The Bad Quarterback League Is BACK

Grantland BQBL LOGO


Not only is it back, it is going to be WAY more bitchin’ this year. What was that? You are unfamiliar with the BQBL? Weird. Click on this; it will get you all caught up. Too lazy to click on that? Fine. The BQBL stands for Bad Quarterback League. It is a fantasy football league where instead of rooting for your quarterbacks to throw for four touchdowns, complete 40 passes, and, ya know, win games, you root for them to get benched, get in an argument with Terry Bradshaw, and have their nether regions appear on sports blogs. Preferably in that order. We did it last year, and all I can say is, we learned — as immoral and evil as it sounds — that it is way more fun to root for catastrophic collapse than for efficient effectiveness. Way more fun.

Not only is the second season of the BQBL going to be blessed with the inevitable failures of Robert Griffin III, Brandon Weeden, and the man that sits atop my big board, Ryan Tannehill, we’re also making things a kajillion times easier for you to start, draft, and maintain your own league. This year we’ll have a fancy new BQBL Failure Machine on where you can create your own league and watch as all of the stats update automatically after each week’s spectacular failures. Anyone who had a league last year just said, “It’s about fucking time,” and anyone who didn’t just said, “When was the last BQBL season, 1983?” So buckle up: In a couple weeks we will be rolling out the BQBL Failure Machine and its fancy new software. In the meantime, I need you to follow some simple steps:

1. Find seven other people dumb enough to participate in a Bad Quarterback League. If you can’t get eight together, fear not, we will automatically match you up with other fans of failure.

2. Set the stakes.

3. Review the rules below.

4. Start researching quarterbacks and learning awesome shit like how Brandon Weeden binge-watches Entourage DVDs.

5. Wait until we post the BQBL Failure Machine, where you can set up your league, have your draft, and finally start rooting for your players to start dating a Kardashian.

Here’s the important information that will help you decide whether you want to draft the double threat of dreadful that is the Cardinals’ Skelton/Kolb combination or focus on the inevitability of the Andy Dalton sophomore slump:

The Scoring System


  • Benched during game (non-injury): 35 points
  • Interception for TD: 25 points
  • Interception (non-TD): 5 points
  • Fumbles lost: 5 points
  • Fumbles kept: 2 points
  • 3-turnover game: 12 points
  • 4-turnover game: 16 points
  • 5-turnover game: 24 points
  • 6-turnover game: 50 points
  • No passes of 25+ yards: 10 points
  • No passing/rushing TDs (QBs only): 10 points
  • Under 200 passing yards: 6 points
  • Under 150 passing yards: 12 points
  • Under 100 passing yards: 25 points
  • Under 50 percent completion rate: 5 points
  • Under 40 percent completion rate: 15 points
  • Under 30 percent completion rate: 25 points
  • Teammate/coach/fan argument on sidelines replayed on SportsCenter: 15 points
  • Quarterback sacked for a safety: 20 points
  • Quarterback fumble returned for touchdown: 10 points
  • Pick-six to lose a game in OT: 50 points


  • Arrested: 50 points
  • Detained/questioned by police: 10 points
  • Practice/locker room fight (physical): 20 points
  • Apology press conference: 75 points
  • Penis picture on blog: 150 points
  • Official vote of confidence from coach: 10 points
  • Bitching about his linemen: 10 points
  • Suspended: 50 points per game
  • Abruptly release the previous week’s starter: 35 points
  • Start dating anyone with the last name “Kardashian,” “Hilton,” or “Lohan,” or anyone who starred on an MTV reality show: 25 points
  • Get in a war of words with Terry Bradshaw, Trent Dilfer, or Steve Young: 25 points


  • 300-349 yards passing: -6 points
  • 350-399 yards passing: -9 points
  • 400+ yards passing: -12 points
  • 75+ yards rushing: -8 points
  • 3 passing/rushing TDs: -5 points
  • 4 passing/rushing TDs: -10 points
  • 5 passing/rushing TDs: -20 points
  • Game-winning drive (last two minutes): -12 points

Answers to Questions You Are Going to Send Us E-mails About Anyway

  • Apology Press Conferences: If an apology comes during a regularly scheduled press conference (for example: after a game, during a weekly chat with reporters on a non-game day), you get no points in the BQBL. Holding a special press conference for the purpose of apologizing does get you points. If a quarterback generically says he’s sorry while he stands half-naked in a locker room after a loss, his mea culpa does not qualify. If he says he is sorry while he wears a pinstriped suit in front of a courthouse after a preliminary hearing, it does. We will make the final call in this matter, and it will be clear in the scorecard.
  • The Terrelle Pryor Rule: Larry Bird had his own exception, Tom Brady has a case, and now Terrelle Pryor has his own rule: No quarterback’s suspensions that were handed out before the draft will count toward that team’s score.
  • 24/7 Points: Every QB on your roster is eligible for 24/7 points. That means even if you didn’t start the Seahawks on Sunday, you still get the 150 points when Tarvaris Jackson’s penis appears on a blog on Tuesday.
  • “Benched” Scoring: If your team’s quarterback led his squad to a 30-point lead and does not take the field for the final drive because the coach does not want to risk him being injured, your team scores no points. Your quarterback needs to be benched because of his poor play. If this is confusing to you, then you really don’t understand the core values of the BAD Quarterback League.

Don’t forget to get your league together for the launch of the BQBL Failure Machine and e-mail us at if you have any further questions. May the worst man win!

Filed Under: Bqbl, NFL, Robert Griffin III

David Jacoby is an ESPN producer who somehow became a writer and editor for Grantland.

Archive @ djacoby