Wednesday, June 9th, 2021


 “If somebody told me, ‘I think he’s the number nine or 10 quarterback in football,’ … I’m not going to fight against it. It was a huge year for Baker Mayfield.” – Simms on Baker Mayfield

“We’ve got to start giving him a little bit of respect. The guy’s playing the position at a really high level…He had games last year that he played perfectly.” – Simms on Derek Carr

Simms’ Top 40 QB Countdown Culminates with the Top Four on Monday, June 21

STAMFORD, Conn. – June 9, 2021 – NBC Sports’ Chris Simms continues to unveil his list of the top 40 quarterbacks in the NFL on the Chris Simms Unbuttoned podcast and “PFT Live” with the QBs ranked 13-16.

Beginning last month and culminating Monday, June 21 with his top five quarterbacks in the league, Simms will unveil his selections on each Chris Simms Unbuttoned episode and discuss his rankings on “PFT Live” with Mike Florio.

Simms, a third-round pick of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the 2003 NFL Draft who played eight NFL seasons, will also offer in-depth player breakdowns and rankings explanations throughout each week on Chris Simms Unbuttoned.

Simms’ quarterbacks ranked 13-40:


13. Baker Mayfield, Cleveland 27. Zach Wilson, NY Jets
14. Derek Carr, Las Vegas 28. Trevor Lawrence, Jacksonville
15. Matt Ryan, Atlanta 29. Andy Dalton, Chicago
16. Kirk Cousins, Minnesota 30. Mac Jones, New England
17. Joe Burrow, Cincinnati 31. Jared Goff, Detroit
18. Carson Wentz, Indianapolis 32. Teddy Bridgewater, Denver
19. Sam Darnold, Carolina 33. Drew Lock, Denver
20. Cam Newton, New England 34. Tua Tagovailoa, Miami
21. Jimmy Garoppolo, San Francisco 35. Tyrod Taylor, Houston
22. Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh 36. Marcus Mariota, Las Vegas
23. Ryan Fitzpatrick, Washington 37. Kellen Mond, Minnesota
24. Taysom Hill, New Orleans 38. Trey Lance, San Francisco
25. Jameis Winston, New Orleans 39. Justin Fields, Chicago
26. Daniel Jones, NY Giants 40. Case Keenum, Cleveland

The rankings will continue Monday, June 14 with numbers and 9-12 on the next episode of Chris Simms Unbuttoned.

The following are highlights from this week’s editions of Chris Simms Unbuttoned:

No. 16: Kirk Cousins, Minnesota Vikings

Simms: “Is Kirk Cousins underrated to a degree? Certainly, I just can’t say he’s better than the 15 guys I have in front of him. I don’t know if he necessarily gets the appreciation he deserves…We’re talking about one of the best processors of information in all of football. His ability to drop back, come off a play-action pass, read and diagnose the defense, and make a decision quickly is as good as the top quarterbacks in the game. He’s great in that department, there’s no doubt…But, there is a system element to Kirk Cousins. I don’t want to say he’s a system quarterback because he’s not. He’s system-plus, because he can add more because of his ability to throw the ball into tight windows and do things like that for your offense. But for this day and age, he’s a below average athlete for an NFL quarterback.”

No. 15: Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons

Simms: “Matt Ryan is a legend of the game. I don’t know what to say. It doesn’t make me feel proud to sit here and tell you that Matt Ryan, I think, is the 15th best quarterback in football right now. Of course, you can win a Super Bowl (with him). You can do special things. Matt Ryan is still capable of playing at a very high level. He is phenomenal at throwing the football between 10 and 20 yards…His ability to process, it’s as good as it gets…Matt Ryan’s movement, it always amazes me how much more he moves than I realize or that I want to give him credit for. That’s the biggest thing about his game…But the one thing that bothered me when I went back and watched was the conservative nature in the competitive part of the football game…You can’t wait until it’s 24-0 to make something happen.”

No. 14: Derek Carr, Las Vegas Raiders

Simms: “He was way above average in my opinion last year. We’ve got to start giving him a little bit of respect. The guy’s playing the position at a really high level…He had games last year that he played perfectly. He’s efficient, he’s accurate with the football, he really never loses control of the football. My big complaint about him last year was, ‘Let’s go. Let it rip a little. Throw the rifle down the middle of the field.’ … He’s got it in him to be a little bit more of a flamethrower than what we saw last year…I thought some of his play was phenomenal last year. I think you can look at a few points where the Raiders faltered last year, but I don’t necessarily think it was his play like I did maybe in years before that…I thought he brought a little bit of an edge to the team last year…I saw him yell at (head coach) Jon Gruden last year. It made me proud.”

No. 13: Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns

Simms: “If somebody told me, ‘I think he’s the number nine or 10 quarterback in football,’ I’d go, ‘Ok, I get it. I’m not going to fight against it.’ It was a huge year for Baker Mayfield, and really I think the biggest thing I would say is it’s an elite arm. He’s an elite passer, an elite thrower…I think the biggest thing that jumped out to me was the amount of high-level, high-degree-of-difficulty throws that Baker Mayfield made throughout the year and he doesn’t blink or doesn’t flinch and he hits the bullseye…Obviously he was more confident and knows the offense. Not necessarily the greatest runner, but a great mover…He brings an edge to your football team. Say what you want about Baker Mayfield – you like him or love him, the guys on that team love him and it shows on the football field and he brings an attitude to their football team. That’s why I’m excited and that’s why he made the big jump.”

To listen to the full player breakdowns on Chris Simms Unbuttoned, click here.