While the quarterback position has always been important, the overall infatuation with passers has only grown more profound over time. This has led, of course, to endless debates around which quarterback is the best in the league — a question these QB power rankings look to answer in 2020.
Losing Drew Brees for any significant amount of time has, and will continue to leave an enormous ripple in our QB power rankings. If you notice a mere five signal-callers losing ground after Week 10, you’re not imagining things. Having risen six places to land at seventh on last week’s list, Brees gives all but three passers (not listed last week) ranked after him an immediate boost in his absence.
Of course, one of the new additions to the rankings will be Jameis Winston, Brees’ replacement. Winston finds himself starting for the first time this season. And with the minimal playing time he’s had, I’ll require tangible results this weekend from the former Florida State alum if he’s looking to climb out of the basement of PFN’s 2020 QB power rankings.
The two other additions to the list are familiar guys. Joe Flacco remains at the New York Jets’ helm while Sam Darnold continues to recover from injury. Ahead of the Jets’ bye week, it was assumed Flacco would resort to his backup role. However, Darnold hasn’t improved enough for that to happen. Then, there’s Andy Dalton, who’s cleared concussion protocol, and will resume as the Dallas Cowboys starter.
Therefore, without much room for guys to drop, the only notable dip in the standings comes from the pinnacle itself. After holding steady for ten weeks, Russell Wilson finally surrenders his grip over the top spot. And while Wilson’s decline is a big deal, anyone with eyes shouldn’t be surprised to see him slip. So who benefits? Will Patrick Mahomes stake a claim as the league’s best passer, having not played a down in Week 10? Or has Aaron Rodgers done enough to outrank them both in our 2020 QB power rankings?
NOTE: PFN’s QB Power Rankings of 2020 include player statistics from the current season. Rank among all starting QBs shown in parenthesis. Stats/analytics include: Games played (GP), passing yards per game (YPG), completion percentage, average air yards per completion (CAY), passing touchdown percentage per attempt (TD%), interception percentage per attempt (INT%), PFN’s Offensive Value Metric (OVM), rushing yards, and rushing touchdowns.
2020 QB Power Rankings Week 11
#1 – Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs ⇑1
Season: 9 GP | 298.6 YPG (3rd) | 66.9% (12th) | 6.3 avg CAY (T-13th) | 7.6 TD% (3rd) | 0.3 INT% (1st) | 20.52 OVM (25th) | 171 rush yards (11th) | 2 rush TDs (T-10th)
Without taking a snap, Patrick Mahomes becomes the front-runner for NFL MVP and my top quarterback heading into Week 11. He’s been on the cusp these last few weeks and finally makes the jump following Russell Wilson’s poor decision making in the previous month or so. Unlike Wilson, Mahomes has had much better luck keeping the ball out of the defense’s hands. His 25:1 touchdown to interception ratio is best in the league, and he’s done well to avoid negative plays such as sacks. Only Philip Rivers, Ben Roethlisberger, Aaron Rodgers, and Drew Brees are getting sacked at lower rates.
#2 – Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers ⇑1
Season: 9 GP | 286.4 YPG (6th) | 67.8% (9th) | 5.9 avg CAY (17th) | 8.3 TD% (2nd) | 1.0 INT% (3rd) | 26.29 OVM (13th) | 65 rush yards (T-18th) | 1 rush TD (T-13th)
Despite the weather playing a role again with his accuracy and timing, Aaron Rodgers did just enough to be placed above Russell Wilson after ten weeks of football. Or, you could say Wilson did badly enough that Rodgers moves up by default. Either way, the Green Bay Packers quarterback is playing some of the most consistent football at the position (sans Tampa Bay). Against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Rodgers managed 329 total yards and three scores with one interception — in 20-30 mph winds. He’s now tallied 14 total touchdowns to two turnovers in the last four weeks.
#3 – Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks ⇓2
Season: 9 GP | 309.9 YPG (1st) | 69.8% (2nd) | 6.8 avg CAY (T-7th) | 8.4 TD% (1st) | 3.0 INT% (21st) | 27.86 OVM (6th) | 325 rush yards (5th) | 1 rush TD (T-13th)
For the first time in the history of Pro Football Network’s QB power rankings (2020 is our inaugural season, by the way), Russell Wilson has relinquished the pole position. In actuality, I’m hard-pressed to keep him above Kyler Murray for another week — especially if he can’t corral these turnovers. In the last two weeks alone, the guy has seven giveaways. Add the three interceptions from Week 7, and Wilson has turned the ball over ten times in his previous four games (2.5 per game). Even Daniel Jones is cringing.
#4- Kyler Murray, Arizona Cardinals
Season: 9 GP | 263.9 YPG (13th) | 68.2% (7th) | 6.3 avg CAY (T-13th) | 5.5 TD% (T-14th) | 2.6 INT% (T-17th) | 27.18 OVM (8th) | 604 rush yards (1st) | 10 rush TDs (1st)
If the season ended today, the Arizona Cardinals’ last three opponents would make the postseason. Through those games, Kyler Murray averaged just under 300 yards passing (296.0), gained an additional 234 yards on the ground (78 per game), and scored 11 total touchdowns. My advocacy for Murray as the league’s MVP is growing stronger as the year progresses — regardless of his ‘Hail Murray’ heroics.
#5 – Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons
Season: 9 GP | 305.1 YPG (2nd) | 67.2% (11th) | 7.6 avg CAY (T-1st) | 4.3 TD% (16th) | 1.4 INT% (T-6th) | 28.42 OVM (5th) | 68 rush yards (16th) | 1 rush TD (T-13th)
Like Mahomes, Matt Ryan enjoyed Week 10 from home or wherever players get to be during their respective bye weeks. However, he remains in fifth place, seeing no change to his current ranking. In Week 11, Ryan heads to the Big Easy to take on the divisional rival New Orleans Saints. Even after winning two straight and three of the last five, the Atlanta Falcons would’ve been underdogs in that game had Drew Brees not been banged up to put it lightly. Now, Ryan and the Falcons have a legitimate shot at getting a win as their season turnaround is in full swing.
#6 – Tom Brady, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ⇑3
Season: 10 GP | 273.9 YPG (9th) | 66.0% (17th) | 6.6 avg CAY (9th) | 6.0 TD% (T-9th) | 1.8 INT% (9th) | 27.03 OVM (9th) | 8 rush yards (27th) | 3 rush TDs (T-3rd)
Sunday was your classic “Tom Brady playing angry after an embarrassing loss in the previous week.” The Buccaneers’ offense was on point, punting zero times en route to 544 total yards and 46 points. But Brady was by no means perfect. Honestly, there were some missed opportunities, and the team wasn’t all that efficient when in scoring range. Nonetheless, Brady spread the ball around nicely, showing off his affinity for beautiful ball placement in the process. For that, he recovers some lost ground from last week’s 2020 QB power rankings update.
#7 – Deshaun Watson, Houston Texans ⇓1
Season: 9 GP | 282.1 YPG (7th) | 68.1% (8th) | 6.9 avg CAY (6th) | 6.0 TD% (T-9th) | 1.7 INT% (8th) | 27.76 OVM (7th) | 233 rush yards (7th) | 1 rush TD (T-13th)
As you can see, Deshaun Watson is top ten in just about every major passing category I hold dear, as well as rushing yards for a quarterback. And I assure you there’s no other qualifying signal-caller on this list that you can say the same for. Watson has his weaknesses and shortfalls for sure, but as the highest-rated quarterback (107.0) to play for a team with a losing record, week in and week out, he carries the Houston Texans offense — even if it’s in a losing effort.
#8 – Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans
Season: 9 GP | 236.4 YPG (18th) | 64.8% (20th) | 7.1 avg CAY (T-4th) | 7.1 TD% (4th) | 1.1 INT% (4th) | 29.71 OVM (3rd) | 114 rush yards (14th) | 1 rush TD (T-13th)
Ryan Tannehill is experiencing a gauntlet of stud NFL defenses this month, and it’s safe to say he’s not handled them as well as one would hope. Against the Indianapolis Colts, he went 4-of-4 for 59 yards and a passing touchdown on the opening drive. From there, the Titans’ passing game was stifled. Tannehill would go on to throw for 88 yards the rest of the way, completing 11-of-23 — his second consecutive game completing less than 50% of his throws.
#9 – Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills ⇑3
Season: 10 GP | 287.1 YPG (5th) | 68.4% (6th) | 6.8 avg CAY (T-7th) | 5.8 TD% (11th) | 1.9 INT% (T-10th) | 25.06 OVM (15th) | 279 rush yards (6th) | 5 rush TDs (T-3rd)
Josh Allen jumps three places in this week’s 2020 QB power rankings despite losing to the Arizona Cardinals via the ‘Hail Murray.’ Without the turnovers, Allen may have overtaken Tannehill. Nevertheless, Allen deserves respect for, yet again, putting the offense on his back to deliver (what should’ve been) a game-deciding score. If it weren’t for Murray’s heroics and Hopkins’ freakish ability a couple of plays later, we’d be talking a lot more about the Buffalo Bills’ 12-play, 78-yard game-winning drive.
#10 – Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers
Season: 8 GP | 291.6 YPG (4th) | 66.8% (T-13th) | 5.4 avg CAY (T-22nd) | 6.3 TD% (7th) | 2.0 INT% (T-12th) | 26.65 OVM (T-10th) | 176 rush yards (10th) | 3 rush TDs (T-5th)
Justin Herbert’s 187 yards passing was not only a season-low but nearly 100 yards below his previous low for the year. Still, Herbert threw for two scores and ran for a third as he continues to make a case for Rookie of the Year accolades. An upcoming date with the New York Jets should prove to rejuvenate after facing a relentless Miami Dolphins’ defense that’s given quarterbacks some trouble as of late.
#11 – Derek Carr, Las Vegas Raiders
Season: 9 GP | 239.6 YPG (16th) | 69.3% (3rd) | 5.4 avg CAY (T-22nd) | 5.7 TD% (T-12th) | 0.7 INT% (2nd) | 26.30 OVM (12th) | 118 rush yards (13th) | 0 rush TDs (T-21st)
For the third consecutive week, Derek Carr threw for fewer than 200 yards, but the Las Vegas Raiders captured the win, yet again. It could’ve been a much better day for Carr, however. Receiver Nelson Agholor dropped a would-be touchdown, and a couple of other big plays were there for the taking had Carr’s supporting cast been able to haul in the on-target throws. Carr has the Raiders in the thick of the playoff hunt and is playing efficient, mistake-free football as he’s making his way towards the top of our QB power rankings for the 2020 season.
#12 – Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers ⇑4
Season: 9 GP | 251.9 YPG (15th) | 66.8% (T-13th) | 4.8 avg CAY (27th) | 6.6 TD% (6th) | 1.2 INT% (5th) | 23.77 OVM (19th) | 14 rush yards (25th) | 0 rush TDs (T-21st)
Ben Roethlisberger moves up the 2020 QB power rankings this week following a 333-yard and four-touchdown performance. While Roethlisberger had similar numbers in last week’s victory over the Dallas Cowboys, this week felt different. Maybe it’s because Big Ben didn’t practice all week. Yup, you heard me. Roethlisberger didn’t even practice ahead of Sunday’s game against the Cincinnati Bengals. He began slow, as expected, but quickly got hot, taking the game over. Seventeen years in the NFL will do that.
#13 – Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens
Season: 9 GP | 195.8 YPG (24th) | 64.0% (21st) | 6.4 avg CAY (T-11th) | 5.7 TD% (T-12th) | 2.0 INT% (T-12th) | 21.12 OVM (23rd) | 524 rush yards (2nd) | 3 rush TDs (T-5th)
For the first time in 32 games, the Baltimore Ravens failed to score at least 20 points. While essential to the streak’s existence, Lamar Jackson was as responsible as anyone for it coming to an end. He was given ample time to find an open receiver on numerous occasions — crazy amounts of time. However, he’d either fire an off-target throw or settle for several yards via scramble. Maybe coach Bill Belichick is on to something by only rushing three in obvious passing situations. Regardless, Jackson is now 0-6 when his offense falls behind by ten or more points.
#14 – Jared Goff, Los Angeles Rams
Season: 9 GP | 271.9 YPG (10th) | 66.4% (15th) | 5.2 avg CAY (25th) | 4.0 TD% (17th) | 1.9 INT% (T-12th) | 20.74 OVM (24th) | 44 rush yards (21st) | 2 rush TDs (T-10th)
For Jared Goff, playing against the Seattle Seahawks’ defense was a breath of fresh air compared to the beating he took from the Miami Dolphins ahead of the bye week. With the defense doing their part to rattle Wilson, Goff became the seventh passer to eclipse the 300-yard mark against the league’s worst defense by completing 27-of-37 for 302 yards. Goff has won five of the last six meetings against Wilson-led Seahawks.
#15 – Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals
Season: 9 GP | 276.1 YPG (8th) | 65.4% (18th) | 5.8 avg CAY (T-18th) | 3.2 TD% (T-22nd) | 1.4 INT% (T-6th) | 28.87 OVM (4th) | 130 rush yards (12th) | 3 rush TDs (T-5th)
Joe Burrow took another beating on Sunday. This time, it was to a Pittsburgh Steelers, who have gained a reputation around the league for giving quarterbacks a hard time. In the end, Burrow was hit 13 times and pressured on another 21 dropbacks. Burrow struggled against the blitz all afternoon (can you blame him) and could not convert a single third-down situation (0-for-13). His 213 passing yards were his lowest since Baltimore’s defense limited Burrow to a season-low 183 yards back in Week 5. Welcome to the AFC North.
#16 – Philip Rivers, Indianapolis Colts ⇑2
Season: 9 GP | 266.1 YPG (12th) | 68.7% (5th) | 5.0 avg CAY (26th) | 3.5 TD% (T-19th) | 2.2 INT% (15th) | 25.35 OVM (14th) | -2 rush yard (32nd) | 0 rush TDs (T-21st)
As the second quarter of Thursday night’s game against the Tennessee Titans came to an end, Philip Rivers was on his way to an extraordinary performance completing 19-of-27 for 209 yards and a touchdown. However, in the second half, Rivers attempted just 12 passes, completing 10 passes for 99 yards. One look at the numbers, and you’d think the Colts blew it. But not so fast. After trailing at halftime 21-17, Rivers and the Colts outscored the Titans 21-0 in the second half to win their sixth game and take control of the AFC South. Rivers was on point for much of the night, taking advantage of his opponent’s miscues with the killer instinct I covet at the position.