Week 1 got off to about as insane a start as anyone keeping track of quarterbacks could envision.
Aaron Rodgers was a mess. Dak Prescott showed virtually no rust. Jameis Winston played better than Drew Brees ever did last year.
Thank goodness for guys like Patrick Mahomes, Tom Brady and Russell Wilson for being just as good as we’ve come to expect. Not sure we could have handled any more surprises.
Here's our ranking the league’s starting quarterbacks entering Week 2:
32. Andy Dalton, Chicago Bears
Last week's rank: 31
Week 1 stats: 27-of-38, 206 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT
I know it’s only been a week, but I’m pretty sure Bears fans are going to revolt if they don’t go to Justin Fields soon.
31. Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons
Last week’s ranking: 16
Week 1 stats: 21-of-35, 164 yards, 0 TD, 0 INT
The Falcons got absolutely trounced and Ryan somehow didn’t have a turnover. He also didn’t have any touchdowns or many yards. Kind of confusing given that his team was behind the whole time.
30. Taylor Heinicke, Washington Football Team
Last week’s ranking: N/A
Week 1 stats: 11-of-15, 122 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Ryan Fitzpatrick is on injured reserve with a hip injury, so it’s Heinicke’s show in Washington. He was fine in relief duty Sunday.
29. Zach Wilson, New York Jets
Last week’s ranking: 29
Week 1 stats: 20-of-37, 258 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT
Wilson was solid in his debut. Honestly, he wasn’t much worse than Mac Jones. He just happens to play for the Jets.
28. Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns
Last week’s ranking: 10
Week 1 stats: 21-of-28, 321 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT
Oof. Not good. Mayfield didn’t do much all game, but he sure influenced its result with that back-breaking pick in the fourth quarter. I still think Mayfield’s set to have a big season.
27. Jimmy Garoppolo, San Francisco 49ers
Last week’s ranking: 25
Week 1 stats: 17-of-25, 314 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
The clock is ticking on Garoppolo in San Francisco. He wasn’t bad Sunday, but the story of the game — other than that it was way too close against the Lions — might still be the one pass that Trey Lance threw, which was a touchdown.
26. Sam Darnold, Carolina Panthers
Last week’s ranking: 26
Week 1 stats: 24-of-35, 279 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Darnold finally got to have the fun his opponents did in the first three years of his career: He got to play the Jets.
25. Daniel Jones, New York Giants
Last week’s ranking: 28
Week 1 stats: 22-of-37, 267 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT, 27 rush yards, 1 rush TD
Classic Daniel Jones game. Ran around a little bit, lost a fumble and lost. The poor guy.
24. Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers
Last week’s ranking: 14
Week 1 stats: 18-of-32, 188 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
If you were to tell me the Steelers would beat the Bills without Roethlisberger being particularly good, I’d be confused. Folks, here I am, confused.
23. Mac Jones, New England Patriots
Last week’s ranking: 30
Week 1 stats: 29-of-39, 281 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Jones was pretty good in his NFL debut. Going by some of the local discussion, you’d think he was Patrick Mahomes. He wasn’t. He was pretty good in a loss to a beatable team. Let’s see a little more before sending him to Canton.
22. Tua Tagovailoa, Miami Dolphins
Last week’s ranking: 27
Week 1 stats: 16-of-27, 202 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT, 1 rush TD
Count me among the Patriots observers who already thought Mac Jones was better than Tua Tagovailoa. A tough pill to swallow: He wasn’t Sunday. Tagovailoa certainly was the better player in their first meeting, but I’m still not super high on the Dolphins QB.
21. Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers
Last week’s ranking: 8
Week 1 stats: 31-of-47, 337 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
Last season saw great performances from Herbert in losses. Herbert wasn’t great in Week 1 — why didn’t they throw to Austin Ekeler? — but the Chargers will take the victory.
20. Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens
Last week’s ranking: 6
Week 1 stats: 19-of-30, 235 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT, 86 rush yards
If you were unsure of Jackson after last season’s regression, Monday probably didn’t make you feel much better. That Ravens offense still has a ways to go.
19. Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans
Last week’s ranking: 7
Week 1 stats: 21-of-35, 212 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT, 17 rush yards, 1 rush TD
I didn’t expect the Titans to get smoked at home in the season opener and neither did you. Julio Jones should be a huge weapon for Tannehill, but he wasn’t. The two connected just three times for 29 yards on six targets.
18. Trevor Lawrence, Jacksonville Jaguars
Last week’s ranking: 20
Week 1 stats: 28-of-51, 332 yards, 3 TD, 3 INT
Lawrence had more of everything than, say, Mac Jones. More good, more bad. He posted gaudy numbers, but three interceptions are frowned upon, especially against the Texans.
17. Carson Wentz, Indianapolis Colts
Last week’s ranking: 22
Week 1 stats: 25-of-38, 251 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT, 23 rush yards
It was a pretty solid Colts debut for Wentz, even if it came in a loss at home. He also lost a fumble on a botched snap in the third quarter.
16. Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals
Last week’s ranking: 17
Week 1 stats: 20-of-27, 261 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT
Burrow is healthy, Ja’Marr Chase (101 yards and a touchdown) is confirmed good and the Bengals are 1-0. Dare we say things are looking up in Cincinnati?
15. Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills
Last week’s ranking: 3
Week 1 stats: 30-of-51, 270 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT, 44 rush yards
Allen performed worse than a lot of the guys he’s ahead of, but you don’t go from No. 3 to No. 25. Power rankings are completely arbitrary, but that just seems ridiculous. The question is whether he can get back to his 2020 form and stay there.
14. Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers
Last week’s ranking: 2
Week 1 stats: 15-of-28, 133 yards, 0 TD, 2 INT
Look, he has to be somewhere, and even with a terrible week, we’re not about to act like Rodgers is a bottom-tier quarterback. He’ll be back in the top 10 (and likely top five) soon enough.
13. Derek Carr, Las Vegas Raiders
Last week’s ranking: 12
Week 1 stats: 34-of-56, 435 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT
Carr can be tough to watch, but he was electric at points Monday against the Ravens. He’s still one of the better QBs in the league.
12. Tyrod Taylor, Houston Texans
Last week’s ranking: 32
Week 1 stats: 21-of-33, 291 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT
You absolutely love to see it. Taylor is better-suited to be a backup at this point in his career, but he played a major role in Houston’s surprise Week 1 win over the Jaguars.
11. Kirk Cousins, Minnesota Vikings
Last week’s ranking: 15
Week 1 stats: 36-of-49, 351 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT
This was a typical Cousins game: Impressive stat line, but didn't do quite enough to win. Things don't get any easier next week on the road in Arizona.
10. Jared Goff, Detroit Lions
Last week’s ranking: 19
Week 1 stats: 38-of-57, 338 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT
Is Goff just going to replace Matthew Stafford as the quarterback of a bad Lions squad who just racks up yards because his team stinks? Very possible, right?
9. Teddy Bridgewater, Denver Broncos
Last week’s ranking: 24
Week 1 stats: 28-of-36, 264 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT, 19 rush yards
Bridgewater's zillionth change of scenery might have done him well. Bridgewater led all QBs in Total QBR in Week 1 during his Broncos debut.
8. Jalen Hurts, Philadelphia Eagles
Last week’s ranking: 23
Week 1 stats: 27-of-35, 264 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT, 62 rush yards
Lost in the discussion about various young QBs is how good Jalen Hurts played to kick off his first full season as starter. Sure, it was against the Falcons, but that Philadelphia offense looked gooooooood.
7. Jameis Winston, New Orleans Saints
Last week’s ranking: 18
Week 1 stats: 14-of-20, 148 yards, 5 TD, 0 INT, 37 rush yards
As someone who thought Winston might be an upgrade over Drew Brees, Sunday’s game against the Packers felt good. As someone who likes their quarterbacks to throw for 150 yards, it felt OK.
6. Matthew Stafford, Los Angeles Rams
Last week’s ranking: 13
Week 1 stats: 20-of-26, 321 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT
The Rams had put out heavy hints that they simply needed an upgrade at quarterback to take the next step, and they were proven right in their first game with Stafford. He was named Offensive Player of the Week for his performance against the Bears.
5. Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks
Last week’s ranking: 5
Week 1 stats: 18-of-23, 254 yards, 4 TD, 0 INT
I had Wilson ranked sixth initially but I moved him up a spot because of how good he was on the Monday Night Football alternate feed with the Manning brothers. True story.
4. Tom Brady, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Last week’s ranking: 4
Week 1 stats: 32-of-50, 379 yards, 4 TD, 2 INT
Neither interception was Brady’s fault, though he also got lucky on a ball that wasn’t picked. What’s important is that Brady was awesome, as we all should have expected him to be against the Cowboys.
3. Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys
Last week’s ranking: 11
Week 1 stats: 42-of-58, 403 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT
There were a lot of major surprises in Week 1 and I’ll put Dak Prescott going off against the Bucs defense right up there. He’s clearly healthy and ready to continue his ascent.
2. Kyler Murray, Arizona Cardinals
Last week’s ranking: 9
Week 1 stats: 21-of-32, 289 yards, 4 TD, 1 INT, 20 rush yards, 1 rush TD
I suggested last week that perhaps we were just a year early on the Kyler Murray MVP talk. His performance in Week 1 against the Titans suggests he could end up in the conversation. Murray was outstanding.
1. Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs
Last week’s ranking: 1
Week 1 stats: 27-of-36, 337 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT, 18 rush yards, 1 rush TD
This freaking guy. Four touchdowns in a comeback win sounds like a fair enough way for the best quarterback in the league to reintroduce himself for the season.