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ESPN 2016 NFL QB Tier Rankings have Sam Bradford as one of the league's worst starting quarterbacks

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Sam Sadford.

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Every year, ESPN's Mike Sando gathers a group of "league insiders" to create tiered rankings of all 32 NFL starting quarterbacks. The panel consisted of 42 insiders, including general managers, head coaches, offensive coordinators, defensive coordinators, personnel evaluators, and other position coaches/executives. These insiders assign each quarterback a grade from 1 (best) to 5 (worst). The rankings are compiled into an average and the quarterbacks are divided into five different tiers.

Last year, Eagles quarterback Sam Bradford ranked No. 23 overall. This year, he's even lower. Bradford ranks all the way down at No. 28, which is the fourth tier: "Might not want this guy starting all 16 games." He's only one spot ahead of the fifth and bottom tier: "Do not think this guy should be starting." Here's the write-up, via ESPN In$ider.

Bradford made no friends among voters when he publicly complained about the Eagles' decision to draft Carson Wentz second overall. However, some thought Bradford showed enough late last season to generate optimism around his performance projection.

"He was healthy for the first time, he knows where everybody is, knows how to use them and he reads coverages easily," a head coach said.

An offensive coordinator called Bradford the ultimate tease as a highly skilled player who can appear rattled and does not deliver ultimately. Bradford still has not played behind a strong offensive line or in an offense with exceptional weaponry.

"He has the arm talent, I think he is a smart guy, I think he is a little [soft], which came out the way he handled his business to begin with this offseason," a QB coach said. "I just don't see the decision-making, consistent accuracy and the fortitude that [makes me think] we have a shot to win every Sunday. With Doug Pederson coaching, I would take Alex Smith over Bradford, but it's the same kind of situation."


Bradford entered this offseason with 78 TD passes and $78 million in career earnings. The $22 million guaranteed in his current deal will push him to the $100 million mark.

"I'm not the greatest Bradford guy," another QB coach said. "I don't think he can create anything himself, and in this day and age, pockets aren't going to be clean."

Only five quarterbacks ranked worse than Bradford: 29) Colin Kaepernick, 30) Blaine Gabbert, 31) Mark Sanchez, 32) Robert Griffin III, and 33) Case Keenum.

The Eagles re-signed Bradford with the goal of being competitive in 2016, but it's clear they're not big believers in him, either. Philadelphia spent a lot of money on Chase Daniel due to Bradford's history of being injury-prone. Then the Birds went out and made a huge trade to move up to No. 2 overall in the 2016 NFL Draft to acquire Carson Wentz. Bradford may enter this season as the starter but everyone, including the veteran quarterback himself, knows it's only a matter of time before Wentz replaces him. The Eagles are expected to move on from Bradford after this season.

Elsewhere in the NFC East, the New York Giants have the division's top rated quarterback: Eli Manning checks in at No. 9. Tony Romo of the Dallas Cowboys is listed two spots lower at No. 11 while Kirk Cousins finished at No. 20 overall.

What do you think of how Bradford was ranked?