Five most intriguing QB matchups on the 2024 NFL schedule

Yardbarker

The NFL released its complete schedule for the 2024 season on Wednesday. While most games are compelling for varying reasons, here are the five most intriguing quarterback versus quarterback matchups of 2024.

Week 1: Jared Goff vs. Matthew Stafford

This QB duel already happened in the playoffs, and it was so good. Who doesn’t want to see part two? Detroit’s Jared Goff threw for 277 yards and a touchdown, while Los Angeles’ Matthew Stafford threw for 367 yards and two scores. Although the Lions won 24-23, the real winner was the fans. 

The Lions got to celebrate a win over their former signal-caller in their home stadium, and there’s no question the Rams would like to do the same. This game is sure to be fireworks with plenty of passing yards and points — and the perfect way for the NFL to get the season started.

Week 2: Russell Wilson vs. Bo Nix/Zach Wilson

With the way Russell Wilson’s Broncos tenure ended and all the derogatory things that were said about him, this game was circled long before the date was officially announced on Wednesday evening.

Add in the mystery surrounding the Broncos’ QB situation and that any one of 2024 first-round pick Bo Nix, Zach Wilson or Jarrett Stidham could be the starter by Week 2, and this game has plenty of intrigue. If Russell Wilson struggles, the Broncos will have their moment of vindication in moving on from the nine-time Pro Bowler. If he puts on a show and carves up the Denver secondary, then the team looks even worse after absorbing a record $85 million in dead cap to get rid of him.

Week 5: Bryce Young vs. Caleb Williams

Not only did the Panthers’ previous regime cost the new one the chance to draft Caleb Williams, but it also stuck them with undersized Bryce Young, whose future NFL success may depend on whether or not Dave Canales turns out to be a good head coach. To make matters worse, Carolina has to play against the generational QB it missed out on, making a potential Week 5 loss all the more painful. 

While it’s unfair to compare Young and Williams given the vastly different situations each entered as the last two No. 1 overall picks, Carolina is sure to be reminded of what could have been the more successful Williams is. But if Young and his new cast of weapons, which includes receivers Diontae Johnson and Xavier Legette, running back Jonathon Brooks and tight end Ja’Tavion Sanders, find a rhythm, this game could be surprisingly entertaining.

Week 6: Jayden Daniels vs. Lamar Jackson

Leading up to the draft, the popular NFL comparison for Commanders rookie signal-caller Jayden Daniels was Ravens QB Lamar Jackson. Those dots are easy to connect when comparing Daniels’ final college season (3,812 yards passing, 40 touchdowns, 1,134 yards rushing, 10 touchdowns) to Jackson’s (3,660 yards passing, 27 touchdowns, 1,601 yards rushing, 18 touchdowns).

While expectations should be tempered as Daniels adjusts to the NFL, if he’s another version of Jackson, who some consider to be the most exciting athlete at the quarterback position, then this matchup could have Game of the Year potential.

Week 14: Kirk Cousins vs. J.J. McCarthy

Kirk Cousins going back to Minnesota to face his former team, possibly playing against the QB drafted to replace him in J.J. McCarthy — this one basically wrote itself. While it’s unfair to judge McCarthy on how he potentially performs in this game, there’s no avoiding it’s going to happen. 

If he out-duels Cousins, it’s a win for the Vikings and their fans. If Cousins lights up Minnesota’s defense, there will be some who question if the Vikings made the right call in letting him walk.

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