When will rookie quarterbacks first see the field this season?

It has been a fascinating preseason to chart the rookie quarterbacks. In a year in which three teams traded up into Round 1 to draft QBs, paying mostly heavy prices, it appears that all three have serious road blocks to get on the field right away.

In fact, we likely won’t see a Week 1 rookie starter. We saw two in one game to start last season — No. 1 pick Jameis Winston vs. No. 2 Marcus Mariota.

On the flip side, a few lower-round quarterbacks from the 2016 draft class have opened some eyes and might go from afterthoughts to surprise first-year contributors. All in all, though, it looks like a deep class for the position.

[Yahoo Fantasy Football is open for the 2016 season. Sign up now]

Here are all of the drafted rookie QBs — plus one undrafted one — and when they first project to take the field in any kind of significant role (i.e. not just a few kneeldown snaps by themselves) with their respective teams.


Jared Goff might be grounded with the Los Angeles Rams for a bit (AP).
Jared Goff might be grounded with the Los Angeles Rams for a bit (AP).

Jared Goff, Los Angeles Rams
Drafted: Round 1 (pick No. 1)

Prior to a fourth-quarter drive on Saturday against the Kansas City Chiefs, the early returns from Goff had been slightly cringe-worthy. But on that series, he looked poised and confident in leading a TD drive — it had to be a huge relief after he looked like he had been pressing. Case Keenum is what he is, but he’s the best option for the Rams right now, and head coach Jeff Fisher is going old school with the approach to Goff. Look for him to get more incubation time, get more reps after Keenum struggles behind a bad line and then have the bubble wrap taken off soon thereafter. After all, Fisher must carefully strategize how he’s going to get his seven or eight wins.

First notable playing time: Week 6 at Detroit Lions

Paxton Lynch, Denver Broncos
Drafted: Round 1 (pick No. 26)

This is one of the more intriguing ones. We believe the battle to start the opener against the Carolina Panthers is between Mark Sanchez and Trevor Siemian (and it might be Siemian’s job to lose now as he’s starting the third preseason game), but Lynch at least has his toe in the door. Winning that job will be tough in short order, but his strong play the first few games might have Gary Kubiak rethinking the long play here. The temptation is to say that Lynch has the best shot to enter the lineup after the Week 11 bye. But might it be sooner?

First notable playing time: Week 6 at San Diego Chargers (hey, we’re willing to go out on a limb)

Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys
Drafted: Round 4 (pick No. 135)

Is Week 1 too soon? We kid. Yes, the Prescott hype is into overtime a mere two fake games into his NFL career. Expect a mini-fall to earth at some point in the next 10-14 days; it happens to everyone. Besides, Tony Romo could end up staying healthy for at least three or four weeks this season. OK, fine, more than that. But we’ll say he gets knocked out (again) against the Philadelphia Eagles and Prescott gets his first shot then.

First notable playing time: Week 8 vs. Eagles, as injury replacement

Carson Wentz, Philadelphia Eagles
Drafted: Round 1 (pick No. 2)

A rib injury has derailed him and could keep him from getting any preseason action until the otherwise meaningless fourth exhibition game. That really sets him back and locks the Eagles in even more with Sam Bradford — for now. Even with Eagles fans breathlessly chanting his name in what ended up an intriguing opening game (they’ll hate him in less than two years maybe), we think it’s still a while before he sees legitimate action. But it will be before he turns 24 in December.

First notable playing time: Week 14 vs. Washington Redskins

Jeff Driskel, San Francisco 49ers
Drafted: Round 6 (pick No. 207)

OK, so can you definitely say that he won’t play this season? The natural follow up before you answer that is to brush up on the depth chart: Blaine Gabbert. Colin Kaepernick. Christian Ponder. The draft class of 2011 got lonely and is having a bro sesh in the Bay Area. At this point, it’s best to project which one will take the longest to make Chip Kelly lose his mind. Maybe that’s Gabbert? At any rate, we are by no means shutting the door on a late cameo by Driskel, who has played well when given the chance.

First notable playing time: Week 15 at Atlanta Falcons


Seattle Seahawks quarterback Trevone Boykin is one snap away from starting (AP)
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Trevone Boykin is one snap away from starting (AP)

Trevone Boykin, Seattle Seahawks
Drafted: Undrafted

The Seahawks might be a Super Bowl team. But betting on them requires one to assume Russell Wilson will remain ambulatory while operating behind a sieve of an offensive line. Boykin had some “wow” moments in the preseason game against the Vikings and might see the field by default, as he’s almost certainly Russ’ backup at this point.

First notable playing time: Week 9 vs. Bills, to protect Wilson for big showdown at Patriots the next game

Jake Rudock, Detroit Lions
Drafted: Round 6 (pick No. 191)

Crank up the Tom Brady comps. Rudock has been a pleasant surprise in Lions camp, to the point where the locals are wondering if he can beat out Dan Orlovsky for the backup job to Matthew Stafford. We’ll assume, like Brady was in 2000, that this year is mostly for sitting and learning. But don’t forget that Brady did get his feet wet as a rookie … in Detroit on Thanksgiving. It’s too perfect.

First notable playing time: Week 12, cleaning up the Thanksgiving table late against the Minnesota Vikings

Connor Cook, Oakland Raiders
Drafted: Round 4 (pick No. 100)

It appears he has every chance of winning the No. 2 job behind Derek Carr, which is impressive given the volatile reputation he entered the league with, seeing his expected draft range fall by 50-75 slots. But Carr is the guy and is going nowhere anytime soon, barring injury. We’ll guess that any action he does is in mop-up form.

First notable playing time: Week 13 vs. Buffalo Bills (again, not as a starter, folks — no need to panic)

Cardale Jones, Buffalo Bills
Drafted: Round 4 (pick No. 139)

Oh, we can envision less likely scenarios than Tyrod Taylor getting hurt and EJ Manuel being, well, ineffective in his place. But right now, we’re slightly pumping the brakes on Jones, even after some impressive play in the early going. Maybe he gets his feet wet late.

First notable playing time: Week 15 vs. Cleveland Browns


Jacoby Brissett, New England Patriots
Drafted: Round 3 (pick No. 91)

It’s interesting how Brissett might have a chance to play sooner than most other rookies. After all, with Tom Brady in the penalty box for a four-game major, Brissett is one snap away with Jimmy Garoppolo starting — behind what could be a very shaky offensive line. We’ll go ahead and assume the Patriots find a way to keep their replacement starter upright. But it wouldn’t be stunning to see Brissett take the field, even briefly, before Brady returns Week 5 at Cleveland.

First notable playing time: 2017

Brandon Allen, Jacksonville Jaguars
Drafted: Round 6 (pick No. 201)

He’s behind Blake Bortles and Chad Henne in the pecking order, and even if Allen beats out Max Wittek (remember him?) for the No. 3 job, his only action on gameday will be wearing a headset, we suspect.

First notable playing time: 2017, when he first has a chance to beat out Henne

Cody Kessler, Cleveland Browns
Drafted: Round 3 (pick No. 93)

We assume his Orlovsky impersonation — and Robert Griffin III’s hot start — ensured that the third-rounder would not be pressed into action. We suppose an unexpected Josh McCown trade could change the dynamic, as certainly an RG3 injury could. But for now we say Kessler stays on ice this season. How’s the for a hot take: Bet you Hue Jackson thinks his team will be competitive in 2016. Feel the sizzle.

First notable playing time: 2017

Nate Sudfeld, Washington Redskins
Drafted: Round 6 (pick No. 187)

Optimism is high for Sudfeld, but him seeing the field is a sign things have gone horribly wrong in the afterglow this season of a 2015 division title. Things going horribly wrong in D.C.? Never!

First notable playing time: 2017, but … you never know

Brandon Doughty, Miami Dolphins
Drafted: Round 7 (pick No. 223)

The Dolphins have been a two-QB team of late, but new head coach Adam Gase could keep the tough kid who maybe has a little Keenum in him. We think Doughty appears worth investing in, and the coach might agree, but playing him this season doesn’t appear too likely.

First notable playing time: 2017 or beyond

New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg might not play at all this regular season (AP).
New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg might not play at all this regular season (AP).

Christian Hackenberg, New York Jets
Drafted: Round 2 (pick No. 51)

Despite all the rumors that the Jets are showcasing Bryce Petty and/or Geno Smith for a trade — ha — which would bump Hack up a slot on the totem pole, we’re not getting too lathered up about Hack’s chances this year. The proverbial redshirt season.

First notable playing time: 2017? Maybe?

Kevin Hogan, Kansas City
Drafted: Round 5 (pick No. 162)

There are roughly a hundred quarterbacks ahead of him on the Chiefs’ depth chart. We have no idea how they will play this one, but it’s not even a lock Hogan makes the opening week roster at this point. Would they keep four? Trade one? Release more than one? Who knows?

First notable playing time: No clue

– – – – – – –

Eric Edholm is a writer for Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at edholm@yahoo-inc.com or follow him on Twitter!