This year we could see as many as five rookie quarterbacks starting in week one with Andrew Luck (Colts), Robert Griffin III (Redskins), Brandon Weeden (Browns), and Ryan Tannehill (Dolphins) already locking up their jobs, and Russell Wilson the leading candidate for the Seahawks.
Since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970, there has never been a season in which five rookie quarterbacks started at least half of his team’s games. However, this is just part of the recent trend as more and more NFL teams are turning to rookie quarterbacks to guide their teams.
In the past 14 seasons, half had at least three rookies start at least eight games. Prior to that, it had only happened twice in 28 years. And if all five rookies start all 16 games for their respective teams (80 games total), they alone would eclipse the previous high of 63 games started by rookies in 2006…
1982 and 1987 were strike-shortened seasons. 1987 had a large number of games started by rookie quarterbacks due to the use of replacement players. Data via Pro-Football-Reference.com.
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