No quarterback in the 2022 NFL draft has emerged as the clear No. 1 -- unlike Joe Burrow or Trevor Lawrence in previous drafts. And according to Football Outsiders' QBASE 2.0 model, there is statistically no significant difference among the top-five rated quarterbacks in this year's NFL draft.
The model predicts that this year's class is more likely to disappear into obscurity than walk into the Hall of Fame. After all, for every class of 1983, there are years that don't yield any starters (see 2017 and 2013).
Scouts Inc. doesn't project any of this year's quarterbacks highly, which is perhaps why there has been so much action this offseason via trades. The Washington Commanders traded for Carson Wentz, the Denver Broncos for Russell Wilson, the Cleveland Browns for Deshaun Watson and the Indianapolis Colts for Matt Ryan. Jimmy Garoppolo and Baker Mayfield may also be traded before the 2022 season kicks off.
Yet some teams could still enter the draft desperate for a quarterback; the Steelers, Falcons and Panthers come to mind. Given the extensive discussion in Brian Billick's book "The Q-Factor," we know that drafting a quarterback out of need can lead to red flags being ignored and, say, EJ Manuel becoming a franchise's first-round pick. This year's model should serve as a warning for any general manager thinking of drafting a first-round quarterback out of desperation.
QBASE 2.0 combines Andrew Healy's original QBASE model (2015) with Rosen and Olbrecht's functional mobility model (2018) by factoring in a quarterback's rushing ability while also using his adjusted college passing statistics and adjusted years started. The adjustments consider the quality of both the quarterback's teammates and opponents, and while they reward quarterbacks who have steadily improved over time, they penalize one-year wonders.
Interpreting each quarterback's projection is straightforward. A value of 0 is replacement level, whereas any value over 1.5 is indicative of a Hall of Fame career. Read more about this methodology here.
Here are our projections for the 2022 quarterback class: