Did you get the chance to checkout the QB Rankings put together by ESPN Insider Mike Sando? It was a very interesting piece. Sando did an investigation of different NFL people thought of the different quarterbacks in the NFL. He talked to front office executives, personnel directors, general managers, head coaches, offensive coordinators, and defensive coordinators around the league and allowed them to vote about how they ranked the quarterbacks.
Sando and the voters put the quarterbacks in four different categories.
• Tier 1 quarterbacks can carry their teams week after week and contend for championships without as much help.
• Tier 2 QBs are less consistent and need more help, but good enough to figure prominently into a championship equation.
• Tier 3 are quarterbacks who are good enough to start but need lots of support, making it tougher to contend at the highest level.
• Tier 4 is typically reserved for unproven starters or those who might not be expected to last in the lineup all season. Voters used the fifth tier sparingly.
There weren’t a lot of shocks in the rankings. In the Tier 1 category (quarterbacks can carry their teams week after week and contend for championships without as much help) there were six quarterbacks and you had the usual suspects. t-1. Aaron Rodgers and t-1. Tom Brady were in a tie for the best quarterbacks in the league. 3. Andrew Luck, 4. Ben Roethlisberger, 5. Peyton Manning and 6. Drew Brees were also in that Tier 1 group, but I’m not so sure that Manning and Brees are still performing at a level that’s worthy of the Tier 1 level.
The Tier 2 group (quarterbacks who are less consistent and need more help, but good enough to figure prominently into a championship equation) had a total of eight quarterbacks with 7. Phillip Rivers and 8. Russell Wilson leading the way. Two-time Super Bowl MVP Eli Manning was ranked in the second group.
The Tier 3 group (quarterbacks who are good enough to start but need lots of support, making it tougher to contend at the highest level) had a total of ten quarterbacks with the probable Eagles starter, Sam Bradford ranked 23rd. Only one of this group of quarterbacks has taken a team to the Super Bowl, T-18 Colin Kaepernick, but he has seen his career head south. Bradford’s ranking was greatly affected by his injury history, but you still hear about the glowing evaluations from 2010 when he was drafted.
“I thought he was a 2 coming out because I did not see the big arm,” a head coach said. “No one could tell from his pro day because [agent] Tom Condon wouldn’t let him throw any deep comebacks. He has the intangibles, but you have to give him a 3 or 4 just because he is always hurt. Frankly, you probably want him to be your backup, just for his availability.”
Why isn’t there any discussion of how Bradford has played in the NFL when he has been healthy? The guy was drafted in 2010, but everybody is still talking about his pre-draft workouts in 2010 rather than how he has played in the NFL since then.
“There is no quarterback I loved more than him coming out,” a different head coach said. “I am pulling for him. If he can stay healthy, he can be so accurate. Keep him as a 3 but only because of the injury factor.”
Shouldn’t there be a statute of limitations on glowing evaluations? If a player doesn’t do anything when they’re healthy, the glowing evaluations need to stop. I think Bradford has the potential to be an outstanding quarterback, but he’s got to get on the field and do it.
The guy whom Bradford was traded for Nick Foles, was ranked 22nd on the list, just ahead of Bradford. I think Foles should have been ranked higher because of the fact that he has put together a great season, 27 touchdowns and 2 interceptions. He had led the Eagles to the playoffs in 2013 and had led them to a 6-2 record last year, even though he wasn’t playing great football.
Shouldn’t a player who has done it on the field in a NFL game, get more credit than somebody who has shown nothing but potential?