In recent weeks we have seen the highly respected Mike Sando and Ron Jaworski of ESPN rank their top 32 quarterbacks in the NFL. While I highly respect the work of these two analysts, their rankings of Teddy Bridgewater were a bit low. To clarify a few things, Sando's rankings actually weren't his own. He asked 35 league insiders to place quarterbacks into one of five tiers, and Teddy fell into tier 3, which is defined as "Quarterbacks who are good enough to start but need lots of support, making it tougher to contend at the highest level." As far as rankings go, he was ranked 23rd of 32 quarterbacks. While he is just one season into his career, it doesn't seem too hard to find more than 9 starting quarterbacks that should be ranked below Teddy.
While Sando's ranking seemed a bit low, it's hard to put any kind of blame on him, as his article simply passed on what he heard. Ron Jaworski, or, "Jaws" rankings however were self-made and were quite frankly far more ridiculous than Sando's. Teddy ranked a putrid 27th out of 32 quarterbacks behind only Jameis Winston, Marcus Mariota, Ryan Mallet, Geno Smith, and Josh McCown. Listed ahead of him (Laughably) are names like Derek Carr, Matt Cassel (Yes, THAT Matt Cassel), Blake Bortles and Jay Cutler. While it's hard to wrap my mind around the fact that somebody in our country actually thinks Matt Cassel is better than Teddy Bridgewater at being a quarterback, Bortles and Carr being listed ahead of Teddy are outrageous in their own right. *Insert Nick Young Meme*
By nearly any statistic (Other than touchdowns for Derek Carr) Teddy was by far the best rookie quarterback. As most Viking fans know, over the final five weeks of the season Teddy graded out as Pro Football Focus' top quarterback in the entire NFL. But, even if we ignore that final five game tear of Teddy's, he still graded out far better than both Bortles (Who was the worst graded QB in the NFL over that span) and Carr.
Now that all that irritation is out of my system, lets get to the point. These low rankings of Teddy have inspired me to put together my own "Top 32 Quarterback List". I have decided to rank the quarterbacks in terms of value they bring to their respective teams. With that said, here is my list.
Jackson McIntire's Top 32 Quarterbacks
32. Matt Cassel/E.J. Manuel, Buffalo Bills
31. Ryan Mallet, Houston Texans
30. Blake Bortles, Jacksonville Jaguars
29. Marcus Mariota, Tennessee Titans
28. Josh McCown, Cleveland Browns
27. Derek Carr, Oakland Raiders
26. Geno Smith, New York Jets
25. Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
24. Nick Foles, St. Louis Rams
23. Jay Cutler, Chicago Bears
22. Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins
21. Andy Dalton, Cincinnati Bengals
20. Sam Bradford, Philadelphia Eagles
19. Eli Manning, New York Giants
18. Teddy Bridgewater, Minnesota Vikings
17. Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers
16. Carson Palmer, Arizona Cardinals
15. Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions
14. Alex Smith, Kansas City Chiefs
13. Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers
12. Ryan Tannehill, Miami Dolphins
11. Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons
10. Joe Flacco, Baltimore Ravens
9. Phillip Rivers, San Diego Chargers
8. Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys
7. Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks
6. Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos
5. Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts
4. Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints
3. Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers
2. Tom Brady, New England Patriots
1. Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers
So there you have it. Teddy Bridgewater comes in at what I believe is a fair 18th out of 32 quarterbacks, just ahead of Eli Manning and right behind Colin Kaepernick. If everything goes as planned this coming season, Teddy could find himself as a top 10 quarterback at the conclusion of the 2015-16 season.
Thankfully training camp starts in a few days and us writers will actually have something to write about...