Page 2's Backup Quarterback Rankings!
One month into the 2010 season, attrition and ineptitude are infecting the ranks of the league's quarterbacking fraternity.
The result, of course, is a constantly fluctuating hierarchy of signal callers. Good thing you have Page 2's Backup Quarterback Rankings to sort through the carnage. Without further ado, we present this week's top 10 clipboard carriers -- even if none of them has a nickname as cool as "Shoelace."
It was implied in this space last week that Batch might be able to wrest the Steelers' starting job from a rusty Ben Roethlisberger -- at least for a week or so. Then Batch produced a performance that cemented his grip on the clipboard in Pittsburgh. Plus, with Batch on the roster, it's like having another coach on the team.
Tebow usurped Brady Quinn and returned to the No. 2 spot on Denver's depth chart behind Kyle Orton this past week. But judging by Sunday's game against the Titans, Orton doesn't wield the same evangelistic influence as Tebow. Just ask Chuck Cecil.
It's likely that Jackson will be the long-term beneficiary of Randy Moss' return to Minnesota. After all, how much longer can Brett Favre possibly play? So we suspect it would be in Jackson's best interest to help keep the oft-disgruntled wide receiver gruntled.
Croyle's clipboard-toting role in Kansas City might seem secure. But with the postseason clearly in focus, the Chiefs might soon be tempted to rest Matt Cassel and other starters to keep them fresh for the team's imminent postseason run.
Bears starter Jay Cutler isn't expected to play Sunday at Carolina. Meantime, Collins, 38, will shake off a neck stinger and take the field for Chicago. But we expect grit from Collins, who arrived on campus at Michigan in 1990 -- the same year as the Fab Five.
Morrall backed up Y.A. Tittle, Tobin Rote, Frank Tarkenton, Johnny Unitas, Bob Griese and Milt Plum (!) during a 21-year NFL career. He saw significant playing time for two Super Bowl participants -- the 1968 Colts and the undefeated '72 Dolphins.
Thigpen entered Monday's game against the Patriots in relief of Chad Henne, presumably leapfrogging Chad Pennington in the Dolphins' pecking order. Let the controversy begin! After all, when you think Coastal Carolina football, you think Tyler Thigpen.
The Broncos' braintrust of Josh McDaniels and Brian Xanders might be beginning to look like overmatched fantasy owners. Exhibit A: trading Peyton Hillis for Quinn, who has now fallen to No. 3 on Denver's depth chart. We wonder if he's done as a pro.
It's been quite a week for the former Bears backup and current Calgary Stampeder. First, photos of him wearing a bra began circulating on the Internet. Then he threw for 412 yards and was named CFL offensive player of the week. Don't look now, but we might have a future Lingerie Football League MVP on our hands!
Congratulations, Derek! On the strength of a 7-for-14, 64-yard performance with two interceptions at San Diego on Sunday, you narrowly edged out undrafted rookie teammate Max Hall for the final spot in this week's rankings. Please enjoy your stay.
Promoted to starter from last week's rankings: Ben Roethlisberger, Steelers (conduct policy suspension elapsed); Kevin Kolb, Eagles (injury to Michael Vick).
Dropped out of rankings: Trent Edwards, Jaguars; Frank Reich, four teams; Matt Leinart, Texans; Mark Brunell, Jets; Matt Flynn, Packers.
Thomas Neumann is an editor for Page 2.