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Friday, January 25, 2013
Flacco disagrees with Lewis on this issue

By Jamison Hensley

OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis said quarterback Joe Flacco has to "come out of his quiet shell" to become the next leader of the Ravens.

Asked about Lewis' comments, Flacco responded, "I don’t know if I agree with it. There are a lot of different ways to lead, and the bottom line is it’s about motivating your players to get the best out of them and having belief that you can go do it in any situation. And Ray does a great job of that in his own way, and I don’t know if there’s anybody quite like him in that category. So, in an effort to do something along the lines of the way he does it would be a mistake, just because I don’t think you’re going to live up to it."

Some believed Lewis had passed the torch to Flacco to become the team's next leader before the AFC divisional playoff game in Denver. Lewis told Flacco coming out of the tunnel that he was "the general, lead us to victory."

But Lewis said Thursday that he doesn't know who will turn into the next leader for the Ravens.

"There are a lot of guys that can definitely step in that role," Lewis said. "But, I think Joe has a great advantage and head start to really becoming that next true, true leader. He kind of has to come out of his quiet shell a little bit. But outside of that, Joe is definitely a great candidate for it.”

Whether he needs to be more vocal or not, Flacco has led the Ravens to the Super Bowl, throwing eight touchdowns and no interceptions in the playoffs. Has his strong play quieted the naysayers?

“I really don’t care,” Flacco said. “There are guys out there that have got to make a living on hating on somebody. If that’s going to be me, then I plan on being around for a while. And if you want to continue to do it, I’ll be here.”