football Edit

First in a series: Which program can stake claim to being QBU?

Davis Webb
Davis Webb (AP Images)

Which team is QBU? Many times, this is determined based on history. But we thought it would be interesting to base it off of current NFL rosters. Below are the teams that were the best candidates, along with Farrell's verdict.

TAKE TWO: Does Josh Allen deserve to go No. 1?

CLASS OF 2019 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | State | Position | Team


Aaron Rodgers
Aaron Rodgers (AP Images)

Current NFL QBs: Aaron Rodgers, Jared Goff, Davis Webb

Rodgers is a future Hall of Famer. Goff is coming into his own in Los Angeles and looks to have one of the brightest futures in the entire NFL. Other than USC, Cal is a top school for quarterbacks in the Pac-12, and the Golden Bears currently have more higher-profile, successful players at that position in the league.

Cal hasn’t always been in the conversation as a "Quarterback U." The success of Rodgers brought them back into that conversation, along with the breakout sophomore campaign of Goff down in Los Angeles. Cal has a history of strong quarterbacking, with the likes of Joe Kapp, Craig Morton, Steve Bartkowski and Kyle Boller all spending time in the NFL, but Rodgers and Goff have brought the Bears back to prominence in that regard. Davis Webb, drafted by the Giants in the third round of the 2017 draft, is waiting for his opportunity as well." - Trace Travers,


Tom Brady
Tom Brady (AP Images)

Current NFL QBs: Tom Brady, Chad Henne, Jake Rudock

Does Brady alone make Michigan QBU? It certainly can be argued, since Brady is arguably the best quarterback of all time, a five-time Super Bowl champion and a 13-time Pro Bowler. At 40 years old, Brady is still dominant in the league. Plus, Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh was a first-round draft pick and played in the NFL for more than a decade.

“Michigan might not boast the most QBs in the NFL, but it does feature the best … of all time. Tom Brady and his legendary status begins and ends the argument.” - John Borton,


Kirk Cousins
Kirk Cousins (AP Images)

Current NFL QBs: Kirk Cousins, Connor Cook, Brian Hoyer, Drew Stanton

Leading the way in numbers in the Big Ten is Michigan State, with Cousins being the top guy after signing with the Minnesota Vikings in free agency. Conference foe Penn State has two quarterbacks in the NFL, Michigan and Ohio State have just one. Cousins just signed a massive contract last month that could draw more quarterbacks’ attention to East Lansing.

“A large portion of Michigan State’s offensive playbook and strategy utilizes pro-style concepts such as 3-, 5- and 7-step drops from under center, with play-action fakes. We often hear about spread offense QBs who are at a loss when it comes to under-center footwork when debuting in NFL training camps. Michigan State quarterbacks have an advantage against some NFL QB competitors in this regard, in addition to a familiarity with reading defenses within a pro-style concept rather than the look-to-the-sidelines-for-orders uptempo approach. This has had a hand in helping Michigan State QBs survive training camp cuts, to begin with. Underrated QB high school talent in Michigan and Ohio has also been a factor.” - Jim Comparoni,


Philip Rivers
Philip Rivers (AP Images)

Current NFL QBs: Philip Rivers, Mike Glennon, Jacoby Brissett

Note: If Russell Wilson is not counted in NC State’s class because he finished his career at Wisconsin, the Wolfpack have an impressive haul, including three current NFL quarterbacks. If Wilson is included, NC State has an argument maybe as good as any other program as QBU.

“Since Philip Rivers stepped on campus, the quarterback for 11 of NC State’s ensuing 16 seasons are now in the NFL (Brissett, Glennon, Rivers and Russell Wilson, who started three years at NC State before finishing a single season at Wisconsin). And a year from now it is a safe bet to say that Ryan Finley will be make it 14 out of 19 seasons. For the better part of two decades now, the starting quarterback at NC State has been a verifiable pro, with Rivers and Wilson turning into NFL stars and Glennon and Brissett both spending time as starters.” - Matt Carter,


Matt Cassel
Matt Cassel (AP Images)

Current NFL QBs: Carson Palmer, Cody Kessler, Mark Sanchez, Matt Barkley, Matt Cassel

USC has always been a home of top quarterbacks and the trend has not changed recently. It also shows no signs of stopping anytime soon, with Sam Darnold possibly the No. 1 pick in the NFL Draft later this month. Five-star quarterback JT Daniels could earn the starting job as a freshman and he has the ability to be next in line. The 2020 quarterback class in the West is loaded, and USC is sure to get one of them.

“USC starting quarterbacks from this century are 6-for-6 in getting drafted. That doesn't include longtime NFL vet Matt Cassel, who never started for USC, or Sam Darnold, who might be the top overall pick in 2018. Being the Trojans' starter equals future pro.” - Adam Maya,


Cal. Tom Brady may be the GOAT but beating a combo of Aaron Rodgers and Jared Goff is too much for any team currently in the NFL. I’m impressed with all of these programs, especially NC State and Michigan State, who aren’t always known as blueblood college football programs. But the 1-2 punch at Cal, along with David Webb as a throw-in, wins the day.