10. Trevor Lawrence (2021 Draft)
Not to say that Trevor Lawrence is a bad quarterback, but he’s inexperienced. And to be fair, he didn’t have the best rookie season either. Going 12–17 with his TD:INT ratio, Lawrence had to adjust to not only a new team, new playbook, but also a new head coach. Urban Meyer, who many thought would be the Jaguars next longtime head coach, was fired midway through his debut season into the NFL after poor conduct, and even poorer coaching. Obviously Lawrence isn’t the only one to blame for the Jaguars ranking this season, but playing a little better under center could’ve helped.
9. Jared Goff (2016 Draft)
The Lions made a trade this season and ended up parting ways with their longtime QB in Matt Stafford. Hoping to simply switch one franchise quarterback for another, that’s simply not what happened. Unfortunately the Lions walked away from this trade with the shorter end of the stick. Barely throwing for over 3000 yards on a team that only managed to scrape up three wins, Goff had a rough first half of the season. The only reason why Goff is higher than Trevor Lawrence on this list is because he has already been to two pro bowls.
8. Jameis Winston (2015 Draft)
Between Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota, few have been quick to label these guys as “franchise quarterbacks” so far. But nonetheless, both have carved out respectable NFL careers for themselves. Winston has bounced around a couple places, but still continues to show flashes of excellence on Sundays. If it wasn’t for a season ending injury this season, Winston might’ve lead the Saints to the playoffs. He’s truly a solid quarterback. Inconsistent maybe, but when he’s hot, he can sling it with the best of them.
7. Baker Mayfield (2018 Draft)
After the 2021 season, and after a few lackluster years prior, many have come to the conclusion that Baker Mayfield is not the quarterback of the future with the Browns. I strongly disagree, and if you think that Mayfield hasn’t put up an honest stat line since his rookie season, here’s an interesting stat for you. Both Baker Mayfield and Drew Brees (then with the Chargers) have almost identical stats through their first three seasons. They even had the same exact shoulder injury believe it or not. Now, I’m not saying that Baker Mayfield is going to become a free agent and lead a struggling franchise to a Super Bowl victory, but maybe he’s not as bad as everyone says he is.
6. Jadeveon Clowney (2014 Draft)
Despite seeing three Pro Bowl seasons from 2016–2018, Clowney has not exactly developed into the kind of guy Houston was looking for back in 2014. With the Cleveland Browns being his third team since leaving the Texans in 2018, Clowney has been inconsistent at times, although he did real in an impressive total of 9 sacks this season. It’s safe to say that Clowney is a solid rotational player for any NFL team, but surely not somebody you can depend on in the long run. Hopefully he proves me wrong, but hey, at least he’s not the WORST 1st overall pick of the past 10 years.
5. Eric Fisher (2013 Draft)
An offensive lineman, who you don’t always see walk out first on draft day, put together a pretty respectable career up to this point. Going to two pro bowls (one of which was in 2020), Fisher was able to establish himself as one of the NFL’s best lineman since his debut back in 2013. Consistent, and able to stay healthy, Fisher lands himself on this list at #5, in large part because of that reason.
4. Andrew Luck (2012 Draft)
People forget just how good Andrew Luck was. He was essentially the next in line for the throne after Peyton Manning left Indianapolis. He was viewed as the next long term option, and for seven years, he truly was. In those seven seasons, he made it to the pro bowl a total of four times. He won Comeback Player of the Year in 2018, and surprised everybody with his retirement shortly after. But hey, everybody has to write their own story in life, and I’m so happy to see him enjoying retirement.
3. Kyler Murray (2019 Draft)
Currently as we await the start of another NFL season in 2022, Kyler Murray and the Arizona Cardinals have not had the smoothest of relationships. Those we criticize him say that he lacks leadership, is not a good teammate, and of course, is too short. They said the same thing about Drew Brees (height) keep in mind, so the best thing that Murray can do right now is keep his head up high and continue to ball out on Sundays.
At the beginning of the season, he was clearly one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL from a statistical standpoint. But since then, he’s been mocked on social media for his playoff collapse, and has unfollowed the Cardinals across all of his social media accounts. He also deleted every post he ever made that had anything to do with the Cardinals, quite the controversy if you ask me. But in terms of pure talent and overall ceiling compared to the past 10 first overall picks, Murray deserves to land inside the top 3.
2. Myles Garrett (2017 Draft)
Myles Garrett, who also has had his fair share of controversy, takes the silver on this list for the best first overall selection of the past 10 years. A three time pro bowler, and 2x first team all pro, Garrett has earned his keep in the NFL as one of the leagues best pass rushers. If anything he reminds of a younger Khalil Mack (although not quite as dominant). It’s a shame that so many people remember him for the incident he had with Mason Rudolph, but when it all comes down to it, here’s an amazing talent.
1. Joe Burrow (2020 Draft)
Joe Sheisty, Joe Cool, whatever you wanna call him, he’s all that and then some. He’s the first NFL player in recent memory that is on the good end of a meme. Everyone always laughs about the nicknames and how “he has ice in his veins” yada yada yada. But usually, when an NFL player becomes a meme, it’s usually because they’re either not very good or did something really stupid. Look at Nathan Peterman.
As a Raider fan, I love having “Nathan Peter-Goat” on our roster. Sure, he has the NFL record for most interceptions thrown in one half of football, but I still like him. Burrow on the other hand, was making a strong push for MVP this season. He brought the Bengals all the way back to their first Super Bowl appearance since 1989. He’s confident, he’s clutch, he’s likable, a good leader, just an all around good guy. Now obviously personality doesn’t get you to the #1 spot on any NFL list, but if we weren’t already judging on skill alone, he’d win that competition hands down too.
Thanks for reading my article, I appreciate the support! I just started writing for Gridiron Heroics, but if you’re interested in checking out more of my work here’s a link to another article of mine.
For More Great Football Content
Follow us on Twitter at @GridironHeroics for more great content. We appreciate you taking time to read our articles. To interact more with our community and keep up to date on the latest in Football news, JOIN OUR FREE FACEBOOK GROUP by CLICKING HERE