The Cleveland Browns made an anticipated move official by signing ex-Baltimore Ravens Super Bowl champion quarterback Joe Flacco to their Practice Squad on Monday, Nov. 20. The conclusive report came from ESPN’s Adam Schefter late Sunday, confirming the agreement after Flacco’s workout with the team last Friday initially ended without a deal. However, as widely expected, both sides eventually reached an agreement on the signing.
Former Ravens’ QB and Super Bowl MVP Joe Flacco is signing with the Cleveland Browns’ practice squad, per me and @FieldYates. It is expected that Flacco will get promoted to active roster. Flacco will give the Browns added QB depth in light of Deshaun Watson’s season-ending… pic.twitter.com/SPDlTucPbW— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 20, 2023
Acquiring Flacco is viewed as a subtle addition primarily aimed at offering seasoned guidance to aid rookie quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson. Mary Kay Cabot from Cleveland.com highlights Flacco’s role as a mentor to the rookie, supporting him from the sidelines. Cabot specifies that Flacco is set to join the Practice Squad on Monday in this mentoring capacity, while also being ready to step in if required on the field.
Following Deshaun Watson’s unfortunate season-ending shoulder fracture in Week 10, Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski favored Thompson-Robinson over P.J. Walker for their showdown with the Steelers in the divisional matchup on Sunday.
Thompson-Robinson’s leadership guided the team to a hard-fought 13–10 victory against the Pittsburgh Steelers, but it became evident that the Browns needed a reliable QB3 who could potentially step in should Thompson-Robinson struggle.
Reports surfaced on Sunday highlighting concerns about the young quarterback’s limited downfield passing game, intensifying the importance of signing Flacco for the Browns. This move seems crucial, particularly if Thompson-Robinson’s progress hits a roadblock or if the Browns advance to the postseason, requiring an experienced veteran at the helm.
Flacco, who started four games for the New York Jets last season, boasts nine victories as a starter at Cleveland Browns Stadium. His familiarity with the AFC North, stemming from his tenure with the Baltimore Ravens, could be a valuable asset in this new chapter.
While Flacco adapts to the Browns’ offensive system, Thompson-Robinson is anticipated to maintain his starting position. The team’s primary focus remains on the rookie’s development, although Flacco might assume the Browns’ starting role for the remainder of the season, including both regular and post-season games.
A former Baltimore Raven for 11 seasons, Flacco earned Super Bowl MVP honors in 2012 before moving on to the Denver Broncos and New York Jets.
Watching Flacco don the Browns jersey will certainly be an unusual sight. His impressive career statistics speak volumes, boasting a 61.6% completion rate, 42,320 yards, 232 touchdowns, and 147 interceptions, making his addition a welcomed prospect for the team.