In a similar post to one I did last year at Bleeding Green Nation, I figured we’d take a look at the QB’s around the league to see how “injury-prone” they are. I took all the QB’s that I would project as their team’s starter this season, added up the number of games in their career in which they were the clear-cut starter for their team, and tallied how many games they played/missed due to injury.
Since it has no bearing on being “injury-prone,” I didn’t include games in which the QB sat out Week 17 because they were locked into a particular playoff seed (for example, Aaron Rodgers this past season). I also factored out benchings (Alex Smith, Kevin Kolb, etc.), and any other circumstances in which a QB missed a game due to a non-injury related circumstance (Michael Vick being in jail, etc). Five teams’ projected starting QB’s were omitted. Andrew Luck (likely Colts), Robert Griffin III (likely Redskins), and the Seahawks’ Matt Flynn were all omitted due to a lack of an adequate sample size. Also, the Dolphins’ Matt Moore and the Bills’ Ryan Fitzpatrick both have careers that were simply too difficult to pinpoint exactly which games they missed due to injury and/or coach’s decision, so I just skipped them completely. Apologies for this egregious act of lazy journalism.
|Rank||QB||Team||Possible games||Played||Missed||% started|
Some notes after the jump…
- Last year, Peyton Manning was the reigning NFL QB iron man. Now it’s his brother, although Philip Rivers’ streak is impressive as well. One missed season dropped Peyton from 1st to 13th.
- Seven NFL QB’s have never missed a start, although 4 of them were rookies last year and don’t have adequate sample sizes.
- Only four players missed significant time due to injury in 2011: Matt Cassel of the Chiefs missed 7 games, Jay Cutler of the Bears missed 6, Matt Schaub missed 6 with the Texans, and the Eagles’ Michael Vick missed 3. However, an argument can be made that three of those players’ teams missed the playoffs because they got hurt, and the absence of Schaub may have cost the Texans a deep playoff run..
- There’s some debate as to who the Titans’ starting QB should be this season, Matt Hasselbeck or Jake Locker. For the sake of picking the QB with a larger sample size of games played to draw from in this study, I chose Hasselbeck.
- I took all the QBs from this list and tallied up their possible games played/missed. That’s where you see the “NFL average” on the above list in between Ben Roethlisberger and Carson Palmer.
- It’s somewhat surprising that Michael Vick is less injury prone than 6 NFL starters.
- Alex Smith leads all NFL QB’s with 30 missed starts due to injury.