A quarter of the way into the season, and there have been many suprise teams and a few dissapointing ones. My rankings are not on these player’s overall careers, just this season. So if you’re shocked that I have a 3rd year player ahead of Tom Brady, it’s not because I believe Brady is an inferior player, it’s just that he may have had a slow start to 2013. It’s also not a complete reflection of the team: No one is arguing that Jacksonville isn’t the worst team, but Blaine Gabbert might not be the worst quarterback.
32. Mike Glennon, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Well, the rookie 3rd round pick played in his first NFL game this weekend after coach Greg Schiano benched Josh Freeman, who was once projected to be Tampa Bay’s franchise quarterback. Glennon certainly didn’t impress, and he made a critical mistake in throwing a late interceptionto Patrick Peterson. The sample size is really too small to say anything more.
31. Blaine Gabbert, Jacksonville Jaguars.
He had an awful Week 1 and all Chad Henne had to do was play competent to take the starting job, and he failed to do that. Gabbert is certainley not good, but he’s been hurt from some boneheaded plays from his wide receivers and an O-line with more holes than a slice of swiss cheese. Gabbert is not as bad as his stats, but he hasn’t played very well either.
30. Christian Ponder, Minnesota Vikings.
According to coach Leslie Fraizer, he’s the starter. That might change after Matt Cassel led the Vikings to their first victory this season and got the endorsement of Adrian Peterson. Ponder’s main job consists of handing the ball off and he has passed poorly en route to 2 td’s and 5 interceptions.
29. Geno Smith, New York Jets.
The Jets went ahead with Geno as their starting QB despite him cleary not being ready. To be fair, he hasn’t been horrible and has the Jets sitting at .500, which is more than Mark Sanchez could say last year. There have been rookie mistakes and there is certainly room for improvement, but he should give Jets fans hope, and quite frankly I’m sure they’d take pretty much anyone over Sanchez at this point.
28. Brian Hoyer, Cleveland Browns.
Hoyer led the Browns to 2 wins over 2012 playoff teams, and that is an encouraging sign. However, he did throw 3 picks in his first game and he’s only played in 2 games this year. Hoyer is a much better option than Brandon Weeden, but Hoyer needs to go up against a team with an elite pass rush and deliver consistently to move up on my list.
27. EJ Manuel, Buffalo Bills.
EJ was the first quarterback taken in this year’s draft, and last week he led the Bills to a win over the defending Super Bowl champion Ravens. His 3 fumbles are concerning, but he’s been the most impressive rookie QB this year and looks to be a solid player the Bills can build around.
26. Sam Bradford, St. Louis Rams.
I don’t believe Bradford is a draft bust. He excelsin a high-tempo offense and that is not what the Rams are running. He has no run game to support him, and until the Rams decide to build their system around him, he’s going to have a tough go of it in St. Louis after his sucessful rookie season. One knock on him is his injury history, and his consistency is a bit worrying.
25. Joe Flacco, Baltimore Ravens.
Despite being at the helm of the Super Bowl Champions last season, Flacco is one of the most overrated quarterbacks in my opinion. He threw 5 interceptions last week in a losing effort to a Bills defense missing it’s best secondary player and one of the best safeties in the league in Jarius Byrd. Flacco has thrown too many picks this year and is struggling without Anquan Boldin and Ray RIce. Rice had just 5 carries last week and should return to form, but Boldin has gone to San Francisco. Flacco is a slightly above average quarterback, nothing more.
24. Carson Palmer, Arizona Cardinals.
The Cardinals have a Hall of Fame wide receiver in Larrry Fitzgerald and an exciting young receiver in Micheal Floyd playing opposite him, yet Palmer has failed to produce like they had hoped. Palmer hasn’t been the same since he hurt his elbow when he was with Cininnati. Despite his early struggles, Palmer is still a much better option than anyone Arizona has employed since the departure of Kurt Warner.
23. Andy Dalton, Cincinnati Bengals.
Dalton was impressive as a rookie and is clearly the Bengals quarterback of the future, yet he has struggled a little bit this season. His ceiling projects to a solid QB but not a spectacular one. Dalton has an elite receiver in AJ Green but fails to conncect with him at times and struggles on the deep ball. He has been fairly solid with turnovers and will not be a liability at quarterback.
22. Matt Schuab, Houston Texans.
Schuab works with an incredible receiving corps and had a solid first half in the game against Seattle, resulting in a 17 point lead at halftime. But the second half was terrible. They allowed Seattle to catch up and in a situation where they should have been playing it safe, Schuab threw a pick 6 to Richard Sherman to tie the game up, and they lost it in overtime. The game was concerning to the Texans coaching staff, and the considerable talent on this team may be wasted if they continue to blow big leads.
21. Terelle Pryor, Raiders.
I may have Pryor ranked a bit higher than he should be here, but he showed some real poise in his first game against the Colts and has shown he is the fastest quarterback in the NFL. Pryor has had some growing pains, as expected, but has a bright future.
20. Robert Griffin the third, Washington Redskins.
RG3 has looked like a differnt player out there, and not in a good way. By forbidding him to run, coaches have limited a huge part of his game. He looks timid and looks like he is still unsure about his surgically repaired knee. His throwing motion is worse, but not so much that it isn’t correctable. Hopefully he will figure it out as he gets more comfortable with his Roboknee.
19. Jake Locker, Tenesee Titans.
Locker was finally starting to play into his potential when he went down last week with what looked like a gruesome hip injury. Thankfully the injury wasn’t season ending, and he could be back in 4-6 weeks. Locker was playing well and is a talented young QB that will be intergral to this improving Titans team.
18. Eli Manning, New York Giants.
The 0-4 start by the Giants is not Eli’s fault. Offensive Coordinator Kevin Gilbride needs to go and he’s had absolutely no help in the running game. David Wilson and Da’Rel Scott have both been so bad that they felt it was necessary to sign an over-the-hill Brandon Jacobs. Eli was leading a nice drive in week 1 when an easily catchable pass bounced off Scott’s hands and was picked off for a touchdown. The O-line has been awful, but when you start a weak 0-4 and get beat down by the Panthers, the quarterback has to take some blame. Eli needs to cut down on his interceptions, which seems to be said every year.
17. Ben Rothliesberger, Pittsburg Steelers.
Rothliesberger is pretty much the only decent player the Steelers have right now, though rookie running back Le’Veon Bell looked good against the Vikings. Big Ben was leading a nice drive when he was sacked by Jared Allen to seal the game. Things don’t look good in Pittsburg this year, but don’t look to Rothliesberger as a scapegoat.
16. Michael Vick, Philedaphia Eagles.
Vick looked great Week 1 in Chip Kelly’s new offense, but has been mediocre since. Vick has managed to keep turnovers to a minimum, and needs to continue to do so if the Eagles want to compete in the NFC East.
15. Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys.
Romo has really played well this year, despite the 2-2 record. Romo is off to his best start of his career and could turn in the best year of his career if he stays healthy. Dez Bryant is a top receiver in the league and Jason Witten is an elite tight end, giving Romo plenty of offensive weapons to work with.
14. Ryan Tannehill, Miami Dolphins.
One of the biggest suprises this year has been the Dolphins and there rise to prominence. They acquired elite WR Mike Wallace and Tannehill has thrived in the new offense. He showed flashes of his considerable potential last year but he has improved his decision making and accuracy this year, and is really coming along nicely into a franchise Quarterback. He folded a little bit against the Saints, but how he comes back will be an indication of the type of player he really is.
13. Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers.
Newton’s been mostly mistake free but he is being limited by head coach Ron Rivera, who is making a huge mistake in doing so. Newton needs to be set free and needs to lead this young Carolina team that is growing into a contender. Newton’s considerable talent and improvement on turnovers lands him this spot.
12. Jay Cutler, Chicago Bears.
Cutler was playing very well this year during Chicago’s 3-0 start, but stumbled a bit with 3 interceptions against the Lions. Cutler is the x factor in this Chicago offense, and if he plays well the Bears are poised to make a deep playoff run.
11. Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions
Stafford is playing football at a high level and looks crisp and accurate with his passes. This is the quarterback Detroit was hoping for when they drafted him.
10. Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts.
Luck has continued to play well in his second year. He beat up on a bad Jaguars team but also led the Colts on an impressive win over the 49ers, outplaying Colin Kaepernick. Luck has the arm strength, moblity in the pocket, accuracy, and decision making to be an all time great.
9. Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers.
This season we’ve seen good Kap and bad Kap. Good Kap was the one that diced up the Packers defense through the air, and converted on several key 3rd downs and passed well on his way to a 35-11 win. Then there is bad Kap, who got schooled by the Colts and Seahawks defense, and was outclassed by Russel Wilson. Hopefully last weeks game is an indication of what CK7 is all about.
8. Russel Wilson, Seattle Seahawks.
Russel Wilson beat the Texans on the ground last week and beat the 49ers two weeks before that in the air. One of the premeir dual threat QB’s in the league, Wilson is a nightmare for opposing defenses. His modest passing numbers are the only reason he is not ranked higher.
7. Alex Smith, Kansas City Chiefs.
KC brought him in to play mistake free football, and although his turnovers last week were concerning, Kansas City has already doubled their win total from last year and they look to be for real, and a lot of that is thanks to Alex.
6. Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons.
The Falcons are not the same as last year, but Ryan continues to make his push to be one of the elite QB’s in the league with his play this year.
5. Phillip Rivers, San Diego Chargers.
Rivers was considered as the nex QB to make the leap to elite a few short years ago, but interceptions and poor timing led to a 2 year fall off. Rivers improved his release time and accuracy, and is playing like a stud so far this season.
4. Tom Brady, New England Patriots.
It’s crazy to think how bad this team would be without him. He’s been hurt by drops and inexperienced receivers. Brady is carrying this team, and he showed he still has it by out dueling Matt Ryan last week.
3. Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers.
Rodgers had a suprising amount of trouble in a 34-30 loss to Cincinnati, but he played excellent football in his previous 2 games before that, and with his track record, be assured it’s just a blip in the radar.
2. Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints.
In any other year, Brees would top this list. He is absolutley decimating defenses, picking them apart with ease. It feels like could thread the football through a pinhole right now.
1. Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos.
Well, Peyton Manning is in the discussion for greates quarterback of all time, and it seems he only gets better with age. 16 tds, no picks through 4 games. That’s the most touchdowns through the first 4 games and the most touchdowns without an interception in NFL history. At his current pace, he would rewrite the record books in almost every passing category. Peyton Manning could be turning in the greatest season from a quarterback ever.