What are the criteria for these rankings? These rankings will weigh heavily on what happened this season, especially in the last six weeks when the pressure was high. Past playoff performances will also factor in. Like all rankings, these are subjective, and this is our shot at it!
Rudolph has filled in admirably as Pickett faltered late and got injured towards the end of this season. Starting only 13 games so far in his NFL career and posting an 86.9 quarterback rating, Rudolph is an obvious choice at 14.
Mayfield fits nicely here. While his play was solid down the stretch, he lost against teams like the Eagles, Bills, 49ers, and Texans. Additionally, Mayfield appeared slightly banged up during Week 18 against one of the worst teams in the NFL.
Hurts has had a dismal year compared to 2022, when he finished second in MVP voting. Last season looks more like an aberration as the year before and year after that great year have been bad. He doesn’t read progression well, plus he is hurt. I think the injury plays a small factor, but I also think that he has proved last season to be a fluke during this season.
Mike McDaniel and his weapons (Tyreek Hill, Raheem Mostert, Jaylen Waddle) allow Tua to get by most weeks, yet Tua often faltered in big spots this season; recent losses to the Ravens and Bills resulted in the Dolphins blowing home-field advantage. Tua fed off bad teams while performing poorly when facing important games – something which must change before these playoffs start!
Flacco deserves recognition for all he’s accomplished throughout his career, particularly since joining Cleveland as a free agent in Week 13. After finishing 4-1 to help Cleveland secure the No. 5 seed, Flacco recorded eight picks but still managed 13 touchdowns while averaging 323.2 passing yards per game Flacco has a 10-5 playoff record when he played with the Ravens (including a Super Bowl victory ). We give him credit as an elite quarterback who belongs in our top 10.
Goff has shown major improvement since arriving in Detroit. He has played much better at home than on the road, and let’s face it, he did take the Rams to the Super Bowl, but he still has to prove how good of a playoff quarterback he is. He also is tremendous at home and has struggled on the road. If he can put those road struggles to bed, he will advance quickly up these rankings.
Love had an outstanding season, finishing second behind Dak Prescott with 32 touchdown passes. Additionally, Love finished strong – winning six of eight games to qualify for the playoffs. He went on to throw 18 touchdowns against just one interception between Week 11-18 vs the Bears as a win-and-in game he finished with is highest passing efficiency ranking(128.6)!
At one point this season, Purdy was an MVP contender. Now, people count him out after he struggled against the Ravens, but Purdy has been a model of consistency in his two years as the Niners quarterback. Do I completely trust what I see in Purdy? No, but I trust he will be solid and make big throws in pressure situations.
Allen is a notorious turnover machine, which bodes poorly for him in the playoffs. This season alone he threw at least one pick in 14 of 17 games; Buffalo scored 51 offensive touchdowns this year, and Allen contributed 44 of them (29 passing, 15 rushing). Since joining the NFL six seasons ago, he’s already played eight playoff games, including an AFC Championship Game appearance a few years back – should Buffalo make it all the way to the Super Bowl it will likely be on Allen’s shoulders; should Buffalo not succeed then it could very well also likely be because of him as well.
Dak Prescott has had an unpredictable career. Following a disappointing 2022-23 campaign, Dak likely will finish second in MVP voting behind Lamar Jackson. Prescott led the league with 36 passing touchdowns and met his promise not to throw 10+ interceptions during regular season play – making him an attractive option when selecting quarterbacks based solely on performance in 2023. Unfortunately, Prescott struggled in postseason competition, ultimately costing his Cowboys in 2022 during the Divisional Round against the Niners; until Dak gets past this hurdle and progresses further into an NFC Championship game, questions will persist.
Stafford is the perfect combination of experience and performance when entering the playoffs hot. After an inconsistent 3-6 start to their season, Los Angeles went 7-2 over its final eight games to claim the 6-seed with Stafford as their starting QB – throwing 16 TD passes compared to only four interceptions during this stretch! Stafford has it all: weapons, coach support and the confidence of his players – making the Rams one of the more dangerous teams heading into postseason play; the thing that will stop the Rams, in the end, will be their less-than-stellar defense.
Stroud was one of the least turnover-prone quarterbacks in the NFL this season – in fact, he led them all with his 1.0% INT rate! Like Love, Stroud got his first taste of playoff football in Week 18 when the Texans beat the Colts. Stroud finished that game with a 134.1 passer rating and led a drive in the fourth quarter that secured victory for Houston. On pure ability alone, Stroud stands head and shoulders above most QBs in the NFL, and to tell you the truth, he might be the best quarterback on this list. The question is whether enough talent exists on this team to make a deep run.
Mahomes had his worst regular season yet in 2023; Mahomes managed to lead Kansas City to the 3-seed and secure a home playoff game – his playoff record stands at 11-3 overall with five trips made directly to the AFC Championship game; should Mahomes return them there or even take them to Super Bowl, this will likely be considered his greatest feat yet in his career. Mahomes, with a win over the Dolphins, will then face his first road playoff test.
At the rate he played, Jackson should win NFL MVP for the 2023 regular season. Jackson led his Ravens team to first place and finished this year with his highest passer rating since winning MVP in 2019. Unfortunately for Jackson, though, his playoff record is just 1-3, yet Todd Monken found an ideal system that allows Jackson to flourish and dominate in. It wouldn’t surprise anyone to see Jackson and the Ravens reach Super Bowl! History tells me the Divisional playoff round may be the hardest win to get just because of Jackson’s past playoff performances.
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