The last several NFL offseasons have been highlighted by star quarterback movement. First was Tom Brady moving to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Then Matthew Stafford departed the Detroit Lions after 12 seasons for the Los Angeles Rams in 2021 and, like Brady, led his new club to a Super Bowl victory in his first year with the team. Russell Wilson and Deshaun Watson both switched teams this year at tremendous cost to their new clubs, the Denver Broncos and Cleveland Browns, respectively.
But there has been more shuffling at the position than the big names – and not everyone is destined for immediate success like Brady and Stafford.
In all, seven veteran QBs are currently leading new teams compared to 2021. Through the first month of the 2022 season, most have endured bumpy starts.
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Here’s a look at how each quarterback has performed so far.
He won’t have the top job in two months, assuming Watson is cleared to return from his suspension. But Brissett has the Browns 2-1 with the lone loss not much of his fault – the defense allowed two late scores to the New York Jets in Week 2.
Despite averaging only 6.5 yards per attempt, Brissett ranks ninth in the NFL with a 66.3 completion percentage and has taken care of the football (one interception) while avoiding sacks (four). He has thrown four touchdowns. Wide receiver Amari Cooper looks rejuvenated, and the Browns can rely on their rushing attack to keep the pressure off Brissett.
Call him Rocky Mountain Russ, with an emphasis on the “rocky.”
After not playing in the preseason (like most of the Broncos’ starters), Wilson is completing 59.4% of his throws, which is 27th in the league, and has two touchdowns. He does not look comfortable yet in the offense of first-year head coach Nathaniel Hackett, who has struggled with clock management.
Wilson has solid wide receiver options like Jerry Jeudy (who has battled injuries) and Courtland Sutton, but instead has a career-low 83.2 passer rating.
However, Wilson and Brissett are the only ones on this list with a positive record.
Speaking of a veteran being disjointed in his new surroundings.
Ryan asked out of Atlanta after Falcons became publicly private suitors for Watson during the offseason. The Colts had moved on from Carson Wentz after one year, and the team once again opted for the veteran quarterback trade market.
The Colts went tie, loss, win to open Ryan’s tenure. But he hasn’t looked comfortable, throwing four interceptions.
Jonathan Taylor finding his stride in the backfield and second-year receiver Michael Pittman returning to full health should help “Matty Ice” regain form.
Tight end Kyle Pitts and rookie receiver Drake London have helped him push the ball down the field, and Mariota’s 8.1 yards per attempt is best among QBs on new teams. Cordorelle Patterson has also rushed for 302 yards, giving the Falcons a weapon on the ground. But Mariota has thrown three touchdowns against three interceptions, and the Falcons are 1-2.
After backing up Derek Carr in Las Vegas for two seasons, the 29-year-old is getting a fresh chance to show he can be a viable NFL starter.
On his third team in three years, Wentz should keep the movers on speed dial. Sure, the one-time MVP candidate is putting up stats in some notable categories (861 passing yards, seven touchdowns). It is the mistakes that are once again haunting him.
The Eagles sacked him nine times last Sunday, and at least some were the fault of the quarterback. He has reached the playoffs once since being drafted in 2016.
Last year, Sam Darnold was at quarterback, and now Baker Mayfield has the unenviable task of saving coach Matt Rhule’s job as the Panthers’ QB shuffling continues.
And the results are more of the same. Mayfield came up short in his Week 1 self-anointed “Revenge Game” against the Browns. The former No. 1 overall pick is completing barely half (51.9%) of his passes and averaging 183.3 yards per game.
Robbie Anderson and DJ Moore are two quality options at wideout, but chemistry can be hard to find with the constant QB churn. The good news is that Christian McCaffrey is a reliable safety valve in the passing game – if he can stay healthy.
A few weeks from now and a different name – first-round pick Kenny Picket – could be under center.
Coach Mike Tomlin has stood by Trubisky thus far but the leash could be tightening around Trubisky, who spent last season behind Josh Allen on the Buffalo Bills.
The Steelers’ offensive line has done him little favors this season. Trubisky ranks last in yards per attempt (5.5) even though receivers Chase Claypool, Diontae Johnson and rookie George Pickens are options any quarterback would relish. He’s also thrown two touchdowns against one interception.
Follow Chris Bumbaca on Twitter @BOOMbaca.