The League

Doug Farrar
Writer

Doug Farrar

A FootballOutsiders.com staff writer

All Quarterbacks Need Help

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It's great that Matt Ryan and Joe Flacco have "led" their teams to 6-3 records - these are the highest won-loss records through the first nine games for any rookie quarterbacks in NFL history. But before we hold the coronation and assume that this changes the landscape for rookie quarterbacks forever, consider that the all-time rookie W-L runners-up through nine games are Kyle Boller (who Flacco replaced) and Rick Mirer (who might be bagging groceries at the Hy-Vee where Kurt Warner used to work, were it not for that NFL pension).

Ryan and Flacco seem to be prodigies, there's no question. But it's always - ALWAYS - about putting a quarterback in the right situation to win. Ryan entered a team that spent big on its running game and re-focused on its offensive line. Flacco has a very solid line in front of him, and rookie back Ray Rice has star potential. Neither player has multiple aerial targets at a Pro Bowl level just yet, though Ryan and Roddy White have established a real bond.

In the end, it's still just as much about what the quarterback has around him. Whether that quarterback is an impressive rookie or a Hall-of-Fame veteran with a bunch of Super Bowl rings, that's how it will always be.

By Doug Farrar  |  November 11, 2008; 12:07 PM ET  | Category:  NFL Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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