Analyzing Chris Simms’ QB Rankings [Top 40 Update for 2023]

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It is always fun to revisit NFL preseason rankings and see how far off reality is from earlier expectations. You cannot fault analysts for poor predictions, especially with the slew of quarterback injuries that have ravaged the NFL in 2023.

Today we will review Chris Simms’ Top 40 quarterbacks heading into 2023 and see how the quarterbacks’ play stacks up against their initial ordering. (To see Simms’ original preseason rankings, check out this link.)

The 2023 NFL season has really embraced the NFL mantra of “any given Sunday.” The saying implies that the parity of the NFL allows any team to beat any other team during any week. There have been no front-runner teams that have consistently beaten their opponents, and much of this is due to parity at the quarterback position.

Last year’s Super Bowl teams, the Philadelphia Eagles led by Jalen Hurts and Kansas Chiefs led by Patrick Mahomes, have looked beatable throughout most of the season (with the Chiefs suffering another recent loss at the hands of the Raiders, and the Eagles squeaking by a poor Giants team. Even Brock Purdy’s San Francisco 49ers had a 3-game losing streak in which Brock threw 5 interceptions against just 3 touchdowns.

The quarterback play across the league has been so rough that skill position and defensive players are in consideration for the MVP award. Purdy’s teammate, running back Christian McCaffery, and Cleveland Browns star edge rusher Myles Garrett, have legitimate arguments to hoist the MVP trophy.

With all of this in mind, let us take a look at a revised top 40 NFL quarterbacks list:

  1. Brock Purdy
  2. Dak Prescott
  3. Tua Tagovailoa
  4. Patrick Mahomes
  5. Josh Allen
  6. Jared Goff
  7. Jalen Hurts
  8. Lamar Jackson
  9. Matthew Stafford
  10. Joe Burrow
  11. CJ Stroud
  12. Kirk Cousins
  13. Russell Wilson
  14. Trevor Lawrence
  15. Justin Herbert
  16. Jordan Love
  17. Baker Mayfield
  18. Joe Flacco
  19. Gardner Minshew
  20. Sam Howell
  21. Jake Browning
  22. Justin Fields
  23. Geno Smith
  24. Kyler Murray
  25. Derek Carr
  26. Will Levis
  27. Tommy DeVito
  28. Aiden O’Connell
  29. Deshaun Watson
  30. Anthony Richardson
  31. Drew Lock
  32. Zach Wilson
  33. Kenny Pickett
  34. Mac Jones
  35. Andy Dalton
  36. Bryce Young
  37. Cooper Rush
  38. Joshua Dobbs
  39. Daniel Jones
  40. Desmond Ridder

Brock Purdy

What could have been in the 2022 NFC Championship if Haason Reddick had not injured Purdy’s elbow? We saw it during a Week 13 matchup between the Eagles and the 49ers in Philadelphia. Purdy shredded the Super Bowl contender’s defense for 4 touchdowns and 300 yards.

It was the 3rd 4 TD game and 8th multiple-touchdown game Purdy had this season. While he is not having a 2013 Peyton Manning season, Purdy has shown enough this season to separate him as the leader in a crowded quarterback field.

Tua Tagovailoa

Throughout his career, Tua has been discounted by NFL media and fans alike. Some see him as the generational talent that led Nick Saban to bench Alabama starter Jalen Hurts in the College Football Playoff Championship. Others see Tua as a system quarterback who has benefitted from exceptional talent throughout his college and professional career.

2023 has not answered which player Tua is, but this has not stopped him from putting up impressive numbers under second-year Miami Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel. He has already matched his single-season career touchdown record while putting up stunning wins including a Week 3 70-point beatdown of the Denver Broncos. He may never be recognized as elite, but he is quietly having an excellent season.

Jalen Hurts

Hurts’ dual-threat ability and chemistry with wide receivers AJ Brown and DeVonta Smith led him to a second-place finish for the 2022 NFL MVP award. His ability to rush the ball, especially with Philly’s much-studied Tush Push, opens up the offense for him to take downfield chances on his speedy wide receivers.

The 2023 NFL season has not been as promising as Hurts has dealt with injuries combined with a defense that is ranked bottom third in the league. He is still efficient and deadly at the goal line and in short-yardage situations, but we will need to see him put the team on his back to return to a top 3 quarterback ranking.

Patrick Mahomes

It is hard to measure Mahomes’ success during any season because of the high bar he has set for himself. Through 7 seasons he has 2 MVP awards, 2 Super Bowls, and 2 Super Bowl MVP awards. He is dynamic on all fronts, and having an off year by his standards in 2023. His interception count has climbed throughout the season, but he also seems to have to play a lot of hero ball given the game situations he is consistently put in.

His WRs lead the league in dropped passes, leading Mahomes to force more passes to targets he trusts. While he has been good, we can only hope that Kansas City General Manager Brett Veach spends some capital this offseason bolstering Mahomes’ pass-catching group.

John Allen

Josh Allen is both the greatest facilitator of offensive scoring and his own worst nightmare. For every highlight reel throw our rumbling run by the 6 foot 5 inch Allen, there is an accompanying interception or fumble. When he is on, there are very few offenses in the league that can keep up with Allen’s Buffalo Bills. The issue is he has been inconsistent throughout this season. To threaten to be the top quarterback in the league, Allen needs to be consistently excellent.

The Backups

The 2023 NFL season has seen an incredible number of quarterback injuries. From potential MVP candidates like Joe Burrow to superstars like Kirk Cousins and Justin Herbert to promising rookies like Anthony Richardson, no one is safe.

This year could really be called the year of the backup as so many teams have had to start second or third-string quarterbacks. There are potential new starters like Jake Browning and Will Levis. The solid and consistent fill-ins like Gardner Minshew and Andy Dalton and the flash and burn quarterbacks like Josh Dobbs. Then there are the downright terrible backups like Mitch Trubisky. Some of these guys have played their way into lucrative new contracts, but all have played a role in what has been an NFL season of incredible parity.

About Ryan from Sport Stuff Genius 58 Articles
A complete sports fanatic most of his life, Ryan has taken his interest and expert knowledge to Sport Stuff Genius—a blog dedicated to uncovering answers to different questions and bringing fun to all things ball.