How Daniel Jones, five other QBs fared in their first starts of 2019

ByNFL Nation ESPN logo
Monday, September 23, 2019

Six quarterbacks made their first starts this season in Week 3. The group had a combined record of 3-3. Here's a look at how they fared:

Kyle Allen, Carolina Panthers

Statistics: 19-for-26 with 261 yards passing, 4 TDs, 0 INTs, Total QBR 85.6

Performance in two words: Season-saving. Had Kyle Allen not come through for the injured Cam Newton (foot) and the Panthers fallen to 0-3, this team might have self-destructed. For sure, there would have been rumblings about the job security of coach Ron Rivera and general manager Marty Hurney. Now the only rumblings will be about whether the Panthers should stick with Allen as long as he's on a hot streak because the offense clicked on practically all cylinders with him spreading the ball around. It hasn't with Newton. -- David Newton

Teddy Bridgewater, New Orleans Saints

Statistics: 19-for-27 with 177 yards passing, 2 TDs, 0 INTs, Total QBR 65.6

Performance in two words: Long overdue. Bridgewater delivered in his first "meaningful start" since the 2015 season -- and admitted that he was filled with emotions pregame. He didn't light up the stat sheet, but he was savvy enough to get the ball to Alvin Kamara and Michael Thomas while avoiding sacks and turnovers in one of the NFL's toughest road venues. His poise was exactly what the Saints expected when they made him the NFL's highest-paid backup quarterback. -- Mike Triplett

Luke Falk, New York Jets

Statistics: 12-for-22 with 98 yards passing, 0 TDs, 1 INT, Total QBR 13.4

Performance in two words: No chance. Falk was overwhelmed in his first NFL start, orchestrating two drives that crossed midfield. Facing one of the top defenses in the league, Falk was under heavy pressure (five sacks), some of it caused by his inability to read defenses. Patriots coach Bill Belichick toyed with the 24-year-old quarterback, confusing him with pass coverages you can bet he didn't see in the Pac-12. Falk didn't see the field well and completed just seven passes to his wide receivers. It could be one-and-done for him, as Sam Darnold (mono) is hoping to return after the Week 4 bye. -- Rich Cimini

Daniel Jones, New York Giants

Statistics: 23-for-36 with 336 yards and 2 TDs, 0 INTs, 4 carries for 28 yards, 2 TDs, Total QBR 88.0

Performance in two words: Absolutely incredible.Jones became the second player (joining Eric Hipple) since the 1970 merger to record two rushing TDs and two passing TDs in his first career start, according to Elias Sports Bureau research. Giants co-owner Steve Tisch described it as a "new chapter." It included an 18-point comeback and a game-winning touchdown scamper with less than two minutes remaining on a fourth-down prayer. Jones made coach Pat Shurmur look smart in his belief that the rookie was the better quarterback for the Giants right now when deciding to start Jones over Eli Manning. -- Jordan Raanan

Mason Rudolph, Pittsburgh Steelers

Statistics:14-for-27 with 174 yards passing, 2 TDs, 1 INTs, Total QBR 18.9

Performance in two words: Too conservative. Rudolph didn't uncork a long pass until the second half. In the first half, seven of his eight completions were caught at or behind the line of scrimmage. But when he went vertical in the second half -- including touchdown throws of 76 and 39 yards -- the offense picked up. Rudolph made a couple of young quarterback mistakes, including taking a few sacks and throwing a bad interception, but the biggest mistake was on the coaching staff for not dialing up plays that fit his skill set until it was too late. -- Brooke Pryor

Josh Rosen, Miami Dolphins

Statistics: 18-for-39 with 200 yards passing, 0 TDs, 0 INTs, Total QBR52.7

Describe his performance in two words: Initial spark. Rosen brought more aggression to the Dolphins' offense than it had the first two weeks with Ryan Fitzpatrick, including a 40-yard reception to DeVante Parker and a 25-yarder to Preston Williams. Rosen flashed some solid pocket presence and looked to be on the way to a strong day when he led four first-half drives deep into Cowboys territory. But drops and an untimely turnover got the Dolphins a total of six points. In the second half, Rosen took a step back, throwing for 46 yards and failing to get any rhythm going. -- Cam Wolfe

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