The Colts traded for Matt Ryan because they were looking to switch to more of a grownup at quarterback. Somebody who could avoid making the key mistakes. But that hasn’t happened.

Instead, they’ve gotten worse at the position than they were with Carson Wentz. They’ve had pass protection issues, and with Ryan being an older, immobile quarterback, he’s been unable to avoid being snowed under.

Through four games, Ryan has fumbled 9 times. Per the search tools at, that ties as the 3rd-most by any quarterback in the last 30 years.

There have been 22 quarterbacks who’ve fumbled at least 7 times in their first four games in the last 30 years. Of that group, about a third had another 8-plus fumbles left in them. At the top of the leaderboard, I see 2002 Daunte Culpepper (23 fumbles) and 1996 Tony Banks (21 fumbles).

Culpepper, oddly, finished with the best overall quarterbacking numbers in that 2002 season (though I suppose it might be different if docking him 2 points for each fumble).

Of those 22, 10 finished the season with top-15 quarterbacking numbers, but that speaks more to how many games they started rather than how effective they were. With cumulative stat rankings (particularly at QB and RB), guys who stay in the lineup tend to make the top 15.

In the table below, the number of fumbles in Weeks 1-4 appear next to the player’s name. His total fumbles for the year are also listed.

YearPlayer (Fum)StPassTDPRunTDRFumPtsRk
1992Ran. Cunningham, Phil. (7)15277519549513299.73
1992Kelly Stouffer, Sea. (7)790033701260.737
1993Jim Harbaugh, Chi. (7)1520027277415180.917
1996Tony Banks, St.L. (10)13254415212021210.415
1997Scott Mitchell, Det. (8)1634841983115266.59
1998Trent Green, Was. (7)14344123117214291.08
1998Jeff George, Oak. (7)71186420775.540
1999Brian Griese, Den. (8)13303214138216233.415
2000Cade McNown, Chi. (7)91646832638164.926
2001Daunte Culpepper, Min. (7)11261214416516267.215
2002Daunte Culpepper, Min. (8)163853186091023387.61
2004Chad Hutchinson, Chi. (7)59034140862.638
2005Chad Pennington, NYJ (8)35302270837.250
2006Carson Palmer, Cin. (7)1640352837015317.56
2006David Carr, Hou. (8)16276711195216215.920
2006Kurt Warner, Ariz. (10)513776301093.238
2006Jay Cutler, Den. (7)510019180887.940
2007Josh McCown, Oak. (7)9115110143011113.931
2009Jason Campbell, Was. (7)16361820236113290.515
2009Josh Freeman, T.B. (7)9185510161010153.027
2011Michael Vick, Phil. (7)13330318589110302.112
2019Kyle Allen, Car. (6)12332217106213256.727
2022Matt Ryan, Ind. (9)????????

Statistics compiled using search tools at

—Ian Allan