Ranking Josh Allen among the QBs of the AFC before 2022 NFL Draft

Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills (Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports)
Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills (Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Josh Allen
Russell Wilson, Denver Broncos (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images) /

5. Russell Wilson (Denver Broncos)

Another major acquisition this offseason, Wilson looks to carry on the QB lineage in Denver after John Elway and Peyton Manning. It’s just gonna be weird seeing the Super Bowl XLVIII champion not play in a Seattle Seahawks uniform.

Last season was sort of a microcosm of Russ’ last few years in Seattle. In the first four games of the season, Wilson was en fuego (10 total TDs, 0 turnovers, 129.9 passer rating, 72.5% completion rate) as he guided the Seahawks in a tough NFC West. Then he absolutely mangled his middle finger in a Week 5 Thursday night game that resulted in him missing the first three games of his NFL career.

Wilson would return in Week 10 to the lineup, and while his numbers weren’t bad — 16 total TDs, 6 TOs, 92.9 passer rating, 61.5% completion rate — they were a step below the level he played throughout most of September. And as much as we can talk about the injury, or the possibility of the 33-year-old starting to see some slippage, the Seahawks always felt like a team reluctant to fully let Wilson show off his skills as a passer.

I mean, how could you not let Russ cook?

But now in Denver, it feels like a perfect fit in a situation where the passing game will be fully invested. And this isn’t a slight at D.K. Metcalf or Tyler Lockett, but more so at the schemes the Seahawks have run on offense throughout Wilson’s tenure.

Now he’ll be able to move around in a West Coast system under rookie head coach Nathaniel Hackett after he helped Aaron Rodgers win the last two MVP trophies. He’ll also have a load of weapons with Courtland Sutton, Jerry Jeudy, Tim Patrick, K.J. Hamler, and Albert Okwuegbunam, as well as Javonte Williams in the backfield after a strong rookie season.

And there is still a chance that Melvin Gordon could return as well. The offensive line also has some pieces to work with, including franchise LT Garrett Boles, Bobby Massie at RT, and their three young guys inside with Dalton Risner, Lloyd Cushenberry III, and Division III product Quinn Meinerz.

For the dynamic Wilson, he continues to be one of the top deep-ball throwers in the game. He averaged 9.9 intended air yards per attempt (tops in the league), 6.7 completed air yards per attempt (4th in the league), and 4.3 air yards per attempt (tied for 5th in the league).

And even though his legs may not be what they used to be (career-lows with 183 rushing yards, 3.1 carries per game) Wilson is still dangerous outside of the pocket. On 23 scrambles last year, Wilson averaged 7.3 yards per carry.

A new era is now ahead for Russ in Broncos Country. As one of only two starting QBs with a Super Bowl ring in the AFC, the veteran has all the cache to bring in a new hope for Denver as it looks for its first postseason berth since winning Super Bowl 50.

But the question is how will the team do that in what may be the best division we’ve ever seen in the AFC West?