Joe Murray

Joe Murray

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - OCTOBER 16: Lamar Jackson #8 of the Baltimore Ravens throws the ball during the first quarter against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on October 16, 2022 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)

Week 8 of the NFL season is upon us, so it’s time to take a look at who the best quarterbacks in the league are through the first 7 weeks of the season.

Quarterback play as a whole is down this year, with spotty offensive line play and defenses adjusting to the newer rules. However, there are still some quarterbacks that are playing above the rest, so let’s dive into which QBs are playing above their peers.

I’ve been breaking down the 7 best QBs each week, if you want to take a look at last week’s you can find it here. The list has been fluid all season, but this week it changed more than any previous week.

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - SEPTEMBER 11: Lamar Jackson #8 of the Baltimore Ravens looks to pass during the first half against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium on September 11, 2022 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY – SEPTEMBER 11: Lamar Jackson #8 of the Baltimore Ravens looks to pass during the first half against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium on September 11, 2022 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

1. Lamar Jackson

Lamar was far and away the best quarterback over the weekend, dominating at home against the explosive Lions.  Lamar went 21 of 27 for 357 yards and three touchdowns. He also ran for 36 yards and another score. I’ve said in previous weeks that I believe Lamar Jackson is the MVP of the league, and this was on full display on Sunday.
Lamar threw for 246 yards while under pressure, the most of any quarterback, since ESPN started tracking the stat. Lamar has the Ravens on top of the AFC north, and has them looking primed for a deep playoff run as long as they can stay healthy.
CINCINNATI, OHIO - DECEMBER 04: Patrick Mahomes #15 of the Kansas City Chiefs looks on against the Cincinnati Bengals during the first half at Paycor Stadium on December 04, 2022 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

CINCINNATI, OHIO – DECEMBER 04: Patrick Mahomes #15 of the Kansas City Chiefs looks on against the Cincinnati Bengals during the first half at Paycor Stadium on December 04, 2022 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

2. Patrick Mahomes

Patrick Mahomes was stellar on Sunday, throwing for 424 yards and 4 touchdowns. The Chiefs are starting to look like the defending Champs we all expected to see earlier in the season. Travis Kelce and Mahomes were back to being the best duo in the league, with Kelce having 12 receptions for 179 yards and a score. “I think both Kelce and Pat, when they’re on the same page, that’s a challenge for any defense,” coach Andy Reid said after the game.

The Chiefs lost their season opener and have since ripped off 6 straight wins, letting the rest of the NFL know they’re not going anywhere anytime soon. “I know they work on it. This isn’t, like, a secret,” Reid said. “It’s quite a tribute for those two executing the way they do.”

If Mahomes and Kelce continue to play like they did this past weekend, not only will the AFC struggle to keep up with them, but the rest of the league is back on notice that the Chiefs could be in Vegas in February defending their Super Bowl win.

  • Jacksonville Jaguars v Philadelphia Eagles

    PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA – OCTOBER 02: Jalen Hurts #1 of the Philadelphia Eagles yells during pregame against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Lincoln Financial Field on October 02, 2022 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

    3. Jalen Hurts

    Hurts and the Eagles dominated the Miami Dolphins on Sunday night. Hurts was 23/31 for 279 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. The Eagles offense has been off to a slow start this season, but they showed up in their biggest game to this point and flipped the script on the explosive Dolphins. Hurts was in rhythm most of the night and AJ Brown was dominant with 10 receptions for 137 yards and a touchdown.

    If the Eagles offense can get back to the explosive unit they were last season, paired with their defensive front, similar to the Chiefs, they’ll hope to be in Vegas in February with a shot to redeem themselves in the Super Bowl. Hurts and the Eagles offense had been a little slow to this point in the season, especially in the red zone, but if they can cure those ailments which they seemed to start to figure out this week I expect them to stay atop the NFC and make another deep playoff run.

     

     

  • Carolina Panthers v Miami Dolphins

    MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA – OCTOBER 15: Tua Tagovailoa #1 of the Miami Dolphins receives the snap during the second quarter in the game against the Carolina Panthers at Hard Rock Stadium on October 15, 2023 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Rich Storry/Getty Images)

    4. Tua Tagovailoa

    Tua falls to number 4 after a tough outing against the Eagles in Philly. Tua was 23/32 for 216 yards with one touchdown and one interception. A very pedestrian day for Tua especially this season with the Dolphins setting offensive records through the first six weeks of the season. The Eagles held Tua’s favorite target Tyreek Hill in check, Hill still had 11 catches but only had 88 yards and a touchdown, which sounds like a great game for most but for Hill that’s a down week.

    I still expect Tua to light it up this season and be a top 5 QB for the rest of the season, but this was a major hiccup and did show some of the team’s flaws. Some media members and fans have tossed the word “fraud” around when talking about the Dolphins after this performance. I wouldn’t go that far, but if you’re a Dolphins fan, maybe this game gave you some trepidation heading into the colder months. Where the game slows down and teams are forced to grind out wins. The Dolphins will hang around the top of the AFC all season, but how deep they can go in the playoffs will rely on Tua’s ability to continually execute Mike McDaniel’s scheme at a high level.

     

  • MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA - OCTOBER 16: Kirk Cousins #8 of the Minnesota Vikings celebrates a win against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium on October 16, 2022 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Eric Espada/Getty Images)

    MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA – OCTOBER 16: Kirk Cousins #8 of the Minnesota Vikings celebrates a win against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium on October 16, 2022 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Eric Espada/Getty Images)

    5. Kirk Cousins 

    Kirk vaults up to number 5 this week with a very unlike Kirk performance in prime time on Monday Night Football against the 49ers. The Vikings upset the 49ers 22-17 largely because of Kirk Cousin’s great play and Brock Purdy’s struggles. Kirk impressed, going 35/45 on passing attempts for 378 yards, two touchdowns and one interception.

    The Vikings have been underperforming all season and losing Justin Jefferson for at least 4 weeks, many expected them to just roll over against the perceived best team in the NFC, the San Francisco 49ers.

    Cousins’ noted struggles in prime time games also gave Vikings fans pause headed into this one, but Cousins’ continues to show that the Vikings struggles aren’t on his shoulders while he has statistically one of his best seasons. It would be to much to expect Cousins to stay in the top 5 all season, but he’s worthy of a spot this week after pulling off the second-biggest upset of the weekend.

  • EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - SEPTEMBER 11: Quarterback Josh Allen #17 of the Buffalo Bills scrambles with the football during the second quarter of the NFL game against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium on September 11, 2023 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

    EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY – SEPTEMBER 11: Quarterback Josh Allen #17 of the Buffalo Bills scrambles with the football during the second quarter of the NFL game against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium on September 11, 2023 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

    6. Josh Allen

    Josh Allen falls to number 6 after a rough weekend, struggling against the Patriots and losing as one of the heaviest favorites of the weekend. Allen struggled right out of the gate as his first pass attempt was intercepted by Jabrill Peppers and the Bills faced an uphill battle from there on out. Many expected the Bills to roll the Patriots, as the Patriots have been one of the worst teams in the league, struggling mightily offensively.

    This wasn’t the case on Sunday though as Mac Jones got the Patriots over 20 points for the first time this season while Josh Allen went 27/41 for 265 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Allen is a tough quarterback to grade at times as his legs and freakish arm talent should always have him in the top 5 but his decision-making and erratic accuracy have been a problem for the Bills this year.

    I would expect Allen to hang around the top 5 all season, but something does seem slightly off with Buffalo this season. Could Allen still be banged up from last season? Or is there more going on with the Bills struggles? We know Stefon Diggs and Josh Allen have butted heads at time and if Allen continues his streaky play there could be more tension on the way in Buffalo.

     

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