There are 32 teams in the NFL, and over the course of league history, no quarterback has ever lost to all of them, but that’s something that could change in 2022.
As pointed out by Pro Football Talk, Colts quarterback Matt Ryan is on the verge of setting an NFL record that no QB wants to set. Since his rookie year in 2008, Ryan has lost to 29 of the league’s 32 teams, and there’s a chance that by the end of the 2022 season, he could become the first quarterback in NFL history to lose to all 32 teams.
Even if he doesn’t hit the 32-team mark, Ryan could still set the record. If he just loses to 31 different teams, he would become the first QB in league history to lose to that many different teams. Although there have been seven quarterbacks that have lost to 30 teams, no QB has ever hit the 31-team mark.
So what has to happen for Ryan to set this ugly record? Let’s take a look.
According to Pro Football Reference, there are only three teams that Ryan has never suffered a loss against — the Raiders, Jaguars and Falcons — and he’ll be facing two of those three teams during the 2022 regular season.
The Colts will play at Jacksonville in Week 2, and although that seems like a guaranteed win for Indy, I think we can all agree that’s not the case. If we learned one thing from last season, it’s that there’s no such thing as a guaranteed win for the Colts when they play in Jacksonville. The Colts have lost seven straight games on the road against the Jags dating back to 2015. Even if the Colts win in Week 2, the Jags will get another shot to beat Ryan in Week 6.
If the Jags do pull off at least one win, that would put Ryan in a situation where he’s lost to 30 different teams. At that point, Ryan would break the record if the Colts were to lose to the Raiders in Week 10. If the Jags and Raiders both beat the Colts, Ryan would become the first QB to lose to 31 different teams.
Ryan could theoretically hit the 32-team mark this season, but things would have to get a little crazy. To lose to all 32 teams, Ryan would have to also lose a game to the Falcons, which won’t be easy since Atlanta isn’t on Indy’s schedule this year. The only way the two teams could play in 2022 is if they face each other in the Super Bowl. Although the idea of the Falcons getting to the Super Bowl seems far-fetched, most people thought the same thing about a Bengals‘ Super Bowl appearance in 2021, and we all know what happened there.
If Ryan played the Falcons in the Super Bowl and lost, that would give him a loss to each of the NFL’s 32 teams. If Ryan only loses to one of the three teams this year, he would have lost to 30 different teams, which would put him in a tie with Carson Palmer, Brett Favre, Jon Kitna, Alex Smith, Drew Bledsoe, Drew Brees and Matt Hasselbeck as the quarterbacks who have lost to the most teams.
Derek Carr could also hit the 30-team mark if the Raiders lose to the Saints this year. Carr has lost to a total of 29 different teams, and of the three he’s never lost to — the Saints, Panthers and Raiders — New Orleans is the only one he’ll be facing this season.
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As for Ryan, although he could become the first QB to lose to all 32 teams, he could also join the short list of quarterbacks who have beaten all 32 teams. There are only three teams Ryan has never beaten — Falcons, Patriots and Steelers — and the Colts will be facing two of them in 2022 (New England and Pittsburgh). If he beats the Patriots and Steelers, Ryan could hit the 32-team mark with a win over Atlanta, but for that to happen, the Falcons would have to make the Super Bowl.
The good news — or bad news — for Ryan is that even if the Falcons don’t make the Super Bowl, he won’t have to wait long to face them. The Colts are scheduled to play the Falcons during the 2023 regular season, and by the time that game rolls around, a win could make Ryan just the fifth QB to beat all 32 teams or a loss could make him the first QB to lose to all 32.