This is the first installment in what is hopefully a semi-weekly series here on Musket Fire. I will rank the top five quarterbacks in the NFL based on their performance in the previous week (or two weeks). I will not take any previous achievements into consideration, I will be looking solely at each player’s most recent performance’s.
1. Peyton Manning
Through two games, Manning has thrown for 769 yards along with tossing 11 touchdowns passes. That is pretty damn impressive, and even though both secondary’s he went up against were extremely suspect, he deserves this top ranking by a large margin. Manning’s trademark accuracy and anticipation seem better than ever, and it even looks like his arm strength is better than it was a year ago. He has a lethal arsenal of weapons to throw to, and he has utilized them to the fullest degree thus far in the season. Peyton has completed 67% of his passes, and has led his team to 90 total points in the first two games.
2. Matt Ryan
The Falcons haven’t gotten off to the best of starts here in 2013, but this is no fault of quarterback Matt Ryan. Ryan has been phenomenal in both games, totaling 678 yards and four touchdowns. Like Manning, Ryan has an extremely talented supporting cast that includes one of the best young receivers in the game in Julio Jones. Ryan has been cool and calm in situations where the Falcons absolutely need him to make a play, and he has showcased his tremendous deep ball touch numerous times in the first two regular season tilts.
3. Aaron Rodgers
813 yards, seven touchdowns and a 69% completion rate. Peyton Manning’s stats are just about as impressive as they come through two games, but Rodgers puts up a hell of a fight. Granted, he had the pleasure of going up against one of the worst secondary’s in the league in the Washington Redskins this past week, but 480 yards is 480 yards. He also rang up 333 yards and three touchdowns against arguably the best defense in the league, the San Francisco 49ers. Rodgers did all of this with a decimated offensive line, and a receiving core that is not what it used to be, but that is what great quarterbacks do, and Rodgers is definitely one of the best in the league.
4. Jay Cutler
Cutler’s play through the first two weeks of the season has been extremely surprising in my eyes. Cutler has struggled throughout his career in decision making and pocket presence, but he has reversed the tables in the first two games of 2013. Cutler has thrown for 532 yards to go along with five touchdowns and three interceptions. But what has impressed me is his cool demeanor in the big moments, as he led the Bears on game winning drives in both victories, including a clutch 16 yard touchdown pass to Martellus Bennet with only 10 seconds remaining in their win over the Vikings. Cutler has also only taken two sacks in the first two games, and although a lot of the credit has to be given to the Bears revamped offensive line, Cutler deserves some credit with an improved sense of his whereabouts in the pocket.
5. Matt Schaub
Schaub presence on this list is largely due to the fact that he has performed admirably in the clutch moments for his team (much like Cutler). Schaub led his team all the way back from a 21 point deficit in week one against San Diego, and then he followed it up by coming through three separate times late in the win against the Titans. The Texans are definitely a run-first offense with top running back Arian Foster in the fold, but to start this season they have throwing the football quite a bit, and Schaub has responded in a big way.