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Week 17 QB Index: The old man Tom Brady leads all quarterbacks

Tom Brady Buccaneers QB Index
Tom Brady at 43 years old is the QB Index leader after week 17. The Buccaneers are trending upward late in the season.

By: NFLHeads

The last week of professional football in the regular season, by God we finally made it. It’s a miracle that every team played 16 games this year, and in all sincerity we should be abundantly thankful that in all the chaos that has ensued, we have had the grace of enjoying the NFL. And speaking of thankfulness, I would like to thank each and every person that has followed the QB Index through the season. This column has been so fun to write and to every reader who has enjoyed it, I thank you. So without further ado, it gives me great pleasure to bring to you… the week 17 QB Index. The final one.

  1. Tom Brady

Brady dropped a whopping four touchdowns on the morabund Atlanta Falcons. Brady was a yard away from 400 yards through the air in a game, and even against the Falcons that is very remarkable. Having Brady as the lead off quarterback for two weeks in a row is bold, and that bodes very well for the Buccaneers’ playoff chances. 

  1. Aaron Rodgers

Aaron Rodgers had a perfect game against the Chicago Bears, and there is a very strong argument to write in the Packers for the NFL Super Bowl spot. Unfortunately, there is a chance that their tradition of losing in the Conference Championship could very well come back to haunt them.

  1. Josh Allen

Allen had one of the best games by a quarterback this week, and one of the best years by a quarterback this year. Allen whopped 56 points on the Miami Dolphins, that is insanity at its highest form. 

  1. Drew Brees

Brees kicked the Carolina Panthers’ ass on Sunday, and this is one of the only games of the season where Brees is performing at one of the highest possible levels that he has all season. 

  1. Justin Herbert

You have to hand it to the kid, he beat the best team in the NFL even if they were playing their backup quarterback (actually all their backups but who cares he had a great day). Herbert has a great win that he can cap the season off with, and I see great things for his future.

  1. Deshaun Watson

The Texans were able to put up 38 points in their loss on Sunday, and it was all due to Watson’s amazing play. Deshaun has had a bit of a rough year due to Bill O’Brien pretty much setting up the team to fail, but when he has moments like this it is hard to imagine him as anything less than elite.

  1. Ryan Tannehill

Ryan Tannehill was instrumental in the Titans win over the Texans, a 42-38 win, but his game was not only led by the passing game. Today, Derrick Henry and Ryan Tannehill combined for four touchdowns on the ground, in addition to Tannehill’s touchdown through the air. All the people writing off Tannehill after his “Cinderella Story” in 2019 have to eat crow after this season.

  1. Kirk Cousins

Cousins threw for over 400 yards in the win against Detroit, but he gets a lot less credit because once again his best game is a game that has no meaning, and it is in a spot where very few people are watching. Cousins needs to perform at this level every week if he is to be seen as the starter in Minnesota.

  1. Lamar Jackson

Lamar did not do a bunch in the passing game, but despite not putting up over 200 passing yards, he had three touchdowns in the 38-3 trouncing of the Cincinnati Bengals to secure a playoff spot in the AFC.

  1. Cam Newton

Cam finally had a week where he did not look like a tire fire. Unfortunately, when your best game comes against a team like the New York Jets there isn’t really a ton to get riled up about for the Patriots.

  1. Russell Wilson

Letting Russ cook has worked out in 2020, and although his last regular season game was close he still came away with the win over San Francisco. Wilson is once again putting his team on his back and carrying them to a playoff run.

  1. Matthew Stafford

I feel like I write this sentence almost every week, but Stafford is not the reason the Lions lost. I fear that the organization will blame its ability to not pull itself together on Stafford, and he will be shunted to a quarterback desperate team like the Jets to serve as a mentor for a rookie.

  1. Baker Mayfield

Baker’s final regular season game although unremarkable was still a win where Baker played effectively. I think when all is said and done, Baker was not at all a bad quarterback this year, he has been put in lots of tough situations and he delivers about 60% of the time.

  1. Daniel Jones

Jones fought hard to give the Giants a win over the pitiful Dallas Cowboys, but in the end it just was not enough to get the win in the NFC Least as the Washington Football Team will pull away with the trophy at 7-9. Jones has had a hard career and one can only hope he gets put in a more opportune circumstance next year.

  1. Philip Rivers

Rivers likely played his final regular season game in the NFL, and his game encapsulated his last years in the NFL pretty well. A mediocre stat line in which the Colts won, but were pretty milktoast throughout the whole ordeal. I personally will miss Rivers, but this was a good regular season game for him to go out on.

  1. Derek Carr

The Raiders have finally rested, their final record being a measly 8-8. I feel like their ceiling is being lowered by the presence of Carr there. I do not believe he is a bad quarterback, but he just simply does not do enough to move the Raiders to playoff contention. He would be a great high level backup.

  1. Alex Smith

Well for a team that doesn’t have a name, I’d say Washington did pretty well coming away with a playoff berth. And what would be a better story than Alex Smith, who while maybe not the best quarterback in the league, has kept the Washington Football team alive in what is one of the worst divisions in the history of the NFL.

  1. CJ Beathard

Beathard did not look bad tonight, but Russ simply played too well to allow a team starring most of its backups to pass. Shanahan has done a miraculous job coaching his backup quarterbacks to have OK to good games, and that is exactly what has happened with Beathard.

  1. Drew Lock

In this game I can honestly say I finally do not blame Lock for the loss against Las Vegas, although many of the other losses in the season can in fact be attributed to him. Lock did not prove anything, but we need a year that is not a tire fire before we start writing him off.

  1. Chad Henne

Henne is Henne, there is not much to be said except for I can’t believe the Chargers didn’t win by more, and I can’t believe that Henne ended up throwing two touchdowns in the loss against Justin Herbert.

  1. Matt Ryan

Ryan is finished. There I said it, because no other realistic fans seem to want to. Before 2020, he has been moving the offense and has been the reason they stay in games. Now his inefficiency is causing the Falcons to lose games, and he no longer has the same connection with a receiver corps that has two top ten wideouts. Ryan may still be a starter if you squint hard enough, but he is no longer elite. 

  1. John Wolford

Wolford is not the reason the Rams won, but to be fair he was not all that bad. I can honestly say I was expecting him to throw about four picks, and I was really expecting to see Blake Bortles around the third quarter.

  1. Matt Barkley

Matt Barkley is a low level backup, but he kept the game in the Bills crushing grip in relief of Josh Allen. Barkley threw 6 completions, including a touchdown and an interception, off of 13 pass attempts.

  1. Mason Rudolph

HEADLINE: MASON RUDOLPH REVENGE GAME! Yes there certainly was a lot of hubbub surrounding the incident where Myles Garrett assaulted Mason Rudolph on the field (you can read about it elsewhere), but for a supposed revenge game it is telling that Joshua Dobbs saw actual playing time.

  1. Mitch Trubisky

Trubisky did nothing to help save a game against the Packers that might have actually pushed the Bears into the playoffs. Instead, the Bears exit the 2020 season with the Raiders and Cardinals as the last teams to ever go truly .500 in the regular season, as we are shifting to a 17 game schedule next year.

  1. Mike Glennon

After all, what do you expect? The Jags are not about to play hard for a head coach who they know will be fired after the game ends, and it’s not like they have any record to play for. The Jags finish off with one lousy win to be proud of, and a 15 game skid to be disgusted at.

  1. Andy Dalton

Dalton has done his job to be fair, no reasonable person would expect him to walk into one of the most injury riddled teams we have ever seen and deliver amazing play. We bid a grateful farewell to another boring Dalton season at last.

  1. Chris Streveler

Chris Streveler. Remember him? Actually it’s very unlikely that most of my readers will, but back in 2019 Streveler was a star quarterback for a good football team. That team was the surging Winnipeg Blue Bombers. But enough of that mularkey, Streveler was responsible for the team’s only score, throwing a touchdown and a pick in the loss to Los Angeles.

  1. Sam Darnold

What a disappointing year for Sam Darnold. I do not claim to be a Jets fan at all, but I can say I always feel bad for organizations that don’t tend to get it right. But I can say when I watched Darnold for the first time when he was a rookie, his first game ever was a game where the Jets annihilated the Detroit Lions, dropping over 40 points on them. At that point, I felt legitimate hope that Darnold could be a star. But it seems as though that hope is gone, and Darnold and the Jets fell in week 17 to the Patriots.

  1. Kyler Murray

Murray was terrible today. In a game the Cardinals absolutely needed to go to the playoffs, Murray did not deliver and now the Cards are staring down the barrel of an 8-8 season.

  1. Jalen Hurts

Jalen Hurts actually ended up getting yanked from the game because he was playing so poorly, which is really a shame because I was starting to warm up to the idea of this guy being really good one day. There is still hope of course, but Hurts will have to prove it from here on out. 

  1. Teddy Bridgewater

No touchdowns and two picks, Bridgewater had a terrible showing in what might be his last game in a Panthers uniform. The Panthers ended up pulling Bridgewater and switching to former XFL stud PJ Walker instead.

  1. Tua Tagovailoa

Tua was not ready this season to be an NFL starter, and games like this prove just that theory. Tua bombed, throwing three picks in what looks like one of the worst losses of Week 17, where the Bills ended up dropping over 50 points on the Dolphins.

  1. Nate Sudfeld

The only thing more amazing to me than the decision to bench Hurts, was the decision to put in Sudfeld over Carson Wentz. Sudfeld looked bad against the Washington Football Team, and he was a part of the Eagles fall today.

  1. Brandon Allen

I recently wrote a few nice things about Brandon Allen, well I wish I could go back and expunge that from my last QB Index because Allen was God awful today. I do not understand how you come away with only a field goal when you can beat the Steelers a few weeks before.

  1. PJ Walker

Former XFL stud PJ Walker was subbed in for a struggling Teddy Bridgewater, and was even worse than Teddy B throwing no touchdowns against three picks. Walker and the Panthers watched helpless as the Saints set them on fire in their last regular season game.

  1. Joshua Dobbs

So here’s the thing folks, the rule I use on whether I am going to put a quarterback’s performance in the QB Index is if he has five or more pass attempts, he is in. That being said four completions for a measly two yards is terrible and I would not want Dobbs running my offense.

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