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Saturday, September 17, 2011
Discussing ceilings for Flacco and McCoy

By Jamison Hensley

Trent Dilfer, the Super Bowl winning quarterback for the Ravens who later played for the Browns, offered some interesting insight when he evaluated the "ceilings" for NFL quarterbacks under the age of 27. In his Insider piece, Dilfer ranked the Ravens' Joe Flacco and the Browns' Colt McCoy near the bottom of his top-8 list. His rankings are based on how high a quarterback can ascend and not necessarily where they rank today.

Some might say Flacco has nearly reached his ceiling, but he has already shown more growth this year than last. He is throwing over the middle instead of exclusively outside the numbers. With better pass protection, Flacco is displaying more patience in going through his progressions. All of that improvement allowed him to get over his latest career hurdle -- beating Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.

It's more difficult to give a fair evaluation of McCoy because he lacks the supporting cast. Unlike Flacco, McCoy doesn't have the experience at wide receiver or the talent along the offensive line, especially with injured left guard Eric Steinbach out for the season and right tackle Tony Pashos sidelined. Cleveland's growing pains as a team could cloud the evaluation of McCoy.

Dilfer mentioned Bengals rookie Andy Dalton but placed him in the "Too Soon to Tell" category.