Dad's Lame Excuse for Missing Son's Birth Won't Make Him Father of the Year -- Like, Ever

Rant 90

Joe FlaccoYesterday, as Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco was getting ready to take to the field for the big game, he got a call. His wife had just given birth to their second child, a son, in a New Jersey hospital.

Rather than throwing off his pads and racing to her side to meet his flesh and blood, however, he kept them on. Then he took to the field and led his team to victory over the Cleveland Browns ... while his wife and son remained in the hospital.

I really don't like to judge other parents' decisions when it comes to how they want to bring their baby into the world, but something about this case really rubs me the wrong way. He wasn't saving lives or fighting overseas for our country -- he was playing football. I mean, it wasn't even the Super Bowl or some kind of once-in-a-lifetime event. For something like that, I might have a little more empathy, but to miss the birth of your child for a regular old Sunday football game? I don't think I'd be cheering my husband for such a move ... at all.

He knew that morning that she was in labor, so he could have headed home to her then. But he didn't. According to the Baltimore Sun, he even joked to his coach that he was going to leave and go to his wife. Coach John Harbaugh told the paper:

I'm so glad he didn't do it. He would have had me hook, line, and sinker and in the boat. To play with that on your mind, I think obviously says a lot, and we appreciated that.

Why is that a joke? And you have to wonder how much his son is going to appreciate the fact some day when he learns his dad chose football over his birth.

Earlier this year, golfer Hunter Mahan was close to winning $1 million in a golf tournament, and he walked away for the birth of his child. He was praised for having his priorities in the right place. As for Flacco, his choice definitely raises questions about where his priorities may lie.

Do you think he should have left the game to attend his son's birth?


Image via Baltimore Ravens

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nonmember avatar krelia

He's contracted and paid many many millions of's not even remotely like the golfer winning a tournament...

nonmember avatar Pam

Joe Flacco is the highest paid quarterback in the NFL, totaling $120 million over the next 6 years. With a salary that high, I am not surprised he chose to play the game. His family, his contract, his decision.

keelh... keelhaulrose

Did you think, perhaps, that he stayed with his wife's blessing? That she told him it was okay for him to carry on with the game?

Quarterback is a very crucial position on a football team, and while there have been some excellent second stringers, often a replacement will be the difference between a win and a loss. You get sixteen games to make the playoffs (and defend a title). One loss keeps several teams out of the playoffs every year, and there's monetary incentives to make it to the post season. When your job involves getting hit every week and you can have a career ending injury at any moment money is a consideration.

ashjo85 ashjo85

I think that's a private decision between him and his wife, and not of any of our business. This two parents all in at the birth concept is fairly new anyway. Up til the mid 20th century, fathers were NEVER present for the birth of a child. It's not a character statement.

And that child won't give one hoot that his dad wasn't in the hospital. In fact, it's probably a cool story that his dad won a football game for him on his birthday!


You may have to duck Julie--there's a football whizzing & spinning towards your head.

If a football game is on and I ask my husband a question [any kind of question]--his answer is Football.american football

just1... just1morein14

As keelhaulrose mentioned, maybe he stayed and played the game with the blessing of his wife. We dont know how she felt about him being at his game instead of at the hospital. Besides Im a huge football fan so if my dad was a QB in the NFL and won a game the night I was born I'd just think that was freaking awesome! 

Crystal Weber

This wasn't just some good ol high school boys getting together to rehash some football memories.  This was his JOB!!!  And I can bet you money, his wife told him to stay.  For you to write such a biased article and to even suggest that it was poor parenting onhis part, proves you are an idiot.  

Jasmin Ramos

Blah, I don't care how many millions he is getting paid, as a first time mother of a 1 yr old I don't think ANYTHING is more important than the birth of your child....but whatever, to each his/her own.

jalaz77 jalaz77

Pretty sure the couple talked before she gave birth. Sorry he makes how much a year? I am sure she had plenty of help. My husband wanted to be there for the births but he also doesn't get paid millions of dollars to play ball. It's not the end of the world. Not the first time a dad misses a birth.

lulou lulou

I think it was kind of jerky.  However, Id be interested in how the fantasy sites list anything like this in their pregame notes, P, Q, etc?  Becuase Id at least like to know if it could alter my lineup.

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