The biggest story this week is not the one about the Super Bowl quarterback who could be a free agent next month.


NEW ORLEANS - Joe Flacco's expiring contract doesn't seem to concern anyone with the Baltimore Ravens, including the quarterback himself.

Flacco practically shrugged Thursday when asked about potentially being a free agent after the Ravens play the San Francisco 49ers in the Super Bowl.

The fifth-year pro and only quarterback to win a playoff game in each of his first five seasons could not reach a deal with the team before 2012 kicked off. He could be on the market in March, although the Ravens could franchise-tag him at about $14.6 million for next year.

Coach John Harbaugh says the uncertain contract status for the only quarterback to win six road playoff games "has been amazingly unchallenging." And Flacco calls it "a good problem to have."

Packers' Driver to retire

Donald Driver, the Packers' all-time leading receiver, announced his retirement Thursday morning, with a public ceremony planned for Feb. 6 at the Lambeau Field Atrium.

"I've always said I never want to wear another uniform. I've always said that I owe it to the fans to retire as a Packer," Driver said. "I feel like I can still play, but if I can't play for my organization, then I can't play for anyone else."

Driver finished his 14-year career as Green Bay's all-time leader in yards receiving (10,137 yards), catches (743) and 1,000-yard seasons (seven) and is third behind Don Hutson and Sterling Sharpe with 61 touchdown receptions. Driver was a four-time Pro Bowler and Green Bay's MVP in 2002.

"All 14 years. Every day," Driver said in an interview on ESPN's "Mike & Mike" when asked what his favorite memory is. "That's a special place to walk out of, and that's something I'll never forget."

Neurologists on sideline?

NFL general counsel Jeff Pash says he expects independent neurological consultants to be on sidelines during games next season to help diagnose and treat concussions.

Speaking at a pre-Super Bowl news conference Thursday, Pash explained that the doctors would not be paid by the clubs or hired as team physicians. There could be more than one neurologist assigned to each team to divide home and road games.

Pash said "details need to be worked through" with the NFL Players Association.