Jalen Hurts makes immediate impact – NFL Sports

While the quarterback position has always been important, the overall infatuation with passers has only grown more profound over time. This has led, of course, to endless debates around which quarterback is the best in the league — a question these QB power rankings look to answer in 2020.

With that said, the title of best NFL quarterback is still a close call as we near the final few weeks of the regular season. After throwing three of his five interceptions this past weekend, Patrick Mahomes allowed the gap between Aaron Rodgers and himself to narrow. This is mostly because Rodgers continues playing MVP football week in and week out. He’s also yet to throw for fewer than two scores in any game this year.

When it comes to the quarterbacks beyond Mahomes and Rodgers, Josh Allen finds himself back in the mix as one of my top five at the position. In just his third season, Allen has found the end zone 35 times (28 passing, 6 rushing, 1 receiving), moving past Jim Kelly’s franchise record of 34 total touchdowns set back in 1991. Allen has the Bills rolling and the AFC on notice.

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And after Monday Night Football, it should be no surprise to see both Baker Mayfield and Lamar Jackson receive a boost in their standings in our 2020 QB power rankings. But which of the two deserves the higher ranking? That’s the real question. I guess you’ll have to stick around to find out.

Overall, Week 14 took a toll on this week’s list. Half of my top 16 passers found themselves moving in one direction or the other. And with two signal-callers falling into the bottom half of the rankings, someone had to step up to overtake those vacancies. It’s not like there are that many takers as just four quarterbacks (12.5%) earn a boost from a week ago.

NOTE: PFN’s QB Power Rankings of 2020 include player statistics from the current season. Rank among all (current) starting QBs shown in parenthesis. Stats/analytics include: Games played (GP), passing yards per game (YPG), completion percentage, average air yards per completion (CAY), passing touchdown percentage per attempt (TD%), interception percentage per attempt (INT%), PFN’s Offensive Value Metric (OVM), rushing yards, and rushing touchdowns.

2020 QB Power Rankings Week 15 

#1 – Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs

Season: 13 GP | 323.7 YPG (1st) | 68.4% (7th) | 6.5 avg CAY (T-9th) | 6.6 TD% (5th) | 1.0 INT% (T-3rd) | 23.47 OVM (19th) | 250 rush yards (10th) | 2 rush TDs (T-13th)

It’s hard to beat Patrick Mahomes on his bad days. For that reason, Mahomes’ standing atop this week’s 2020 QB power rankings is secure — for at least one more week. You’ve all heard the gist. Mahomes tossed three picks during an uneven performance against the up-and-coming Miami Dolphins. Despite the ball bouncing the wrong way a few times, the MVP favorite still managed to put up 393 yards and two touchdowns. Luckily, the Dolphins could not take advantage of his bad luck, allowing Mahomes and his talent-laden supporting cast to explode for 30 points between the second and third quarters.

#2 – Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers

Season: 13 GP | 283.5 YPG (T-4th) | 69.6% (4th) | 5.8 avg CAY (T-15th) | 8.7 TD% (1st) | 0.9 INT% (2nd) | 26.55 OVM (6th) | 100 rush yards (24th) | 2 rush TDs (T-13th)

Aaron Rodgers could very well be your top quarterback. I wouldn’t argue too much. Against a Detroit Lions team that owned the Green Bay Packers as of late (coach Mike McCarthy era), Rodgers began the game with 10 straight completions, including two touchdowns. He’d start the second half just as effectively, engineering three scoring drives in a row. It was Rodgers’ 10th game of 2020 with three or more touchdown passes and his fourth consecutive. For perspective, Mahomes has thrown three or more scores in half as many games this season (5).

#3 – Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks

Season: 13 GP | 283.5 YPG (T-4th) | 70.4% (3rd) | 6.5 avg CAY (T-9th) | 7.8 TD% (2nd) | 2.6 INT% (23rd) | 26.45 OVM (7th) | 423 rush yards (4th) | 1 rush TD (T-21st)

Speaking of throwing a gazillion touchdown passes, Seattle Seahawks’ signal-caller Russell Wilson just completed his fifth game with at least four touchdown throws. Sure, it was the New York Jets. But it was a much-needed “get back on track” game for the star passer. Wilson was flawless outside of a tough interception as his team took a 37-3 lead in the third quarter. He could’ve very well thrown five or six touchdowns if he played the final 20 minutes. But why?

#4 – Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills ⇑1

Season: 13 GP | 280.1 YPG (7th) | 68.6% (6th) | 6.6 avg CAY (T-7th) | 5.9 TD% (10th) | 1.9 INT% (T-10th) | 25.22 OVM (9th) | 350 rush yards (8th) | 6 rush TDs (T-3rd)

Josh Allen struggled a bit in the first half, completing only 10-of-23 passes for 76 yards. He especially struggled on passes over 10 yards, going 0-for-8 with an interception. If you weren’t sure, the Pittsburgh Steelers’ defense has been good all season. But the NFL’s most improved quarterback didn’t let it get to him in the second half, completing 14-of-20 passes for 162 yards and two touchdowns in the final two quarters. At 10-3, Allen has the Buffalo Bills on track to compete for a conference championship, and, dare I say, a Super Bowl appearance. Okay, I’m overreacting, but the Bills are pretty good.

#5 – Deshaun Watson, Houston Texans ⇓1

Season: 13 GP | 289.3 YPG (2nd) | 68.9% (5th) | 7.1 avg CAY (T-4th) | 5.8 TD% (T-11th) | 1.4 INT% (6th) | 28.13 OVM (4th) | 369 rush yards (7th) | 3 rush TDs (T-9th)

I’m not sure the Houston Texans would win a football game if it weren’t for Deshaun Watson. That said, he drops in this week’s 2020 QB power rankings because he’s making some situations worse by holding the football too long. I imagine he’s doing so in hopes of making a much-needed big play. But taking six sacks and a safety is not all his offensive line’s fault. Watson not only misses DeAndre Hopkins, but he’s without two of his starting receivers as well. I commend him for his grit, but you have to try and get the ball out quicker under the circumstances.

#6 – Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans

Season: 13 GP | 246.8 YPG (18th) | 65.8% (17th) | 7.2 avg CAY (3rd) | 6.9 TD% (3rd) | 1.2 INT% (5th) | 29.73 OVM (2nd) | 152 rush yards (15th) | 2 rush TDs (T-13th)

You may have thought Ryan Tannehill surprised us all last season. However, with two touchdown throws this past weekend, Ryan Tannehill has now thrown a career-best 28 touchdowns for the year (the league’s sixth-most). He’s been just as good, if not better, in 2020 and continues to protect the football, throwing just two interceptions in the last six weeks — only five for the year.

#7 – Tom Brady, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Season: 13 GP | 268.9 YPG (11th) | 64.8% (21st) | 6.7 avg CAY (6th) | 6.0 TD% (T-8th) | 2.2 INT% (T-16th) | 27.68 OVM (5th) | 5 rush yards (36th) | 3 rush TDs (T-9th)

In the beginning, it was clear Tom Brady had last week off. However, the ageless wonder settled in to put up 17 points in the second quarter. That would be more than the Minnesota Vikings scored for the game. Brady’s 15 completions and 196 passing yards were both season-lows, but the Buccaneers ran a mere 49 plays in fewer than 21 minutes of possession. With limited opportunities, Brady still outperformed a third of the league’s passers. Not to mention, the offense’s 0.531 points per play were the ninth most of Week 13.

#8- Kyler Murray, Arizona Cardinals

Season: 13 GP | 248.5 YPG (17th) | 67.0% (12th) | 5.8 avg CAY (T-15th) | 5.0 TD% (T-15th) | 2.2 INT% (T-16th) | 24.15 OVM (15th) | 712 rush yards (2nd) | 10 rush TDs (2nd)

Kyler Murray nearly slid out of the top ten these past few weeks, with his production falling off significantly in that time. On Sunday, Murray returned — even if slightly — to his old ways. He completed 68.6% of his throws for 244 yards and a score. Most importantly, he ran the ball 13 times for an additional 47 yards. That’s more rushing yards than he totaled in the last two weeks combined. Still, there’s room to improve as the Arizona Cardinals’ offense struggled in the red zone (2-for-7) and managed just 26 points on 79 offensive plays.

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#9 – Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints *NEW*

Season: 9 GP | 244.0 YPG (20th) | 73.5% (1st) | 5.0 avg CAY (24th) | 6.0 TD% (T-8th) | 1.0 INT% (T-3rd) | 22.27 OVM (23rd) | 1 rush yard (T-38th) | 2 rush TDs (T-13th)

It seems like a longshot for Drew Brees to return to the field in Week 15, but last week’s performance by Taysom Hill makes it clear as day that Brees needs to be the team’s starter as soon as he’s able — hence his return to our 2020 QB power rankings. Hill’s 208.5 yards per game as the starter, while admirable, would rank him in the bottom third of the NFL. Furthermore, his three fumbles lost at the end of games will be a bigger deal come the playoffs. I’ll stick with a highly efficient Brees who is elite in crunch time.

#10 – Derek Carr, Las Vegas Raiders ⇓1

Season: 13 GP | 257.2 YPG (13th) | 68.2% (T-8th) | 5.4 avg CAY (T-20th) | 5.5 TD% (14th) | 1.6 INT% (7th) | 24.31 OVM (14th) | 141 rush yards (19th) | 2 rush TDs (T-13th)

Sunday was Derek Carr’s first multiple interception game of 2020, yet it felt worse. Probably because his first interception turned a potential four-point lead into a three-point deficit. And the second one, well, that went for a touchdown in the other direction. In essence, Carr’s first game with more than one interception gave his opponent two touchdowns (given the seven-point swing). But it wasn’t all bad for Carr, who topped 300 yards for the fourth time and accounted for three total touchdowns against a tough Indianapolis Colts’ defense.

#11 – Philip Rivers, Indianapolis Colts

Season: 13 GP | 269.8 YPG (10th) | 68.1% (10th) | 5.1 avg CAY (23rd) | 4.4 TD% (20th) | 2.0 INT% (T-12th) | 25.01 OVM (11th) | -5 rush yard (40th) | 0 rush TDs (T-28th)

I’m not sure if you’ve noticed, but the Indianapolis Colts’ offense has been gaining steam lately. During Sunday’s game against a playoff-hungry Las Vegas Raiders team, Philip Rivers and the offense were firing on all cylinders. The run game was astounding, gaining 212 yards on nearly seven yards per rush. But don’t discount Rivers. His 8.7 yards per attempt was his second-most of 2020. And in his last four games, Rivers has a 9:2 touchdown to interception ratio. Say what you want, but Rivers is a top-12 quarterback right now. Furthermore, you can see why Carson Wentz misses Frank Reich so damn much.

#12 – Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers

Season: 12 GP | 288.9 YPG (3rd) | 66.3% (14th) | 4.8 avg CAY (T-26th) | 5.0 TD% (T-15th) | 2.0 INT% (T-12th) | 23.26 OVM (21st) | 185 rush yards (13th) | 3 rush TDs (T-9th)

The aura surrounding Justin Herbert has lost its glow the last month or so. Against the 30th ranked pass defense of the Atlanta Falcons, Herbert averaged just 5.5 yards per attempt for his third-lowest yard total (243) of the season. With that said, he remains at 12th in this week’s 2020 QB power rankings merely because he pulled it together enough to win the game for the Los Angeles Chargers when Matt Ryan wanted nothing to do with it. However, his late interception before the game-winning drive should’ve been his last chance to do so.

#13 – Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers ⇓3

Season: 13 GP | 253.2 YPG (16th) | 66.2% (15th) | 4.5 avg CAY (29th) | 5.6 TD% (13th) | 1.7 INT% (T-8th) | 23.17 OVM (22nd) | 13 rush yards (34th) | 0 rush TDs (T-28th)

The cold has Ben Roethlisberger looking old. In primetime against the Bills, Roethlisberger was late on throws and without a run game. The Pittsburgh Steelers depended on his fading arm far too much (in Buffalo, of all places). Don’t look now, but the Steelers went from the last undefeated team to two straight losses in December. Not to mention, Roethlisberger threw two picks and fewer than 200 yards for the first time this season. Can Big Ben right the ship? If not, he could find himself outside of the top 15 in next week’s 2020 QB power rankings.

#14 – Kirk Cousins, Minnesota Vikings

Season: 13 GP | 253.7 YPG (15th) | 67.5% (11th) | 7.1 avg CAY (T-4th) | 6.8 TD% (4th) | 3.0 INT% (26th) | 30.08 OVM (1st) | 130 rush yards (20th) | 0 rush TDs (T-28th)

It’s hard to hold the loss to the Buccaneers against Kirk Cousins. He completed 64.9% of his throws for 225 yards and a score. But even with Dalvin Cook rushing for his seventh 100-yard game, the Minnesota Vikings managed just 14 points in over 39 minutes of possession. Yikes. Maybe Dan Bailey’s four missed kicks worth 10 points had something to do with it. Or maybe Cousins and the offense shouldn’t have settled for field goals so often. Hmmm.

#15 – Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns ⇑1

Season: 13 GP | 214.2 YPG (22nd) | 62.3% (27th) | 7.5 avg CAY (T-1st) | 6.1 TD% (7th) | 2.1 INT% (15th) | 25.15 OVM (10th) | 104 rush yards (22nd) | 1 rush TDs (T-21st)

I don’t care that Baker Mayfield and the Cleveland Browns lost Monday night’s barn burner against Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens. Mayfield moves up in this week’s 2020 QB power rankings, regardless. And to top it off, he’ll remain ahead of Jackson as the more well-rounded signal-caller. Not only was Mayfield impressive from the jump, but the way he responded to each Ravens’ score was magnificent. Even after that terrible third-quarter interception that could have easily put the game away for good, Mayfield continued to bring the juice and led his team down the field twice when it really mattered.

#16 – Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens ⇑1

Season: 12 GP | 184.8 YPG (26th) | 63.9% (T-22nd) | 6.3 avg CAY (T-11th) | 5.8 TD% (11th) | 2.3 INT% (T-19th) | 20.68 OVM (26th) | 793 rush yards (1st) | 6 rush TDs (T-3rd)

The game plan on Monday was simple. The Ravens wanted to give the Browns a taste of their own medicine by pounding the rock themselves. And Lamar Jackson was no exception. Several minutes into the second quarter, Jackson had only attempted four throws, as he’d end up carrying the ball nine times for 124 yards on the evening. Most of his 17 pass attempts were in the second half, where he was forced to keep the pressure on the Browns’ offense — which he did. Jackson now has three passing and three rushing touchdowns combined for the past two weeks as he moves back into the top half of this week’s 2020 QB power rankings.

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– NFL Sports

Jalen Hurts makes immediate impact Jalen Hurts makes immediate impact

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