This post reflects exactly what I think and feel about Joe Flacco, and I've been saying the same thing for over a year now.The "same mistakes" seem to boil down to 1) pocket presence and 2) progressions. Let's look at them shall we?
1) Flacco doesn't seem to care if he takes a sack because more often that not, he has made it up in a subsequent play. But let's look at WHY. How many times do we see a set of vanilla patterns where NO receiver comes open? Many of us fans have complained about the lack of creative route planning.
Let me give an example. Two wideouts and a TE to the right. At the snap, two of the three run fly patterns and the third runs a crossing route. Flacco fakes a handoff to Rice and runs the bootleg to his right. When the defender rushes him, Flacco tosses to Leach for an easy 8-10 yards. Where is the deep out route on this play? That would both put pressure on the guy who covers Leach but also would open up another option for Flacco another 15 yards downfield!
Another example (referenced by Bucky Brooks' article), why is Torrey Smith not given shallow crossing routes? On 3 of 4 plays, the defender might tackle Smith limiting the play to a gain of 5-10 yards. But oh that fourth play - he just might elude that first tackle and pick up another 25-35 yards!
2) Progressions - If no one is open and the defense has a spy on the checkdown receiver, Tom Brady is going to be sacked. Peyton Manning too. You can put any name you want and that QB will go down. The difference is those aforementioned QBs were looking at receivers running routes that were the result of creative route planning and seem to have someone open at all times!
Watching games this year, how many times did we see a balanced formation: 1 WR split from each end of the line and 1 or 2 TEs? Sorry folks, but I and several of you fellow fans could cover those routes! Why is Brady so great? Why is Mannning so great? Why is Flacco deemed "jury still out?" Does Brady or Manning have a better arm? Puhleeeese! If you look at the tools, they are all VERY similar, but the difference is that each of these QBs has led offenses that utilize all the tricks of the trace (rubs, bunch formations, etc.) - anything to get at least one guy OPEN.