Flacco named Super Bowl XLVII MVP

NEW ORLEANS - All those arguments about whether Joe Flacco is an elite quarterback can be put to rest.

Flacco was named Super Bowl XLVII MVP on Sunday after leading the Ravens to a big lead they never relinquished, even though the had to survive a late rally.

“It hasn’t sunk in yet,” Flacco said of winning the Super Bowl. “Crazy. Unbelievable. It’s tough to put into words because it really hasn’t sunk in yet. I don’t even think that it has sunk in that we’re here. Pretty cool.”

Flacco went 22-for-33 for 287 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions to finish the playoffs with 11 touchdown throws and no picks. That tied Joe Montana and Kurt Warner for most scoring passes in one postseason.

Making it even more impressive is that Flacco wasn’t intercepted for the last 6 1/2 games after his pick-six at the end of the first half of the Dec. 16 loss to the Broncos. He threw for 15 scores during that time.

“People mentioned that to me, but I never asked them what the number was or anything,” Flacco said. “I just kind of avoided the whole thing, for no reason. It’s pretty cool. Joe Montana has been my favorite quarterback, so to be put anywhere next to him is pretty cool.”

Flacco led the Ravens to a fast start, becoming the sixth quarterback to pass for at least three touchdowns in the first half of a Super Bowl. He threw for exactly three over the first 30 minutes Sunday, helping to give the team a 21-3 lead.

Flacco’s teammates weren’t surprised by his performance, which included a 56-yard touchdown fling to Jacoby Jones.

“Joe has been so huge for us all year, especially this postseason. Nobody deserves this one more than him in this organization,” tight end Dennis Pitta said. “It’s well-deserved. He’s taken a lot of criticism over his career for whatever reason, but we’ve always believed in him.

“We’ve known the kind of player that he is. He’s showed up on the biggest stage and performed. It’s unbelievable. He deserves everything.”

Ravens coach John Harbaugh also had kind words about Flacco.

“Joe is phenomenal,” Harbaugh said. “We are sitting at third-and-six inches. Joe has three play options and Joe decides to throw the fade to Anquan (Boldin). He throws it right on the money and Anquan goes up and makes the play. To me, that shows you he has got guts. He has got the guts of a burglar. He was doing it all night, making plays.”