NFL Week 12 Predictions: Projecting the Week's Worst QBs
As each season gradually progresses, you can begin see which QBs unfold as consistently good, mediocre and bad.
In addition though, there are some who start well, then finish badly, as well as those who start badly, then finish well. The following four QBs have had their moments this season, no matter how brief.
But as for Week 12, they don't get the job done, to say the least.
Tyler Palko, Kansas City (vs Pittsburgh)
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Tyler Palko came into the Chiefs' Monday night game against the New England Patriots, who had the NFL's worst-ranked pass defense. Needless to say, Palko had some success throwing the ball, but ended up tossing three picks, despite having a 65.8 completion percentage.
This week, Palko and the Chiefs welcome the Pittsburgh Steelers to Arrowhead Stadium, and the Steel Curtain ranks No. 3 against the pass and No. 6 against the rush.
And although their solid rush defense has no direct effect on Palko, it does have that indirect effect, because that limits Kansas City's odds at establishing a multidimensional attack. Because when you play the Steelers, you must be balanced, otherwise you've already lost.
That also holds especially true for K.C., since their rushing offense is their best chance to move the ball. But the Steelers will stop it, then force the Chiefs to rely on Palko, which will only give Pittsburgh that much more of an advantage.
Projection: 20-of-34, 150 yards, no TDs, one fumble, two INTs
Ryan Fitzpatrick, Buffalo (at NY Jets)
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Bills QB Ryan Fitzpatrick accelerated Buffalo's offense out of the blocks like Usain Bolt this season and was 3-0 before anyone could think.
Through that start, Fitzpatrick had thrown nine TDs to just three picks and compiled 841 yards. Since then however, Buffalo has gone just 2-5 and the former Harvard graduate has only hit over 250 yards one time to go with seven TDs and 11 picks.
Now look at the previous three games (two TDs, seven picks, 26 total points), and the Bills have no chance this week against the Jets and their No. 6-ranked pass defense.
For one, Fitzpatrick's attempts will be limited, regardless of how many possessions Buffalo has, because his confidence is basically struck. So, if Buffalo has any success it will have to be on the ground, since New York allows almost 120 rush yards per game.
However, even when Fitz drops back, you can't expect him to dominate, as New York shut him down just a few weeks ago. It's clear that Rex Ryan's dynamic defensive schemes and fronts confused him, because the Jets were the ones who began Buffalo's slide.
Projection: 17-of-34, 175 yards, one TD, three INTs
Rex Grossman, Washington (at Seattle)
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Arguably the most inconsistent and frustrating QB to watch this century, Rex Grossman has shown signs of brilliance, as well as sure ineptitude on numerous occasions, but more so the latter.
To that end, last week Grossman had possibly his best game this season against the Dallas Cowboys but, as evidence of who he is, Grossman will fall from grace once again. This week, it's the Seattle Seahawks who get the best of him.
For starters, the Seahawks appear to be getting into a rhythm, as they've won two straight and could quite possibly finish 8-8. They're pass defense only ranks No. 15; however, they are No. 8 against the run, and Washington has no threatening ground game.
Therefore, the game will be in Grossman's hands, and in road games alone this season, he's thrown just two TDs to five picks and only averaged a little over 200 yards.
Seattle's defense has only allowed 24 total points in their previous two games, and they aren't too shabby at causing turnovers. And we all know how Grossman can be when it comes to throwing picks.
Projection: 18-of-37, 200 yards, one TD, three INTs
Curtis Painter, Indianapolis (vs Carolina)
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Unfortunately for the Colts, it doesn't matter the opponent, because Curtis Painter has simply been bad. Now, to his defense, he was somewhat thrown to the wolves so to speak, because when you replace Kerry Collins, well, that just goes without saying.
Anyway, this week Indy hosts the Carolina Panthers, who just put 35 points on Detroit, but allowed 49. That does give a small sense of hope for Painter's production, but the passing game is Indy's weakness, whereas Carolina's pass defense is their strength.
That said, a big part of why Painter doesn't produce much to begin with is because the Panthers do rank No. 30 in rush defense. So, although the Colts aren't too threatening of a running team, it is their more effective option.
However, even with limited opportunities, Painter will be forced to throw a lot more than planned, as the Colts won't stop Carolina's offense. If Indy wants to win, it will be a shootout, and they're simply not explosive enough to keep pace.
The Panthers have a Top 10 offense in both rushing and passing, and since Indy hasn't scored more than 24 points in any game this season (once, at Tampa), there's no way Painter matches Cam Newton.
Projection: 16-of-30, 160 yards, no TDs, three INTs