John Elway Believes Joe Flacco Is Entering His Prime for Broncos at 34 Years Old

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistMarch 14, 2019

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco looks on from the sidelines during the second half of an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Chargers in Carson, Calif., Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018. (AP Photo/Kelvin Kuo)
Kelvin Kuo/Associated Press

The Baltimore Ravens may believe Joe Flacco's best days are behind him, but John Elway and the Denver Broncos swear the veteran quarterback still has plenty of football left in him. 

Elway told NFL Network's James Palmer recently that the 34-year-old Flacco is just entering his prime:

James Palmer @JamesPalmerTV

Why Joe Flacco? I asked John Elway that very question yesterday. Here’s what he told me. https://t.co/hPiO5Z5u6o

Denver officially acquired Flacco from Baltimore on Wednesday in exchange for a 2019 fourth-round pick.

Elway and Co. have been searching for stability at the quarterback position ever since Peyton Manning retired following the 2015 season. In the three seasons since, they have had a revolving door featuring Trevor Siemian, Paxton Lynch, Brock Osweiler and Case Keenum under center.

The addition of Flacco brings a former Super Bowl MVP to town—and possibly the answer to the team's quarterback woes.

Flacco has piled up more than 38,000 yards and 212 touchdowns in his 11-year career. But since leading the Ravens to the Lombardi Trophy in 2012, he has had a rough go of it. He has 110 touchdowns to 80 interceptions during that span, and he has thrown for more than 20 touchdowns just once in the last six seasons.

Meanwhile, he is coming off a season in which he completed 61.2 percent of his passes for a career-low 2,465 yards, 12 touchdowns and six interceptions in nine games. A midseason hip injury sidelined him and ultimately cost him his job in Baltimore, as rookie Lamar Jackson rallied the Ravens to the postseason.

As Pro Football Focus noted, Flacco does not appear to be much of an upgrade over Keenum from a numbers standpoint:

With a new coaching staff, Elway believes Flacco could excel in a new system.

It's fairly low-risk for the Broncos regardless, though. As Palmer noted, Flacco is not owed any guaranteed money after 2019, meaning the team can cut ties with him at any point.