Joe Flacco is back.
The former Ravens quarterback took over for the New York Jets late in the first quarter in Thursday night’s game against the Denver Broncos after starter Sam Darnold was injured and left the game.
Darnold was thrown to the ground while being sacked by linebacker A.J. Johnson and appeared to hurt his shoulder or collarbone. He went into the locker room for further evaluation, but returned early in the second quarter.
In relief, Flacco completed both of his passes for 16 yards, including an 11-yard checkdown on third-and-30, but the offense failed to get a first down under his direction.
Flacco was active for the first time all season Thursday after having offseason neck surgery. He signed a one-year, $1.5 million deal with the Jets in May after being released by the Broncos in March. He started eight games in Denver last season, completing 65.3% of his passes and averaging 227.8 yards per game with six touchdowns and five interceptions before being placed on injured reserve with a herniated disk in his neck. Broncos second-round draft pick Drew Lock replaced Flacco and started the first two games of this season before suffering a shoulder injury against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Second-year pro Brett Rypien, the nephew of former Washington quarterback and Super Bowl XXVI Most Valuable Player Mark Rypien, started Thursday for Denver.
The Broncos acquired Flacco before the 2019 season for a fourth-round draft pick. Flacco started 163 regular-season games for the Ravens, passing for 38,245 yards, 212 touchdowns and 136 interceptions, and was named MVP of Super Bowl XLVII. He was injured midway through the 2018 season and ultimately lost his job to Lamar Jackson, a rookie who helped lead the team to its first playoff appearance since 2014 and first AFC North title since 2012.