Friday, January 4, 2013
Jaws' final QB rankings: Flacco moves up
By Jamison Hensley
ESPN analyst Ron Jaworski posted his final quarterback rankings for the 2012 season. It's an Insider post, but I can tell you that three AFC North quarterbacks moved up in his rankings:
BEN ROETHLISBERGER, STEELERS
Current ranking: No. 6
Previous ranking: No. 5
Jaworski comment: When he was healthy, though, Big Ben carried this team for most of the season. The run game (26th in the league) didn't help much, nor did some drops from his receivers.
Hensley comment: This is where I would have Roethlisberger. I wouldn't have put any of the rookie quarterbacks ahead of him yet, and Eli Manning (who is No. 7) shouldn't go above Roethlisberger because he struggled down the stretch, too.
JOE FLACCO, RAVENS
Current ranking: No. 8
Previous ranking: No. 9
Jaworski comment: The next hurdle for Flacco is to get it done in the playoffs, but against the Giants I really saw his confidence level grow. He was hitting on the deep ball, firing the ball outside the numbers, he looked like he had that edge he showed us against New England in Week 3.
Hensley comment: I'm not sure if there is a right spot for Flacco. He is just so streaky that he can look like a top-10 quarterback one game and a bottom-10 quarterback the next. This ranking should stir a debate because Flacco is ahead of Matt Schaub, Robert Griffin III, Andrew Luck and Jay Cutler.
ANDY DALTON, BENGALS
Current ranking: No. 16
Previous ranking: No. 17
Jaworski comment: I think Dalton has been good to very good this season. Now I'm just waiting for him to become great. When I watch him on film, he just holds the ball a little too long.
Hensley comment: I have taken heat this season from Who Dey Nation, who insist Dalton hasn't taken a step back this year. But Jaws placed three rookie quarterbacks ahead of Dalton (RG III, Luck and Russell Wilson) as well as Colin Kaepernick. It's interesting to note that Dalton is two spots ahead of Cam Newton.
BRANDON WEEDEN, BROWNS
Current ranking: No. 27
Previous ranking: No. 30
Jaworski comment: I find him so interesting because his highs were quite good, but there were a lot of "very lows" as well. Is he the quarterback of the future in Cleveland? We'll see.
Hensley comment: Weeden never seemed to find a rhythm in the offense, and I'm not sure if the blame should fall on him or the offensive system. He certainly didn't live up to expectations as a rookie, but he wasn't a bust either. The only quarterbacks he ranked ahead of were: Ryan Fitzpatrick, Jake Locker, Brady Quinn and Mark Sanchez.