NFL QB power rankings: Where all 32 starters stand heading into Week 9

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Using a loose formula, we ranked all 32 NFL starting quarterbacks.

Our formula is based on two different advanced statistics: Football Outsiders’ DYAR metric and ESPN’s total QBR metric. We also considered other factors, including recent performance, long-term outlook, and job security.

We’re about halfway through the regular season, and while Deshaun Watson and Carson Wentz have emerged as breakout stars, other quarterbacks are stuck in the lower reaches of our list. Below, check out where all 32 starters stand heading into Week 9.


32. C.J. Beathard, San Francisco 49ers

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Ezra Shaw/Getty

Ranking after Week 6: 30

Record as starter: 0-2

DYAR rank: 28

QBR rank: N/A

One thing to know: Two starts into his NFL career, Beathard hasn’t looked like anything special, but the 49ers’ trade for Jimmy Garoppolo is actually what lands him at the bottom of this list. He may keep the starting job for the next couple of weeks, but don’t expect to see him under center after the his bye in Week 11.


31. Brett Hundley, Green Bay Packers

Ranking after Week 6: 32

Record as starter: 0-1

DYAR rank: N/A

QBR rank: N/A

One thing to know: Hundley struggled in his first career start, but he may be in for a better result this week. Weeks after undergoing surgery to repair a broken collarbone, Aaron Rodgers has returned to Lambeau Field to mentor his teammate for the rest of the season.


30. Drew Stanton, Arizona Cardinals

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Alan Crowhurst/Getty

Ranking after Week 6: N/A (replacing Carson Palmer, No. 19)

Record as starter: N/A

DYAR rank: N/A

QBR rank: N/A

One thing to know: Stanton hasn’t seen much action since Carson Palmer went down with a broken arm, but the early returns were uninspiring – the Michigan State product completed just 5 of his 14 passes in Week 7. If he can’t turn things around against the 49ers this week, the Cardinals will be in real trouble.


29. DeShone Kizer, Cleveland Browns

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Jason Miller/Getty

Ranking after Week 6: 31

Record as starter: 0-7

DYAR rank: 32

QBR rank: 32

One thing to know: The Browns were set to acquire third-year signal caller A.J. McCarron from the Bengals earlier this week, but they failed to submit the trade before the 4 p.m. deadline. Beyond being embarrassing, the failed deal was also a slight at Kizer, who co-leads the league in interceptions.


28. Brock Osweiler, Denver Broncos

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Ranking after Week 6: N/A (replacing Trevor Siemian, No. 24)

Record as starter: N/A

DYAR rank: N/A

QBR rank: N/A

One thing to know: Two months after being released by the Browns in favor of DeShone Kizer, Kevin Hogan, and Cody Kessler, Osweiler will make his first start of the year in the Mile-High City. He threw more interceptions than touchdowns last season, but that doesn’t mean he won’t be an improvement over Trevor Siemian.


27. Mitch Trubisky, Chicago Bears

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Ranking after Week 6: 28

Record as starter: 2-2

DYAR rank: N/A

QBR rank: N/A

One thing to know: Trubisky played just one season as a starter in college, so he’s experiencing some predictable growing pains at the pro level. He remains a woefully inaccurate passer, but at least he set a career high in completions in Week 8: 14, up from 4 in the previous game.


26. Joe Flacco, Baltimore Ravens

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Ranking after Week 6: 27

Record as starter: 4-4

DYAR rank: 31

QBR rank: 28

One thing to know: Flacco endured a brutal late hit during last Thursday’s game against the Miami Dolphins, but he cleared concussion protocol and should be ready to go for Week 9. The Ravens may have one of the worst offenses in football, but with a 4-4 record, their postseason hopes are very much alive.


25. Jay Cutler, Miami Dolphins

Ranking after Week 6: 29

Record as starter: 4-2

DYAR rank: 29

QBR rank: 26

One thing to know: Miami’s league-worst offense led to widespread calls for Cutler to be benched, but the team looked even worse with backup Matt Moore, losing to the Ravens 40-0 last Thursday. Mediocre as Cutler has been, Dolphins fans should count themselves lucky that the 34-year-old is set to return from a rib injury this week.


24. Jacoby Brissett, Indianapolis Colts

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Ranking after Week 6: 26

Record as starter: 2-5

DYAR rank: 26

QBR rank: 25

One thing to know: Jimmy Garoppolo wasn’t the only Patriots backup who got traded this season – Brissett was shipped to Indianapolis in exchange for Phillip Dorsett in early September. Seven starts in, the numbers aren’t quite there, but he’s often hampered by the Colts’ leaky offensive line. Brissett has been as good they could have reasonably hoped for.


23. Andy Dalton, Cincinnati Bengals

Ranking after Week 6: 22

Record as starter: 3-4

DYAR rank: 24

QBR rank: 27

One thing to know: Dalton has improved since his atrocious start to the season, but his stats remain down across the board from two years ago. ESPN recently mocked a trade that would have sent the TCU product across the division to the Browns, but Cincinnati actually went in the other direction, attempting to deal backup A.J. McCarron.


22. Josh McCown, New York Jets

Ranking after Week 6: 23

Record as starter: 3-5

DYAR rank: 25

QBR rank: 18

One thing to know: This veteran had his best game of the year in Week 8, but with the dawn of the second half of the season, it’s fair to wonder how much longer the Jets are going to keep starting him over youngsters Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenberg. Whoever replaces McCown will have trouble matching his completion rate of 70.5.


21. Eli Manning, New York Giants

Ranking after Week 6: 20

Record as starter: 1-6

DYAR rank: 22

QBR rank: 22

One thing to know: Just when it looked like things were beginning to turn around, Manning had a terrible game in Week 7, completing less than half of his passes in a 24-7 loss to the Seahawks. This will go down as a lost season no matter how the next nine weeks play out, but Giants fans would love to have a bit more peace of mind about their quarterback situation by the end of Week 17.


20. Blake Bortles, Jacksonville Jaguars

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Ranking after Week 6: 25

Record as starter: 4-3

DYAR rank: 20

QBR rank: 19

One thing to know: Bortles is coming off two of his best performances of the season, throwing for a combined 571 yards while completing over two-thirds of his passes, a rarity for the often inaccurate gunslinger. Another rarity: the Jaguars are above .500 through their first seven games.


19. Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers

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Ranking after Week 6: 13

Record as starter: 5-3

DYAR rank: 23

QBR rank: 21

One thing to know: Newton’s passer rating sat at 98.5 through Week 5, but after three lackluster games since then, it has fallen all the way to 79.1, below names like Jacoby Brissett and Blake Bortles. The Panthers remain competitive, but they have to be disappointed that their MVP-winning quarterback from two seasons ago now co-leads the NFL in interceptions.


18. Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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Ranking after Week 6: 16

Record as starter: 2-5

DYAR rank: 14

QBR rank: 24

One thing to know: Winston was mediocre last Sunday, but cut him some slack – he’s been dealing with a sprained AC joint in his throwing shoulder. Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter said the Florida State product is doing “a lot better” this week, so their matchup against New Orleans will serve as an important test.


17. Case Keenum, Minnesota Vikings

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Ranking after Week 6: 18

Record as starter: 4-2

DYAR rank: 5

QBR rank: 6

One thing to know: Most backup quarterbacks are mere stopgaps, but Keenum has been much more than that, leading the Vikings to the top spot in the NFC North. Teddy Bridgewater and Sam Bradford could both return in the next few weeks, but until this Texan begins to fade, it seems unwise to mess with success.


16. Philip Rivers, Los Angeles Chargers

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Maddie Meyer/Getty

Ranking after Week 6: 11

Record as starter: 3-5

DYAR rank: 9

QBR rank: 23

One thing to know: Last week’s game against the Patriots should have been a shootout, but Rivers struggled to find a rhythm in the wet conditions, completing just 57% of his passes for a 76.0 passer rating. The Chargers will hope that this week’s bye can break him out of his funk.


15. Marcus Mariota, Tennessee Titans

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Jason Miller/Getty

Ranking after Week 6: 9

Record as starter: 4-2

DYAR rank: 17

QBR rank: 11

One thing to know: Mariota has been limited to just eight rushing yards since returning from a hamstring injury, his lowest two-game total of the season. The Titans didn’t score a touchdown in their 12-9 win over Cleveland in Week 7, but after last week’s bye, their quarterback may be ready to start using his legs again.


14. Jared Goff, Los Angeles Rams

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Alan Crowhurst/Getty

Ranking after Week 6: 10

Record as starter: 5-2

DYAR rank: 12

QBR rank: 15

One thing to know: Goff has faded since his terrific start to the season, posting a 65.9 passer rating and throwing three interceptions over his last three games. He needs a rebound against the Giants this week.


13. Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions

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Ranking after Week 6: 15

Record as starter: 3-4

DYAR rank: 19

QBR rank: 16

One thing to know: Stafford had an odd game on Sunday night, throwing for 423 yard but not a single touchdown in a 20-15 loss to the Steelers. His tremendous arm strength remains a major asset, but with his accuracy numbers way down from last year, it’s not too surprising that the Lions have dropped four of their last five games.


12. Tyrod Taylor, Buffalo Bills

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Ranking after Week 6: 21

Record as starter: 5-2

DYAR rank: 18

QBR rank: 17

One thing to know: The Bills lost most of their receiving talent over the offseason, but a surprising 5-2 start caused them to rethink their plans. They pulled off a trade for the Panthers’ Kelvin Benjamin earlier this week, giving Taylor a proven weapon as the race to the playoffs heats up.


11. Derek Carr, Oakland Raiders

Ranking after Week 6: 17

Record as starter: 3-4

DYAR rank: 11

QBR rank: 14

One thing to know: Carr has looked just fine at times, but his inconsistency is a primary reason behind the Raiders’ 3-5 record at the midway point. After an ugly loss to Buffalo in Week 8, the Fresno State product vowed to perform better in the games ahead.


10. Kirk Cousins, Washington Redskins

Ranking after Week 6: 8

Record as starter: 3-4

DYAR rank: 15

QBR rank: 5

One thing to know: The 49ers were long seen as a logical destination for Cousins, who’s playing his second straight season on the franchise tag, but they effectively eliminated themselves as an option by trading for Jimmy Garoppolo. The Redskins have been willing to pay through the nose to keep Cousins around, and they may decide to do it again this offseason.


9. Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers

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Leon Halip/Getty

Ranking after Week 6: 12

Record as starter: 6-2

DYAR rank: 4

QBR rank: 13

One thing to know: Roethlisberger has settled down since his nightmarish five-interception performance in Week 5, and his Steelers are on a three-game winning streak, leading the AFC North by two games. Still, he’s completed less than 57% of his passes since the last installment of these rankings.


8. Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks

Ranking after Week 6: 14

Record as starter: 5-2

DYAR rank: 13

QBR rank: 9

One thing to know: Wilson outgunned Deshaun Watson in one of the games of the season, throwing for 452 yards and four touchdowns in a feel-good win. After a performance like that, Seahawks head coach Pete Caroll probably didn’t mind his quarterback’s hilarious Halloween costume.


7. Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys

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Patrick Smith/Getty

Ranking after Week 6: 7

Record as starter: 4-3

DYAR rank: 8

QBR rank: 2

One thing to know: After weeks of uncertainty, Ezekiel Elliott was officially slapped with a six-game suspension, meaning Prescott will have to go without one of his top weapons as the Cowboys battle for playoff position. The second-year signal caller has never won a game without Elliott by his side.


6. Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons

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Ed Mulholland/Getty

Ranking after Week 6: 6

Record as starter: 4-3

DYAR rank: 10

QBR rank: 10

One thing to know: Last week’s game against the Jets probably wound up being more stressful than Ryan was expecting, but he still held up well in the poor conditions, throwing a pair of touchdown passes for a 113.3 passer rating. He’ll need to maintain that level of play to keep the Falcons competitive against their next three opponents: Carolina, Dallas, and Seattle.


5. Alex Smith, Kansas City Chiefs

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Ranking after Week 6: 3

Record as starter:

DYAR rank: 2

QBR rank: 7

One thing to know: Smith looked strangely flat against the Broncos on Sunday, but he still managed to throw for 202 yards and a touchdown in a decisive win. With two ho-hum performances in his last three games, the Utah product is coming back to earth, but he’s still at the helm of a terrific offense.


4. Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints

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Ranking after Week 6: 4

Record as starter: 5-2

DYAR rank: 3

QBR rank: 12

One thing to know: Brees logged the 6,000th completion of his career on Sunday, joining an elite group that includes Brett Favre, Peyton Manning, and no one else. With an unexpectedly competent defense, the Saints sit atop the NFC South and would love to bring home a surprise Super Bowl win as their legendary quarterback plays through the twilight of his career.


3. Carson Wentz, Philadelphia Eagles

Ranking after Week 6: 5

Record as starter: 7-1

DYAR rank: 7

QBR rank: 3

One thing to know: At 7-1, the Eagles have the best record in the NFL, and Wentz is doing his part by putting up MVP-level numbers, like his league-leading 19 touchdown passes. The team got even more dangerous this week, acquiring Jay Ajayi from the Miami Dolphins in a huge trade deadline deal.


2. Deshaun Watson, Houston Texans

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Ranking after Week 6: 2

Record as starter: 3-3

DYAR rank: 6

QBR rank: 1

One thing to know: Watson had one of the best games of his young career in Week 8, and at least one Seahawks defender came away impressed: cornerback Richard Sherman. “You played the best game any quarterback has ever played against us, and we’ve played all the legends,” he said, according to the MMQB.


1. Tom Brady, New England Patriots

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Jim Rogash/Getty

Ranking after Week 6: 1

Record as starter: 6-2

DYAR rank: 1

QBR rank: 4

One thing to know: The Patriots reaffirmed their commitment to Brady when they traded backup Jimmy Garoppolo across the country to the San Francisco 49ers. The Michigan product has been as prolific as ever since turning 40, leading the NFL in passing yards.


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