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As goes the quarterback, so goes the team. It's not always true in the NFL, but it usually is. And it makes sense: In a passing league, the passers are like royalty -- the biggest influences on whether a team is destined more for a Super Bowl title or a No. 1 draft pick.

It's with that in mind that we come to you with the most important pecking order outside of traditional team power rankings: QB Power Rankings. Consider this your cut-and-dry guide to the best and worst of the NFL's signal-callers -- a weekly 1-to-32 rundown of every starter under center.

How are the QBs ranked? We try to factor in both current standing and future upside. So a long resume doesn't always guarantee an edge over untapped potential, just as a cold streak doesn't always erase a history of success. At the end of the day, we're simply trying to sort the QBs based on 2021 value, both now and in the near future.

Now, without further ado, let's get to our Week 18 rankings:

Week 18 QB Power Rankings
Aaron Rodgers Green Bay Packers QB
Rodgers over the last two years, at ages 37 and 38: a 26-5 record, with 83 touchdowns and nine picks. Crown him.
Tom Brady Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB
Good thing Tampa Bay has the ageless wonder under center, because otherwise the losses out wide would be huge.
Patrick Mahomes Kansas City Chiefs QB
Even with a long, rough stretch this year, his numbers look pretty. At full speed, his offense remains a powerhouse.
Josh Allen Buffalo Bills QB
He's had a few down days through the air, but his legs almost always keep the Bills in it anyway. He remains Mahomes-esque.
Joe Burrow Cincinnati Bengals QB
Joey Cool. Joe Chuck-It. Chief Conqueror. Call him what you want, but few have trusted the big play more this season.  (+1)
Justin Herbert Los Angeles Chargers QB
Four or five years ago, he'd be getting MVP buzz. Now let's see if he can deliver with the season on the line. (-1)
Dak Prescott Dallas Cowboys QB
Aside from their recent Washington rout, he and the Cowboys offense have been too sluggish. But the talent is there. (+1)
Matthew Stafford Los Angeles Rams QB
Goodness, he's hidden some bad decisions in some key wins lately. Sean McVay can't put it all on his plate. (-1)
Russell Wilson Seattle Seahawks QB
How convenient of him, to turn it on as the season winds down and Seattle potentially prepares to deal him. (+2)
Kyler Murray Arizona Cardinals QB
Murray, when on point, is one of the best playmakers in the game. Arizona desperately needs that version of him in the playoffs.
Lamar Jackson Baltimore Ravens QB
We're banking on him finally returning from a lingering ankle issue. And, of course, his athleticism remaining intact. (-2)
Kirk Cousins Minnesota Vikings QB
Sean Mannion's emergency start was a reminder that Cousins is actually good. But who knows if his Vikings days are up?
Derek Carr Las Vegas Raiders QB
It's do-or-die time for Carr in Week 18. Get to the playoffs, and maybe he keeps his job amid Vegas' inevitable rebuild. (+1)
Ryan Tannehill Tennessee Titans QB
It's been a tough year, aesthetically and statistically, but he's stayed cool during their run to the postseason. (+1)
Carson Wentz Indianapolis Colts QB
He still makes (or gets bailed out of) too many unnecessary plays. If he settles down, they can still make some noise. (-2)
Jalen Hurts Philadelphia Eagles QB
He's shown real growth as a passer in key spots, with some shades of a young Donovan McNabb in Week 17. (+3)
Mac Jones New England Patriots QB
The Jaguars showed up just when he needed a confidence boost. He'll be set up nicely for years to come here. 
Justin Fields Chicago Bears QB
Forget Week 18; the real question here is what kind of staff he'll be working under as a second-year starter.
Trey Lance San Francisco 49ers QB
Jimmy Garoppolo may be more reliable in the system (at full health), but Lance just has the "it" factor. (-3)
Tua Tagovailoa Miami Dolphins QB
All the goodwill from the win streak? Mostly gone, thanks to the Titans. He's efficient. But is he the guy? We'll see. (-2)
Matt Ryan Atlanta Falcons QB
The most exciting moment of his 2021 season may have been when he got flagged for taunting after scoring in Buffalo.
Ben Roethlisberger Pittsburgh Steelers QB
He just can't consistently push the ball anymore, but give him credit for giving his all and winning ugly on the way out.
Baker Mayfield Cleveland Browns QB
Kevin Stefanski and the O-line haven't helped, but he's been part of the problem. Cleveland should be shopping him. (-3)
Taylor Heinicke Washington Football Team QB
Ron Rivera is long overdue for a real investment at QB here. Heinicke has the gusto to stick as a top-tier No. 2. (+2)
Davis Mills Houston Texans QB
He's done more than enough to warrant at least some QB1 reps in the summer, save for a big-name acquisition.
Taysom Hill New Orleans Saints QB
The Saints have a definite ceiling with him under center, but if he can control the ball, they might still surprise. (+2)
Trevor Lawrence Jacksonville Jaguars QB
Are we taking bets on whether he'll join Jags fans in dressing as a clown in Week 18 to demand a GM change?
Sam Darnold Carolina Panthers QB
Reminder: the Panthers traded three draft picks for him. They'd probably take anything to dump him after this year.
Zach Wilson New York Jets QB
He started strong in a near-upset of the Buccaneers, but as is the course in New York, it all fell apart. (+1)
Drew Lock Denver Broncos QB
He's auditioning for anyone who will take him off the Broncos' hands. This, unfortunately, is how Vic Fangio goes out. (+1)
Tim Boyle Detroit Lions QB
He's actually shown signs of improvement since replacing Jared Goff, but the bar was already low.
Jake Fromm New York Giants QB
Don't worry. Joe Judge is absolutely, positively sure that vets around the NFL are dying to come play for this team.

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