Best QB in the AFC West?
Another year and yet another trip to the Super Bowl by the Kansas City Chiefs. That’s two Super Bowls in a row and now three straight AFC Championship Game appearances. Safe to say, we are officially in the thick of the Chiefs dynasty.
Their success is without a due to one man himself: Patrick Mahomes. The QB who continues to take the league by a storm. Setting new heights only he is capable of reaching.
As for the other teams, they continued to battle it out. But what’s the point? They’re all just playing for second anyways—however, each with quarterbacks who could potentially lead their team to an AFC West title one day.
Until then, let’s take a dive into the current state of the AFC West’s quarterbacks.
Patrick Mahomes – Kansas City Chiefs
- 4740 yards and 38 touchdowns
- 66.3 completion percentage with 8.1 yards per attempt
- 6 INT and 22 sacks
- 14-1 overall record with 3 GWD
- 108.2 QB rating and an overall grade of 91.4
Derek Carr – Las Vegas Raiders
- 4103 yards and 27 touchdowns
- 67.3 completion percentage with 7.9 yards per attempt
- 9 INT and 26 sacks
- 8-8 overall record with 5 GWD
- 101.4 QB rating and an overall grade of 84.3
Drew Lock – Denver Broncos
- 2933 yards and 16 touchdowns
- 57.3 completion percentage with 6.6 yards per attempt
- 15 INT and 19 sacks
- 4-9 overall record with 1 GWD
- 75.4 QB rating and an overall grade of 63.5
Justin Herbert – Los Angeles Chargers
- 4336 yards and 31 touchdowns
- 66.6 completion percentage with 7.3 yards per attempt
- 10 INT and 32 sacks
- 6-9 overall record with 3 GWD
- 98.3 QB rating and an overall grade of 80.1
The king of the West lies in Kansas City. This isn’t really much of a debate. Patrick Mahomes is the best QB in the league, period. He continues to shatter records and makes impossible throws look, pedestrian. There’s a reason he signed a ten-year deal with the Chiefs. He is that good.
As for Derek Carr, he once again put up solid numbers and remains one of the most underrated quarterbacks in the league. While he may not be Mahomes, he is good enough to be the Raiders franchise QB going forward. His completion percentage, yards, touchdowns, and QBR would all land him in the top 11.
After all, Carr eclipsed 4,000 yards despite finishing 14th in the league in total pass attempts. While trade rumors swirled a possible Derek Carr trade earlier in the year, it’s hard to envision parting with a player such as Carr. Give him another year under Gruden and a draft to find additional playmakers and see if he can enter into the top ten conversations.
Once again, Mahomes sweeps all the hardware here. Barring a devastating injury, we are looking at the Mahomes shows for years to come. So you better get used to this guy carving up your favorite team week in and week out.
Long-term Derek Carr appears to be the perfect franchise QB. It will be awfully hard to find an upgrade. But that doesn’t mean the Raiders should stop looking altogether. After all, Carr is 30 years old and set to hit free agency in 2023. Having someone under the wings might not be the worst plan in the world.
If there is going to be anyone that challenges Mahomes for this title, that man resides in Los Angeles. The reigning rookie of the year certainly looks the part. If Justin Herbert continues to take that next step and if the Chargers can adequately protect him (32 sacks in 15 games), Herbert could be the next big thing.
Finding weapons and an upgrade at the offensive line weapon should be priority number one for the Chargers front office. With Hunter Henry (TE) and Forrest Lamp (OG) departures, upgrades will be needed. The signings of Corey Linsley and Matt Feiler to the line were significant steps. But adding a blue-chip tackle such as Rashawn Slater in the draft could take that unit to the next level.
That leads us to the Denver Broncos. Quite frankly, Drew Lock, ain’t it chief. It’s tough to give up on such a young player, but his stats have been inadequate to date. A near one-to-one touchdown to INT ratio and a completion percentage of 57.3 does not exactly spell success.
The Broncos roster is way to stacked to waste time on the development of Drew Lock. Whether that means swinging for the fences on a rookie such as Justin Fields or acquiring a veteran via trade, such as Teddy Bridgewater, George Paton needs to be aggressive in finding their franchise QB.
All in all, this looks to be a promising bunch. If the Broncos can upgrade at the QB position, the race for first could be an absolute blood bath. But until proved otherwise, all QB’s not named Mahomes are playing for second here.