Colin breaks down the NFL’s crop of quarterbacks into 4 distinct tiers

Colin Cowherd lists his top NFL quarterbacks. Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers are at the top, but number three may surprise you.

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- Here's my tiers of quarterbacks. Tier 1, these are guys that can carry their team. Brady, Rodgers, and Luck. And you're out of your mind if you don't get Andrew Luck. Andrew Luck came into this league, they were 1 in 15 with one Pro Bowlers. They went 11 and 5, 11 and 5, 11 and 5. Third year, made the AFC championship. If that ain't carrying a franchise, what the hell is?

Those are the three guys that can carry mediocre rosters. Aaron's been carrying mediocre defenses for most of his career, and Brady has won multiple Super Bowls without multiple Pro Bowlers on offense.

The tier 2 guys for me, it's not can carry a team, but they're darn close to carrying a team. The tier 2 guys, Big Ben, Brees, Derek Carr, Philip Rivers, Russell Wilson. They're really, really close to carrying a team.

Big Ben, by the way, can carry them at home. He's not nearly as good on the road. His home and road splits are pretty stark. These guys can carry a team by and large but need some help.

Tier 3 for me is just you're a really good quarterback, and most people would love to have you. Matt Ryan, Stafford, Mariota, Eli, Jameis, Dak, Flacco, Smith, Kirk Cousins, Cam Newton, Wentz. You're above average. You're a franchise quarterback. There are days you're great. There's days you struggle. You can't carry a team, and I don't think you're always that close to carrying a team, but you're a really good National Football League quarterback-- really, really good.

And then tier 4 for me would be who cares? That guy is getting replaced anyway. So that's my tier.

In review, let's go and do in review my tiers again. Brady, Rodgers, Luck. You don't need a lot of Pro Bowlers. You don't need a great defense. You can carry a team to a conference championship. They've all done it. They've all carried a team to a conference championship without much help.

Tier 2, you're close to that, but generally need a little more help. Ben, Brees, Carr, Rivers, Wilson.

Tier 3, you're just a darned good NFL quarterback, better than average, capable of winning a Super Bowl but certainly can't carry it. And I don't think you can almost, almost carry it. You need help. That's why I say Matt Ryan to me-- eight years, take away his one great year, eight years he's good. I like him. He's good. He wasn't Luck good. He wasn't Rodgers good. I don't think he's Russell Wilson-capable either.

And Colin's tier 4 is, who cares? Your team's trying to replace you anyway in the very, very near future.

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