One of the most decorated eras in Baltimore Ravens history looks like it's coming to an end.
The partnership of John Harbaugh and Joe Flacco has been one of the most consistent coach-quarterback duos over the last 11 seasons. But Harbaugh's seat is hotter than it's ever been, and Flacco's inconsistency has been compounded by injury, as his hip is hurting and may make him miss Baltimore's pivotal post-bye matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Ravens’ QB Joe Flacco has an injured hip that has his status for next Sunday’s game against Bengals in question, as @jeffzrebiec reported.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 9, 2018
Flacco's injury, plus a three-game losing streak, opens the door for the next era of Ravens football: enter Lamar Jackson.
The man whom the Ravens traded back into the first round to select with the 32nd overall pick in this year's draft has been knocking on the door since his arrival in Baltimore, with his electrifying athleticism and Flacco's big contract and inefficiency making Ravens fans ask the question, "when's Lamar time?" Well, Lamar time might be coming as early as next week: the Ravens are preparing to make the Flacco-to-Jackson transition "soon," according to NFL insider Jay Glazer.
As a lifelong Ravens fan and an admitted Joe Flacco stan, this is hard to admit, but the time might have come to close the book on the Flacco era. As much as I'd love Joe to stay and form a two-headed monster with Jackson in 2019, his contract has been a major hindrance to this team since he signed it in 2013. And with the opportunity to cut or trade Flacco at a minimal loss after this season, it could be best of everyone to find Flacco a new home in 2019...maybe the Jets?
Whatever happens with Joe after this season, one thing is clear: it's time to prepare ourselves for the Lamar Jackson era in Baltimore.