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Because quarterbacks being the most vital position in the NFL is one of the very few things the football-adoring public can agree on, when a team is winning football games it's only natural to assume the quarterback is playing at a high level. 

With the modern infiltration of easy, underneath throws, the RPO, and the growing accentuation of yards after the catch, it's actually quite possible that a team wins without stellar individual quarterback play. 

Here I'm pinpointing the quarterbacks who have not played particularly amazingly despite their club's current winning record. You may be surprised at who I selected. 

Jalen Hurts
PHI • QB • #1
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The warning signs

Right now, with the Eagles sitting pretty at 3-0, it's always sunny in Philadelphia. Despite that start from the reigning NFC champions and the free vitamin D being dispersed across the City of Brotherly Love every day, Jalen Hurts hasn't been impressive. Particularly for a quarterback of a Super Bowl-contending team.

Let's distill Hurts' individual play from the tremendous Eagles environment around him and quarterback-friendly scheme he operates. Entering Week 4, Hurts has been credited with four Big-Time Throws (BTT) and five Turnover-Worthy Plays (TWP). That's not good. For perspective, he had just 11 TWPs all regular season in 2022. 

We now know clean-pocket play is more stable and predictive than any other quarterback metric. And Hurts has struggled without pressure too. His 6.1 yards per attempt is tied for the 28th-best in football. His 83.2 quarterback rating while kept clean ranks 27th among qualified passers, and three of his TWPs have come without pressure. That's the cherry on top of my concerns. 

Well how about as a rusher? Disappointing there too -- 23 carries for 100 yards (3.2 yards per rush), and Hurts has forced a miss tackle every 5.75 attempts. Last year on 123 carries, Hurts averaged 4.5 yards per rush and forced a missed tackle once every 4.24 rushes on 123 regular-season totes. 

The positive spin

Even if Hurts isn't 2022 Hurts this season, it might not matter. The Eagles are cruising defensively -- seventh in defensive DVOA -- and Jalen Carter might already be the best defensive player on Philadelphia's roster, which is a terrifying development for opposing offenses. A.J. Brown is elite. Devonta Smith is an elite No. 2 wideout. 

And, ahhh, the Eagles offensive front -- still pretty damn good. For context there -- D'Andre Swift is averaging 4.9 yards BEFORE contact per rush which is the highest figure among backs with at least 20 carries to date. Not for nothing, Boston Scott is having 5.8 yards before contact per rush on his six carries too. Goodness. 

Brock Purdy
SF • QB • #13
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The warning signs

I'll admit, it's difficult. But I've learned that when evaluating a quarterback inside Kyle Shanahan's system, we can't automatically assume high-caliber classic stats mean said passer is actually playing high-caliber football himself. 

Why's that? Because Shanahan is now an established quarterback whisperer, and when the personnel is, at the very least respectable around the quarterback, the efficiency will be there. No doubt. 

For example, on the surface, Purdy doesn't belong on this list, right? He's completing nearly 68% of his throws with four touchdowns and no interceptions. However, the second-year quarterback has actually logged three BTTs to seven TWP plays -- in essence, he's extraordinarily lucky his touchdown-to-turnover ratio isn't considerably worse entering Week 4. 

Clean-pocket play is most predictive, but that doesn't mean we should totally gloss over how a quarterback has fared under pressure when looking ahead. And with Purdy, he's being pressured more this season -- currently 40.6% of his dropbacks after a 32.4% rate in 2022 -- and his 58.6% adjusted completion rate in those circumstances ranks 23rd among qualifying passers. 

The positive spin

When kept clean, Purdy has averaged 9.7 yards per attempt (second-highest in football) with just one turnover-worthy play that's been countered by one big-time throw. That's really good!

Also too -- in the 2022 regular season, Purdy's BTT rate was a minuscule 1.7% (and was part of why I was fully prepared for somewhat of a regression from him this year) -- right now, it's actually up from that rate entering Week 4 at 2.1%. There are some new offensive line pieces in San Francisco which may be contributing to Purdy's higher pressure rate. In general, though, I trust Shanahan's blocking unit, Deebo Samuel, George Kittle, Christian McCaffrey and Co. on that side of the ball. 

Purdy and Hurts are in comparable environments. 

Jordan Love
GB • QB • #10
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The warning signs

The Packers are 2-1 after a dazzling, ironically Aaron Rodgers-esque fourth-quarter comeback win against the Saints in Week 3. Love has the league's 13th-best quarterback rating a 94.7. Beer and cheese for everyone in the greater Green Bay area! 

I hate to spoil a party centered around beer and cheese, but through three contests in 2023, Love has the NFL's lowest adjusted completion rate at 59.8%. Worse than Zach Wilson? Yeah. Way lower. Wilson's adjusted completion rate is currently 72.1%. In fact, Kenny Pickett is second to last, ahead of Love at 67.7%. 

And Love has as many Turnover-Worthy Plays as Big-Time Throws (four). Even during what many would consider a down year for Rodgers in 2022 in Green Bay he had 33 BTTs to 18 TWP. 

The positive spin

This team's record and Love's general statistics paling in comparison to his wayward accuracy through three games speaks to the marvelous schematic job head coach Matt LaFleur has done. He's been Shanahanian. Also too, Christian Watson, who scored seven touchdowns on just over 46% of the offensive snaps as a rookie, has yet to play this season. 

David Bakhtiari and Aaron Jones haven't played since Week 1. Kevlar blocker Elgton Jenkins missed Week 3's comeback win over the Saints. Maybe Love's ball placement will improve as some of his star plays return from injury? We've hardly seen this Packers team at full strength yet.