AFC North QB power rankings: Does the reigning MVP hold the top spot?

How do the four projected QB starters in the AFC North stack up with each other?
AFC Championship - Kansas City Chiefs v Baltimore Ravens
AFC Championship - Kansas City Chiefs v Baltimore Ravens / Perry Knotts/GettyImages

The AFC North might be the best division in football, so let's rank the four projected starting QBs in this stacked division. Every team in the AFC North finished with a winning record in the 2023 NFL Season, and it might just happen again. Each team has some excellent parts to their roster, and a couple of them have truly elite quarterbacks.

It's a hard-nosed, rugged version of football in the AFC North, so the games are always physical. Well, the most important position for any NFL team for that matter is the QB spot. How do the four starting QBs in the AFC North rank out?

AFC North QB power rankings: Does the reigning MVP hold the top spot?
4. Russell Wilson, Pittsburgh Steelers

Honestly, Deshaun Watson of the Cleveland Browns might have a legit argument to be ranked at the No. 4 spot, but as someone who has watched Russell Wilson each of the last two seasons, I can attest that Wilson is a shell of his former self.

Even though he threw 26 touchdowns against just eight interceptions last year, the stats were just empty calories. However, Wilson should be a massive upgrade over the QB room that the Steelers fielded in the 2023 season.

3. Deshaun Watson, Cleveland Browns

Looking totally different in Cleveland than in Houston, Deshaun Watson has more questions than answers, and I don't believe it's out of the question to suggest that he's washed-up, as crazy as that might sound. Watson not playing for an entire season could have impacted him more than some of us think.

Even with Watson missing a large chunk of the 2023 NFL Season, the Browns somehow won 11 games and made it to the playoffs, so the team can vault into contender status in 2024 if Watson can return to what he saw him do with the Houston Texans.

2. Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens

A two-time MVP, which is something very few players in NFL history can say, Lamar Jackson comes in at the two spot on this list, which might be confusing to some. Jackson's lows are quite low, and he's not a prolific passer by any means. There also does seem to be some valid concerns about Jackson and his playoff pedigree as well.

Now yes, 28 other teams might trade the farm to have Lamar Jackson on their roster, and he's one of the very best QBs in the NFL, but he just so happens to play in a division with the second best QB on planet Earth.

1. Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals

The only QB in the NFL right now who can go toe-to-toe with Patrick Mahomes is Joe Burrow, who has now suffered two season-ending injuries in his brief four-year career. Is Burrow injury prone? It's a valid question, but one thing that cannot be questioned is how good he is when he's on the field. Surgical from the pocket, his "Joe Cool" nickname is perfect.

In the offseason, the Bengals added OTs Trent Brown and Amarius Mims, signed RB Zack Moss, and added TE Mike Gesicki in free agency. The Bengals offense does appear to be better on paper, and Brown should help finally stabilize the tackle situation as well.

If Patrick Mahomes didn't exist, the answer is Joe Burrow.