NFL Soup|Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Week 14 NFL QB Power Rankings: Where Do RG3 and Luck Belong? 

Who is higher in our week 14 QB power rankings?

It’s time to start talking about Robert Griffin III, Andrew Luck and Russell Wilson not as rookie QBs, but as NFL signal callers.

In my fantasy league, RG3 leads all quarterbacks in points, edging out Tom Brady by two points. This list, while it has one eye on fantasy play, has a larger purpose. You would probably take Brees, Brady, Rodgers, and Peyton to lead an actual team for one season. But who would come before RG3 of the next group: Matt Ryan, Andy Dalton, Cam Newton, Matthew Stafford – and Andrew Luck.

For his part, Russell Wilson is a better option on the field than he is on your fantasy roster, but his stock is soaring due to his poise, leadership and game management. We’d never tell you that Phil Simms was the best QB ever, much like we’d tell you Russell Wilson isn’t the best QB this year. But more teams than not would want him.

Here is where we rate the NFL QB’s after Week 13:

1. Tom Brady – Patriots

Johnny Unitas’s consecutive games with a TD pass streak stood for 52 years; Drew Brees’s might only stand for a year. Brady would break it in the Patriots’ 7th game next year if he’s not stopped. Unless he’s pulled early in a game to rest of the playoffs, he’ll take that streak into the 2013 season. It’s December after all and the Pats don’t lose and Brady doesn’t struggle in the cold. 25 TDs to 4 INTs is just greatness.

2. Drew Brees – Saints

His 31 TDs are tops in the league; 3,674 yards are among the best. But his 16 INT and lone lost fumble leave him just one turnover behind ….wait for it… Mark Sanchez.

3. Aaron Rodgers – Packers

His 105 passer rating tops all QBs, except those named Greg McElroy and, um, Shaun Hill. But upon a discount double check, A-Rod is better than that pair. As steady a performer as there is in the NFL, we think his best games this season are ahead of him still.

4. Peyton Manning – Broncos

I guess his neck is okay… After his early season rust wore off he has been as good as anybody. A 104.6 passer rating; 29/9 TD to INT ratio. But most of all he’s brought a winning spirit to Denver (and not the fluke-y miracle winning spirit of a season ago)

5. Robert Griffin III – Redskins

This just in – this guy’s pretty good. A Monday night win against the Super Bowl champs put him on the map for good. Interesting test this weekend against the Ravens. Great quarterbacks don’t let down. A win here and then you start to ask “Who’s Gonna Stop Him?”

6. Matt Ryan – Falcons

He’s been atrocious recently, but this is a season-to-date list, not a snapshot. He’s thrown for 3,590 yards and has a 94.9 rating. With 22 TDs and 13 INTs we shrug our shoulders a bit, knowing in the next four weeks, he could even drop from the top 10.

7. Andy Dalton – Bengals

Like Ryan we shrug at 24/13 TDs to INTs but we know he’s a solid option at QB. If he can significantly outduel Tony Romo this weekend, more people will agree with us than don’t

8. Cam Newton – Panthers

Eight feels a bit high for us, but he’s been lights out in recent weeks and has 20 total TDs (14 passing) to 10 INTs. It was a slow go for a while, but he does bring more tools and a carpenter even if he doesn’t always utilize them.

9. Josh Freeman – Buccaneers

He’s tossed for 3,003 yards and owns a 3:1 TD to INT ratio (23 to 8). He’s thrown for 2 fewer TDs than Brady, despite throwing 72 fewer passes. He’s a pretty economical player even if you haven’t watched him play.

10. Matthew Stafford – Lions

More than 3,700 yards but has the most attempts (534). We expected better; not a ton better but better-than-Andy-Dalton better.

11. Andrew Luck – Colts

We want to put him in the top 10, but with 21 turnovers against 17 TD, poise isn’t going to get it done. He and Carson Palmer have the same number of attempts (503); Palmer’s completed more passes (305 to 279) but Luck’s gotten more yardage (3596 to 3532). We do wonder who good he’d be with a better running attack that allowed him more diversity in play calling.

12. Ben Roethilsberger – Steelers

Obviously his numbers have suffered due to the injury but before that he enjoyed a 100 passer rating and just 4 INTs to 17 TD passes. A rock solid QB.

13. Matt Schaub – Texans

Speaking of rock solid. With Arian Foster behind him, he need not carry his team in a way Brady, Rodgers and Peyton do (think about their general lack of running backs). 21 TDs to 9 picks, just over 3,000 yards. Just another season at the office for the QB who outflaccoed Flacco.

14. Carson Palmer – Raiders

He’s turned it over 17 times as well (as many as Brees, one less than Sanchez) between 4 fumbles and 13 giveaways. 20 TDs and 3,532 yards on over 500 attempts means he’s throwing it a ton to even post those numbers.

15. Tony Romo – Cowboys

Tons of yards, tons of mistakes. That’s just the deal.

16. Russell Wilson – Seahawks

He’s like the batter in baseball who might hit .265 but he walks 120 times a season and his on-base percentage is close to .400. How the hell does he do it, you ask. He’s thrown more TDs than Eli Manning, Joe Flacco, Stafford or Luck while also attempting at least 100 fewer passes than each of them.

17. Joe Flacco – Ravens

He’d surely be “better” without Ray Rice, but we like his 3,000 yards and 15 TDs.

18. Eli Manning – Giants

I know. He’s a 2-time Super Bowl MVP. He wins late in the year (Monday night not withstanding). A tough out in the playoffs. Too bad we’re not ranking any of that here. He’s just eh….

19. Alex Smith – 49ers

Folks, he has a passer rating of 104.1. That’s between Brady and Peyton for crying out loud. Thirteen TDs on 217 pass attempts. Would make a bunch of NFL teams better as their starter even if his coach doesn’t think that’s the case on his own team.

20. Ryan Fitzpatrick – Bills

He doesn’t throw a ton (373 attempts) but has 21 TDs (20 through the air). 16 turnovers keep him from being better. We loved him on “The League” though!

21. Philip Rivers – Chargers

Do we even need to talk about how disappointing he’s been?

22. Jay Cutler – Bears

He really is a much better QB than 22, but he’s missed time, his O-line is in shambles and after Brandon Marshall he’s got nobody.

23. Sam Bradford – Rams

What’s the deal with Bradford. He’s not great but he’s not terrible. The type of QB who’d be an annual Pro-Bowler on another team. For now, he’s stuck in the land of mediocrity

24. Alex Smith – 49ers

Folks, he has a passer rating of 104.1. That’s between Brady and Peyton for crying out loud. Thirteen TDs on 217 pass attempts. Would make a bunch of NFL teams better as their starter even if his coach doesn’t think that’s the case on his own team.

25. Brandon Weeden – Browns

Here’s where I’m supposed to make a joke about his age rather than talk about his numbers….

26. Michael Vick – Eagles

I’m done talking about Mike Vick. Please don’t make me do it anymore.

27. Mark Sanchez – Jets

He’s guaranteed $8 million next year. Of course he’s going to play.

28. Blaine Gabbert – Jaguars

Chad Henne, if he started all year, would be around 16 or 17 on this list. We know that’s more interesting than any Blaine Gabbert number we could toss at you.

29. Ryan Tannehill – Dolphins

At least his wife is hot.

30. Jake Locker – Titans

Does anyone even know who starts for the Titans anymore? Unless you’re in a 12-team league that plays 3 QBs, why would you even care?

31. Brady Cassell – Chiefs

I mean they’re the same quarterback, no?

32. John Skelton – Cardinals

Technically, I suppose, Kolb should be listed here, but either guy would be 32 anyway. Don’t even get me started on Lindley.

About the author: Thomas J. McFeeley

Thomas J. McFeeley is a former award-winning journalist and a current Jets fan. He is a Jets fan because his dad was a (typically dispassionate) Giants fan. He is a fantasy football junkie because he is a Jets fan and wanted to experience meaningful games in October.

One Response to Week 14 NFL QB Power Rankings: Where Do RG3 and Luck Belong?

  1. KB

    As an Andrew Luck homer, I fully admit he had a lot of work to do, is not a top 10 QB yet, and throws some awful picks. BUT, if you are going to say he has 21 turnovers, which includes fumbles, it would only be fair to add in his 5 rushing TDs to his TD total. It doesn’t change your argument, but either say he is 17/16 TD/INT throwing or 22/21 TDs total/Turnovers.


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