The Falcons chose to give Desmond Ridder a chance this offseason as opposed to making a run at Lamar Jackson or attempting to draft a quarterback. So far, that has not panned out very well. Ridder has struggled by just about every metric and the Falcons appear to be moving on from him in favor of Taylor Heinicke. It already felt like Atlanta needed a quarterback entering the year. Now, it looks like it could be the missing piece to an offense that has plenty of playmakers. With the Falcons currently leading the NFC South, it might not be easy to draft one of the top prospects in this class, but it is a deep group, so there will be more creative options Atlanta can pursue.
No need to worry about Bryce Young just yet. He has not played well, but neither has just about anyone in Carolina so far this season. Andy Dalton is a capable and experienced backup as well. If Young is still struggling this badly again next season, then Panthers fans can start to panic.
Derek Carr has not set the world on fire since joining New Orleans, but the Saints are in no position to replace him. With depth in Jameis Winston and Taysom Hill, it is hard to envision the Saints making any meaningful additions to their quarterback room in the 2024 offseason.
Baker Mayfield’s hot start takes the edge off just how badly the Buccaneers need to find Tom Brady’s successor, but they still need to do it. The likelihood is that won’t be a first-round quarterback. Tampa Bay currently owns the 13th pick in the draft. I think the Bucs would be better situated to build in the trenches with that first-round pick while finding a developmental quarterback prospect on Day 2. There will be prospects on the board in the second and third rounds in 2024 worth selecting and developing.
Arizona has taken one of the most interesting approaches to their quarterback situation this year. After trading for Josh Dobbs just prior to the season to fill in for the injured Kyler Murray, the Cardinals shipped out Dobbs at the trade deadline despite Murray not being 100 percent ready to go. Rookie Clayton Tune will be the fill-in going forward. On top of that, the Cardinals currently have the worst record in the league and sit in poll position to draft Caleb Williams. Perhaps Arizona would want to run it back with Kyler and net a huge haul for the No. 1 pick. They don’t need to replace Murray, but the former Oklahoma star has struggled to stay healthy and Williams would give them the ability to reset the franchise.
Matthew Stafford did what he was brought in to do. The Rams won a Super Bowl. Now, it is time for Los Angeles to start working on a succession plan. Stafford has struggled with injuries over the past two seasons, most recently dealing with a thumb injury. After years of the “Blank them picks” approach in L.A., Stan Kroenke has a first round pick for the first time since selecting Jared Goff in 2016. The Rams are currently slated to pick No. 10 overall, which could put them in range to select one of the top quarterbacks in this draft class. Maybe the team believes in Stetson Bennett long term, whom it drafted in the fourth round this past year, but it seems very likely that Los Angeles will select a passer during the first two days of the draft.
Like it or not, Brock Purdy is the 49ers franchise quarterback. Heading into the season, there was definitely a bit of uncertainty, but after trading away Trey Lance and Purdy’s impressive play (save the past two weeks), there is no debate anymore. San Francisco has an experienced backup as well in Sam Darnold. The 49ers are set at the position, just not in a way any of could have predicted two years ago.
Preseason QB Need: 2
Current QB Need: 2
Geno Smith is proving that last season was not a fluke. While his numbers are nowhere near as prolific, he is still providing Seattle with above-average quarterback play. The only reason the Seahawks don’t register as a 1 for me on this list is because of Drew Lock. He has been fine in relief and has some starting experience, which is valuable for a backup quarterback. However, he signed a one-year contract this past offseason. If Lock does not come back, the Seahawks will need to find some insurance behind Smith.