CONTINUED: Mr. Mascot vs. Jason. Battle of the NFL QB Ranks.

A new head-on-head weekly editorial sports debate

June 13, 2018 - 11:43 am

CONTINUED: Rankings (#17-32): 

17.  (Sporting News Rank: Jameis Winston)

Mr. Mascot:  Derek Carr, Raiders– There may be nothing worse for a QB than a new head coach. It’s even worse for Carr because it’s QB hoarder Jon Gruden. Carr already has a fire under him after Gruden traded for, buckle up, Christian Hackenberg from the Jets. But then waived him. Carr was dealing with some injuries in 2017, which, according to sources, are all but gone now. I wouldn’t be surprised if the QB carousel (Gruden) benched Carr early into the season for poor play. For Carr’s sake and Raider Nation’s sake, let’s hope he plays like he did in seasons past.

Jason: Deshaun Watson, Texans-  We don’t have a lot of NFL tape to really count Watson as a great NFL quarterback yet since he only appeared in 7 games before tearing his ACL. When he was injured, the Texans were awful. He had 19 touchdowns in those 7 games which are simply amazing and 1700 passing yards. If he had played the full season, he may have already been in the top 12 by this point. We don’t know if the ACL will affect him at all, but if he plays like the way he did to start his career, the league better watch out.

18.  (SN: Derek Carr)

Mr. Mascot:  Andy Dalton, Bengals- What’s more impressive? The fact that Andy Dalton is still a starter in the league OR that Marvin Lewis is STILL the head coach of an NFL team? Both boggle the mind, but for now, let’s concentrate on Dalton. This offseason Cincy has been working on Dalton’s throwing under pressure. New QB Coach Alex Van Pelt (remember when he was in the league?!) is trying to improve on Dalton’s 2017 season that mimicked his rookie year statistic wise. The real issue is that he plays in the same division as the Steelers and Ravens who are no pushover teams.

Jason:  Jameis Winston, Buccaneers- Winston took a major step back this season after improving from his rookie to sophomore year. His third year was supposed to be the one that he guided the Bucs to the playoffs. Instead, he went 3-10 with Tampa before getting injured and missing the rest of the season. You can argue that he doesn’t have enough weapons, but so far he has only shown that he is a QB who can put up above average steps but not really win games.

19.  (SN: Cam Newton)

Mr. Mascot:  Joe Flacco, Ravens – First off, this is where they had Cam Newton ranked… so… take that for what you will. Second, Flacco has taken quite a tumble from the 2012 Super Bowl MVP. He no longer has a defense that is constantly getting him the ball back and putting him in favorable field positions. And he just lost his deep threat, Torrey Smith to Carolina. So, where does that lead Flacco? Well, the Ravens signed Robert Griffin III and drafted QB Lamar Jackson from Louisville, so… you tell me.

Jason:  Dak Prescott, Cowboys– This is where Cam Newton was ranked by Sporting News. This is where I put Prescott. Personally, I’m not that high on Prescott. I think he had a good first season due to an amazing offensive line in Dallas. Last season, he wasn’t that spectacular and looked like an average quarterback. I don’t see him making that big of a jump anytime soon and I wouldn’t be surprised if the Cowboys give up on him once they find a new QB in the draft or free agency.

20.  (SN: Andrew Luck)

Mr. Mascot:  Tyrod Taylor, Browns – Somehow Taylor found a way to make his situation worse. He went from a mediocre Bills team that made the playoffs for the first time since 1999 to a Browns franchise that hasn’t seen the postseason since the Louisiana Purchase. Taylor is a great ‘baller.’ He can run, throw, leads on the field and in the locker room, BUT, that magic can only go so far. The player turnover in Cleveland was insane in the offseason. They may have good pieces and players but it will take a while before Taylor has that offense singing in tune.

Jason:  Alex Smith, Redskins- Smith is the most solid quarterback in the league. Just solid. He isn’t great, but he isn’t bad. He is just solidly consistent. The playoffs are a different story though. If you give Smith the regular season success he has in the playoffs, he would be a top 12 QB. He doesn’t throw a lot of interceptions, but he also doesn’t throw a lot of deep balls. He will make your team average, but not great.

21.  (SN: Blake Bortles)

Mr. Mascot:  Andrew Luck, Colts – Luck is a bit of a mystery. Is his shoulder ok? Will he even play in 2018? Will I have a third question to fulfill the rule of threes? Who knows! All anyone knows is that when he is healthy he can sling it with the best of him, but when he isn’t 100%, he isn’t doing Indy any favors. The Colts invested a lot in their offensive line the last two years, including a first-round pick this year. Everything depends on the health of Luck for him to rise back to his top 10 ranks.

Jason:  Eli Manning, Giants – Sporting News ranked Eli number 30 and that is just absurd. Yes, he had a bad season, but look at the terrible offensive line he had. I wouldn’t be surprised if Manning moves to the top 15 this year with a new and improved offensive line. He isn’t the quarterback he once was and is still vulnerable to interceptions, but he does not have 29 quarterbacks ranked ahead of him.

22.  (SN: Case Keenum)

Mr. Mascot:  Eli Manning, Giants- If you thought Flacco’s fall was bad, Eli has it worse. The Giants’ 2017 was garbage and saw Manning BENCHED. They have another new head coach BUT have one of the best rookie running backs (we shall see) going into 2018. CBS Sports reported that former GMen Sean O’Hara and Justin Tuck said that the Giants organization wasted Eli Manning’s prime. Yikes. And it’s hard to disagree with them. Outside of Odell Beckham Jr and newly drafted Saquon Barkley, the Giants haven’t exactly given Manning or the offense any good players. The real kicker is that the Cowboys and the Eagles aren’t a joke anymore so getting back to owning the NFC East may take time… time Eli doesn’t have anymore.

Jason:  Andy Dalton, Bengals- I really didn’t want to put Dalton here, but I think he still has a chance to becoming a solid quarterback after two terrible seasons. He needs a better team around him, and he needs a new head coach for cryin’ out loud, but he is a guy that will get you 8-10 wins. If you’re a team that wants to win just 8-10 games, then he is your guy. The Bengals are a team that wants that. Most other teams are not. Until the Bengals give up on him, he will continue being a below average quarterback. But you never know...

23.  (SN: Alex Smith)

Mr. Mascot:  Jimmy Garoppolo, 49ers– I’m going to borrow Missouri’s state slogan: “Show me.” Show me that you can play a full season as a starter. Show me you are more than a few wins at the end of a dead 49ers season. Show me that you aren’t just Matt Cassel 2.0. Then you can find yourself higher on this list. Until then, I can’t justify having Garoppolo any higher than this. He’s started a total of SEVEN games. To his credit, he looks good so far and he is going to be playing with the same group of receivers as last season. Show me Garoppolo, the 16 game starter.

Jason:  Joe Flacco, Ravens – Flacco reminds me a whole lot of Eli Manning at this point in his career. He puts up decent stats but also has really really bad games. Compared to Ryan who was in the same 2008 class, Flacco doesn’t even compare. However, he is still a Super Bowl MVP. Will he ever guide the Ravens to another Super Bowl? Probably not. But he can still get them to the playoffs. Lamar Jackson is waiting to take over though. This will be the final season for Flacco in Baltimore.

24.  (SN: Mitchell Trubisky)

Mr. Mascot:  Alex Smith, Redskins – Alex Smith has played for countless head coaches and offensive coordinators and he finds himself on his third NFL team (and most likely his last). Upside, he has one of the biggest offensive lines in the NFL. Trent Williams and Brandon Scherff anchor it, so he will have time to step up. He has a loaded backfield that also benefits from this stout offensive line. AND, Smith isn’t a slouch. He’s a three-time Pro Bowler with multiple ten win seasons. It will be interesting to see this (final) chapter in his long NFL career.

Jason: Tyrod Taylor, Bills – Having Taylor above Newton still blows my mind. Taylor is not that good. He doesn’t throw a lot of interceptions and puts up some solid number, but he doesn’t help a team win. The Bills made the playoffs this past season largely to their stellar defense, and Taylor was the perfect QB to help guide that team. But we all knew Taylor would never win a playoff game. He is in that ‘win you some games but not in the playoffs’ category. With the Browns, he may be really bad. I wouldn’t be surprised if Mayfield takes the starting job by week 6.

25.  (SN: Patrick Mahomes)

Mr. Mascot:  Sam Bradford, Cardinals– The real difference between Bradford and Alex Smith is that Bradford somehow finds a way to get hurt. On his 4th NFL team in nine seasons, Bradford seems to have found his role. Placeholder. It’s not pretty, but the last few teams to sign him used him as a bridge to their future. When healthy, Bradford is… okay at best. But, he knows and the Cards know it’s just a matter of time before UCLA rookie Josh Rosen steps in. In the meanwhile, look for Sam to hit Larry Fitzgerald up five to seven times a game and keeping the seat warm for Rosen.

Jason: Sam Bradford, Cardinals– I agree with The Mascot here. Sam Bradford is a former number one pick who has made tons of money on many teams is a below average quarterback. But hey, he is still in the league so something is working. It could still be the potential, but that is starting to fade away quickly. He shouldn’t be a starting quarterback though and rookie Josh Rosen will more than likely become the starter this season.

26.  (SN: Andy Dalton)

Mr. Mascot:  Mitchell Trubisky, Bears – Going into year two of Mitch’s career and one thing is for sure; he will run the ball a lot more. Head coach Matt Nagy looks to have him gain 40 to 60 yards a game. This will help free up Allen Robinson, newly acquired from the Jags, down the field and assist Jordan Howard in the run game. FYI, Howard is coming off a 1,110+ rushing season. Nagy went on to sign longtime backup Chase Daniels as Trubisky’s backup. Why? Pretty much to be an extra pair of ears and eyes for the young QB. All things point to him taking a leap in the right direction this season.

Jason: Blake Bortles, Jaguars – Somehow this man took the Jaguars to the AFC Championship and earned himself a big contract. When he had a solid season in 2015, many thought he would be primed to be a breakout star for the Jaguars. Since then his stats haven’t been stellar. But with a great team being built around him, Jacksonville seems to have given him the keys. Now we will wait to see if he earns his money or not.

27.  (SN: Ryan Tannehill)

Mr. Mascot:   Josh McCown, Jets – Even with rookie Sam Darnold and Teddy Bridgewater in Jets OTAs, it looks like McCown will emerge as the starter in 2018. McCown (who will turn 39 on July 4th) seamlessly jumped into camp and picked up where he left off in 2017. Drafted by Arizona in 2002 he has started for Arizona, Chicago, Carolina, Cleveland, Detroit, Oakland, Tampa and now NY… again. McCown is truly a ‘game manager.’ Good for 230ish yards, 2TD and 1 INT per game.

Jason: Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins- Once again I agree with Sporting News. Tannehill has been a big disappointment with all the injuries he has sustained during his career. He had a chance to be a very solid quarterback but it was just never meant to be. The Dolphins don’t have a great backup plan, but they did sign Brock Osweiler. Osweiler isn’t great either but if Tannehill starts to struggle, his tenure in Miami could be over quickly.​

28.  (SN: Josh McCown)

Mr. Mascot:  Blake Bortles, Jaguars- Just a reminder to everyone… this quarterback almost brought the Jaguars to the Super Bowl… just let that sink in for a little. The Jags lost Allen Hurns to the Cowboys in the offseason. That hurts. However, have maybe the best power back in the league in Leonard Fournette. They lost to the Patriots in the AFC Title game last season where he threw for 293 yards and 1 TD. There is room to build. Especially with a defense that gives you the ball back so quickly.

Jason: Case Keenum, Broncos- Keenum can easily prove me wrong. He was a joke of a quarterback before he guided the Vikings to the NFC Championship game last year. By doing that, he received a good contract with the Broncos who are still looking to replace Peyton Manning. Keenum may be a good fit in Denver but he is nothing spectacular.

29.  (SN: Joe Flacco)

Mr. Mascot:  Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins– Former Fins receiver Jarvis Landry said in regards to playing with Tyrod Taylor and Baker Mayfield, “It’s better than I had in Miami.” And another former Fin center, Mike Pouncey said, “He’s ready to play with an elite guy.” (He’s talking about playing with Philip Rivers.) Not a great ego boost for Tannehill who missed all of 2017 with a sprained MCL and ACL in the same knee. BUT, who is really going to replace him? Brock Osweiler? Bryce Petty? I don’t think so. It definitely doesn’t help that receiver Danny Amendola will miss four games due to testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs.

Jason:  Josh McCown, Jets – I’m surprised that McCown is still even in the league. He’s been on more teams than I can count but still receives opportunities. He can definitely hold down the QB gig with a team that struggles, but Jets draft pick Sam Darnold will take over the job soon to end McCown’s career.

30.  (SN: Joe Flacco)

Mr. Mascot:  Case Keenum, Broncos– Having Super Bowl winning Eli Manning at #30 is off the charts insane. So, instead, I put ‘backup’ QB Case, Keenum. Now before everyone loses his or her minds, YES, he was the QB of the Vikings team that made it to the NFC Title game. He was also the QB that lost that title game in true backup fashion. Look for Keenum to target second-year TE Jake Butt the same way he did with Kyle Rudolph in Minnesota. I would be shocked if Keenum was starting by week 10…

Jason: Mitchell Trubisky, Bears– The Bears gave up A LOT to get Trubisky. His first season wasn’t great, but it wasn't bad. There is still a lot of potentials and he can move up this list one day. He has a pretty good arm and completed 60 percent of his passes, but to go any higher than 30, he has to show what he can do in the league.

31.  (SN: Sam Bradford)

Mr. Mascot:  AJ McCarron, Bills– Another backup that is getting his shot at starting outright. Unfortunately, for McCarron, it’s in Buffalo. On top of that, the Bills just drafted Josh Allen. So, you have to try and win in a cluster of a franchise and fend off a rookie that most Bills’ fans think is their real starter. The biggest help for McCarron is that he is paired up with LeSean McCoy who is maybe the best running back in the league. The best route is for McCarron to start all 16 games and NOT throw Allen into the fire… but it’s Buffalo so let’s say “into the snow bank.”

Jason: AJ McCarron, Bills – I’m only putting McCarron over Mahomes since we have seen McCarron receive NFL snaps. Mahomes has never even played in an NFL regular season game. I do expect McCarron to lose his starting job eventually to Josh Allen and for Mahomes to pass him on this list within the first two weeks of the season.

32.  (SN: AJ McCarron)

Mr. Mascot:  Patrick Mahomes, Chiefs– Google his name and every article that you see is CRAZY negative. I’m not sure what KC and Andy Reid see in him, but they are in it to win it now. Mahomes is a Texas Tech QB. What does that mean? It means he was in a ‘passing system’ in college, unlike anywhere in the NFL. So, a lot of his under the center work, handoffs and other pro-style mechanics will ALL be new to him. The biggest upside is that the AFC West will be wide open and is up for grabs for anytime willing to go 8-8.        

Jason: Patrick Mahomes, Chiefs  (SN: AJ McCarron) – We don’t know a lot about this guy. He played at Texas Tech and was picked early in the 2017 NFL Draft. He could be a sleeper, but he has a lot to prove with the Chiefs being such a winning team over the last few years. There is a lot of pressure for the kid.


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