Grading the QB “Carousel” of 2022 NFL Free Agency

NFL free agency 2022 was looking like it was going to be a pretty crazy one when looking at the free agent list before the off season began. No one could have predicted how wild it really was in terms of quarterbacks alone. The quarterback position is probably one of the single most valuable positions in football, as a bad or even mediocre quarterback can lead to a team being one-dimensional on the offensive side of the ball. It is because of this that so many teams went so far to acquire quarterbacks this off season, and I’m going to take a look at every team that acquired a new quarterback during this off season.


Russell Wilson to the Broncos, B/B-

This was the first blockbuster quarterback move of the 2022 offseason as Denver gave up a lot to get the 9x pro-bowl quarterback from Seattle. The Broncos always seemed like a decent quarterback away from becoming a contender last season, and even after giving up a lot to get Wilson they didn’t give up any of the key players. The Denver defense will probably be very good once again, and with Wilson behind the helm the offense should greatly improve. With that said, this trade gets a B and not an A for two reasons. First of all, Wilson did not look great at the end of last season, and second is that this trade feels really bad unless Denver goes deep into the playoffs. If Denver was in any other division this trade would be an A, but the AFC west is ridiculously competitive.


Deshaun Watson to the Browns, F-/A+

Yeah, those grades are not a typo because this move is so unbelievably complex. Watson is still involved in multiple legal situations which could lead to his inability to play football for a very long time. We have also not seen Watson play football in a long time and if he doesn’t come back as the player he was before he “took a break,” the Browns will be in a pretty bad situation. On the other hand, Baker Mayfield was quite poor for the Browns last season and they still managed to almost make the playoffs. With the addition of Amari Cooper, if Watson plays and plays at the elite level we’ve seen him play at, this move will be a certified A+ and the Browns will be a scary team.


Matt Ryan to the Colts, B

Matt Ryan flew very under the radar last season because he played on a terrible Falcons team, but Ryan is still a solid NFL quarterback. Ryan threw for almost 4000 yards last season along with 20 touchdown passes. This was also his first year in a very long time without stud wide receiver Julio Jones, and he was also missing young star Calvin Ridley. Ryan will now come to a team with reigning offensive player of the year finalist Jonathon Taylor, developing young star Michael Pittman, reliable veteran T.Y. Hilton, and a very talented offensive line headed by one of the best lineman in the NFL Quenton Nelson. I believe this was a very underrated move by the Colts, and if Ryan can play well for even just one or two more years, the Colts could be a contender.


Drew Lock to the Seahawks, B-

I am sorry to say this, but I do not believe in Drew Lock whatsoever. Dude threw two touchdowns in six games in 2021, and threw just as many interceptions. The Seahawks however, got much more than just little, old Drew Lock in their trade deal, as they acquired a good lineman in Shelby Harris, a talented if unpolished tight end in Noah Fant, two first-round picks, two second-round picks, and a fifth-round pick. Now they gave up NFL superstar Russel Wilson, but Seattle is pretty far from a title and Wilson very well might have just kind of wasted the rest of his career away there. I think the Drew Lock acquisition is a C-, but the Seahawks overall trade is an A-/A.


Mitchell Trubisky to the Steelers, B-/B

Trubisky was a little bit better in Chicago than people give him credit for, although definitely disappointing. However, Pittsburgh is not looking for anything more than acceptable, as I expect them to grab a QB in the draft. With the devastating news of the passing of Steelers QB Dwayne Haskins, Trubiksy is shoved a little bit more into the spotlight. The Steelers are, in my opinion, an elite QB away from being contenders. Their offensive line needs to be shored up, but if Mitch can come in and be acceptable, better than four-hundred year old Big Ben, it’ll be a good move for Pittsburgh, especially seeing that Trubisky was only signed on a two-year, $14 million contract.


Carson Wentz to the Commanders, A-

I don’t know why, but I really like Wentz to Washington. Wentz is another QB who had an underrated season last year, throwing only seven interceptions and 27 touchdowns. However, he definitely could have been better, as the Colts offense was significantly spurred on by Johnathan Taylor, and there were often times where Wentz wasn’t necessarily all that bad, he just wasn’t great, didn’t do enough. In Washington, Wentz will be one of the better and older players on a young, rebuilding team. Wentz now has Terry McLaurin and Antonio Gibson on his team, two very promising young players that he can mentor. I do hope that MVP season Wentz will one day return, but even if he doesn’t I like this pick up for Washington.


Overall, this was a very exciting off season for QB’s and teams across the league. I definitely look forward to seeing what all these guys do on their new teams. Hopefully, we can see some teams make some surges to the playoffs, and see some new quarterbacks in new threads ball out.