Every Member of the NFL’s Gigantic 20-Man QB Carousel

How the Vikings Could Play Packers in the Playoffs
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The NFL’s annual quarterback carousel, a spectacle growing in popularity and prevalence by the year, could arrive at any minute. In late January 2021, the event kickstarted with the Matthew Stafford trade to the Los Angeles Rams. That resulted in a Super Bowl triumph.

This year’s carousel contains about 20 names, a mammoth figure considering quarterback is the game’s most important position.

Every Member of the NFL’s Gigantic 20-Man QB Carousel

Listed in alphabetical order, these are the 2023 participants. And a reminder — not all of these men will leave their 2022 team.

1. Tom Brady (TB)

every member
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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 8th

Brady is a true-blue free agent and doesn’t seem married to the idea of remaining with the Buccaneers. Tampa Bay also overhauled its coaching staff sans head coach Todd Bowles.

It’s either retirement, a fourth year in Tampa, or a rendezvous with the Raiders or Patriots. The Dolphins appeared to rule themselves out of The Brady Sweepstakes over the weekend.

We say watch for Brady-to-Raiders.

2. Jacoby Brissett (CLE)

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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 7th

Brissett wasn’t too exciting, nor does he bring attention to himself, but he was an effective passer in 2022. Some team will probably pair Brissett [a free agent] with their rookie quarterback for bridge duty.

Otherwise, Brissett can stay put and backup Deshaun Watson. On the whole, Brissett probably isn’t some team’s long-term solution at QB. He’ll be available, though.

3. Derek Carr (LV)

Derek Carr a Better Bet than Kirk Cousins for 2022, per Bleacher Report
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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 19th

Around the fourth or fifth-sexiest name on this list, Carr must find a new team to showcase his ability. The Raiders failed to afford Carr a defense year after year and are now silently scapegoating him as the problem in the last nine years.

It’s a longshot, but Carr would fit nicely in New England.

4. Kirk Cousins (MIN)

Prediction for Vikings-Giants
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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 17th

Cousins is under contract through the end of 2023 and has a no-trade clause. However, after the Vikings season ended disappointingly at home against the Giants, Minnesota could tell Cousins, “we want to trade you,” asking him to find a destination of his liking.

When September rolls around, Cousins will probably be the Vikings starter once again, but with the unpredictability of the new front office, we shall see.

5. Andy Dalton (NO)

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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 13th

Dalton was a solid and serviceable quarterback in 2022, but nobody cared. He isn’t fun. The 35-year-old feels like a placeholder.

Like Brissett above, Dalton could be tabbed for patchover-to-a-rookie duty.

6. Sam Darnold (CAR)

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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = Did Not Qualify

Darnold — somehow — played wonderfully for a minute when the Panthers slipped into the lineup. But it’s probably not enough for a team to waltz into 2023 with Darnold as an undisputed QB1. However, he’s a free agent and could be used to patch over a rookie and serve as a very reputable QB2.

7. Jimmy Garoppolo (SF)

Vikings Rival Listed as Landing Spot for Jimmy Garoppolo
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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 1st

Advanced stat metrics love Garoppolo, and he’ll be the odd man out in San Francisco — if that can be believed.

Because Brock Purdy emerged out of nowhere, this will likely be the year when Garoppolo finally heads elsewhere. He may even be given the audition to start in an offense.

8. Taylor Heinicke (WAS)

NFC Clears Out for Vikings during Bye Week
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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 25th

Heinickie is lovable, gritty, and fun — but he’s not very productive, consistent, or sustainable. If he ends up with a bad team, he could nibble at a QB1 job. Realistically, however, like his teammate Carson Wentz, Heinicke is now a QB2 and is a damn good one.

9. Lamar Jackson (BAL)

About Those Fleeting Lamar
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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 14th

The Ravens claim they want Jackson back — who wouldn’t? — but he wants Deshaun Watson money. And is it wise to invest $250+ million in a man who’s been hurt the last two seasons? Run-first quarterbacks like Jackson have a shelf life of about 5-7 years. See: Cam Newton.

If the Jackson contract stuff becomes embroiled in bitterness, he could ask for a trade.

10. Trey Lance (SF)

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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = Did Not Qualify

Trey Lance will have an interesting summer after the Brock Purdy ride in 2022. Purdy proved he can start in the NFL — or at least authored a nearly flawless opening chapter — and deserves another QB1 shot in 2023.

The 49ers traded a lot for Lance and could explore recouping some of that king’s ransom via trade. If they do not, well, get ready for The Great Lance v. Purdy Debate coming to a screen near you in seven months.

11. Marcus Mariota (ATL)

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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 15th

A free agent, Mariota is back to a QB2, but his landing spot will make a few headlines.

The Falcons will roll with Desmond Ridder or a rookie from the 2023 NFL Draft.

12. Baker Mayfield (LAR)

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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 32nd

Mayfield will no longer be handed QB1 jobs like in Cleveland, Carolina, or Los Angeles. Yet, he was the No. 1 overall pick in 2018, so all things Mayfield will snatch folks’ attention.

He feels like a guy that teams will call on around November when 2023 injuries arise to QB1s.

13. Gardner Minshew (PHI)

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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = Did Not Qualify

Also a free agent, Minshew could hoodwink general managers into patchover duty. If a team drafts a rookie quarterback with the 15th overall pick or so, pairing that man with Minshew in the summer and early autumn checks out.

14. Tyler Huntley (BAL)

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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = Did Not Qualify

A la Tyrod Taylor, Huntley can start in the league while keeping the seat warm for the next guy. He could remain the Ravens QB2, too, if Lamar Jackson returns. Baltimore’s offensive need not stylistically change when Huntley enters the lineup.

But he simply isn’t as good as Jackson.

15. Aaron Rodgers (GB)

Aaron Rodgers Lauds Viking as 'Best Player in Game'
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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 21st

Rodgers vividly regressed in 2022; you’re just not allowed to say that out loud, especially to the Cris Collinsworths of the world. He also could’ve been hurt.

The Packers appear to be warming to the idea of a Rodgers trade, which would almost certainly occur with an AFC team. That’s why the Rodgers-to-Jets fodder is loud. For the first time in 18 years, Rodgers staying in Green Bay feels improbable.

16. Cooper Rush (DAL)

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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = Did Not Qualify

The Cowboys were 5-1 (.833) with Rush as a starter. But after the Cowboys got spanked by the Eagles on October 16th, everyone forgot about Rush. Bummer.

He could gain some attention as a fringe QB1 for a needy team.

17. Geno Smith (SEA)

Vikings Fans to Become Loud
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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 12th

This is probably a nothingburger because the Seahawks seem to adore Smith, but he is a free agent. If he returns to the Seahawks, he’ll be handsomely paid, likely around $25-30 million per year.

If Seattle turns the page, which is not expected to occur, well, Smith is some other team’s QB2. Just like the old days.

18. Carson Wentz (WAS)

QBs after Week 17
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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 31st

Wentz is on the carousel solely to become one of the best QB2s in the NFL. The days of teams auditioning him for QB1 are over. He was given a greenlight in Indianapolis and Washington — and flopped.

But some team will receive a marvelous QB2. That is Wentz’s fate for the rest of his career.

19. Zach Wilson (NYJ)

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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = 27th

Some team will acquire Wilson for a draft pick, stash him on the depth chart, and pretend he could be the next big thing. See: Josh Rosen in 2019.

For now, draft scouts really bungled Wilson’s draft lead-up.

20. Jameis Winston (NO)

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2022 QB DVOA Ranking = Did Not Qualify

Winston might stay in New Orleans, but will that really excite any Saints fans? New Orleans can move on from Winston’s contract with an $11.2 million dead cap penalty.

But then, who plays quarterback in 2023? Taysom Hill? The Eagles own the Saints 10th overall pick, meaning they can’t easily draft a 1st-Rounder to move on from the Winston-Dalton-Hill sandwich.

Regardless, there’s a financial path to end the Winston Era if New Orleans is interested.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by OverTheCap.com.