Sep 29, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning during the second half against the Philadelphia Eagles at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The Broncos won 52-20. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports
After another week of solid NFL action has passed, and here I come with another ‘Top Five Quarterback’ list. We saw some great quarterback play over this weekend, as well as some not so great quarterback play. This week’s list was tough to get together, and there are a few guys that may have deserved a spot in the top five. But never the less, here are the top five quarterbacks in the NFL through week four of the regular season.
1. Peyton Manning
Manning has been in a zone through the first four weeks of the season. He is on pace to shatter Tom Brady’s record of 50 touchdowns in a single season, as he already has racked up 16 of them. As if this wasn’t impressive enough, Manning has completed 75% of his passes and he has yet to be picked off. He has a star-studded supporting cast, so it is no surprise that the Broncos boast the top offense in the league, but Manning has been playing at an all-time great level, and at this rate I don’t see how he doesn’t reel in another MVP award.
November 18, 2012; Denver, CO, USA; San Diego Chargers quarterback Phillip Rivers (17) during the third quarter against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports
2. Phillip Rivers
The play of Rivers has definitely been the biggest surprise of this young 2013 season. He has eliminated most of his turnovers, which had been the main thing that he has struggled with over his career. The Chargers are sitting at 2-2, but if your win-loss record was based on the play of your quarterback, San Diego would be undefeated. Rivers is second only to Peyton Manning in total QBR at 81.4, he has completed 74% of his passes, and currently he has thrown only two interceptions to eleven touchdowns. I have enjoyed watching the new Rivers this season, and I honestly am rooting for him throughout the remainder of the regular season.
Sep 29, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) drops back to pass in the first half against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports
3. Tom Brady
Brady’s numbers can’t compare to those of Manning and Rivers, but what Brady has done with the guys surrounding him is possibly more impressive than anything Peyton or Rivers have done thus far in 2013. Brady is working with two rookie receivers, Julian Edelman who caught only 21 balls in 2012, and he has been without his stars Rob Gronkowski and Danny Amendola for the majority of the year. Despite this young and rough group of weapons, Brady has only thrown two picks thus far, and New England has yet to lose a game. Brady’s unique ability to win with whoever is around him is unrivaled not only in today’s NFL, but in NFL history. This skill is what sets him apart from the rest, and this is also why he finds himself in the top five for the first time this season.
Sep 29, 2013; Jacksonville, FL, USA; Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck (12) looks for a receiver in the second quarter of their game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field. Mandatory Credit: Phil Sears-USA TODAY Sports
4. Andrew Luck
When Luck came into the league last year, he got swept under the rug (relatively speaking) because of the electric play of Robert Griffin III and Russell Wilson. When these three guys were drafted, I said that Luck was, and will always be the better of the three, and his play thus far in 2013 is proving my thought. Luck has only thrown for 918 yards and five touchdowns, but his team is 3-1 and the only two guys that are ahead of him in total QBR are Peyton Manning and Phillip Rivers. Luck’s demeanor on the football field is unnaturally calm for a second year player, and in that respect, he reminds me of another guy on this list who happens to be a three time Super Bowl champion. Luck is headed for big things, but for now, he will have to settle for fourth on this week’s edition of the top five quarterbacks in the league.
Sep 29, 2013; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans quarterback Jake Locker (10) rushes against the New York Jets during the first half at LP Field. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports
5. Jake Locker
I feel obligated to included Locker on this list, not only because he suffered what appears to be a devastating hip injury, but because up until that point, he had been leading the NFL’s most surprising team of 2013. Tennessee is 3-1 largely due to the improved play of their quarterback. Locker is an athletic dude, but he has started to learn how to play within the game, make the correct read, and deliver the ball to his receiver on target. He has not been intercepted once here in this young season, and currently he owns the fifth best quarterback rating in the league. Initial reports suggest that Locker could miss anywhere from four to eight weeks with this hip injury, and I think the Titans will experience a significant drop in winning percentage while Locker is gone.