The 2024 NFL Draft is in the books, and the biggest wave of free agency is over. That makes it a perfect time to take stock of NFL rosters as we head toward the 2024 season. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be looking at the quarterbacks, running backs, and pass catchers for all 32 NFL Teams. I’ll be ranking each unit 1-16 in their conference.

When it comes to taking stock of the whole unit, it’s not just about star power but depth. That’s especially true as we look at quarterbacks. A total of 66 quarterbacks started in 2023, and 68 started in 2022. That means you need more than one—sometimes more than two! Today, I wrap up QBs with a look at the top tier of the AFC. Teams appear in ascending order.

No. 8: Cleveland Browns

On the Roster: Deshaun Watson, Jameis Winston, Tyler Huntley, and Dorian Thompson-Robinson

About: This was a tough call, but I began part two with the Browns. On paper, the Browns have a solid room. Watson has been a star, Winston is a quality backup, Huntley has some good experience as a backup, and Thompson-Robinson is a development guy. The Browns struggled in the wake of Watson’s injury in 2023 and the team’s lack of depth, and they worked to address that this off-season. I like the depth here.

I also potentially like the starter. Watson came to the Browns on a big, guaranteed deal. But we’ve seen him play just 12 games in two seasons. Can he hang in there for more in 2024? This ranking is, in part, based on the theory he’s more available to the Browns this season. If not, they have the depth to make it work with a good roster.

No. 7: Jacksonville Jaguars

On the Roster: Trevor Lawrence, Mac Jones, and C.J. Beathard

About: The Jaguars were the only team to take a quarterback high in the 2021 NFL Draft that still has that player on the roster. This season, they actually added one of his draft classmates in Jones, as a quality backup. The Jaguars were a surprise winner of the AFC South in 2022 but fell off after an 8-3 start in 2023.

A lot is riding on Lawrence, who saw his fifth-year option picked up this off-season. A lot is riding on whether Lawrence can clean up some of his sloppy play in 2024. If not, the Jaguars are hoping Jones can return to the form he had as a rookie. Either way, I liked the potential here enough to put them seventh.

No. 6: Indianapolis Colts

On the Roster: Anthony Richardson, Joe Flacco, Sam Ehlinger, and Kedon Slovis

About: This is a tough team to rank. Part of it is based on the upside, of which Richardson has plenty. I liked the pick last year, though we only saw him for a couple of games before he was lost for the season. That potential still remains.

This year, the Colts elevated things by grabbing a solid veteran in Flacco, who was the Comeback Player of the Year in 2023. For the Broncos, he went 4-1 with 1,616 yards and 13 touchdowns. I like having him in the mix. Ehlinger and Slovis are developmental guys, but the potential of Richardson and the veteran presence of Flacco was enough for me to vault the Colts up to fifth.

No. 5: Cincinnati Bengals

On the Roster: Joe Burrow, Jake Browning, and Logan Woodside

About: The Bengals have a great starter in Burrow. The hope here is that Burrow is back from injury and ready to fly again. His upside as a starter is squarely what puts the Bengals in consideration here. As he missed time last year, we did get to see how Browning would fare. He went 4-3 with 1,936 yards and 12 touchdowns against a tough schedule. He proved himself a capable backup. So, with the upside of Burrow and the experience we saw from Browning, I like what Cincinnati has in its quarterback room.

No. 4: Baltimore Ravens

On the Roster: Lamar Jackson, Josh Johnson, Devin Leary, and Malik Cunningham

About: The Ravens had a lot of depth in recent years but there is a bit of a change this year. Still, Johnson is a veteran with plenty of experience. He’s played for seven different teams, throwing for 2,280 yards and 13 touchdowns over the years. He’s not the best backup quarterback on the list, but he’s plenty capable.

The Ravens have some development guys on the roster, as well, all of whom sit behind an elite starter in Jackson. He’s a past MVP and has been a quality starter for the Ravens throughout his career. With his upside, even with a thinner room behind him, this team is a Top 4 option in the AFC.

No. 3: Buffalo Bills

On the Roster: Josh Allen, Mitch Trubisky, and Shane Buechele

About: Allen is a great starter, perhaps one of the best in the NFL. So, why are the Bills only third? Well, it comes down to the strength of the room versus the two teams I have above them.

Trubisky was once a top pick, but he didn’t work as a starter in Chicago or Pittsburgh. Still, he was a backup in Buffalo before his stint with the Steelers, and now he’s back. He’s a backup with experience that can come in and play. It is something of a sizeable drop off from Allen, though I trust Trubisky a bit more than Josh Johnson, which is why they are third.

No. 2: Houston Texans

On the Roster: C.J. Stroud, Case Keenum, Davis Mills, and Tim Boyle

About: The Texans have a deep quarterback room. Keenum, Mills, and Boyle have all seen time starting games, with Keenum and Mills enjoying success at points. That gives them plenty of experience and upside.

All that is behind Stroud, who had an excellent rookie year. He finished with 4,108 yards, 23 touchdowns, and just five interceptions. He’s got great upside and the Texans continue to build a heck of a team around him. So, between Stroud’s upside and the veteran backups in the room, the Texans jumped past the Bills and Ravens for me.

No. 1: Kansas City Chiefs

On the Roster: Patrick Mahomes, Carson Wentz, Chris Oladokun, and Ian Book

About: So, the Chiefs are the number one. Not a shock, right? Well, the team wasn’t first last year, but in my opinion, they’ve improved. I don’t know if Book or Oladokun have much to offer, but this team has the best quarterback in the league in Mahomes. He’s won three Super Bowls, including the last two, and is at the top of the heap as a quarterback.

But, as I’ve said, it takes more than just a great starter. In this case, I love what the Chiefs did to bring in a quality QB2. Wentz is probably past the point where you’d want him as your franchise quarterback. Still, he’s talented and experienced, which makes him an ideal candidate to serve as a backup. Much like the Eagles in the NFC, the Chiefs made sure they’re covered at the biggest position. That’s why the Chiefs are at the top of my standings.

Matthew Fox is a die-hard NFL fan and Broncos’ homer. He’s a member of the FSWA. You can find more from him on Twitter @knighthawk7734 or as co-host of the Fantasy Football Roundtable Podcast, a part of the Campus2Canton Network.

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