NFL quarterback rankings, Week 3: Derek Carr is showing out

NFL quarterback rankings, Week 3: Derek Carr is showing out

Derek Carr has taken plenty of heat, but he’s rolling to start the 2021 season, leading the Las Vegas to a surprising 2-0 start.

Our 2021 FanSided NFL quarterback rankings go live each Tuesday morning throughout the regular season, and we use a sliding scale incorporating current and past performances, with the former meaning more as the year goes on.

32

Zach Wilson

QB New York Jets New York Jets

2021 stats: 468 yards | 55.7 comp % | 2 TD | 5 INT | 6.7 YPA | 22.6 QBR

LW: 30

Wilson doesn’t have much help, but he’s off to a bad start. His four interceptions on Sunday — three of which were hideous throws — was the week’s low point for quarterback play.

31

Davis Mills

QB Houston Texans Houston Texans

2021 stats: 102 yards | 44.4 comp % | 1 TD | 1 INT | 5.7 YPA | 10.0 QBR

LW: NA

Mills is a third-round rookie with absolutely no support. Thursday will be rough.

30

Trevor Lawrence

QB Jacksonville Jaguars Jacksonville Jaguars

2021 stats: 450 yards | 50.0 comp % | 4 TD | 5 INT | 5.4 YPA | 24.9 QBR

LW: 27

Lawrence looked great on the opening, scripted drive against Denver. Then he went 9-of-26 for 45 yards with two interceptions.

29

Andy Dalton

QB Chicago Bears Chicago Bears

2021 stats: 262 yards | 73.5 comp % | 1 TD | 1 INT | 5.3 YPA | 52.1 QBR

LW: 31

Dalton is hurting with a knee injury but might start against the Cleveland Browns on Sunday. While Justin Fields wasn’t good in his debut, Dalton is clearly a backup, even in Chicago.

28

Jacoby Brissett

QB Miami Dolphins Miami Dolphins

2021 stats: 169 yards | 60.0 comp % | 0 TD | 1 INT | 4.2 YPA | 36.3 QBR

LW: NA

Brissett is a good backup and a borderline starter. Against the Buffalo Bills in a 35-0 loss, he looked timid behind an awful line.

27

Taylor Heinicke

QB Washington Football Team Washington Football Team

2021 stats: 458 yards | 73.8 comp % | 3 TD | 1 INT | 7.5 YPA | 45.7 QBR

LW: 32

Outside of what could have been a game-ending interception, Heinicke played well. Washington can win with him when he avoids mistakes.

26

Daniel Jones

QB New York Giants New York Giants

2021 stats: 516 yards | 63.8 comp % | 2 TD | 0 INT | 7.5 YPA | 63.3 QBR

LW: 28

Jones was pedestrian in the first half of Thursday’s loss to Washington, but he ignited in the final 30 minutes. If the Giants didn’t completely fall apart, they would be 1-1.

25

Carson Wentz

QB Indianapolis Colts Indianapolis Colts

2021 stats: 498 yards | 65.2 comp % | 3 TD | 1 INT | 7.2 YPA | 42.6 QBR

LW: 25

Wentz is now dealing with a pair of sprained ankles, putting his status for Week 3 in jeopardy. When he has played, there have been good moments. There have also been shovel passes getting intercepted.

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

24

Jameis Winston

QB New Orleans Saints New Orleans Saints

2021 stats: 259 yards | 59.5 comp % | 5 TD | 2 INT | 6.2 YPA | 63.1 QBR

LW: 24

Winston went bad to “Bad Jameis” on Sunday. The Saints watched him throw two ill-advised interceptions while barely cracking 100 yards. Now, Bill Belichick.

23

Ben Roethlisberger

QB Pittsburgh Steelers Pittsburgh Steelers

2021 stats: 483 yards | 62.5 comp % | 2 TD | 1 INT | 6.7 YPA | 33.8 QBR

LW: 20

It’s over. Like over, over. The Steelers are going to play out the 2021 campaign with Roethlisberger, but there’s no arm strength and the offense is clearly avoiding the deep middle of the field because of it.

22

Sam Darnold

QB Carolina Panthers Carolina Panthers

2021 stats: 584 yards | 68.5 comp % | 3 TD | 1 INT | 8.0 YPA | 66.2 QBR

LW: 26

Darnold has done a nice job so far, largely avoiding mistakes and throwing to his ample weapons. If the Panthers get this version, they can make the playoffs.

21

Jalen Hurts

QB Philadelphia Eagles Philadelphia Eagles

2021 stats: 454 yards | 67.2 comp % | 3 TD | 0 INT | 7.8 YPA | 65.9 QBR

LW: 23

After an amazing opener, Hurts came back to earth a bit. The Eagles should still love what they’re seeing, but on Sunday, the second-year man only threw for 190 yards on 23 attempts. Factoring in a 91-yard bomb to Quez Watkins, Hurts only notched 99 yards on his other 22 throws.

The Providence Journal

20

Mac Jones

QB New England Patriots New England Patriots

2021 stats: 467 yards | 73.9 comp % | 1 TD | 0 INT | 6.8 YPA | 53.4 QBR

LW: 21

Jones is the epitome of a game manager to this point. Everything has been underneath, with only one target of more than 20 yards against the Jets. Still, the Patriots have a great defense, so game-manning is enough.

19

Jared Goff

QB Detroit Lions Detroit Lions

2021 stats: 584 yards | 68.8 comp % | 5 TD | 2 INT | 6.2 YPA | 43.5 QBR

LW: 19

Goff was competent against the Packers, throwing well and keeping Detroit in the game through the better part of three quarters. However, once the Lions fell behind by multiple scores, things fell apart. Nobody needs to be comfortable more than Goff.

18

Matt Ryan

QB Atlanta Falcons Atlanta Falcons

2021 stats: 464 yards | 69.1 comp % | 2 TD | 3 INT | 5.7 YPA | 28.8 QBR

LW: 15

Ryan has been awful to start the year. Of course, it doesn’t help he’s constantly trailing and the offensive line stinks, but a pair of pick-sixes on Sunday weren’t ideal.

17

Teddy Bridgewater

QB Denver Broncos Denver Broncos

2021 stats: 592 yards | 77.1 comp % | 4 TD | 0 INT | 8.5 YPA | 83.2 QBR

LW: 22

Bridgewater’s play has him deserving a higher ranking. He’s going downfield, avoiding mistakes and nabbing wins. So why isn’t he soaring? Because the Broncos have played the Giants and Jaguars, and there’s mounds of evidence saying this is an aberration. Let’s see Weeks 4 and 5 against the Ravens and Steelers.

Arizona Republic

16

Kirk Cousins

QB Minnesota Vikings Minnesota Vikings

2021 stats: 595 yards | 71.6 comp % | 5 TD | 0 INT | 7.3 YPA | 62.2 QBR

LW: 17

Cousins was very good against the Cardinals, throwing three touchdowns and hitting chunk plays. Unfortunately, the Vikings can’t kick a field goal or stop anybody, so they’re 0-2.

15

Jimmy Garoppolo

QB San Francisco 49ers San Francisco 49ers

2021 stats: 503 yards | 70.9 comp % | 2 TD | 0 INT | 9.1 YPA | 62.4 QBR

LW: 16

Garoppolo is doing enough to hold off Trey Lance for now. The veteran is utilizing a good defense and solid rushing attack to his advantage, taking few risks and staying within his abilities.

14

Joe Burrow

QB Cincinnati Bengals Cincinnati Bengals

2021 stats: 468 yards | 68.4 comp % | 4 TD | 3 INT | 8.2 YPA | 32.8 QBR

LW: 14

Burrow played great on Sunday, if you erase three consecutive throws being intercepted. The Bengals don’t have a defense to bail the former No. 1 overall pick out, so any mistakes — let alone three straight — are a death sentence.

13

Ryan Tannehill

QB Tennessee Titans Tennessee Titans

2021 stats: 559 yards | 64.0 comp % | 1 TD | 1 INT | 7.5 YPA | 46.5 QBR

LW: 13

Tannehill struggled early and the Titans appeared destined for 0-2. Then, suddenly, Tannehill came alive, going for more than 300 yards in a comeback overtime win. For Tennessee, the key to winning is deep balls and avoiding turnovers. Job well done in Seattle.

Scott Galvin-USA TODAY Sports

12

Baker Mayfield

QB Cleveland Browns Cleveland Browns

2021 stats: 534 yards | 81.6 comp % | 1 TD | 2 INT | 10.9 YPA | 59.3 QBR

LW: 11

Mayfield wasn’t great against the Texans, throwing an interception and getting hurt while making the tackle. However, he ran for a score and largely distributed the ball to his undermanned offense, which operated without Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham Jr.

11

Justin Herbert

QB Los Angeles Chargers Los Angeles Chargers

2021 stats: 675 yards | 70.5 comp % | 2 TD | 3 INT | 7.7 YPA | 43.2 QBR

LW: 7

Herbert needs to drop a few spots. Throwing two interceptions in a one-score game is devastating, and a horrid sack (should have been intentional grounding) in the fourth turned a potential touchdown into a field goal. Can’t make those errors.

10

Derek Carr

QB Las Vegas Raiders Las Vegas Raiders

2021 stats: 817 yards | 66.7 comp % | 4 TD | 1 INT | 8.8 YPA | 61.3 QBR

LW: 12

Nobody has enjoyed a better start to the season. Carr is leading the NFL in passing yards by more than 100, despite playing good defenses in the Ravens and Steelers. Left for dead by most pundits — including yours truly — Carr and the Raiders look terrific.

9

Josh Allen

QB Buffalo Bills Buffalo Bills

2021 stats: 449 yards | 56.0 comp % | 3 TD | 1 INT | 5.3 YPA | 44.5 QBR

LW: 6

Allen has been, in a word, awful. The ’20 Second-Team All-Pro has struggled mightily against the Steelers and Dolphins, missing hoards of open receivers while checking down far too often. Buffalo needs the Allen of a year ago to show up.

Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

8

Matthew Stafford

QB Los Angeles Rams Los Angeles Rams

2021 stats: 599 yards | 69.6 comp % | 5 TD | 1 INT | 10.7 YPA | 77.9 QBR

LW: 8

Stafford was solid against the Colts. Nothing that was otherworldly like a few throws against the Bears in Week 1, but quality play which has the Rams 2-0 leading into their tilt with the Buccaneers this weekend.

7

Lamar Jackson

QB Baltimore Ravens Baltimore Ravens

2021 stats: 474 yards | 66.1 comp % | 2 TD | 2 INT | 8.5 YPA | 59.8 QBR

LW: 10

Jackson put on a masterpiece performance against the Chiefs, accounting for more than 300 total yards with three scores. Yes, he tossed two interceptions — one was because Sammy Watkins slipped — but he took Baltimore down time and again. Phenomenal work.

6

Kyler Murray

QB Arizona Cardinals Arizona Cardinals

2021 stats: 689 yards | 73.5 comp % | 7 TD | 3 INT | 10.1 YPA | 71.5 QBR

LW: 9

Murray had some YOLO moments against the Vikings, leading him into two ugly interceptions. However, he’s largely been brilliant this season, generating chunk plays with his arm and legs.

5

Dak Prescott

QB Dallas Cowboys Dallas Cowboys

2021 stats: 640 yards | 76.5 comp % | 3 TD | 2 INT | 7.5 YPA | 61.6 QBR

LW: 5

Prescott played great ball against the Chargers, save for one Asante Samuel Jr. interception. The Cowboys are only going as far as their talented quarterback can take them. The good news? Prescott looks healthy and better than ever.

Dylan Buell/Getty Images

4

Aaron Rodgers

QB Green Bay Packers Green Bay Packers

2021 stats: 388 yards | 67.2 comp % | 4 TD | 2 INT | 7.0 YPA | 46.2 QBR

LW: 4

Rodgers needed a huge game, and he produced one. The Packers put up 35 points in the Monday night win, with the future Hall of Famer throwing four touchdowns to handle the Lions. Now, a tough test out west against the 49ers.

3

Russell Wilson

QB Seattle Seahawks Seattle Seahawks

2021 stats: 597 yards | 74.1 comp % | 6 TD | 0 INT | 11.1 YPA | 63.2 QBR

LW: 3

Wilson can’t be happy with the Seahawks’ second-half performance, including his own. While the overall statline was solid, Wilson only helped generate seven points over the final 30 minutes and overtime.

2

Patrick Mahomes

QB Kansas City Chiefs Kansas City Chiefs

2021 stats: 680 yards | 76.1 comp % | 6 TD | 1 INT | 10.1 YPA | 79.3 QBR

LW: 1

Mahomes has been playing spectacular ball, but he drops one spot. Ultimately, he threw a hideous pick against the Ravens that contributed to blowing an 11-point lead in the fourth quarter. It happens.

1

Tom Brady

QB Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tampa Bay Buccaneers

2021 stats: 655 yards | 65.1 comp % | 9 TD | 2 INT | 7.6 YPA | 64.8 QBR

LW: 2

How is this possible? Brady has already thrown nine touchdowns against two interceptions (one Hail Mary, one ball through Leonard Fournette’s hands). He’s playing at an MVP level.

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