Baltimore Ravens Quarterback Breakdown: Complete Depth Chart Analysis
Despite the Baltimore Ravens' struggles in 2014, they have one of the most stable quarterback units in the NFL. Though Baltimore has had a lot of success by winning close, physical games with its defense and running game, the QB position will be more important in 2014 now that Gary Kubiak is the offensive coordinator.
He'd previously served as the Houston Texans' head coach from 2006-2013 before being fired this offseason.
Between 2009-2012, the Texans' passing offense ranked seventh, seventh, 10th and 11th. It’s now Kubiak’s job to turn around an offense that ranked 27th in the NFL, according to NumberFire metrics.
That begins with the QB position. Here's a look at the current Ravens depth chart at QB.
Starting QB: Joe Flacco
There's no debating who the Ravens' top signal-caller is. Joe Flacco is a franchise quarterback, and they're paying him as such.
In March of 2013, Flacco signed a six-year, $120.6 million contract that made him the NFL’s highest-paid player. Needless to say, Baltimore is committed to Flacco for the foreseeable future.
Flacco's first year playing under that contact was one to forget, though. He completed just 59 percent of his passes and threw just 19 touchdowns, both of which were the second-lowest marks of his six-year NFL career.
He also threw a career-high 22 interceptions. Not all of this can be solely blamed on Flacco.
The Ravens offensive line was horrendous, allowing 48 sacks in 2013. That was tied with the Buffalo Bills for the fourth-most allowed in the NFL in 2013.
The running game was also nonexistent too often. Running back Ray Rice ran for a career-low 660 yards, and the Ravens rushing offense ranked 30th in the NFL.
Flacco was also without his most reliable pass-catcher in tight end Dennis Pitta, who missed most of the year recovering from a torn hip labrum.
Not only will Pitta be back and healthy in 2014, the the Ravens added wide receiver Steve Smith and tight end Owen Daniels in free agency.
Flacco will be expected to have a bounce-back season this year and remind everyone he deserves to be paid like an elite QB.
Backup: Tyrod Taylor
Taylor has spent his entire NFL career backing up Joe Flacco, and he'll continue to do so in 2014. The dual-threat Taylor has attempted just 35 career passes for 199 yards. He also has rushed 23 times for 139 yards.
The one time Taylor played significant snaps was in Week 17 of the 2012 season vs. the Cincinnati Bengals.
Baltimore had already clinched everything it could in terms of the playoffs, and Taylor was put in the game early to replace Flacco.
Taylor went on to complete 15 of 25 passes for 149 yards and ran for 65 yards and one touchdown on nine attempts.
Taylor looked like a serviceable QB in that game, and though it's just one game, it gave the Ravens comfort in having him as Flacco's backup.
He i set to be a free agent in 2015, though, and he may at least try to see if another team will give him a chance to start.
Taylor isn't getting that opportunity in Baltimore unless Flacco gets injured.
3rd-String/Development QB: Keith Wenning
With the 194th overall pick in the sixth round of the 2014 NFL draft, the Baltimore Ravens drafted Ball State quarterback Keith Wenning.
With Tyrod Taylor's contract set to expire after this year, the Ravens were looking to draft a developmental QB, and that's where Wenning comes in.
A very productive college career at Ball State ended this year after Ball State finished 10-3 and suffered a loss to Arkansas State in the 2014 GoDaddy Bowl. Wenning finished his career with a 27-20 mark in 47 starts.
A four-year starter, Wenning was a two-time captain who threw for 4,148 yards with 35 touchdowns and only seven interceptions as a senior. According to the school's official website, Wenning set school records, in pass completions (1,035), attempts (1,642), passing yards (11,402) and touchdowns (92).
A dual-threat QB, Wenning also had 13 career rushing touchdowns. As of now, he's the only QB on the roster behind Taylor and Joe Flacco, so the odds of him making the 53-man roster are good.
Wenning looks like a solid developmental prospect who could eventually become a nice backup behind Flacco. Depending on how the team handles Taylor heading into 2015 free agency, Wenning could be Flacco's primary backup in the 2015 NFL season.