The thing about Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles is that you know what you’re getting from him — for the most part. He has some games where he can explode, but mainly he’s a below-average starter in the NFL.
Gregg Rosenthal of NFL.com took that one step further, ranking the top 32 quarterbacks in the NFL and excluding Bortles altogether. Rosenthal even draws attention to it by saying “Players like Blake Bortles, Colin Kaepernick, A.J. McCarron and Mitchell Trubisky just missed the cut.”
Again, Bortles is not a top-tier, or maybe not even middle-tier quarterback when compared to others around the league, but to not include him on the list at all is ludicrous.
Players like Teddy Bridgewater, Patrick Mahomes and Sam Bradford were ranked ahead of Bortles on this list — those three players combined for 80 passing attempts in 2017. I’m not saying those aforementioned quarterbacks don’t have better tools or higher ceilings than Bortles, but two of them are coming back from serious injuries and the other has played in one NFL game ever. I think it is a bit too hasty to say that all three of them are better players than Bortles.
Bradford has played in all 16 games just twice in eight NFL seasons. Bortles has not missed a game since taking over as the Jaguars starting quarterback. While, again, Bradford probably has better tools, is more accurate and can throw a pretty deep ball, I’m not risking those kind of durability issues with my field general.
Bortles ranked in the top-half of the league in the following passing categories in 2017: passing yards (11th), touchdowns (16th), red zone touchdowns (6th), first downs (7th), and plays of 20 yards or more (15th).
Obviously, Bortles had his struggles too. His 13 interceptions were tied for seventh-most, though that mark was actually a career low for Bortles, as was his interception rate of 2.5 percent. Aaron Rodgers, Ben Roethlisberger and Derek Carr also had a 2.5 percent interception rate last year. His completion percentage ranked just 24th among qualifying/starting quarterbacks and his quarterback rating of 84.7 was good for just 20th among qualifiers. His ESPN QBR of 55.5 put him right in the middle of the pack at 15th, though.
Another quarterback who made Rosenthal’s list over Bortles was Jacoby Brissett of the Indianapolis Colts. This is another one I disagree with. Brissett, who played in all 16 games last year, had fewer yards, yards per attempt, and touchdowns and a lower completion percentage, quarterback rating, and total QBR.
Both teams were pretty depleted, but Brissett at least had T.Y. Hilton and Jack Doyle to throw to. Bortkes’ top options were... undrafted free agent Keelan Cole and Marqise Lee?
Give me Bortles over Brissett 10 out of 10 times.
Other names like Joe Flacco, Ryan Tannehill, Eli Manning and Nick Foles made the list, and I think deservedly so, but those are the kinds of quarterbacks I would currently group Bortles with — not looking at career achievements, obviously, but based off of press time.
Maybe I am just a homer, but I am not shy about calling Bortles out when he plays awful, so I don’t think that’s the case. Bortles not being on this list is a complete and total joke. Honestly if Jacksonville’s front office felt that he wasn’t a top-32 quarterback, there is no way he gets an extension and also no way the Jags didn’t sign a quarterback in free agency.
What do you guys think?
Is Blake Bortles a top-32 quarterback in the NFL?
This poll is closed