QB Index, Week 6: Russell Wilson catches Patrick Mahomes!

Print
  • By Ali Bhanpuri, Tom Blair, Gennaro Filice and Dan Parr NFL.com
More Columns >

With Week 5 of the NFL's 100th season in the books, NFL.com editors Ali Bhanpuri, Tom Blair, Gennaro Filice and Dan Parr join forces to update the QB Index -- the hierarchy among starting quarterbacks -- heading into Week 6.

How do we arrive at these rankings? Well, each of the four QB watchers submits a ballot, and through the power of mathematics, we average out the results to arrive at our list. The individual rankings of each writer are listed in every QB blurb. With the season well underway, the rankings now rely more heavily on 2019 production, as opposed to previous performance. That said, old opinions die hard.

NOTE: Up/down arrows reflect movement from the Week 5 QB Index. Rankings reflect each quarterback's standing heading into Week 6 and were locked before "Thursday Night Football." Stats for QBs who play on Thursday night are also locked, to provide better context for those QBs' rankings.

Check out the FedEx Air NFL Players of the Week and cast your vote.

RANK

T-1

Patrick Mahomes

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 2 | Blair: 2 | Filice: 1 | Parr: 1

2019 stats: 5 games | 65.6 pct | 1,831 pass yds | 9.4 ypa | 11 pass TD | 0 INT | 81 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 1 fumble lost

Parr: I'm still riding with the reigning MVP at No. 1, but he's struggled enough in the last couple weeks for a couple of my colleagues to drop him a spot in their rankings. I get it. Their choice for the top spot, Russell Wilson, is killing the game -- he's the only QB who's thrown more TD passes than Mahomes (12 to 11), and he has a better passer rating (126.3 to 114.7) in 2019. Mahomes has the highest career passer rating in NFL history (112.4) and is on pace to throw for a record 5,859 yards, but he looked human on Sunday in a home loss to the Colts, which is not a sight any of us are used to seeing. However, I couldn't bring myself to knock the guy for not living up to the high bar he has set on a night where he aggravated an ankle injury and was playing shorthanded due to injuries on the offensive line and at receiver. Yes, the Chiefs' struggles against man coverage are real (and not spectacular). Mahomes has owned up to them himself. But let's see how successful defenses are with that tactic once Tyreek Hill and Sammy Watkins return from injury.

RANK

T-1

Russell Wilson

1

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 1 | Blair: 1 | Filice: 2 | Parr: 2

2019 stats: 5 games | 73.1 pct | 1,409 pass yds | 9.0 ypa | 12 pass TD | 0 INT | 120 rush yds | 2 rush TD | 1 fumble lost

Parr: If you like good quarterback play but didn't catch Russell Wilson vs. the Rams last Thursday night, do yourself a favor and check out the tape. Watching him dodge three defenders before delivering a 17-yard strike to Tyler Lockett was magical. He made this 25-yard beauty to Will Dissly look effortless. It was a perfect throw, and his 40-yard bomb to D.K. Metcalf for a score was nice, too. Those were all in the second quarter alone. He now leads the league in TD passes (12) and passer rating (126.3). Most impressively, he's taken his "How the heck did he do that?" to a new level this year. Wilson has completed 73.1 percent of his passes this season (second-highest among qualifying QBs), but was only expected to complete 62.5 percent of those passes (eighth-lowest), per Next Gen Stats. His plus-10.5 percent completion percentage above expectation is the highest through the first five weeks of a season for any qualifying QB in the past three years.

RANK

T-3

Tom Brady

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 3 | Blair: 6 | Filice: 4 | Parr: 3

2019 stats: 5 games | 63.1 pct | 1,409 pass yds | 7.5 ypa | 10 pass TD | 2 INT | -3 rush yds | 1 rush TD | 0 fumbles lost

Parr: Like the senior-most engine that could, Brady chugged along and eventually broke through the Washington defense on Sunday after a mini-funk of a game and a half. He was uncharacteristically reckless on his one interception, and the 'Skins did a good job of pressuring him early on. He was sacked four times after being brought down just three times in the first four games combined. Brady went 9 of 11 for 142 yards (a whopping 12.9 yards per pass attempt) and a pair of touchdowns to put the game out of reach in the second half, though. Oh, and the Patriots are the only 5-0 team in the NFL and don't have to face a team currently boasting a winning record until November. Must be nice.

POST-TNF UPDATE: Against the Giants, Brady failed to throw a touchdown pass for the second time in three weeks. But he scored twice on QB sneaks, marking just his third career regular-season game with more than one rushing touchdown -- the last such effort came on Christmas Eve of 2011. He also threw for 300 yards for the fourth time this season, putting him one away from matching his total number of 300-yard games in 2018. And, of course, he moved a rung up the all-time passing yards list, and now sits at No. 2 behind Drew Brees.

RANK

T-3

Carson Wentz

1

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 5 | Blair: 4 | Filice: 3 | Parr: 4

2019 stats: 5 games | 60.3 pct | 1,152 pass yds | 6.6 ypa | 10 pass TD | 2 INT | 59 rush yds | 1 rush TD | 0 fumbles lost

Parr: Wentz wasn't at his best Sunday. He didn't need to be against an inept Jets team that was out of the game by the end of the first quarter. The Philly QB did a nice job of moving in the pocket to avoid pressure, but he overthrew Nelson Agholor on a would-be TD pass midway through the second quarter, completed less than 60 percent of his passes for the fourth straight week and was nowhere near as successful on third down as he had been through the first quarter of the season. This isn't anything to panic over, but ... it's not great. Wentz has been a slow starter this season, with a 54.4 passer rating in the first quarter (second worst, minimum three starts) and a 102.3 rating in the final three frames (seventh best). There won't be any gimmes like the Jets on the schedule for a while, so he's going to have to be a little more crisp out of the gate.

RANK

5

Deshaun Watson

3

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 4 | Blair: 3 | Filice: 6 | Parr: 6

2019 stats: 5 games | 69.2 pct | 1,364 pass yds | 8.6 ypa | 11 pass TD | 1 INT | 122 rush yds | 3 rush TD | 2 fumbles lost

Parr: Great googly moogly. Look what Watson can do when he gets the ball out quickly and has decent protection! For the first time in his career, the Texans QB faced a pressure rate of less than 10 percent, and he responded by putting together one of the best performances you'll see from a QB. Ever. The man had the same number of TD passes and incompletions (five) against the beleaguered Falcons. I'm pretty sure that's good. Only Patrick Mahomes has been better than Watson when throwing from a clean pocket since they entered the league in 2017. It's just that Watson hasn't had such opportunities often enough, which, as he has admitted, is partly his fault for holding the ball for too long. This was just the second time in his career that he went a full game without being sacked. On Sunday, he averaged a career-low 2.43 seconds to throw, per Next Gen Stats, which is about a half second lower than his season average entering the game. So, welcome back to the top five in the QB Index, Deshaun Watson. You most definitely deserve it.

RANK

6

Aaron Rodgers

1

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 6 | Blair: 5 | Filice: 5 | Parr: 5

2019 stats: 5 games | 62.8 pct | 1,307 pass yds | 7.3 ypa | 6 pass TD | 1 INT | 52 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 2 fumbles lost

Parr: Rodgers had his worst game of the season on Sunday in Dallas. With WR1 Davante Adams out with a toe injury, no Packers wide receiver had more than 28 yards. Rodgers didn't throw a TD pass for the first time in 2019. In the fourth quarter, he only threw four passes, completing three for a paltry 18 yards. He lost more yards to sacks (23) than he passed for in that final quarter. And yet ... the Packers still went into Dallas and won by 10 points! That had to be a strange feeling for the future Hall of Famer, not having to put the team on his back and will it to victory. Aaron Jones did that for Green Bay this time around. This is not the all-time great Rodgers that we've seen torture defenses for the past decade, but it's working just fine for the Packers thus far. Weird.

RANK

7

Philip Rivers

1

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 7 | Blair: 7 | Filice: 9 | Parr: 7

2019 stats: 5 games | 68.6 pct | 1,465 pass yds | 7.6 ypa | 7 pass TD | 4 INT | 24 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 1 fumble lost

Parr: Injuries are clearly playing a role in the Chargers' struggles right now, but Rivers was simply not on his game against the Broncos. Too many throws were either well off the money or slightly off. He didn't see Alexander Johnson on his pick in the end zone late in the third quarter. Nothing was happening downfield for the Bolts -- Rivers had 18 pass attempts targeting the backfield (five more than any other QB in a game this season, per Next Gen Stats). His seven TD passes this year are his fewest through five games since 2011. Something's not right here.

RANK

T-8

Dak Prescott

1

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 9 | Blair: 9 | Filice: 7 | Parr: 8

2019 stats: 5 games | 69.6 pct | 1,606 pass yds | 9.4 ypa | 11 pass TD | 6 INT | 122 rush yds | 1 rush TD | 0 fumbles lost

Parr: It would have been fair to expect Dak's play to drop off as the Cowboys' competition increased over the past two weeks, but maybe not quite this much. He had a TD-to-INT ratio of 9:2 and passer rating of 128.0 in Weeks 1-3, when he faced the likes of the Giants, Redskins and Dolphins. In the past two games, when he's faced the division-leading Saints and Packers, he's compiled a TD-to-INT ratio of 2:4 and passer rating of 79.2. Not surprisingly, Dallas has lost both games. His receivers let him down at times against Green Bay, but he did throw for 463 yards and two TDs. He still ranks first in QBR, third in DVOA and third in Pro Football Focus' QB ratings. And he gets a chance to bounce back from consecutive rough outings against the winless Jets, who have allowed at least 30 points in each of their last two games.

RANK

T-8

Matthew Stafford

1

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 8 | Blair: 8 | Filice: 8 | Parr: 9

2019 stats: 4 games | 62.4 pct | 1,122 pass yds | 8.0 ypa | 9 pass TD | 2 INT | 54 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 2 fumbles lost

Blair: Loyal QB Index readers already know this, but Stafford is having a pretty good season! He's thrown nine touchdowns passes, two short of his previous personal best for TDs in his team's first four games (11, in 2011), and he's been picked off just twice, less than he's managed to this point in every season except 2017 (not counting the 2010 campaign, in which he attempted just 15 passes before being injured). And he's currently on pace to finish with a passer rating of 100-plus for the first time in his career. Stafford will get a chance to show a prime-time audience just how well he's playing against the Packers on "Monday Night Football." (I swear I'm not trying to jinx him. I want all our QBs to be winners!)

RANK

10

Matt Ryan

2

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 10 | Blair: 12 | Filice: 11 | Parr: 10

2019 stats: 5 games | 70.3 pct | 1,655 pass yds | 7.5 ypa | 11 pass TD | 7 INT | 55 rush yds | 1 rush TD | 1 fumble lost

Bhanpuri: Just when you think you're out, Matt Ryan pulls you back in. The Falcons' franchise QB, more than any other passer on this list, had been clinging to his spot based on past precedent rather than real-time results. But then he arrived at NRG Stadium, his favorite place on Earth, and threw for 330 yards and three touchdowns. Ryan even added a rushing score, after both Ito Smith and Devonta Freeman failed to break the plane from the 1-yard line. Devoid of a functional running game and under constant duress, the 34-year-old carried Atlanta's offense, going 13 of 19 for 139 yards and two TDs on pressured dropbacks, per PFF. It's not his fault the Falcons went up against a supercharged buzzsaw on Sunday. His last throw of the day was his worst and extended his giveaway streak to seven consecutive games dating back to last season.

RANK

11

Lamar Jackson

1

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 12 | Blair: 13 | Filice: 10 | Parr: 11

2019 stats: 5 games | 65.4 pct | 1,271 pass yds | 7.8 ypa | 11 pass TD | 5 INT | 308 rush yds | 1 rush TD | 0 fumbles lost

Bhanpuri: Jackson's quest to prove he's a legitimate starting quarterback in this league is over. Done. The answer is (and always was) a resounding Yes! The bigger question dogging the former Heisman Trophy winner is whether he can play at an elite level week after week. Jackson was never going to sustain the absurd stat lines he put up to start the year. But his last two games have brought out some of his worst tendencies: inaccuracy, indecision and impatience. Can he find the right balance between taking aggressive shots downfield while also having the discipline to work underneath? Will he truly embrace his unique speed/elusiveness skill set that makes him an absolute nightmare to defend, and run all over the opposition when opportunities arise? Jackson has the tools to rule among the NFL's QB nobility, to have a seat at the small council with Patrick Mahomes and Russell Wilson. But the two-eyed Raven has to be far more consistent if he's to take the gridiron throne by season's end.

RANK

12

Derek Carr

1

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 11 | Blair: 11 | Filice: 12 | Parr: 13

2019 stats: 5 games | 73.3 pct | 1,117 pass yds | 6.9 ypa | 6 pass TD | 3 INT | 27 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 2 fumbles lost

Bhanpuri: What a difference a season makes. Carr appears in complete command of Jon Gruden's offense in Year 2, directing the The Autumn Wind with aplomb. Against one of the most feared defenses in the NFL, the Raiders QB led three methodical 10-plus-play drives in the first half that netted 17 points. Carr fired the ball decisively and efficiently, connecting on 78.1 percent of his passes, and relied on rookie running back Josh Jacobs to carve up Chicago's stout run defense. The non-stop grinding from the former 'Bama back (not one of his 26 carries resulted in negative yardage) opened up windows for No. 4, who went a perfect 10 for 10 on play-action passes. And when the Raiders needed him most, down by 4 with under 8 minutes to play and starting from their own 3-yard line, Carr directed a 13-play, 97-yard touchdown drive (with some special teams magic) that chewed up six minutes and gave Oakland the lead. As a Bears fan, seeing Carr go toe-to-toe with Khalil Mack and Co. in those final moments -- and then deliver the knockout blow -- was absolutely soul crushing.

RANK

13

Jimmy Garoppolo

1

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 13 | Blair: 10 | Filice: 15 | Parr: 12

2019 stats: 4 games | 69.0 pct | 920 pass yds | 8.1 ypa | 7 pass TD | 4 INT | 6 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 1 fumble lost

Bhanpuri: Garoppolo remains one of the most perplexing players to rank on this list. Even after 12 starts in Kyle Shanahan's dynamic, QB-friendly offense, it's hard to distinguish just how much of Garoppolo's success stems from the scheme versus his own innate ability. At the end of the day, as long as the Niners are winning, does it even matter? Garoppolo made the plays he needed to on Monday night, putting together a sound 60 minutes of football -- even if there were a few wince-worthy passes along the way. I'm still waiting for his statement game in San Francisco, but perhaps the biggest statement he can make right now is that he's QB1 for the NFC's only undefeated team.

RANK

14

Jared Goff

1

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 15 | Blair: 14 | Filice: 13 | Parr: 16

2019 stats: 5 games | 63.1 pct | 1,649 pass yds | 7.4 ypa | 7 pass TD | 7 INT | 13 rush yds | 1 rush TD | 3 fumbles lost

Bhanpuri: Similar to Matt Ryan, Goff's uninspiring start to the 2019 season has exhausted much of the goodwill he stockpiled during the previous two campaigns. Thankfully, he played more like the old Goff on Thursday night (instead of the old, old Goff), coming within a missed field goal of upsetting the Seahawks in Seattle. For all the concerns about the Rams' offense, the Goff-led unit still ranks fourth in offensive points per game (28.0) while the QB is No. 1 in passing first downs per game (16.8). But his disappointing production under pressure -- whether because of poor offensive line play, a lack of commitment to the run game, his own regression at the position, all of the above -- and his predilection for turnovers (averaging a league-high two per game) continue to give critics reason to short Goff's stock.

RANK

15

Gardner Minshew

3

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 16 | Blair: 16 | Filice: 14 | Parr: 14

2019 stats: 5 games | 66.7 pct | 1,279 pass yds | 7.8 ypa | 9 pass TD | 1 INT | 124 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 4 fumbles lost

Bhanpuri: Facing a Panthers defense that entered the weekend allowing the second-fewest yards per attempt (5.2) and fifth-lowest passer rating (74.4) after stonewalling Deshaun Watson just seven days earlier, the NFL's mustachioed Man of Teal tightened his bandana and went to work. He was accurate, confident, aggressive and seemingly unfazed by the challenge in front of him, earning 8.5 yards per clip and finishing the day with a 101.9 rating. He threw with velocity when needed, but also demonstrated great touch, like on his moneyball to D.J. Chark for six. Losing three fumbles put a stain on his 374-yard, two-touchdown day (most yards Carolina's allowed to a single passer since Week 6 of 2016), as did the final score. But Minshew showed yet again he's the hero Jacksonville deserves, and certainly the one it needs right now.

RANK

16

Baker Mayfield

5

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 17 | Blair: 15 | Filice: 17 | Parr: 15

2019 stats: 5 games | 55.9 pct | 1,247 pass yds | 7.7 ypa | 4 pass TD | 8 INT | 0 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 1 fumble lost

Bhanpuri: Mayfield currently carries the dubious title of being the NFL's worst best quarterback. The Browns' head-scratching play calling and suspect offensive line are certainly not doing the QB any favors, but Mayfield deserves his share of the blame, as well. He has a terrible tendency of holding the ball too long rather than taking what the defense gives him. It's no coincidence that in the one game this season ( Ravens, Week 4) in which Cleveland emphasized a quick-passing attack (2.4 seconds per throw), Mayfield balled out and the Browns' offense hummed to the tune of 40 points. But in Cleveland's four other games, when his average time to throw soared to 3.09 -- the highest of any QB in the league during that span -- the unit generated just 52 total points, per Next Gen Stats. In fact, Mayfield owns the third-lowest passer rating (55.8) when his time to throw eclipses 2.5 seconds. (For comparison, Russell Wilson boasts a 129.5 rating on these throws.) When Mayfield starts to freelance too much, he leaves himself susceptible to pressure, hits and risky decisions -- and these mistakes are adding up. After Sunday's four-turnover day, the Browns' QB1 now has the second-most giveaways since 2018 (26) and as many three-plus turnover games (5) in 18 starts as he does games with zero turnovers. Baker is playing well below the standard he set as a rookie, and, as he knows better than most, tape don't lie.

RANK

17

Jacoby Brissett

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 14 | Blair: 17 | Filice: 18 | Parr: 18

2019 stats: 5 games | 64.7 pct | 1,062 pass yds | 6.4 ypa | 10 pass TD | 3 INT | 66 rush yds | 1 rush TD | 1 fumble lost

Bhanpuri: The Colts put together a masterful plan ( on both sides of the ball) to try and contain MVPat on Sunday night, and a vital part of their strategy entailed emphasizing the run and dominating time of possession. Well if 45 rushing attempts (highest of the week) and a whopping 14.5-minute time differential isn't following through on your objectives, then I don't know what is. Brissett was charged with taking care of the football, being a steady force under center and avoiding negative plays. Beside one poor decision that Tyrann Mathieu capitalized on, the Colts QB did just that. He consistently evaded pressure (took zero sacks) as he's done all season, and helped to sustain drives through the air and on the ground. Jacoby the Giant Slayer he was not. But Jacoby the Game Manager was all the Colts needed him to be.

RANK

18

Kyler Murray

5

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 18 | Blair: 19 | Filice: 16 | Parr: 17

2019 stats: 5 games | 62.7 pct | 1,324 pass yds | 6.6 ypa | 4 pass TD | 4 INT | 206 rush yds | 2 rush TD | 0 fumbles lost

Blair: There was plenty to be excited about in Murray's first career NFL win, including a 23-yard strike to Trent Sherfield on third-and-9 in the second quarter, a 28-yard ball that Murray dropped over Bengals safety Shawn Williams for Pharoh Cooper to lay out and grab on third-and-7 in the third quarter and a 24-yard pass to David Johnson that pushed Arizona into Cincinnati territory in the closing minutes of a tie game. All of those throws were key elements on scoring drives. Oh, and Murray ran, compiling the second-highest rushing total (93 yards) for a quarterback this season. His legs bookended the scoring for Arizona, starting with a 6-yard touchdown on fourth-and-2 in the first quarter, on which he skirted around William Jackson as if he was barely there, and ending with a 24-yard scramble, on which he froze Jessie Bates, to set up the clinching field goal. If you want to jump back on the Murray bandwagon, now might be a good time.

RANK

19

Jameis Winston

4

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 20 | Blair: 18 | Filice: 25 | Parr: 20

2019 stats: 5 games | 61.4 pct | 1,371 pass yds | 8.3 ypa | 11 pass TD | 5 INT | 37 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 0 fumbles lost

Blair: While the Saints took Mike Evans away, they couldn't stop the connection between Winston and Chris Godwin, who collaborated on a pair of impressive scoring strikes. But Winston was sacked too many times (six), putting himself at a disadvantage -- on one fourth-quarter possession, he lost a total of 25 yards on three sacks, almost completely wiping out the yardage gained on an impressive 26-yard dart to Godwin. The Bucs were forced to punt, giving New Orleans the ball back with 5:14 left and a 31-17 lead. The Saints burned four minutes of game clock, and as a result, Winston and Godwin's final score, which pulled Tampa to 31-24 with 18 seconds remaining, became the worst kind of highlight: dazzling but irrelevant in a close loss.

RANK

20

Kirk Cousins

5

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 22 | Blair: 21 | Filice: 19 | Parr: 24

2019 stats: 5 games | 68.3 pct | 1,041 pass yds | 8.3 ypa | 5 pass TD | 2 INT | 40 rush yds | 1 rush TD | 2 fumbles lost

Blair: Kirk Cousins is back, baby! Of course, you could also say Adam Thielen is back, baby. It's hard to tell if the QB unleashed the WR or if the WR unleashed the QB. Does it make a difference? One week after Thielen was limited to two catches for 6 yards on six targets, Cousins hit him on seven of eight targets for 130 yards and two nice scores in the win over the Giants, giving both players their first multi-touchdown efforts of 2019. Whatever strange brew of interpersonal agita has been roiling the Minnesota locker room, you'd have to think Cousins would be back in Thielen's good graces. Spoilsports will point out that the Giants' 28th-ranked defense was the worst passing unit Minnesota has faced this season, and he demonstrated shaky pocket awareness on his three sacks, but I say, let the guy have a win.

RANK

21

Teddy Bridgewater

7

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 21 | Blair: 25 | Filice: 21 | Parr: 23

2019 stats: 4 games | 70.2 pct | 849 pass yds | 7.0 ypa | 6 pass TD | 2 INT | 32 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 0 fumbles lost

Blair: I could tell you exactly how many years have passed since Bridgewater last topped 300 yards or threw four TD passes in a game, as he did in New Orleans' win over Tampa. But the QB Index is not about the past; the QB Index is about the present. And right now, Teddy B is looking pretty good at the controls of the offense. Since Week 3, when Bridgewater made his first start in place of Drew Brees, just four quarterbacks have posted a completion rate of plus-70 percent with six or more TDs: Deshaun Watson, Russell Wilson, Matt Ryan and Bridgewater. Bridgewater hit a number of noteworthy deep throws, including a pretty 34-yarder to Michael Thomas midway through the first quarter, a 42-yard throw down the left sideline to Thomas and a 33-yard scoring pass down the middle to Ted Ginn.

RANK

22

Joe Flacco

1

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 24 | Blair: 24 | Filice: 22 | Parr: 21

2019 stats: 5 games | 66.7 pct | 1,258 pass yds | 7.5 ypa | 6 pass TD | 4 INT | 12 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 2 fumbles lost

Blair: Flacco might be having exactly the kind of steady-as-she-goes veteran season the Broncos could have used from Case Keenum in 2018. His completion rate and yards-per-attempt marks are both career highs, and he's currently on track to finish with a passer rating north of 90 for just the third time as a pro. There were miscues in Sunday's win over the Chargers, including a lost fumble on the edge of the red zone in the second quarter and a batted ball that was picked at the Denver 7 in the third. And a fair amount of the load in Flacco's first victory as a Bronco was shared by the ground game and defense. But there were also some quality throws, including a 26-yard shot to Jeff Heuerman on Denver's first play from scrimmage and a pass that traveled about 30 yards to Courtland Sutton that Sutton took the rest of the way for a 70-yard score.

RANK

23

Marcus Mariota

3

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 19 | Blair: 22 | Filice: 24 | Parr: 27

2019 stats: 5 games | 61.7 pct | 1,116 pass yds | 7.9 ypa | 7 pass TD | 0 INT | 125 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 0 fumbles lost

Blair: Mariota remains a puzzle in his prove-it season, but one thing is for sure: It's tough to win football games without converting first downs. Tennessee recorded eight three-and-outs in a one-score loss to the Bills in Week 5, including on a final possession in which the Titans traveled 5 total yards, petering out at their own 25. Mariota's final act of the day was sailing a third-down pass over Adam Humphries' head just past the chains with 4:26 left. Tennessee never got the ball again. In total, he completed three of his eight third-down attempts -- the same number of money-down completions that Jets placeholder QB Luke Falk managed against the Eagles. It didn't help that three of his five sacks came on third down, on plays where Buffalo's pass rush barely even gave him a chance. And, yes, he's still on track for a nightmarish, once-in-a-generation sack total (70.4).

RANK

T-24

Sam Darnold

NA

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 28 | Blair: 23 | Filice: 20 | Parr: 19

2019 stats: 1 game | 68.3 pct | 175 pass yds | 4.3 ypa | 1 pass TD | 0 INT | 0 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 0 fumbles lost

Blair: Mono has been vanquished. Next on the to-do list: 1) Revive a once-promising Jets season that is threatening to turn to ash. 2) Relieve even a little bit of the pressure on Adam Gase to deliver the first win of his New York tenure. 3) Provide Jets fans with something to finally cheer for in 2019. The Cowboys are scuffling, which could make them dangerous -- or it could make them a decent matchup for Darnold's first game back.

RANK

T-24

Daniel Jones

5

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 26 | Blair: 23 | Filice: 23 | Parr: 22

2019 stats: 4 games | 64.2 pct | 760 pass yds | 7.0 ypa | 4 pass TD | 3 INT | 78 rush yds | 2 rush TD | 3 fumbles lost

Filice: Jones' playing style matches the metaphorical sensation he's experienced over the last seven months: a roller-coaster ride. The rookie quarterback, who went from backpage farce to backpage darling in a New York minute, will make a jaw-dropping throw one play and airmail a wide-open receiver the next. Last Sunday's effort against the Vikings was more of the latter than the former, producing his worst stat line yet (55.3 percent completions, 4.8 yards per attempt, 65.9 passer rating). Though that 35-yard TD pass to Darius Slayton was a thing of beauty.

POST-TNF UPDATE: Facing challenging weather conditions and an imposing defense led by a coach who is renowned for his ability to terrorize rookie QBs, Jones finished with the kind of line you might expect against the Patriots in Foxborough: 15 of 31 for 161 yards (64 of which came on one touchdown pass to Golden Tate), three picks and a passer rating of 35.2. Arizona's 24th-ranked pass defense will offer Jones a chance to get off the mat in Week 7.

RANK

26

Josh Allen

2

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 23 | Blair: 20 | Filice: 27 | Parr: 26

2019 stats: 5 games | 62.6 pct | 1,122 pass yds | 6.9 ypa | 5 pass TD | 7 INT | 158 rush yds | 3 rush TD | 2 fumbles lost

Filice: Anyone who paid attention to the highly charged, FIRE-take-saturated debate that was Josh Allen's pre-draft evaluation is familiar with one number: 56.2. That was the cannon-armed quarterback's completion percentage over three years at Wyoming. In the scouting community, college completion rates below 60 percent are a no-no -- especially when such figures are accumulated in one of the FBS' less-glamorous conferences. (Former No. 1 overall pick Matthew Stafford got a pass for his 57.1 number at Georgia because S-E-C! S-E-C! S-E-C!) But given how obsessed the quarterback-judging population of America was about Allen's completion percentage then, I feel like it's my civic duty to point out a positive development on this front now. In Sunday's 14-7 win over the Titans, Allen recorded his first NFL game with a completion percentage north of 70. 71.88, to be exact. Yes, he barely threw the ball downfield, and yes, the 219 passing yards were his second-lowest total of the season, and yes, 46 of those yards came on a six-inch shovel pass to jet-sweeping Isaiah McKenzie ... But don't spoil my narrative!

RANK

27

Kyle Allen

5

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 25 | Blair: 26 | Filice: 28 | Parr: 25

2019 stats: 3 games | 66.7 pct | 674 pass yds | 7.5 ypa | 5 pass TD | 0 INT | 3 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 4 fumbles lost

Filice: QB wins might be the most widely ridiculed stat in football, and understandably so: Attributing each game's outcome to one individual in such a team-oriented sport defies logic. But that won't stop this harebrained hack from spotlighting an irresistible data point on the subject! Over Carolina's last 13 games, going back to Week 10 of last season, the Panthers are 4-0 with Allen at quarterback ... and 0-9 with anyone else. In Allen's four starts, which include Week 17 of 2018 and the last three games of this season, Carolina has averaged 30.3 points. In Cam Newton and Taylor Heinicke's nine starts, that ppg figure plummets to 18.2. So, what are we supposed to take away from this admittedly short-sighted measurement of recent Panther quarterbacking? That every NFL team should find a former five-star quarterback who was benched by two different college teams before inexplicably entering the NFL draft as an underclassman only to go unselected and sign as a practice squad player. Duh.

RANK

28

Andy Dalton

2

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 27 | Blair: 28 | Filice: 26 | Parr: 28

2019 stats: 5 games | 63.2 pct | 1,412 pass yds | 6.9 ypa | 7 pass TD | 4 INT | 16 rush yds | 1 rush TD | 3 fumbles lost

Filice: The Red Rifle dearly misses his target of choice. A.J. Green, who hasn't played in a full game since last October due to toe and ankle maladies, has already been ruled out of this week's game at Baltimore. Not ideal. While Dalton played pretty efficiently in last week's 26-23 loss to Arizona (27 of 38 for 262 yards and two TDs, with zero picks), Cincy's passing attack clearly lacked that extra oomph to finally push the 2019 Bengals into the winner's circle. Multiple drops from the Green-less receiving corps certainly didn't help -- Auden Tate let a would-be touchdown fly right through his hands -- but Dalton's famously average quarterbacking typically becomes painfully average when Green's out of the lineup. From Week 10 of last year through this past Sunday -- a span when Green has played a total of 17 snaps -- Dalton has gone 0-8 with a bunch of blah numbers like a 61.4 percent completion rate and an 84.2 passer rating. The Bengals QB needs his 2011 draftmate. Stat. But with Cincy sitting at 0-5 and Green in the last year of his contract, could Bengals brass make a move to permanently dissolve this duet?

RANK

29

Josh Rosen

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 29 | Blair: 29 | Filice: 29 | Parr: 29

2019 stats: 4 games | 51.2 pct | 482 pass yds | 5.7 ypa | 1 pass TD | 3 INT | 13 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 0 fumbles lost

Filice: As a rookie in 2018, Rosen ranked dead last among qualified starters in passing yards per game and passer rating. In Year 2, he's holding down the cellar in both categories once again. So why isn't he listed at the very bottom of this here list? Because context matters. In his first two NFL seasons, Rosen's been dealt the kind of hand that'd make any sane person stop playing cards. After last year's debacle in Arizona, Rosen's even worse off with the rebuilding (to put it as kindly as humanly possible) Dolphins. And he has actually played well in the first half of each of his two starts for Miami. But inevitably, after the break, the Fins' talent deficiency fully takes hold, the game gets out of hand and opposing pass rushers tee off. Honestly, evaluating Rosen while he's playing in such dire circumstances (again!) is a fool's errand. But at least first-year coach Brian Flores has now announced that we'll get the rest of the season to run this analytical hamster wheel!

RANK

30

Case Keenum

NA

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 30 | Blair: 30 | Filice: 30 | Parr: 30

2019 stats: 4 games | 68.1 pct | 970 pass yds | 7.2 ypa | 7 pass TD | 4 INT | 2 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 2 fumbles lost

Filice: The NFL coaching carousel began spinning at 5 a.m. ET on Monday, when the Redskins fired Jay Gruden. And this, in turn ... well ... just continued Washington's ongoing quarterback carousel. NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Wednesday that interim coach Bill Callahan is expected to give the starting reins back to Keenum, assuming his balky foot cooperates. This, of course, comes two weeks after the 'Skins hastily gave first-round pick Dwayne Haskins an ill-fated whirl, and one week after Gruden went out Sinatra style ( "I did it myyyyyyyyy way!"), starting his favorite journeyman, Colt McCoy, in his final game at the helm. Round and round the Redskins' QB job goes, where it stops, nobody knows.

UPDATE: Callahan announced on Friday that Keenum will indeed start on Sunday, with Haskins serving as the backup.

RANK

31

Chase Daniel

1

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 31 | Blair: 31 | Filice: 31 | Parr: 31

2019 stats: 2 games | 73.3 pct | 426 pass yds | 7.1 ypa | 3 pass TD | 2 INT | 6 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 0 fumbles lost

Filice: By the end of this season, Daniel will have earned $34,304,317 over 11 years in the NFL. It's quite an achievement, considering he just made his fifth career start on Sunday -- same as rookie Kyler Murray. While Daniel enjoyed a little success downfield against the Raiders and made a pair of touchdown connections with Allen Robinson, he threw two facepalm-inducing picks, including an absolute back-breaker late in the fourth quarter of the three-point loss. With Matt Nagy expressing optimism that Mitch Trubisky (dislocated non-throwing shoulder) will return after this week's bye, Daniel appears to be headed back to his well-compensated spot on the bench.

RANK

32

Devlin Hodges

NA

Individual Rank: Bhanpuri: 32 | Blair: 32 | Filice: 32 | Parr: 32

2019 stats: 1 game | 77.8 pct | 68 pass yds | 7.6 ypa | 0 pass TD | 0 INT | 20 rush yds | 0 rush TD | 0 fumbles lost

Filice: Truthfully, Hodges has done nothing to earn the ignominious distinction of No. 32. Forced into action by Mason Rudolph's frightening head injury midway through the third quarter last Sunday, Hodges actually used his first 26 NFL snaps pretty efficiently. Pittsburgh's backup to the backup completed 7 of 9 passes -- with one of the two incompletions coming courtesy of a Jaylen Samuels drop -- for 68 yards, and also sparked a fourth-quarter field goal drive with a nifty 21-yard scamper out of a collapsing pocket. Hodges' first pass of overtime was a 10-yard completion to JuJu Smith-Schuster ... but Marlon Humphrey hijacked the play (and ultimately, the game) with a picture-perfect punch-out. So why is Hodges here, holding up the rear in unanimous fashion? Because he's an undrafted rookie out of Samford, and we're cowardly QB evaluators who seek the easy way out. Make us look stupid, Duck.

The Air Index delivered by FedEx ranks NFL quarterback performances all season long. What's the possibility Russell Wilson supplants Patrick Mahomes at top of the rankings next week?

Print

Headlines

The previous element was an advertisement.

NFL Shop