this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Today's position: quarterback. 1. Indianapolis Colts Peyton Manning continues to play at a level that most QBs can only dream about. He is a master at reading defenses, getting in and out of plays and is so well prepared, he ...
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|07-30-2007, 05:12 AM||#1|
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Home Sweet Home, NEW ORLEANS, La.
QB rankings: Teams 1-10
Today's position: quarterback.
1. Indianapolis ColtsPeyton Manning continues to play at a level that most QBs can only dream about. He is a master at reading defenses, getting in and out of plays and is so well prepared, he can even adjust the blocking assignments up front before the snap. He makes better presnap decisions than any QB in the history of this league and his career completion rate is 64 percent. He has even improved his one weakness, mobility, over the past two years, and now does a good job of moving around and avoiding sacks. Backup Jim Sorgi has limited arm strength and lacks Manning's presnap creativity, but he's played pretty well in some mop-up situations and has an excellent feel for the Colts' offense. Veteran John Navarre is big and strong and will occupy the No. 3 spot, but with Manning being the most durable QB in the NFL, the Indianapolis backups don't get a lot of work.
2. New England Patriots
There is no better QB at accomplishing more with less than Tom Brady. In 2006, with a mediocre receiving corps, he threw 24 TD passes to 11 different receivers. He is the consummate leader and combines outstanding toughness with great physical skills. He has a better feel for pressure than any other QB in the league and has an uncanny ability to move around the pocket, beat the blitz and find the matchup he wants. With a better group of receivers in 2007, Brady should put up huge numbers. Backup Matt Cassel is a young guy with a lot of Brady-like qualities and the coaches have a lot of faith in him. Still, he hasn't started a game since high school, which is not a major concern as long as Brady continues to be Mr. Durable.
3. New Orleans Saints
In a short amount of time, Drew Brees has become the face of this organization and a favorite son to a city that needs a diversion. He may have the best touch and accuracy of any QB in the league and does a great job of spreading the ball around to all of his receivers. He does not have great arm strength, but he doesn't need it because the Saints' offense puts the emphasis on underneath routes. He is the unquestioned leader and has a calming presence that seems to filter through the entire team. Backup Jamie Martin has the confidence of his coaches, but he's probably not a long-term answer if he had to replace Brees. Still, he does know the system and could step in for a short run. Rookie Tyler Palko has the inside track for the No. 3 job, but this is clearly Brees' team.
4. Cincinnati Bengals
Carson Palmer rebounded from a devastating knee injury in 2005 to play all 16 games last season, throwing for 4,035 yards with a 62.3 completion percentage. He is big, strong, has a great arm and can be lethal running the no-huddle offense. He has worked hard this offseason to improve his mobility -- he was sacked 36 times last season -- and passing on rollouts. He did not play great at the end of the 2006 season and seemed to force the ball at times, but his weaknesses are fixable and he is poised to have a great year. Following Anthony Wright's signing with the Giants, the backup role goes to veteran Doug Johnson, who has a good feel for the offense and good overall skills. Rookie Jeff Rowe will fill the No. 3 spot and will be brought along slowly.
5. Philadelphia Eagles
Donovan McNabb is the heart and soul of this team, but now 31, he has lost significant playing time due to injuries over the past several seasons and durability is a big question. Still, he's big-play guy capable of putting up huge numbers in the Eagles' pass-oriented offense and his arm strength, accuracy, mobility and leadership remain top-notch. The No. 2 spot starts with A.J. Feeley, who has shown glimpses of promise in stops at Miami and San Diego and knows this system, but he may have to battle Kelly Holcomb, who was obtained in an offseason trade from Buffalo. Holcomb has average skills, but he's tough and competitive. Rookie Kevin Kolb, Philadelphia's top draft pick, will be brought along slowly as the QB of the future.
6. San Diego Chargers
Young Philip Rivers exceeded everyone's expectations a year ago with his poise and maturity and now the Chargers are ready for him to take the next step. He has excellent physical skills and fits perfectly into the Chargers' offense, which requires a lot of timing routes, quick decisions and tight throws. He is a student of the game, prepares well and will only get better. His backup is ex-Titan Billy Volek, who could start for a lot of NFL teams. He has good skills and intangibles and could step up immediately if Rivers was hurt. Charlie Whitehurst will be the No. 3 QB. He's young, has a strong arm and is an excellent prospect.
7. St. Louis Rams
Marc Bulger adjusted well to new coach Scott Linehan's low-risk, conservative offense in 2006 and probably played the best football of his career, earning his second trip to the Pro Bowl in the process. His physical skills are solid, but where he has shown marked improvement is his ability to read defenses, change plays at the line of scrimmage, and make accurate and safe throws. Right now, he is at the top of his game, and in this offense, he will only get better. Backup Gus Frerotte, who has played for Linehan in Minnesota and Miami, has a great grasp of this offense. He may have a stronger arm than Bulger, but he lacks Bulger's consistency. Young Ryan Fitzpatrick from Harvard is an excellent developmental project and is in the perfect spot in St. Louis as the No. 3 QB.
8. Baltimore Ravens
Although his skills may be starting to erode, Steve McNair can still play at a fairly high level. He brought toughness and leadership to the Ravens in 2006 and still makes all the throws necessary to win. He reads defenses well and is excellent in the short-range and midrange passing game. While he doesn't scramble like he used to, he has excellent patience in the pocket and will risk taking a hit to hold on to the ball a little longer to allow his receivers to separate from coverage. Former first-round pick Kyle Boller is the backup and actually played pretty well a year ago, replacing the injured McNair in a couple of games, but whether he can carry this team as a starter when McNair is done is still a question mark. The No. 3 job will be an interesting battle between rookie Troy Smith from Ohio State, and young Drew Olson from UCLA. Both are talented guys, but one will wind up on the practice squad.
9. Seattle Seahawks
QB Matt Hasselbeck had a little bit of an off year in 2006 because of injuries and some inconsistency, but he still is capable of taking over a game and carrying the Seattle offense. He has excellent arm strength and touch, along with great pocket presence and good leadership skills. When he's pressured, however, he tends to force the ball into coverage, but it's a flaw that he's working to correct. His backup is Seneca Wallace, who really surprised a lot of people in his four starts last season when Hasselbeck was out. Wallace has a huge arm, big-time running skills and can create a lot of big plays, but he lacks consistency and doesn't manage the game as well as Hasselbeck. David Greene is in his third year, but he's still a developmental project and is not close to being ready to get on the field right now in Mike Holmgren's complex offense.
10. Pittsburgh Steelers
Ben Roethlisberger suffered through a tough 2006 because of offseason injuries. He was inconsistent and looked nothing like the QB who led the Steelers to a Super Bowl win in the 2005 season. In 2006, he threw a league-high 23 interceptions. He often looked confused reading defenses, which led him to hold on to the ball too long and take 46 sacks. Big Ben has worked hard in the offseason to rebuild his confidence and improve his mechanics. The talent is still there, and new QB coach Ken Anderson will work hard to get him back to that championship level. Charlie Batch is excellent in the backup role and can easily step in as a starter and play at a high level for a short time. Brian St. Pierre is the No. 3 guy and has decent developmental qualities.