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Wow, what a week we’ve had.  Once the bell sounded on Monday, the news of free agency signings were coming in fast and furious.  At the end of the day, many of the top free agents, especially RBs, were calling to schedule moving companies.  I’ll leave the RBs and WRs to my colleagues, I’m here to discuss QBs.

Kirk Cousins was the big move everyone was waiting on and he didn’t waste any time.  Even before the Monday frenzy, we had news on Russell Wilson and Baker Mayfield.  Since then, Gardner Minshew, Sam Darnold, Jameis Winston, Tyrod Taylor, Marcus Mariota and Drew Lock all found new homes.  Did I miss anyone?  I’ll discuss each and see if it caused me to update my QB rankings.

The Free Agents

  • Player: Kirk Cousins
  • Team: Atlanta Falcons
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): QB10 (QB17)

The last time we talked, I said I hoped Cousins returned to the Vikings. But of course, that didn’t happen. Barring a return, my next thought was, “All that said, I can definitely see a scenario where Cousins signs with a team like the Falcons.”  All of Georgia must be doing the “dirty bird” this week.  With all the offensive weapons and good offensive line, the Falcons are lining up to be the class of the Division. 

The “experts” moved Kirk up two spots to QB17.  I’m keeping him at QB10.  Although I do expect some transition time, between the injury recovery and learning his new teammates, I fully expect Cousins will be a Top 10 QB when the dust settles next season. 

             

  • Player: Baker Mayfield
  • Team: Tampa Buccaneers
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): QB16 (QB22)

To the surprise of nobody, Baker is back with the Bucs.  I thought he’d either get a multi-year deal or the franchise tag.  Well, it turned out to be the former.  This is great news on both sides, especially since the Bucs also signed Mike Evans. 

The “experts” moved Baker up one spot to QB22.  I’ll do them one better and move him up two spots to my QB16. 

           

  • Player: Russell Wilson
  • Team: Pittsburgh Steelers
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): QB21 (QB27)

On our recent live show, the boys and I made predictions for a few players.  We all knew Russell’s days in Denver were numbered but would he be traded or cut.  Since the Broncos found no takers for a trade, he was unceremoniously let go with a fat severance check.  Any team wanting to sign Russ would essentially get him for free, so the risk was low.  I predicted the Steelers due to their generally competitive roster and existing QB situation.  Sure enough, Russ comes to the Steel City and will vie for the starting gig against Kenny Pickett.     

The “experts” have Russ as QB27 and I had him at QB25.  I fully expect him to win the starting job on this playoff-contending team and so I’ll confidently move him up to QB21.

 

  • Player: Gardner Minshew
  • Team: Las Vegas Raiders
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): QB28 (QB36)

I didn’t see this one coming.  Gardner Minshew signs with the Raiders on a two-year, $25M contract ($15M fully guaranteed).  Logic says a team doesn’t give out this kind of contract for a QB they expect to be a backup, but then again, it’s the Raiders.  Regardless, I see Minshew under center in Week 1 and therefore will move him up to QB28 in my rankings.

 

  • Player: Jameis Winston
  • Team: Cleveland Browns
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): QB30 (QB54)

Jameis Winston signs with the Browns to back up Deshaun Watson.  I see this as a good signing for Winston as the oft-injured, oft-underperforming Watson may yield decent playing time.  That said, he’s not going to be heavily drafted in fantasy circles if Watson starts healthy.  I give him a generous QB30 ranking, mostly because I’m not a believer in Watson.  We’ll see how this one plays out.

 

  • Player: Sam Darnold
  • Team: Minnesota Vikings
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): QB34 (QB37)

The Vikings lost Kirk Cousins and replaced him with Sam Darnold.  Darnold goes from a backup on a Super Bowl team to likely getting the keys to a high-powered offense of his own.  Of course, Nick Mullins is still there so it’s not a foregone conclusion Darnold gets the starting job (did I actually just type that?). 

At any rate, Darnold needs to be in my rankings so I’m placing him at QB34, three spots ahead of his new teammate. 

   

  • Player: Tyrod Taylor
  • Team: New York Jets
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): QB49 (QB62)

Although he doesn’t have a home yet, we know Zack Wilson won’t be returning to the team.  Tyrod Taylor signs on to be the Aaron Rodgers insurance policy.  This doesn’t move the needle much for me.  I’ll leave him at QB49.  

 

  • Player: Marcus Mariota
  • Team: Washington Commanders
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): Outside Top 50 (QB63)

The Commanders are long rumored to be in the rookie QB market on Draft night.  The signing of Marcus Mariota means Sam Howell’s days in the Nation’s Capital are probably numbered.  Unless the Commanders shock the world and pick Marvin Harrison Jr. (or trade down), this signing really has no fantasy value.  Unless all that happens, Mariota will remain outside my Top 50 QBs. 

 

  • Player: Drew Lock
  • Team: New York Giants
  • My Rank (2024 ECR): Outside Top 50 (QB47)

I actually like this signing for the G-men.  Daniel Jones is coming off a significant injury and may not be ready to go right away.  Adding Drew Lock gives the team a capable fill-in who won’t be overmatched by the moment.  I don’t see him holding the gig long-term, but he’s a good backup option and insurance policy.  He’ll remain outside my Top 50 for fantasy until we get further Daniel Jones news. 

 

There’s a quick recap of the QB free agent signings this week.  You’ll note there is no mention of Justin Fields as his opportunities outside the Windy City continue to shrink.  I say he stays in Chicago and they trade down.  At any rate, be sure to drop your thoughts on this and any other QB prediction in the comments below.      

In the meantime, here are the full QB rankings:

Download Table as CSV
Note: Filters and sorting in the table below apply to the output

# Name Team
Josh Allen BUF
Jalen Hurts PHI
Dak Prescott DAL
Lamar Jackson BAL
Patrick Mahomes KC
C.J. Stroud HOU
Joe Burrow CIN
Jared Goff DET
Justin Herbert LAC
Kirk Cousins ATL
Brock Purdy SF
Matthew Stafford LAR
Tua Tagovailoa MIA
Jordan Love GB
Anthony Richardson IND
Baker Mayfield TB
Kyler Murray ARI
Trevor Lawrence JAC
Derek Carr NO
Justin Fields PIT
Russell Wilson PIT
Aaron Rodgers NYJ
Daniel Jones NYG
Will Levis TEN
Caleb Williams Und
Deshaun Watson CLE
Geno Smith SEA
Gardner Minshew LV
Bryce Young CAR
Jameis Winston CLE
Sam Howell WAS
Kenny Pickett PHI
Jayden Daniels Und
Sam Darnold MIN
Drake Maye Und
Joe Flacco IND
Nick Mullens MIN
Michael Penix Jr Und
Bo Nix Und
J.J. McCarthy Und
Michael Pratt Und
Desmond Ridder ARI
Jimmy Garoppolo LAR
Taysom Hill NO
Joshua Dobbs FA
Mac Jones JAC
Ryan Tannehill FA
Zach Wilson NYJ
Tyrod Taylor NYJ
Taylor Heinicke ATL

As always, all our articles and rankings are free at https://football.razzball.com.  Also, don’t forget to join the Razzball boys, Bobby (@BobbyLamarco), Sky (@SkyGuasco), Matt (@Stiles08) and me each week for our live show.  Come for the insight, stay for the fun!

Look for my articles right here each week and be sure to follow me on Twitter/X @Derek_Favret.  I’m now on BlueSky as well (@dfavret.bsky.social).

Until next time, my friends!