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Ravens mail: Flacco's projected numbers

8/29/2014

Time to click open our Twitter mailbag ...

@jamisonhensley: For all of Joe Flacco's inconsistency during the season, his end-of-the-year numbers have been fairly consistent. Remove last year's dreadful performance and he's produced close to 22 touchdowns and 11 interceptions every season from 2009 to 2012. Flacco should duplicate those numbers with the addition of wide receiver Steve Smith and the return of tight end Dennis Pitta. The biggest improvement with Flacco this year will be his completion percentage. In his first season under new offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak, Flacco will throw more shorter and intermediate passes. He won't force the ball deep as much as last year. Flacco hasn't completed more than 60 percent of his passes since 2010. That should change based on Kubiak's play-calling. Matt Schaub completed 64.6 percent of his throws in seven seasons with Kubiak. This has to be the target for Flacco this year.



@jamisonhensley: Odds are low. The Ravens won't trade Tyrod Taylor because there wouldn't be much interest in him from other teams, and they don't have anyone to replace him as the backup quarterback. Rookie sixth-round pick Keith Wenning isn't ready to be the No. 2 quarterback. Where the Ravens have trade value is at wide receiver and linebacker. Another team could be interested in someone like wide receiver Deonte Thompson or inside linebacker Josh Bynes. That's where the Ravens could strike a trade to add depth at cornerback or offensive tackle.



@jamisonhensley: No spoiler alert here. My predictions for ESPN won't appear on the site until Friday. But here's a note to remember: The Ravens are 4-0 when they open the season at home under coach John Harbaugh. The last time the Ravens lost a Week 1 game at home was 2005, when the starting quarterback was Kyle Boller.



@jamisonhensley: I wouldn't rule out the Ravens keeping seven wide receivers, but I would be surprised if they did so. By keeping a seventh receiver, the Ravens would have to go lighter at cornerback, safety or linebacker. I don't see the Ravens keeping both Michael Campanaro and Thompson because they're essentially the same player. They're slot receivers whose only impact on special teams is as a returner. Kamar Aiken has an edge because he can play on cover and return teams. The No. 5 wide receiver won't be asked to play many reps on offense. His primary role is to be a core special-teams player.



@jamisonhensley: Ravens coach John Harbaugh referred to Jackson as one of his three top corners a week ago. The only way that would change is if Jackson's ankle isn't strong enough by the opener or if the Ravens want to ease him back. Under those scenarios, the Ravens' options would be using rookie Terrence Brooks, Chykie Brown or recently signed Derek Cox in that role. Cox was impressive in covering the slot receiver in the preseason finale, although his work came against backups (so he should stand out). Whoever is the Ravens' No. 3 corner this year, it will be a big drop-off from last year, when the Ravens went with Corey Graham.