2021 Quarterback Free Agency: Week 15 NFL Mailbag

Last Updated: Jan 9, 2021


2021 Quarterback Free Agency: Welcome to the Week 15 NFL Mailbag! Here are your best questions from Twitter about the NFL, which included answers from me about the future for 2021 QB Free Agents.

2021 Quarterback Free Agency: Week 15 NFL Mailbag

What happens at quarterback for the Denver Broncos in 2021?

I think the Broncos’ quarterback situation is one of the most fascinating in the NFL. It’s clear they have a ton of talent at receiver, and their offensive line looks to be improving under Mike Munchak.

But is Drew Lock the answer? Through two seasons, there is nothing that suggests Lock is a player that elevates the talent around him.

Now, does that mean his career is over? Of course not. But in a division with Patrick Mahomes, the Broncos can’t afford to wait around for a quarterback to maybe, potentially, hopefully, develop into a top-15 player at the position. (Question submitted by @FananaticCowboy)

While it does feel somewhat unlikely that the Broncos will make a massive trade up in the 2021 NFL Draft, the team could be in the market for a veteran quarterback to “compete" with Lock.

Who might that be? Well:

What quarterbacks are scheduled to become free agents in 2021?

The list of proven, capable starting quarterbacks scheduled to hit free agency isn’t very long. Here’s the list via Spotrac:

  1. Dak Prescott
  2. Philip Rivers
  3. Cam Newton
  4. Jacoby Brissett
  5. Mitchell Trubisky
  6. Ryan Fitzpatrick
  7. Andy Dalton
  8. Tyrod Taylor
  9. Robert Griffin III
  10. A.J. McCarron

Outside of Prescott, none of those quarterbacks would be long-term solutions for the Broncos. Could Jacoby Brissett or Mitchell Trubisky get another chance elsewhere? Potentially. But they aren’t necessarily upgrading on Lock.

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However, several other quarterbacks could be leaving the current team this offseason.

Could the Lions release/trade Matthew Stafford if they are trying to rebuild? That is certainly a possibility.

What about Matt Ryan? The Falcons appear to be ready to tear things down, but can they get out of his contract?

Then there is Jimmy Garappolo in San Francisco, who the team might be willing to move on from if they find a different quarterback this offseason.

There will undoubtedly be a ton of quarterback movement, but guessing what the Broncos will do is tricky. These final three games for Lock could go a long way in determining his standing for the future. (Question submitted by @ArmyofTurtles)

What is keeping the Steelers from being a great team?

Staying with the theme of quarterback… it’s Ben Roethlisberger.

Pittsburgh has an elite defense that creates a ton of turnovers. The Steelers have weapons galore on offense and a veteran offensive line. Unfortunately, Roethlisberger is playing like one of the worst starting quarterbacks in the NFL.

2021 Quarterback Free Agency: Week 15 NFL Mailbag: Ben Roethlisberger, pictured here with head coach Mike Tomlin during Week 14, is holding back the Steelers' chances at a Super Bowl with his subpar play.
Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger may be holding back Mike Tomlin’s team with his erratic play. (USA TODAY Sports)

Consider this: Of all the quarterbacks in the NFL to throw at least 200 passes this season, Roethlisberger has the fifth-worst yards-per-attempt average (6.3).

That is quite a drop-off from his last full season (2018), when he averaged 7.6 yards per attempt. Compare that to his first seven yards in the NFL when he averaged 8.0 yards per attempt.

Roethlisberger isn’t as efficient or dynamic as we are used to seeing. He’s just a mediocre quarterback that is being carried by a terrific supporting cast. However, Roethlisberger is a future Hall of Fame quarterback who has the potential to go on a four- or five-game run and get the Steelers to the Super Bowl.

However, my confidence level in him being able to do so is dropping by the week. (Question submitted by @RowdyBrianV)

Who is the most underrated and overrated offensive player in the NFL?

Let’s continue to stick with the theme of quarterbacks. For underrated, I will go with Kirk Cousins. Over the last three seasons, he’s averaged 7.7 yards per attempt and a passer rating of 103.

While he isn’t an elite quarterback or anything, you can certainly win with him. He’s a borderline top-10 quarterback and has had a passer rating of 93.9 or better in six straight seasons.

Cousins is often the butt of many jokes, but you can certainly do far worse than him. Every year, 20ish teams wish they had a quarterback of the caliber of Kirk Cousins; he’s been incredibly reliable and consistent throughout his NFL career.

As for the overrated quarterback, I’m going with Jared Goff. While his Rams are playing well right now, they are almost doing it despite Jared Goff.

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Sean McVay runs the offense and makes every read simple for Goff. And even then, Goff has struggled. Over the last two seasons, he has a passer rating of 89.2 and has thrown 27 interceptions.

When you consider his turnover problems, the lack of mobility and the reliance of McVay to scheme open receivers, you can see why he’s a tad overrated.

Goff is still a serviceable quarterback, but he isn’t someone who should be thought of as a top-15 passer in the NFL. (Question submitted by @TeamHeaney)

Thanks for reading the Week 15 NFL Mailbag! Please make sure to follow me and The Game Day on Twitter.

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Marcus Mosher

Marcus Mosher is an NFL analyst at The Game Day, residing in Erie, PA. He covers the NFL from a betting and fantasy perspective, producing written and video content. Marcus currently hosts multiple football-related podcasts and is a managing editor at USA Today’s Sports Media Group covering the Las Vegas Raiders. He has previously worked at The Athletic and Bleacher Report.

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