ASHBURN, Va. -- Another ranking and more debate. It must be June and everyone's brain is frying like an egg on a hot skillet on a summer morning.
Ryan Fitzpatrick is just getting his feet wet in Washington, his ninth NFL team since coming out of Harvard. With the roster at hand, this is likely his best shot at finally climbing the mountain and making the playoffs for the first time in his career.
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The Washington Football Team has not made the playoffs in consecutive seasons since 1991-92. Yes, the challenge for both is daunting considering the schedule grind that Washington is staring at.
Having a veteran quarterback that has mostly seen it all and with a lot of questionable talent around him, makes it easier to deal with what's ahead.
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Fitzpatrick isn't someone who is thought highly of by a lot of members of the media, but they are largely misguided. The view on Fitzpatrick is largely rooted in the past.
The now is different. Very different. The Miami Dolphins might have wished they had realized the same if second-year quarterback Tua Tagovailoa isn't the answer.
NBC Sports' Chris Simms released his annual Top-40 Quarterback rankings list Monday. On it, he has Fitz listed at No. 23.
Jimmy Garoppolo of the San Francisco 49ers is ranked No. 21. Sure, he's been to a Super Bowl, but he also can't stay on the field. Since signing his five-year $137.5 million extension, Garoppolo has only played one full season.
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Ben Roethlisberger is next at No. 22 and has earned that title with a few Super Bowls appearances under his belt. There's no doubt that Big Ben has had a better career than Fitzpatrick as he enters his 18th season in the Steel City.
The question is when looking at the player, is this ranking about the now or the past?
If it's about the now - Fitzpatrick over Roethlisberger feels like the right answer. Roethlisberger, who just turned 39, threw for a career-worst 6.3 yards per play in 2020. He's barely hanging on and also lost four offensive lineman this offseason.
Taking Fitz over Garoppolo also could be warranted. After all, the best ability for any player is availability.
The QB's just below Fitzpatrick are Taysom Hill and Jameis Winston of the Saints. That seems like a case of Simms not knowing what to do with either of them, so he bunches them together..
At least, Fitzpatrick ranked ahead of guys that he should be ahead of like Jared Goff, Drew Lock and Daniel Jones.
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