One site ranks Sam Howell dead last in NFL starting quarterbacks
Washington Commanders quarterback Sam Howell has started one NFL game. Yet, the former fifth-round pick in the 2022 NFL draft has the opportunity of a lifetime to be Washington’s franchise quarterback in 2023 — and beyond.
We’ve heard all of the talk that NFL evaluators viewed Howell much differently in 2021, and many believed he’d be a top-10 pick in 2022. But losing all of his offensive playmakers led Howell to struggle early in his final college season, and his stock fell.
The Commanders gladly selected with the first pick in the fifth round.
Howell impressed in the preseason last summer. But….it was the preseason. However, the tools were evident, but Howell had much to clean up, particularly his footwork and some of his mechanics.
There were whispers that his teammates wanted to see him play last season. His chance finally came in Week 18 against the Cowboys, and while Howell didn’t put up eye-popping numbers, he completed 11 of 19 passes for 169 yards with a touchdown and interception. Howell also rushed for a touchdown. His completion to Terry McLaurin down the sideline was one of the NFL’s better deep throws last season.
While Washington has high hopes for Howell, many around the NFL or media world don’t have the same high hopes.
CBS Sports recently ranked every projected starting quarterback for 2023, and Howell came in at……No. 32 — dead last.
— NFL on CBS 🏈 (@NFLonCBS) May 5, 2023
The reasons for ranking Howell last make sense. He has yet to prove anything. But neither has Desmond Ridder, Bryce Young, C.J. Stroud, Anthony Richardson, or Jordan Love.
So why is Howell last? It’s simple: because he was a fifth-round pick. Some can’t get over that Howell wasn’t selected higher because quarterbacks picked on the final day of the NFL draft rarely succeed. Tom Brady says hello.
No, we aren’t comparing Howell to Brady. No one is comparable to Brady. But why is Young ranked No. 21? Ahead of Derek Carr and Jimmy Garoppolo, who’ve proven far more than Young at the NFL level, whether you like them or not.
Ultimately, these rankings, or any rankings, mean nothing. Howell will have every opportunity to prove he belongs this fall. If he succeeds, the Commanders are in outstanding shape. If he doesn’t, they’ll be looking for someone else in 2024. But you shouldn’t completely discount Howell because of where he was selected in a previous NFL draft.