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Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco cleared after concussion, expected to start Sunday

The Associated Press
  • Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco is expected to start Sunday vs. the Tennessee Titans.
  • Flacco has been cleared after suffering a concussion in the team's last game vs. Miami.

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco has recovered from the concussion he sustained last week and expects to start Sunday against the Tennessee Titans.

“I feel real good, definitely ready to go,” he said after Wednesday’s practice

Flacco practiced with the team after being cleared of concussion protocol. The injury occurred in the first half of Baltimore’s 40-0 win over Miami on Thursday night.

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco is expected to play Sunday against the Tennessee Titans.

The recovery process began soon after that.

“To be honest with you, I felt pretty normal pretty quickly,” Flacco said. “It definitely is a good thing it was a Thursday night, just to give me time to rest on the weekend, kind of take it easy and not have to get ramped back up quicker than I wanted to.”

The concussion occurred when Flacco took a shot to the head from Dolphins linebacker Kiko Alonso while sliding to the ground at the end of an impromptu run.

“I remember getting hit, standing up and looking down at my chinstrap,” Flacco said. “I’m a little foggy about a couple things after that, but once I had time to sit down and gather my thoughts a little bit I felt pretty good.”

The NFL has said Alonso will not be suspended for the hit, which drew a 15-yard penalty for unnecessary roughness.

In addition to being concussed, Flacco received a gash near his ear that required stitches.

“I’ve never had anything happen like that before. Never even had a mild concussion or anything like that,” Flacco said. “I think I’ve been pretty fortunate, honestly, to not have to deal with anything like this. And even in this situation I feel pretty fortunate. I feel like it could have been a lot worse.”

It was bad enough to convince him that the best course of action was to leave the field, and he knew immediately that he wasn’t coming back.

“A lot of times I’d probably be telling people to go back to the bench and let me stay out there,” he said. “I remember thinking to myself when I got up and looked down, ‘I’m a little bit more messed up than normal. Just do what they tell you to do and get off the field.’”

Years ago, Flacco might have had a different approach.

“If this was high school, I would probably have sat on the bench and gathered myself for a couple of minutes, then go back out there and play defense,” he said.

Teammate Terrell Suggs was delighted to see the quarterback back on the field.

“We know Joe is tough,” the veteran linebacker said. “He’s taken hits before; I don’t think any like that, to the dome. But he was able to shake it off.”

Baltimore (4-4) will go on a bye after Sunday’s game against the Titans (4-3).