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Instant Debate

Which QB already revealed on 'Top 100 Players of 2018' would you want most?

Monday night's episode of NFL Network's "Top 100 Players of 2018" revealed Nos. 31 to 40, with Matthew Stafford and Jared Goff landing at Nos. 31 and 38, respectively, bringing the total number of quarterbacks ranked so far to eight.

Eight more quarterbacks are still yet to be revealed on the series, which airs every Monday at 8 p.m. ET. But scanning the bunch that we know of to this point -- Stafford and Goff joined Deshaun Watson (No. 50), Case Keenum (51), Philip Rivers (56), Derek Carr (60), Jimmy Garoppolo (90) and Kirk Cousins (94) -- who do you want under center for your team right now?

This group has a ton of talent, but I'm sticking with the player who has the most experience: Philip Rivers. The Chargers quarterback has started 192 regular-season games in his career, 67 MORE than the next guy in this group, Matthew Stafford (125). Rivers has seen it all in his 14 seasons, so I gotta roll with the veteran. Matthew Stafford will be playing his 10th season at age 30 -- the time in a quarterback's career where he really starts to know what he's doing, operating with a great feel for the game. Stafford is smart with a very strong arm and outstanding athletic ability.

When you're on a 9-7 team that isn't on national TV all that much, you tend to fly under the radar a bit, but consider his numbers last season. In 2017, Stafford threw for more yards (4,446) than anyone but Tom Brady and Philip Rivers. He completed more touchdown passes (29) than anyone but Brady, Russell Wilson and Carson Wentz. And his completion percentage (65.7) was better than that of anyone but Drew Brees, Case Keenum, Alex Smith, Josh McCown and Brady.

He's also excelled -- passing for 8,773 yards and 53 touchdowns with a 65.5 percent completion rate -- over the last two seasons despite the complete lack of a run game (Detroit ranked 30th in rushing in 2016 and 32nd in '17). If the Lions had been able to mount a better ground attack last season, Stafford probably would have led them to 11 wins. He's the guy I'd want. Wow. This is a pretty impressive list. Doesn't seem like there is a wrong answer. Well, other than Case Keenum. Seriously, that dude is No. 51 in the Top 100 list? He had a great year with Minnesota and I believe the Broncos can make the playoffs with Keenum under center. But are you kidding me?

The quarterback I would take right now is Deshaun Watson. And maybe I'm being swayed by an extremely small sample size -- unlike the excessive sample size fueling the Jimmy G backers ... -- but the dude was absolutely electric in those early games with the Texans. I felt Houston was a legitimate Super Bowl contender for, like, the first time ever. They had those great defenses over the year, but Watson made them a true team. I don't expect him to take a step back at all. Instead, I assume he'll continue to flourish in the coming years.

Watson's the guy I would want to lead my squad. Well, of the players listed here. Obvs. Two players stick out from the rest of the list: Philip Rivers and Matthew Stafford. I'd take Rivers because of the competitiveness and passion we've seen over his entire career. He's going to leave it all out on the field every time. Stafford has the biggest arm of the group. Plus, he's mobile and has the ability to make the difficult throws -- sidearm, on the move and from the pocket. If Stafford ever has a reliable run game, he could be one of the best QBs in the league. Plenty of good quarterbacks on this list, but it's not even close for me: Jimmy Garoppolo. It's not just the white-hot play at the end of last season. It's everything that came before, with Patriots coach Bill Belichick calling the shift to Jimmy G during Tom Brady's 2016 suspension "really seamless." It's 49ers general manager John Lynch telling reporters that Belichick gushed over Garoppolo before trading him to San Francisco -- a move he reportedly didn't want to make -- saying: "Bill, beyond thinking this kid was a special football player, thought he was a special person. And he just said, 'You're gonna love the player, guys respond to him.' "

Just 26 years old, Garoppolo shined down the stretch to lead the league in scoring efficiency, squeezing past Brady for the top spot. To put this in context, Jimmy G generated 30 scoring marches in just 50 drives. Jameis Winston pulled off 40 in a whopping 124. There's nobody else on this list I'd rather have. I'm going with Deshaun Watson for the simple fact that he can extend plays with his legs more than any other quarterback mentioned here. For several years, the Texans have been known for their stingy defense and a middle-of-the-pack (at best) offense. Watson, though, turned the attack around in half a season, proving he and the offense could go blow for blow with Tom Brady's Patriots and Russell Wilson's Seahawks. He's the type of game-changing quarterback I want -- and others should want.

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