QB Power Rankings Week 1: Carr, Garoppolo tied in the middle
1. Tom Brady, New England
Just think how much more relaxed he’ll be to open this season without Jimmy G breathing down his neck.
2. Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay
The highest-paid player in the league has the weight of all Cheeseheads resting on his mended collarbone.
3. Drew Brees, New Orleans
He threw 23 TD passes last year, his lowest total since 2003, but his efficiency was as outstanding as ever.
4. Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh
It’s simple: Just keep throwing it toward Antonio Brown.
5. Philip Rivers, L.A. Chargers
Could this be the year he joins 2004 draft classmates Eli Manning and Ben Roethlisberger as a Super Bowl winner?
6. Russell Wilson, Seattle
He is no longer sharing the Seattle spotlight with anyone on the defensive side.
7. Matthew Stafford, Detroit
He has started every Lions game for seven years – at a very high level.
8. Matt Ryan, Atlanta
As long as he gets in the general vicinity of his 2016 season, he easily cracks the top 10.
9. Deshaun Watson, Houston
We’ve only seen a brief glimpse, but that brief glimpse was extremely impressive.
10. Kirk Cousins, Minnesota
He worked the system to perfection in Washington for this opportunity to take the Vikings to the next level.
11. Alex Smith, Washington
Words you never would have expected to describe him eight years ago: He’s a winner.
12. Nick Foles, Philadelphia
The Super Bowl-winning quarterback is merely keeping Carson Wentz’s seat warm.
13. Cam Newton, Carolina
Although he’s an inconsistent passer, he still has enough star power to carry his team.
14. Jared Goff, L.A. Rams
The league’s most improved player of a year ago must do it again to convince the skeptics.
15 (tied). DEREK CARR, RAIDERS
Alphabetically, Carr comes before Garoppolo.
15 (tied). JIMMY GAROPPOLO, 49ERS
Yep, it’s a cop-out. Rank the two Bay Area coaches together and let their play in Week 1 begin to sort it out.
17. Eli Manning, N.Y. Giants
He gets benched, and the coach turns out to be the one who gets fired. That’s what two Super Bowl rings will do for you.
18. Dak Prescott, Dallas
Was it a sophomore slump or just a true gauge of him as a player?
19. Andy Dalton, Cincinnati
He’s still more popular in Buffalo than anyone playing for the Bills.
20. Joe Flacco, Baltimore
He’s thrown 74 interceptions in his past 80 games. He must cut down on the giveaways for Baltimore to return to the playoffs.
21. Andrew Luck, Indianapolis
With just 22 starts in the past three seasons, we’re still discussing Luck’s potential and not his actual production.
22. Blake Bortles, Jacksonville
He has the defense and the running game. The Jags will go as far as he allows them to go.
23. Marcus Mariota, Tennessee
Thirteen touchdown passes and 15 interceptions is just unacceptable at any level.
24. Sam Bradford, Arizona
Josh Rosen is on stand-by.
25. Ryan Tannehill, Miami
A notch above “solid” in his five seasons as a starter, now he’s returning from a knee injury that wiped out 2017.
26. Case Keenum, Denver
He played very well for the Vikings last season, but there’s a reason he has bounced around so much.
27. Tyrod Taylor, Cleveland
If you listen closely you can already hear the chants -- “Ba-ker! Ba-ker!” -- reverberating off Lake Erie.
28. Ryan Fitzpatrick, Tampa Bay
The Bucs drop a few notches while Jameis Winston serves a three-game suspension.
29. Mitchell Trubisky, Chicago
In 12 starts as a rookie, he threw seven TDs and seven interceptions. Remember, “Game Manager” is not a derogatory term.
30. Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City
So much promise, but so little experience. He will not stay this low on the list for very long.
31. Nathan Peterman, Buffalo
After beating out Josh Allen, his next chore is to make people forget about his five-interception/six-completion game in first career start.
32. Sam Darnold, N.Y. Jets
This is the only spot where the youngest Week 1 starting QB since the 1970 NFL-AFL merger can start his career. It’s all up (maybe) from here.