The NFC is easily the lesser of the two conferences and it’s not close. There are a handful of teams that are truly ready to compete for an NFC Crown, while the remaining 11 are searching for answers. There appears to be a changing of the guard in the NFC North with disfunction in Minnesota and pending departure of Rodgers in Green Bay. The NFC East is loaded and an arms race is underway. The NFC South is a festival of mediocrity and anyone can win it. The NFC West is home to 2 terrible teams and 2 playoff teams.
The quarterback market started to take shape when Derek Carr signed with the Saints. It continued to escalate when Geno Smith resigned with the Seahawks, Daniel Jones re-signed with the G Men and Jimmy G took his talents to Vegas. These moves have narrowed the availability of serviceable options and the world now awaits final decisions on Aaron Rodgers and Lamar Jackson. I fully expect the Packers and Jets to come to a trade agreement within the next 7 days so that all parties can move forward. On the other hand, I think the Lamar situation will carry on for a long time and no other team will offer 2 first round picks plus a contract to him. He is the Face of the Ravens and if Baltimore wants to compete, they need to get this resolved quickly.
We’re not even a full week into the new league year and there are a bunch of winners and losers.
- DALLAS COWBOYS: The Cowboys kept DC Dan Quinn, Leighton Vander Esch, Tony Pollard and traded for Stephon Gilmore and Brandin Cooks.
- NEW YORK GIANTS: The G Men successfully retained RB Saquon Barkley and QB Daniel Jones.
- WASHINGTON COMMANDERS: They didn’t sign Derek Carr, Jimmy G or Geno Smith to solve their quarterback issues. They also missed out on elite offensive tackles Mike McGlinchey, Orlando Brown Jr and Juwan Taylor.
- PHILADELPHIA EAGLES: The Birds brought back veterans Brandon Graham, Jason Kelce, James Bradberry and Darius Slay for another run at a World Championship while the window is open.
- CHICAGO BEARS: The Monsters of the Midway made a few bold moves to reshape their future. They traded the 1st overall pick for a haul and WR D.J. Moore. They supplemented this move by signing a plethora of free agents, highlighted by T J Edwards, Tremaine Edmunds and Robert Tonyan.
- GREEN BAY PACKERS: The Aaron Rodgers drama has caused everyone to pick sides and fight out how the front office has managed the franchise.
- MINNESOTA VIKINGS: A bunch of veterans have been shown the exit and the defense has yet to be improved on paper. Thielen, Kendricks, Peterson are gone and there are rumors swirling that Dalvin Cook and ZaDarius Smith are on the trade block.
- DETROIT LIONS: The Lions appear to be awakening from their 30 year hibernation. They signed RB David Montgomery, CB’s Cameron Sutton, Emmanuel Moseley and Safety CJ Gardner-Johnson.
- ATLANTA FALCONS: The Dirty Birds have spent willingly so far in Free Agency. They have resigned a few as well as signed Jessie Bates, Mack Hollins, Taylor Heinicke, David Onyemata, Lorenzo Carter and Kaden Eliss.
- TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS: They achieved their goal of a World Championship in 2020, but now that they are dealing with salary cap restrictions and TB12 has retired again. They have resigned Lavonte David and Jameel Dean, but have released or traded other key fixtures. Baker Mayfield has signed and will compete with Kyle Trask for the QB role.
- CAROLINA PANTHERS: Signed RB Miles Sanders and WR Adam Theilen.
- NEW ORLEANS SAINTS: Signed QB Derek Carr
- SEATTLE SEAHAWKS: The 12’s resigned QB Geno Smith and have a ton of draft picks to build on their 2022 playoff appearance.
- LA RAMS: The current roster is a skeleton of their 2021 World Championship squad. They traded Jalen Ramsey to the Dolphins for peanuts as well as letting Bobby Wagner and Leonard Floyd depart. Aaron Donald is thinking about retirement consistently just like Aaron Rodgers. There are also rumors that the Rams would be opening to trading Matthew Stafford.
- ARIZONA CARDINALS: A mess of a franchise at the moment. The roster is not ready to compete and there’s a very good chance DeAndre Hopkins will be traded.
- SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS: The 49ers failed to resign Mike McGlinchey and decided to let Jimmy G walk in favor of Brock Purdy and Trey Lance. A bigger loss was seeing DeMeco Ryans leave to take the Head Coaching position in Houston.
NFC POWER POLL: (AS OF MARCH 20TH)
1.). PHILADELPHIA EAGLES
2.). SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS
3.). DALLAS COWBOYS
4.). NEW YORK GIANTS
5.). MINNESOTA VIKINGS
6.). SEATTLE SEAHAWKS
7.). DETROIT LIONS
8.). GREEN BAY PACKERS
9.). CHICAGO BEARS
10.). ATLANTA FALCONS
11.). NEW ORLEANS SAINTS
12.). WASHINGTON COMMANDERS
13.). TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS
14.). CAROLINA PANTHERS
15.). ARIZONA CARDINALS
16.). LOS ANGELES RAMS
The NFL is driven by the quarterback. The NFC is a wasteland when it comes to the quarterback position across the 16 franchises. The Packers have had 2 starting quarterbacks since September of 1992, but that will change this season. The elder statesmen from the QB perspective in the NFCare now Matthew Stafford, Dak Prescott and Kurt Cousins.
NFC QUARTERBACK RANKINGS: (AS OF MARCH 20TH)
**Assuming Aaron Rodgers is a New York Jet
1.). JALEN HURTS
2.). DAK PRESCOTT
3.). JUSTIN FIELDS
4.). MATTHEW STAFFORD
5.). KURT COUSINS
6.). JARED GOFF
7.). DEREK CARR
8.). KYLER MURRAY
9.). GENO SMITH
10.). DANIEL JONES
11.). BAKER MAYFIELD
12.). JORDAN LOVE
13.). TREY LANCE / BROCK PURDY
14.). CAROLINA PANTHERS QB ROOM
15.). DESMOND RIDDER/ TAYLOR HEINICKE
16.). SAM HOWELL
Stay tuned to Spinnable Sports and The Irrational Confidence Podcast @IRConfidencePOD on Twitter) for a ton of College Football, NFL and NFL Draft content. We have our live Irrational Confidence Mock Draft podcast episode coming as well as additional position rankings. The Irrational Confidence Podcast is available on all podcast platforms and the Spinnable Sports YouTube Channel.