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Joe Flacco drawing interest from desperate QB-needy AFC team

Joe Flacco
Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

When Deshaun Watson suffered a season-ending injury, the Cleveland Browns added Joe Flacco to the practice squad. Once it became evident that Dorian Thompson-Robinson wouldn’t be able to start due to a concussion, the Browns had no choice but to start Flacco just two weeks after signing the then-38-year-old QB.

Starting five of the team’s next six games, Flacco put the Browns on his back on his way to leading Cleveland to the playoffs. Now, the former Super Bowl winning QB is set for unrestricted free agency, where the 39-year-old is expected to receive interest from a number of teams.

Related: 5 best Kirk Cousins free agency landing spots if Minnesota Vikings jump ship

New England Patriots could turn to Joe Flacco + rookie QB

new england patriots
Credit: Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports

Despite his advanced age, Joe Flacco shouldn’t have any trouble signing a new contract in 2024, and chances are, it won’t be with the Browns as Deshaun Watson is set to reclaim the starting job. But teams learned the importance of having a competent QB who can produce at a moment’s notice, and Flacco showed plenty capable last season despite having no previous chemistry with his receivers until being signed.

While Flacco is likely to receive interest from several teams, Browns insider Mary Kay Cabot is already hearing that the Patriots are interested in signing Flacco.

“I’m hearing the Patriots are interested in possibly signing Flacco as a bridge starter to help mentor a rookie quarterback if they select one at No. 3 overall, such as North Carolina’s Drake Maye. Former Browns offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt — now in that role in New England — is helping to lead the charge on the quarterback search, and knows as well as anyone that Flacco has plenty left in the tank even though he turned 39 on Jan. 16.”

Cleveland’s Mary Kay Cabot on New England Patriots’ interest in Joe Flacco

Flacco and the Patriots could very well be a good fit. Yet, Cabot’s sources also indicate that the NFL’s Comeback Player of the Year “has his sights set on a starting role.”

With several teams expected to be in the market for a new QB this offseason, we’ll see if Flacco gets his wish when free agency opens on March 13. But if it comes with the Patriots, he may find himself in a competition with a first-round rookie.

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