Top Preseason Grades: Quarterbacks
We don’t know about you, but we’ve had some with preseason. It’s not the best way of seeing who will succeed when win-loss records start to matter, but it has given us a first look at some players and really gives second- and third-stringers a chance to prove their worth.
So with three weeks of action in the bag we’re going to be looking across all the positions to let you know who have earned the grades in the Top 5 at each position.
Now of course there’s a lot more than five players at each position we’ve graded. We’ve run every player to play a single snap on offense or defense through the grading process so if you want to see how they’ve fared this preseason, and get access to seven seasons worth of historical grades and access for 365 days which will include the entire 2014 season (and postseason) then you’ll need a PFF Premium Package. At only $26.99 you won’t get better value.
1. Matthew McGloin, OAK: +7.4
Breakdown: After Oakland acquired Matt Schaub and drafted Derek Carr, the writing was on the wall for McGloin right? Wrong. You figured he could be in line for a Max Hall (who?) type fall from favor but he’s likely ensured a job in this league for at least another year whatever happens with the Raiders.
Signature Plays: Q4, 50 seconds to go against the Packers. Back to back plays show firstly McGloin, with pressure coming loft a ball into a spot only his receiver can get to it. More impressive is the next effort as with pressure coming and a bracketed receiver he fits the ball in down the sideline for a big gain.
2. Russell Wilson, SEA: +7.1
Breakdown: So you’ve just won the Super Bowl. Time to put your feet up and rest? Not when you’re Russell Wilson who entering that magical third year looks set to be even better than before. He started slowly against Denver (as the whole Seattle team did) but has looked in imperious form against both the Chargers and Bears.
Signature Stat: His 139.3 rating using play action is the second highest in the league.
3. Joe Webb, CAR: +5.9
Breakdown: Webb cracks this list taking advantage of third stringers and with the highest preseason rushing grade for any quarterback. Still with Derek Anderson hardly lighting things up he has given the Panthers something to think about after returning to the QB spot with them.
Signature Stat: Against the Patriots with 1.31 to go in the game. Webb gives a glimpse of his often erratic upside as in hurry up he throws a perfectly placed back shoulder throw that picks up big yardage.
4. Ryan Nassib, NYG: +4.9
Breakdown: There were rumors that Nassib, who stunk it up last preseason, might not even make it out of camp. Now there are some wondering if maybe that pre-draft hype about him was right. He has really lit things up and secured the backup job with his play against the Colts and Jets.
Signature Stat: Has completed more passes that have travelled over 20 yards in the air (six) than any other quarterback in preseason.
5. Blake Bortles, JAX and Scott Tolzien, GB: +4.8
Breakdown: Two men tied for fifth and both putting pressure on the man ahead of them. For Bortles he’s asking questions of those who thought redshirting his rookie year would be the best option, showing poise in the pocket and a level of accuracy that Blaine Gabbert never reached. While in Green Bay Tolzien is at least putting some pressure on Matt Flynn who seemed to have the backup job sown up.
Signature Stat: Our Adjusted Accuracy Completion Signature Stat (which counts drops as completions and ignores throwaways, spikes etc) has Tolzien (83.8%) ranked joint first and Bortles (81%) fifth out of 33 qualifying quarterbacks.