PFF ranks NFL starting QBs, where do Alabama players land? (2024)

PFF ranks NFL starting QBs, where do Alabama players land? (1)

AJ Spurr

May 28, 2023 3:14 pm CT

There are Alabama players at just about every position scattered all across the NFL. However, in the last four years, one position has seen a boom in former Crimson Tide stars. There are now four starting quarterbacks in the NFL that started for Alabama.

These quarterback range from conference champions to rookies to polarizing figures. No matter which way you look at it, these Crimson Tide QBs make headlines.

Sam Monson of Pro Football Focus recently ranked all 32 starting NFL quarterbacks, including rookies.

See where Jalen Hurts, Tua Tagovailoa, Mac Jones and Bryce Young land in the rankings.

25. Bryce Young - Carolina Panthers

PFF ranks NFL starting QBs, where do Alabama players land? (2)

(Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)

Monson’s take:“Young was the best quarterback in this draft by a considerable margin, and the only thing that made the discussion close was his lack of size — something that becomes obvious any time he is captured on film with anything near him to show true scale. Young has elite accuracy, anticipation and decision-making (back-to-back seasons with a 2.0% turnover-worthy play rate), but success at his size in the modern NFL is without precedent.”

While Monson didn’t say anything untrue, I believe that he is placing too much emphasis on Young’s size. Sure, he’s not the biggest quarterback in the league by any means, but he has the ability to work around that. Playing at the highest level possible in the SEC was no easy task. The Carolina Panthers certainly didn’t think it would be too big of a factor. I agree that there are too many unknowns with Young, being that he hasn’t played in an NFL game yet, but I still think he will play better than this No. 25 ranking suggests.

21. Mac Jones - New England Patriots

PFF ranks NFL starting QBs, where do Alabama players land? (3)

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Monson’s take: “Bringing in real coaching on offense has the potential to be huge for Jones. As underwhelming as last season was, it’s important to remember that Jones earned an 80.0 overall PFF grade as a rookie, finishing just outside the top 10 of eligible quarterbacks that year. He doesn’t have the dynamic athleticism of Justin Fields or the arm of Trevor Lawrence, but he has already shown he can be a very high-level distributor of the football and a better player than many give him credit for.”

Comparing Mac Jones’ rookie season to his 2022 season is certainly valid. There are many external factors that played into the disappointing year Jones had in New England. Expectations are much higher in 2023 with new skill positions players and coaches to boost his abilities. I believe a ranking of No. 21 is fair for Jones.

11. Tua Tagovailoa - Miami Dolphins

PFF ranks NFL starting QBs, where do Alabama players land? (4)

Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Monson’s take: “Can Tua back up what we saw in 2022, or was his play beginning to be found out anyway when concussions became the overriding factor in his season? That’s the big question for him and Miami heading into 2023. Tua led the league with a massive 8.9 yards per attempt last season and also had one of the highest average depths of target, having been in the middle of the pack before that. He has elite potential within Mike McDaniel’s offense but now needs to repeat it.”

There are a few points that Monson brings up that do need to be considered when evaluating Tua Tagovailoa. Can the Dolphins starting quarterback stay healthy, and were opposing defenses figuring him out late in the season? Those questions may have answers now based on the latter half of the 2022 season, but no one can be absolutely certain. Early in the season, when healthy, Tagovailoa was playing MVP-level football. Ranking him at No. 1 shows that Tagovailoa has the ability to play at a top-10 level, there are just a few hurdles he must overcome.

7. Jalen Hurts - Philadelphia Eagles

Monson’s take: “Hurts was phenomenal in 2022, but the hardest part of that kind of play in the NFL is sustaining it. Lamar Jackson one spot above him is a great example of that. Hurts has taken big steps forward every season of his career, and if he has another one in the tank, then he is ranked too low at No. 7. Hurts averaged 8.0 yards per attempt last season and added almost 800 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns on the ground.”

There were many doubts of Jalen Hurts’ game when he was drafted in 2020. However, in three years he silenced them all, earned a trip to the Super Bowl and earned one of the largest contracts in NFL history. I would personally rank Hurts as a top-five quarterback in the league, but when you’re this close to the top, it’s all subjective. Hurts will continue to shine for the Eagles in 2023.

PFF ranks NFL starting QBs, where do Alabama players land? (2024)
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