There are a few different meanings of "overrated" being thrown around in here.
First, there's the "overrated" that comes with being a superstar on the downslope of your career. You can argue that Matt Birk, Ray Lewis, and Ed Reed all show signs of this. They are not the players they once were, but I hardly think that's worth calling them overrated... "declined" would be a better term. Every one of them is worth their starting position... if not necessarily the superstar status they've retained through their slow descent.
Second, there's the "overrated" that comes with being known to be great, but when there's still a question of just how great. Ray Rice is a phenomenal player. He gets a lot of flak on here for being called elite when it's a measure of his overall game and not of one defining skill. He's a total package... not the fastest runner or the strongest or the smartest or the best receiver or the best blocker but so good at all of those things that he's better as a whole than everyone else (or most everyone else) in the league. He's not overrated unless you insist he's the very best and you wouldn't take an Adrian Peterson or Arian Foster over him under any circumstances.
Third, there's the "overrated" that is most accurate: being generally credited for being better than you are or EVER were. That's Michael Oher. Oher is not a bad player and we're a better team with him on the field... at right tackle, blocking the second-best pass rusher and being a mauler in the running game. He's hyped up as some awesome LT prototype, but he's really not. He certainly shouldn't be receiving Pro Bowl consideration. He's easily the right answer to this question.
Pollard, Ellerbe, and McClain are not well-known enough to be overrated by anyone other than hardcore Raven fan optimists.
Anquan Boldin could be seen as overrated, but he could more accurately be seen as misused, or perhaps just not being allowed to live up to his full potential. More on that in a moment.
Joe Flacco is not overrated. Very much the opposite. First, there's the four consecutive seasons with playoff wins. That doesn't happen by chance and it sure as hell doesn't happen by virtue of your supporting cast alone, or Kyle Boller would still be quarterbacking here after taking us to multiple Super Bowls. Second, there's the fact that he's done that in his first four seasons, during his growing process. We underrate him because he started off so good that we expected him to become a premium QB soon after, and the weight of our expectations is simply too much. He's not the best quarterback in the league, probably not in the top five... but he's good enough to win with our team and to win a Super Bowl. He came within one drop of us being there this past year. We might get there this year... or we might not. Who knows? But we won't go into a tailspin and fall to 6-10 because of him. Not even without Suggs... not unless a lot more people get hurt or begin to suck.
Joe Flacco is underrated because people see the wins, they see his stats, and they assume that it must not have anything to do with him. Most QBs with those stats are mediocre players on mediocre or bad teams. Joe Flacco has those stats because those are the stats he needs to win. Would you rather see him be Matt Stafford, needing 5000 yards to get a team to 10-6? When we have a lead in the second half, we slow things down, grind out the game, go home with the W. We don't put it up in the air for Joe to get another 100 yards to satisfy his critics. Yeah, sometimes this bites us in the ass... but Joe doesn't call the plays and he certainly isn't given the authority for a wholesale strategic change when he feels the game's momentum turning. And he's had a few bad games along the way, not come through in situations where we needed him to author a comeback or just make something, anything happen to avoid squandering a strong defensive outing. But all that doesn't add up to him being overrated.
Joe Flacco can throw for 4500 yards this season if he has to... but that would mean that our defense is letting up 30+ points a game and we're having to outrace every opposing offense. No one here wants to see that. I just know that if Flacco had a Calvin Johnson or an Andre Johnson or a Roddy White like the other QBs in his perceived tier, we wouldn't be having this same conversation. Anquan Boldin was always excellent... as a #2 receiver. Torrey Smith has breakout potential as a DeSean Jackson or Mike Wallace deep threat, but he's not going to be the complete package. If we're ever able to find that guy for Flacco... watch out.
I didnt say the most dangerous weapon, this should be Rice again, but the best WR. If I take last season and considering the fact that Torrey had a full offseason to work on his technique he could post up pro bowl like numbers. But this is not college where players tend to make huge strides every season,this is the NFL it either goes up or down, we surely have to see what kinda production the other Receivers bring, especially Streeter caught my eye, and of course how Pitta and Dickson(!) will develop. If Smith progresses like last season its hard to believe that he will stay on his current contract which brings me back to Anquan's money.
The only overrated guy I see on this team is Ellerbe. I still can't believe the team decided to keep him under the expensive RFA tender after they resigned McClain. The AFC Championship game was a blueprint on how to exploit Ellerbe every time he's out there in the middle. I never understood the hype that made him a fan favorite and based on how he's paid, a team favorite as well.
@Ellerbe How can he be overrated ? He isnt even a starter on most days, this will be his make or break season. Either way he is no risk for the team as he isnt paid too much. I do think he has the tools to be successful as he is stronger than Mcclain and also possesses similar speed, but his main problem has always been his attitude. Harbaugh doesnt like those guys and he could easily end up in his doghouse again. But again, he does has starter potential. its a win-win situation for us, he will either shine or leave us by the end of August.:thumbup:
Ya, tough 2 mio isnt too much either, how much does Bolding get ? Or Mckinney ? I always saw more talent in him than on McClain, we will see what we get from Ellerbe, McClain played great in Lewis' absence last year but isnt as effective when Lewis plays. Ellerbe is more of a thumber which actually qualifies him more of playing next to him, but again his attitude has to change otherwise he wont last long.
I think big Steve B. Is overrated as an owner. I don't understand how he didn't interview some of the people that hang on this board for the head coaching job. There are people on here that know more then any of the coaches on the Ravens. ;)
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