NFL Analysis


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2024 NFL Draft: Best Fits For Top QB Prospects

Caleb Williams running
Southern California Trojans quarterback Caleb Williams (13) carries the ball against the Utah Utes in the first half at United Airlines Field at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

This is one of the best quarterback classes in recent memory, with three prospects who all could go No. 1 in any given year. Plus, this class has a lot of depth in Rounds 2-4. 

But as we know, not all of these quarterbacks will hit. The landing spots for each quarterback will be critical, and some might fail due to their surroundings. So, which franchise is the best spot for each quarterback? Where can they maximize their skillset?

Let's look at the best landing spot for the top six quarterbacks in the 2024 NFL Draft. Remember, this isn’t a mock draft. It’s about where each quarterback would fit the best. So, without further ado, let’s get into the list. 

>> READ MORE: Latest Mock Draft

Best Fits for 2024 QB Class

Caleb Williams, USC 

Best Fit: Chicago Bears 

There is a lot of debate about whether the Chicago Bears will trade away the No. 1 pick and roll with Justin Fields. It's not a bad plan, especially if they can get a king's ransom again. 

Fields is a lot of fun to watch and has progressed during the last two seasons. But make no mistake; Caleb Williams is the far better prospect and a better fit in Chicago.

Like Fields, Williams holds the ball too long and will take too many sacks. His fumble rate is concerning, and he might measure at just 6 feet. But Williams is the type of playmaker the Bears have needed for years. His feel for the game is unreal, and the moment never feels too big for him. 

There is just a certain aura around him that feels different. And that’s what Chicago needs.

Williams is among the most creative quarterbacks we've seen enter the NFL Draft in years. He has a playground-style that resembles Patrick Mahomes.  Like Mahomes, he can win in the pocket with accuracy and anticipation. He’s not the fastest quarterback in the class, but he’s a good runner who can avoid taking unnecessary hits.

Going to a team like Chicago would be ideal for Williams. They already have a strong rushing attack and weapons at receiver. DJ Moore is coming off the best season of his career, and TE Cole Kmet emerged in 2023. Plus, Chicago's defense stepped up in the second half of the season, which never happened for Williams at USC or Oklahoma. 

Williams would be surrounded by weapons and a good offensive coordinator in Shane Waldron, who helped Geno Smith play the best football of his career in 2022. 

If the Bears stick with the No. 1 pick and select Williams, it would be a fantastic fit for both parties. Frankly, there isn't much reason for the Bears to go in any other direction. He is a franchise-changer and would instantly make the Bears a contender in the NFC.

Drake Maye, North Carolina North Carolina logo (UNC)

Best Fit: Denver Broncos

You could easily make the case Drake Maye fits with just about any team in the first round, but the best possible spot for him is the Denver Broncos.

Maye has all the physical tools to be a star in the NFL. Standing at 6-foot-4, 225 pounds, he will draw Justin Herbert comparisons. And those aren’t far off. 

Maye has a huge arm and has no problem throwing the ball into tight windows. He is also athletic and can extend plays with his legs. In terms of traits, he has them all.

But there is still a lot to clean up on the technical side of his game. Too many times, he misses easy throws within five yards of the line of scrimmage. He needs to quicken his release, and his overall throwing motion could be tightened. 

That is why Denver is such a perfect for him. Sean Payton is one of the best quarterback teachers in the game.

The Broncos don't have an all-star cast of weapons or a fantastic offensive line, but both are sufficient to allow him to develop. Pairing Maye with Payton would ensure he gets a fair chance of developing into a star quarterback. 

It’s hard not to love the idea of these two working together for the foreseeable future in Denver. 

Jayden Daniels, LSU

Best Fit: Las Vegas Raiders 

Under Antonio Pierce, the Las Vegas Raiders established a culture of toughness and playing great defense. The problem is their offense was one of the worst in the league last season. 

Aidan O’Connell did a fine job as a fourth-round rookie from Purdue, but the Raiders finished last in the NFL in explosive plays.

Insert Jayden Daniels. No quarterback in college football created more explosive plays with their arm and legs than Daniels in 2023. During the last five seasons, he created the most explosive plays of any quarterback (90). 

The Raiders have a good offensive line and several quality weapons, like Davante Adams, Jakobi Meyers and Michael Mayer. What they need is a dynamic quarterback who can create chunk plays. They’ve got the offensive personnel to be a solid unit, but they are just missing the “guy” to put it all together.

This would be a fantastic fit for Daniels, on and off the field. The Raiders were a competitive team in 2023, but weren't fun to watch. Daniels could bring excitement to Las Vegas and make the Raiders an instant contender. Plus, throwing the ball to Adams, Meyers and Mayer would be nice.

>> READ MORE: What Pierce Needs to Succeed in LV

J.J. McCarthy runs with the ball
Michigan Wolverines quarterback J.J. McCarthy (9) runs the ball against the Alabama Crimson Tide during the second half in the 2024 Rose Bowl college football playoff semifinal game at Rose Bowl. (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

J.J. McCarthy, Michigan 

Best Fit: Atlanta Falcons

After the top three quarterbacks, who will be the fourth passer off the board is uncertain. J.J. McCarthy is the safest bet, considering his am talent and overall athleticism. 

For him, the best possible landing spot is the Atlanta Falcons. We still don't know who Atlanta’s coach or play-caller is, but its personnel fits McCarthy exceptionally well.

The Falcons need a quarterback who won’t turn the ball over but can make enough plays to keep the offense moving. McCarthy did that at Michigan when he led his team to a National Championship. 

McCarthy had just 11 interceptions in three seasons, but that isn’t because he was just a dink-and-dunk passer. He averaged 9.0 yards per attempt in 2023 and became one of the most accurate quarterbacks in the nation.

McCarthy is extremely young (21) and has all the talent to be an NFL franchise quarterback. McCarthy would operate well in a ball-control style of offense until he is ready to shoulder the load. It's hard to envision McCarthy going to Atlanta and not succeeding immediately.

Bo Nix throws a pass
Oregon Ducks quarterback Bo Nix (10) throws against the Liberty Flames during the second half in the 2024 Fiesta Bowl at State Farm Stadium. (Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports)

Bo Nix, Oregon 

Best Fit: Pittsburgh Steelers

What does Mike Tomlin value the most in a quarterback? The ability to play the position without turning the ball over at a high rate. The Pittsburgh Steelers went 6-1 when they didn't turn the ball over this year but were 4-6 when they did. 

Even in the games where Pittsburgh had just one offensive turnover, it went 2-3. That is probably the wrong offensive philosophy in 2024, but that's how Tomlin coaches.

So, which quarterback can make enough plays without turning the ball over at a high rate? That is none other than Bo Nix, who threw just three interceptions during the entire 2023 season. 

In fact, Nix had just 26 interceptions in his career on 1,936 passing attempts. That means he tossed an interception on just 1.34 percent of his throws. That is pretty wild, even for a college quarterback.

But don’t let his low interception rate make you think he’s only a dink-and-dunk, conservative quarterback. Nix had a monster year at Oregon, completing 77.4 percent of his passes and throwing 45 touchdowns. He also added six touchdowns on the ground as one of the better dual-threat quarterbacks.

Pittsburgh has the No. 20 pick in the 2024 NFL Draft, so it is unlikely to grab one of the top three or four quarterback options. But adding one like Nix, who can be productive and dynamic without being turnover-prone, makes a lot of sense.

Michael Penix Jr. runs with the ball
Washington Huskies quarterback Michael Penix Jr. (9) scrambles against the Texas Longhorns in the 2024 Sugar Bowl college football playoff semifinal game at Caesars Superdome. (Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports)

Michael Penix Jr., Washington 

Best Fit: Minnesota Vikings

It remains unclear what the Minnesota Vikings will do at quarterback this offseason, but the best bet is Kirk Cousins will return on a short-term deal. However, that shouldn't preclude the Vikings from taking a quarterback sometime on Day 2 of the NFL Draft. 

Michael Penix Jr. had a fantastic season for the Washington Huskies, leading them to a National Championship appearance against Michigan. While they came up a tad short in that game, Penix had a magical season. 

Penix played on a great team with great receivers, so it's a bit of a mystery how he would do with subpar weapons. But putting him on the Vikings with Justin Jefferson, Jordan Addison and T.J. Hockenson would be almost unfair. He is incredible at throwing downfield and throws with anticipation and accuracy. 

He’s one of the older quarterbacks in this class (he will turn 24 in May), but he could benefit from sitting behind Cousins for a year or two. 

Penix needs to clean up his throwing motion and quicken his release. Giving him a year or two to sit behind an established quarterback could really benefit him. 

As long as he has weapons that can make plays vertically and after the catch, there is no reason Penix can’t succeed in the NFL.