Ranking the backup quarterbacks for the 2022 NFL season


Jimmy Garoppolo’s return to San Francisco and return to a backup job for the primary time in 5 years marked a serious replace to the league’s quarterback scene. After roster cuts, late-summer trades and this Garoppolo growth, right here is how the 32 QB2 conditions stack up.


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32. Cleveland Browns: Joshua Dobbs

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For many of this season, Dobbs has been positioned as Cleveland’s backup. Jacoby Brissett will shift into that position when Deshaun Watson is activated, however Dobbs — a longtime third-stringer or apply squad arm — will rise into the Browns’ QB2 place. Brissett-Dobbs represents a depth chart that would sink the Browns, to the probably delight of most soccer observers, this season. A 2017 fourth-round Steelers draftee, Dobbs has thrown 17 profession passes. Dobbs beat out Josh Rosen, who’s now behind waiver declare Kellen Mond as effectively. Mond might conceivably surpass Dobbs. Both method, this isn’t an enviable state of affairs. 


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31. Detroit Lions: Nate Sudfeld

Detroit Lions: Nate Sudfeld

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Though Colombian 400-meter hurdler Melissa Gonzalez grew to become one of many nice wives/girlfriends in “Onerous Knocks” historical past, the Lions bumped her husband (David Blough) right down to their de facto third-stringer regardless of the Purdue alum having made the preliminary 53-man roster. Sudfeld — his position within the Eagles’ Week 17 tanking debacle however — will get one other probability by way of an Eleventh-hour signing. Although, Sudfeld dropping out to 2022 Mr. Irrelevant Brock Purdy shouldn’t be an amazing look. After all, Lions’ losses — with two 2023 first-round picks and a QB want — won’t be the worst factor as their rebuild continues. 


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30. Las Vegas Raiders: Jarrett Stidham

Las Vegas Raiders: Jarrett Stidham

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A stretch throughout the 2020 offseason led observers to consider the Patriots have been truly contemplating Stidham as Tom Brady’s successor, with Cam Newton not signed till after minicamp that 12 months. However Newton buried Stidham, who then sat behind Brian Hoyer throughout the remainder of his Patriots run. The previously efficient however unspectacular Auburn arm (50% NFL completion price, albeit on 48 throws) might be behind one of many NFL’s most sturdy quarterbacks. Derek Carr, the longest-tenured beginning QB in Raiders historical past, has not missed a sport since 2017 and has missed one in his eight-year profession.


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29. Denver Broncos: Brett Rypien

Denver Broncos: Brett Rypien

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It appeared for some time just like the Broncos being the uncommon group to make journeyman extraordinaire Josh Johnson a precedence — by way of a March free company contract — meant Rypien wouldn’t be again. However the fourth-year Bronco beat out the 36-year-old addition. Rypien was a part of the Broncos’ 11-QB (feat. Phil Lindsay’s wildcat snap in 2020’s Kendall Hinton sport) run between Peyton Manning and Russell Wilson. Now, the Boise State product who made one profession begin (in 2020) might be Denver’s high backup. Rypien is enjoying together with his third play-caller, going from Wealthy Scangarello to Pat Shurmur to Nathaniel Hackett.


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28. Cincinnati Bengals: Brandon Allen

Cincinnati Bengals: Brandon Allen

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The Bengals’ journey to Tremendous Bowl LVI concerned 70 Joe Burrow sacks, together with 19 within the shocking AFC champions’ 4 playoff video games. Given the offensive line the Bengals gave Burrow following his 2020 season-ending ACL tear, it’s shocking Allen didn’t see extra time in 2021. The previous Arkansas passer went three seasons with out seeing any sport time however has began 9 video games — together with six with the Bengals — since 2019. Allen went 1-4 as a starter in 2020 and produced an 8.4 QBR in his Week 18 begin final season. The Bengals re-signed the previous sixth-round choose in March.


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27. Jacksonville Jaguars: C.J. Beathard

Jacksonville Jaguars: C.J. Beathard

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Beathard’s viability out of the Kyle Shanahan system stays to be seen, and the Iowa-developed third-rounder was 2-10 as a starter below the high-level offensive coach. Beathard supplied the bridge to Jimmy Garoppolo as a rookie and made 5 begins in his stead (all losses) when Garoppolo tore an ACL a 12 months later (2018). The Jaguars scooped him up early in free company — albeit throughout the City Meyer-run offseason — final 12 months however have saved him round for Trevor Lawrence’s second season. 


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26. Houston Texans: Kyle Allen

Houston Texans: Kyle Allen

Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports activities

One of many few true rebuilding groups, the Texans usually are not positive if their starter is legit but. However this operation could be set again significantly if Davis Mills went down. Mills growth is principally the 2022 Texans’ motive for suiting up; Houston’s two-deep remains to be full of average-at-best starters. Some rookies symbolize promise, nonetheless. Allen, who was with Ron Rivera in Carolina and Washington, has 17 begins on his resume. Most got here in reduction of an injured Newton in 2019 when the Panthers went 5-7 behind the ex-Texas A&M UDFA. Allen additionally obtained the decision forward of Alex Smith in 2020, however a nasty ankle harm felled him. 


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25. Minnesota Vikings: Nick Mullens

Minnesota Vikings: Nick Mullens

Scott Galvin-USA TODAY Sports activities

Shanahan changed Beathard with Mullens in 2018, and the previous UDFA has appeared strong in spurts. His manufacturing largely got here below Shanahan, however regardless of the perpetual presence of a Day 2 choose (Beathard) throughout his 49ers tenure, Mullens was San Francisco’s most popular Garoppolo substitute. Garoppolo’s shaky harm historical past made that job fairly related. Mullens led the 49ers to a win over the Rams in 2020. Los Angeles’ offensive coordinator from that sport (Kevin O’Connell) traded for him two years later. Mullens will step into the same system, however Kirk Cousins has not missed a sport on account of harm (solely to COVID-19) as a Viking.


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24. Tennessee Titans: Malik Willis

Tennessee Titans: Malik Willis

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Willis’ upside would place him a lot larger on this checklist, but when Ryan Tannehill goes down, the small-school prospect would in all probability wrestle as a rookie. The Liberty alum dazzled as a multidimensional menace after transferring from Auburn. Nonetheless, his fall to No. 86 total suggests the NFL believes a prolonged developmental curve awaits. Willis’ dashing stats at Liberty (1,822 yards, 27 TDs in two seasons) are nonetheless eye-opening. A Taysom Hill-type position might assist a Titans group that each has pass-catcher points and desires to watch Derrick Henry’s mileage might show helpful. 


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23. New England Patriots: Brian Hoyer

New England Patriots: Brian Hoyer

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We’re effectively previous Hoyer’s finest days — spent with the Browns and Texans within the mid-2010s — and the Patriots transferring away from Josh McDaniels’ offense might have signaled a change right here. However Hoyer is oddly in vary of Drew Bledsoe for the third-most service time by a Pats QB (Brady and Steve Grogan might be tough to catch). That is Hoyer’s third stint with the Pats, whose unorthodox (placing it politely) offensive coordinator plan will profit from the 36-year-old’s expertise. New England’s Matt Patricia-Joe Decide plan might make Hoyer a legitimately vital voice as Mac Jones makes an attempt to maintain growing.


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22. Chicago Bears: Trevor Siemian

Chicago Bears: Trevor Siemian

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Not a nasty profession for a part-time faculty starter who as soon as thought-about a profession in actual property. Siemian goes into his eighth season. In Yr 7, he helped the Saints hold their regular-season win streak over the Buccaneers going. However Peyton Manning’s former Broncos successor went 0-4 as a starter in reduction of Jameis Winston. The Saints not solely have been utilizing a whole lot of backup- or apply squad-caliber wideouts throughout these begins, however Alvin Kamara was out for 3 of these contests. Amazingly, Siemian additionally went 13-11 as a Broncos starter. Contemplating what has occurred sans Siemian in latest Denver years, that’s fairly the statistic.


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21. Dallas Cowboys: Cooper Rush

Dallas Cowboys: Cooper Rush

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports activities

One other UDFA quarterback success story has transpired in Dallas, which has saved cash by having Rush as Dak Prescott’s backup in 5 of the previous six years. Prescott’s run of sturdiness stopped throughout Rush’s 12 months away — again with Jason Garrett throughout a part of his Giants OC interval — however he proved succesful in a giant spot when Dak went down once more final 12 months. Rush quarterbacked the Cowboys to a win in Minnesota, throwing for 325 yards and main a game-winning drive that culminated with a final-minute TD cross. The Central Michigan alum must be able to stepping in once more.


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20. Los Angeles Chargers: Chase Daniel

Los Angeles Chargers: Chase Daniel

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How a lot does the oft-hired QB2 have left? Daniel will flip 36 this season, and with Justin Herbert video games being true spectacles at this level, it is going to be a downer if we see his 14th-year veteran backup. However the former Heisman finalist-turned-six-team vet has performed within the offense OC Joe Lombardi is operating for years — largely throughout his two-stint New Orleans profession. Daniel has not thrown a cross as a Charger and has simply 261 makes an attempt. A daily on infographics themed round earnings-to-work ratios, Daniel will transfer previous $40 million in profession money this season. He ought to nonetheless be a succesful QB below Lombardi.


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19. Atlanta Falcons: Desmond Ridder

Atlanta Falcons: Desmond Ridder

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This draft’s second quarterback chosen, Ridder probably might be bumped as much as starter this season. With Atlanta initially of a rebuild and Marcus Mariota a wobbly bridge, the Cincinnati product ought to see a handful of begins. After main the primary Group of 5 group to a CFP berth, Ridder turned in a strong preseason. The four-year Bearcats starter posted three straight 500-plus-yard dashing seasons as effectively and is additional alongside than Willis or the now-injured Matt Corral as an NFL-ready passer. This might be one of many NFL’s worst groups, however Ridder ought to acquire useful seasoning.


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18. Los Angeles Rams: John Wolford

Los Angeles Rams: John Wolford

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Per normal, that is Wolford feat. Sean McVay. The Rams began Wolford in a playoff sport by which Jared Goff was (barely) wholesome sufficient to take part and have continued to hold the previous Alliance of American Soccer passer on their roster. That is Yr 4 for Wolford because the Rams’ backup. He has solely tried 42 passes, none of them going for a landing, however right here is betting McVay might engineer a productive offense round Wolford if Matthew Stafford went down. 


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17. Kansas Metropolis Chiefs: Chad Henne

Kansas City Chiefs: Chad Henne

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The Chiefs managed to win a Matt Moore begin in 2019, and Henne helped the 2020 group stave off the Browns after Patrick Mahomes’ divisional-round concussion. Andy Reid noticed sufficient to maintain Henne for his age-37 season. Whereas Henne in all probability shouldn’t be as bodily gifted as a few of the gamers already listed, going into his Fifteenth season, the previous second-round choose has been in Kansas Metropolis’s system for 4 years now. Henne ought to have another 12 months in him as a fill-in, although the Chiefs — maybe with much less margin for error post-Tyreek Hill and Tyrann Mathieu — definitely wish to keep away from this state of affairs.


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16. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Blaine Gabbert

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Blaine Gabbert

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That is Yr 4 for Gabbert in Bucs OC Byron Leftwich’s system, although it is going to be fascinating to see how the offense appears to be like post-Bruce Arians. Regardless of how a lot clearer the Tom Brady fingerprints might be on Tampa Bay’s offensive blueprint, Gabbert continues to be an offseason precedence. The Bucs will gown Gabbert forward of 2021 second-rounder Kyle Trask, illustrating the group’s perception within the former high prospect. Gabbert has not began a sport since 2018, however the ex-Jaguars starter had good spurts that 12 months as a Titan and with Arians’ Cardinals in 2017. 


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15. Seattle Seahawks: Drew Lock

Seattle Seahawks: Drew Lock

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Lock being unable to beat out Geno Smith doesn’t precisely dent the commerce worth the Seahawks acquired for Russell Wilson, because the draft picks have been the prize within the deal. However it appears to be like dangerous on a former second-rounder who has made 21 begins over his three-year profession. Lock’s turnover penchant confirmed up in his prolonged preseason audition, which featured three INTs. Lock led the NFL in picks two years in the past, regardless of lacking three video games, and can’t be trusted at this level. He does convey extra expertise than many backup QBs, nonetheless, and virtually definitely will make begins this season sooner or later. Nonetheless, Lock’s inventory has undeniably tanked. 


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14. Washington Commanders: Taylor Heinicke

Washington Commanders: Taylor Heinicke

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One among seven undrafted arms positioned as backups this 12 months, Heinicke was thrown into a troublesome state of affairs in 2021. Ryan Fitzpatrick’s Week 1 harm cleared the way in which for 15 begins — on a Washington offense with a below-average offensive line and a Terry McLaurin-dependent receiving corps. The Previous Dominion alum completed twenty third in QBR final season — forward of names like Ben Roethlisberger, Jared Goff, and each non-Mac Jones rookie. The Commanders have a backup who had them at 6-6 at some extent final season. Heinicke, 29, has made 16 profession begins plus a memorable wild-card outing.


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13. Arizona Cardinals: Colt McCoy

Arizona Cardinals: Colt McCoy

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The Cardinals’ McCoy-directed win in Seattle confirmed his high quality Kyler Murray fill-in outing in San Francisco was no fluke. McCoy additionally steered a low-wattage win over a 12-4 Seahawks group as a Big in 2020, doing simply sufficient for his overmatched group. The longtime Washington backup simply turned 36, however he accomplished 74.7% of his throws — at 7.5 yards a pop — final season. Neither of McCoy’s wins concerned DeAndre Hopkins, both. The Thirteenth-year veteran is nearing the top, however he has one thing left. 


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12. New York Jets: Joe Flacco

New York Jets: Joe Flacco

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Flacco doesn’t look to be the Jets’ Week 1 backup; that duty will in all probability fall on Mike White. With Zach Wilson probably out, Flacco is in line to make his sixth Jets begin. The previous Tremendous Bowl MVP didn’t win any of the earlier 5, although the 2020 Jets roster made triumphs tough, and is way faraway from his prime. However the former Ravens and Broncos starter had a pleasant effort with a greater (however nonetheless dangerous) Jets group final 12 months — a 291-yard, two-TD sport towards the Dolphins. Flacco is now 37 and has by no means been a cell passer. However the Fifteenth-year vet nonetheless provides a a lot larger flooring than Wilson at this level. 


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11. New York Giants: Tyrod Taylor

New York Giants: Tyrod Taylor

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That is group No. 6 for Taylor, who has been changed by a rookie (Baker Mayfield, Justin Herbert, Davis Mills) at his earlier three stops. If Taylor finally ends up making a number of begins for the Giants, it means the franchise will probably be beginning over in 2023. It’s not out of the query Taylor, who was in Buffalo throughout Giants GM Joe Schoen’s first 12 months there, replaces Daniel Jones. The 33-year-old nomad didn’t play significantly effectively with the Texans, who put a horrible group round him. However Taylor (53 profession begins) helped a flawed Payments group to the 2017 playoffs. He might probably step in as a safer, much less thrilling QB possibility in New York.


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10. Inexperienced Bay Packers: Jordan Love

Green Bay Packers: Jordan Love

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The Packers erred when buying and selling up for Love. A group perennially held again by roster stinginess — although, this was largely pre-Brian Gutekunst — is utilizing the league’s most useful asset (a first-round QB contract) to journey the bench. Shifting away from the large image, the Packers have seen enchancment from the Utah State product. Love confronted starters behind a backup-laden O-line and receivers lacking throughout the preseason and fared decently. The drop-off from Aaron Rodgers to Love would once more be steep, as final 12 months’s Chiefs and Lions video games confirmed, however the backup presents competency. Damning with faint reward is an improve from the place this case as soon as was.


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9. Buffalo Payments: Case Keenum

Buffalo Bills: Case Keenum


That is group No. 7 for Keenum, whom the Browns traded to the Payments. Keenum went 2-0 as a starter final season, beating the Broncos and a backup-laden Bengals squad. He threw too many INTs with Denver in 2018 and was on a horrible 2019 Washington group. However Keenum led the NFL in QB DVOA in 2017, spearheading the Vikings to a 13-3 file and the NFC title sport. With group round him, there is no such thing as a motive to assume a 34-year-old Keenum can not steer Buffalo’s Corvette to wins if Josh Allen have been to overlook time. Keenum has made 64 profession begins. Are we positive the Browns upgraded with Jacoby Brissett?


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8. Baltimore Ravens: Tyler Huntley

Baltimore Ravens: Tyler Huntley

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If the Ravens obtain a Deshaun Watson-level commerce supply for Lamar Jackson within the subsequent 12 months, do they shut it down instantly? Huntley’s QBR (in seven video games; 4 begins) was 49.0; Jackson’s 2021 mark was 50.7. That’s cherry-picking, however this checklist’s highest-ranked UDFA had an injury-flooded Ravens group in shut video games towards the Packers and Rams. Huntley additionally accomplished 70% of his passes in three of his 5 prolonged outings. In Greg Roman’s offense, the ex-Utah Ute confirmed shocking kind. The Ravens in all probability usually are not unloading their franchise participant, but when he misses time once more, the group has discovered one thing at QB2.


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7. Carolina Panthers: Sam Darnold

Carolina Panthers: Sam Darnold

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When Darnold returns from his excessive ankle sprain, he’ll step in as a wildly overpaid backup to Baker Mayfield. Darnold has largely been dangerous as a professional, however the once-elite USC prospect has been dealt unwinnable palms all through his profession. This isn’t to say Darnold deserves a direct probability to begin once more, however he did have Carolina at 3-0 final season. The injury-prone QB additionally performed behind a brutal Panthers O-line in 2021. With the group set to make use of 4 new O-line starters, together with first-round left sort out Ikem Ekwonu, from Week 1 2021, Darnold (49 profession begins) would have a greater probability. 


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6. Philadelphia Eagles: Gardner Minshew

Philadelphia Eagles: Gardner Minshew

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Minshew coming in would change the Eagles’ offense, which morphed midseason right into a smashmouth assault geared round Jalen Hurts’ skillset. However the Eagles may improve concerning accuracy (although decline considerably in dynamism and fantasy factors) if Hurts missed time. Minshew (63% profession price, 7.0 Y/A) sliced up the Jets in his one begin with Philly’s first-stringers final 12 months and had a descending Jaguars group at 6-6 as he changed Nick Foles in 2019. The previous sixth-round choose can have an enchanting free company market in 2023. It stays odd Minshew solely fetched the Jags a sixth-round choose final 12 months. 


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5. New Orleans Saints: Andy Dalton

New Orleans Saints: Andy Dalton

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Now 34, Dalton has probably settled into the backup stage of his profession. However it is a competent QB with 148 profession begins whose 2021 play is tough to guage as a result of Bears’ setup. Main an offense with out tackles Tyron Smith and La’el Collins in 2020, Dalton helped present Dak Prescott’s worth in a mediocre Cowboys one-off. On a Saints group with one of many league’s finest offensive traces — and a much-improved receiving corps — it’s laborious to think about Dalton not providing worthwhile reduction work. It’s not out of the query the longtime Bengal presents the Saints a better flooring than Jameis Winston, both. 


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4. Indianapolis Colts: Nick Foles

Indianapolis Colts: Nick Foles

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Have been Foles the Bears’ QB2, he would rank decrease. However that is pretty much as good a state of affairs as the previous Tremendous Bowl MVP can have. The 6-foot-6 veteran is again with Frank Reich, once more following Carson Wentz. The Colts made a exceptional QB2 enchancment — from untested Day 3 choose Sam Ehlinger — in reuniting Foles with the previous Eagles OC. Foles has largely underwhelmed away from Philadelphia, however in Reich’s Philly Midwest offense, right here is betting the 33-year-old vet would return to his high kind. Foles seems no menace to Matt Ryan, however Indy’s starter is 37. The Reich-Foles connection makes such a change a non-insane state of affairs.


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3. Pittsburgh Steelers: Kenny Pickett

Pittsburgh Steelers: Kenny Pickett


Pickett must be beginning by the midseason level and, like Ben Roethlisberger 18 years in the past, could possibly be in Pittsburgh’s lineup by the quarter pole. The primary-rounder appeared good in his preseason outings, and Mitchell Trubisky shouldn’t be a formidable obstacle to the Steelers starting the Pickett period quickly. Pickett took a serious leap ahead throughout his COVID-19 bonus 12 months final season, throwing 42 TD passes and ending third within the Heisman balloting — the very best end by a Pitt Panther since Larry Fitzgerald in 2003 — and presents the Steelers upside. The Steelers are a low-ceiling group till Pickett takes over.


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2. Miami Dolphins: Teddy Bridgewater

Miami Dolphins: Teddy Bridgewater

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No, the Broncos weren’t a very enjoyable offense with Bridgewater on the controls. However they have been 7-6 when he suffered his second concussion. Drew Lock, as Denver was threatening to beat eventual AFC champion Cincinnati, promptly oversaw a Week 15 loss and three extra to value Vic Fangio his job. Bridgewater additionally delivered his normal model of adequacy in Carolina in 2020 and stepped in (on an admittedly higher Saints group) to steer New Orleans to a 5-0 file in 2019. There’s a nonzero probability Bridgewater, 29, will change a wholesome Tua Tagovailoa this season. Although, his secure fashion would mortify Tyreek Hill’s fantasy GMs (and probably draw warmth on Hill’s podcast).


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1. San Francisco 49ers: Jimmy Garoppolo

San Francisco 49ers: Jimmy Garoppolo

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Like George Costanza returning to his actual property job after a memorable goodbye, Garoppolo will make a surprising San Francisco re-emergence. The five-year 49er had mentioned all his obligatory farewells. Whereas everybody concerned is saying the best issues, Trey Lance ought to completely be involved. This can be a Tremendous Bowl-contending group not able to groom an unready prospect. Garoppolo additionally may gain advantage by starting the season on the bench on account of his shoulder rehab. For now, the 49ers have probably the greatest insurance coverage insurance policies in latest quarterback historical past. Garoppolo, 30, nonetheless may maintain the important thing to the 49ers pushing for an additional Tremendous Bowl.

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