The NFC East was dominant a season ago. Not a single team in the division ended the season with a losing record in 2023. It now has three quarterbacks within the division making over $40 million annually, with the last being either a stopgap veteran or a passer on a rookie contract.
But in our NFC East QB rankings, who is at the top of this heralded NFL division?
Ranking the QBs in the NFC East
The question is how much stock we put into the entire résumé vs. what the QBs have done recently and their potential upside. Do we think that Jalen Hurts can continue ascending with a new offensive play-caller? Can Daniel Jones be a bigger playmaker with his arm in 2023?
1) Philadelphia Eagles: Jalen Hurts
Dak Prescott has a more substantial résumé than Hurts. But while he’s hit and likely already surpassed his athletic peak and is just sharpening his passing ability at this point, Hurts continues to progress in that area at a somewhat rapid rate.
The thing is, Hurts has gotten better as a passer in every season he’s played from his time at Alabama up until now. He simply keeps improving. But he’s also one of the most dangerous players in the league with the ball in his hands, and his rushing threat helps the Eagles’ ground game be more efficient as a whole, which gives him an edge over Prescott.
PFN’s own Arif Hasan ranked Hurts inside the top five of the NFL QB Rankings; Prescott checked in at seventh.
2) Dallas Cowboys: Dak Prescott
The Dallas Cowboys finished fourth in points per game a season ago despite Prescott’s down year and a five-game stretch without him when they averaged 21.6 ppg. They averaged 30 points per game with Prescott.
Over the past two seasons, they have the highest scoring average in the NFL, and in 97 games played, the Cowboys have averaged 26.6 points per game with Prescott. That career number would have tied for fifth in the 2022 NFL season.
There is no denying that Prescott must take better care of the ball in 2023. Even though many of his turnovers were of little fault of his own, there were still some awful and uncharacteristic decisions made by the veteran pocket passer a season ago.
3) New York Giants: Daniel Jones
It’s difficult to truly gauge how good Jones may be, given the way the Giants’ offense chose to attack defenses in 2022. They did not have any downfield threats on offense, and the receiving corps was underwhelming, to say the least.
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But Jones was finally able to unlock his athleticism, and his rushing ability made him a surprisingly efficient quarterback in 2022. His immediate growth under Brian Daboll and Mike Kafka is at least somewhat reminiscent of Josh Allen’s early improvement with Daboll.
Jones doesn’t have Allen’s arm or brute physicality as a runner. But he is a good athlete, and if he can continue to use his legs as a weapon, it will open up opportunities in the passing game. The addition of Jalin Hyatt should also help the Giants’ nonexistent vertical passing attack.
4) Washington Commanders: Sam Howell and Jacoby Brissett
Ron Rivera said that Sam Howell would get the opportunity to win the starting job, but that he wanted to get an established veteran in the ring as well to fight things out. The team accomplished that when they signed Jacoby Brissett, who could end up the team’s Week 1 starter in 2023.
Honestly, if he’s not, the NFC East might have something to worry about in 2023. Brissett ranked 11th in the EPA+CPOE composite, and he posted the third-best CPOE in the entire NFL a season ago. The Browns’ offense with Brissett under center was good enough to make them a playoff team, but their defense let them down.
Howell suspiciously fell to the fifth round of the 2022 NFL Draft, despite posting some nice tape while at North Carolina. If he has found a way to improve his messy lower-body mechanics, Howell could be a quality starter on a solid Washington roster.