On Sunday, we were reminded that all are mortal and time yields to no one person or moment– at least that was the predominant takeaway most had from watching Tom Brady and Matt Stafford play football.
This year more than any in recent memory feels like a sort of changing of the guard, with millions upon millions of football fans being forced to confront a harsh reality they’ve been trying to avoid: Their favorite player might be washed.
These things aren’t entirely binary — not all washed quarterbacks are the same. There are levels to these things. In this spirit, here’s a tier list of washed quarterbacks:
Joe Flacco: Since leaving the Ravens in 2018, Flacco has been on three different teams and boasts a 3-13 record as a starter. He also allegedly appeared in games this season for the Jets. This is all news to me because I could have sworn he hung it up in 2016. All of this of course doesn’t negate the fact that he is elite.
FanDuel Odds: Jets to make the playoffs? Yes +112 (bet $10 to win $11.20), No -128 (bet $12.80 to win $10)
Tom Brady: The man is 45 years old. What are we doing here? What’s even the goal at this point? Enough Super Bowl rings for every finger? Will that fill the void? If he wanted to, Tom Brady probably could play another 10 years and still be better than most of the quarterbacks in the NFL. But... why?
FanDuel Odds: Buccaneers to make the playoffs? Yes -250 (bet $25 to win 10), No +215 (bet $10 to win $21.50)
Aaron Rodgers: I’m not certain what brings this man joy but it feels pretty apparent at this point that it's not football. Without Davante Adams, the Packers' offense and Rodgers in particular have looked very average. The team has lost five games in a row, culminating last Sunday in a brutal, turnover-fueled 15-9 loss at Detroit. Rodgers turns 39 next month and it appears the Packers' window for competing in the near future is all but closed. Unfortunately, no ayahuasca trip can alter those facts.
FanDuel Odds: Packers to make the playoffs? Yes +470 (bet $10 to win $47), No -600 (bet $60 to win $10)
Matt Ryan: That 28-3 lead in the Super Bowl truly feels like a lifetime ago. Prior to getting injured, the former Falcon was essentially a tackling dummy behind the Colts' porous o-line. He arrived in Indy hoping to be the missing piece for a roster with Super Bowl aspirations. Now he sits at the bottom of the depth chart for a non-playoff team and is now arguably the second most relevant Matt Ryan in sports.
FanDuel Odds: Colts to make the playoffs? Yes +530 (bet $10 to win $53), No -700 (bet $70 to win $10)
Russell Wilson: Please, please stop putting Russell Wilson in primetime. Since moving to the Broncos, the signal caller's struggles are well-documented, and his weirdness thoroughly Tik Tok’d. Nobody could have predicted the trainwreck that has ensued, but we’re inclined to see it through — mostly because the content has been phenomenal.
FanDuel Odds: Broncos to make the playoffs? Yes +700 (bet $10 to win $70), No -1100 (bet $110 to win $10)
Carson Wentz: He doesn’t turn 30 until December, but Carson Wentz’s days as an MVP-caliber quarterback have never felt more distant. Injuries have plagued Wentz throughout his career, and if things don't work out in Washington, another starting job will probably be hard to come by.
FanDuel Odds: Commanders to make the playoffs? Yes +570 (bet $10 to win $57), No -750 (bet $75 to win $10)
Matt Stafford: Super Bowl hangovers are common in the NFL, meaning teams that win or compete in the Super Bowl oftentimes have a down year the following season. The Rams — a team that made a litany of moves to win it all last year — were expected to take a step back this season… and boy, have they ever. Stafford's 8 TD passes have him lagging way behind the 42 he threw last season, but it's arguable that changes along the offensive line and receiving corps are more to blame than any kind of talent regression. That’s our best guess… for now.
FanDuel Odds: Rams to make the playoffs? Yes +215 (bet $10 to win $21.50), No -250 (bet $25 to win $10)
Andy Dalton: Dalton, who appeared extremely washed during the tail end of his time with the Bengals, has since carved out a pretty comfortable niche as a veteran gunslinger for hire. This season he’s played admirably in place of the injured Jameis Winston, and the Saints rank third in the NFL in offensive yardage per game. He may be in his 48th NFL season, give or take, but this year has proven Andy can still sling it.
FanDuel Odds: Saints to make the playoffs? Yes +460 (bet $10 to win $46), No -600 (bet $60 to win $10)
Case Keenum: Only on his 7th NFL team in 10 seasons, there are still several franchises Keenum has yet to grace and will surely sign with in the many decades to come. It seems more plausible that the sport of football will cease to be played than it does Case Keenum will ever retire.
FanDuel Week 10 Odds: Bills -6.5 (win by seven or more points) vs. Vikings
(Featured Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images)