8. Matthew Stafford
Stafford is the most under appreciated quarterback in football and has been for some time. He gets overlooked because the Detroit Lions rarely put together notable seasons, but the 30-year-old has already thrown for 34,749 yards and 216 touchdowns in his career. With Golden Tate, Marvin Jones and Kenny Golladay on the outside, Stafford should enjoy another prolific year.
7. Matt Ryan
In 2016, Ryan won the league MVP award by throwing for 4,944 yards with 38 touchdowns against only seven interceptions. Last season, the former Boston College star came back down to earth, totaling 4,095 yards with 20 scores and 12 picks. If Ryan can rediscover his MVP form, the Atlanta Falcons could be Super Bowl bound. If not, Ryan and the Falcons may tumble.
6. Philip Rivers
Rivers will be 36 years old this season, and should be at the center of Super Bowl contention with the Los Angeles Chargers. The team is already down Hunter Henry but maintains Keenan Allen and second-year man Mike Williams to go with Tyrell Williams and Travis Benjamin. If the line can stay healthy, Rivers could well be in the MVP conversation.
5. Russell Wilson
Wilson might have a down statistical year, but that’s what happens when you have a limping Doug Baldwin and little else on the offensive side. The former University of Wisconsin star has been nothing short of brilliant throughout his six-year career, throwing for 22,171 yards and 176 touchdowns while tacking on 3,275 rushing yards.