Apart from Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III, week one was not great for the NFL rookie passers.
Fast forward seven days, and performances have gotten much better. As these young (and not so young) players find their feet in the league, read on to find out who is at the top of this week’s class and who needs to stay behind after school, as we grade the rookie NFL quarterbacks.
Brandon Weeden, Cleveland. Final grade: B
After a dismal display last week, Weeden stepped up and looked good, even though his Browns team lost to the Bengals in an AFC North clash this weekend.
Weeden completed 26 of his 37 passes for 322 yards (the most by any rookie QB this week by a long way), and also threw two touchdowns. For this week at least he has shown that he could indeed hold onto this job longer than most people think he will. Overall, a nice game from the 29 year-old rookie.
Andrew Luck, Indianapolis. Final grade: B-
He led his Colts team to a victory this week against Minnesota and completed 64.5 per cent of his throws for 224 yards and two interceptions. After throwing three interceptions last week against the Bears, Luck didn’t turn the ball over at all this week and finished the game with a decent 107.5 QB rating. If he continues this sort of form, and reaches the level that many predict he will, the Colts fans will be asking: ‘Peyton who?!’
Ryan Tannehill, Miami. Final grade: B-
Like Weeden, the Miami gunslinger did not have a great first week in the NFL, but he appears to have bounced back. He completed 18 out of 30 passes for 200 yards and one touchdown, as his Dolphins team destroyed the Oakland Raiders, 35-13.
Miami faces AFC East rivals the New York Jets next week, and Tannehill will be hoping he can put in another good performance in what could be a winnable game for them.
Robert Griffin III, Washington. Final Grade: C-
After topping the class last week, Griffin has slipped down the rankings a little. It would have been difficult for him to play as well as he did in week one against the Saints, but he had a solid enough game, even though he was the only rookie QB to throw an interception this time round.
Griffin was 20 of 29 for 206 and one touchdown to accompany that one interception, in a high scoring affair which saw his Washington team lose to the Rams, 31-28.
Griffin looks composed in Washington and even without the best receivers in the world, he is able to make enough happen to keep his team competitive. Look for Griffin to have another strong showing next week against the Bengals.
Russell Wilson, Seattle. Final grade: C
He led the Seahawks to a 27-7 victory over the Cowboys this week, and completed 15 out of 20 attempts, for just 151 yards. He threw one touchdown and no interceptions, finishing the game with an encouraging 112.7 QB rating.
A lack of passing yards could be explained by Marshawn Lynch’s performance as he went beast mode, rushing for 122 yards. Wilson still looks like the right decision at quarterback, but he faces a stiff opponent in Green Bay next week. Can he do enough to move towards the top of the class? We shall see.