Would it be more fair to expand the pool to QBs who’ve made the Super Bowl? I feel like getting there is the real goal - not the ultimate goal, but it’s the standard we’re really talking about.
I feel like that's more reasonable in my view. Yes, the goal is to win the Super Bowl but we want the team in the game as you don't necessarily need to be the better QB to win that game. Looking at that over the past 10 years as a random cut off point (beyond that is Eli, Rogers, Roethlisberger, Brees, and Warner)
The Corpse of Peyton Manning
I don't feel like Mac's ceiling is a lot lower than some of those players in those particular season(s). Brady, Mahomes, and Wilson are pipe dreams of course - but like, 2012 Joe Flacco? The last season of Peyton Manning? Nick Foles caught on fire but otherwise didn't seem to be there. Ideally, if you want a perennial contender, you definitely want to be better at the QB position but I don't feel like at least a SB Appearance with Mac Jones is a pipe dream...the other 52 matter though.
To that point, taking the past 10 years, here is the leading receiver for those QBs (with their #2)
Cooper Kupp (Van Jefferson)
Jamarr Chase (Tee Higgins)
Mike Evans (Chris Godwin)
Travis Kelce (Tyreek Hill) (x2)
George Kittle (Deebo Samuel)
Julian Edelman (James White)
Robert Woods (Brandon Cooks)
Zach Ertz (Alshon Jeffery)
Rob Gronkowski (Brandon Cooks)
Julian Edelman (Martellus Bennett)
Julio Jones (Mohamed Sanu)
Demaryus Thomas (Emmanuel Sanders)
Greg Olsen (Ted Ginn Jr.)
Rob Gronkowski (Julian Edelman)
Doug Baldwin (Jermaine Kearse)
Golden Tate (Doug Baldiwn)
Demaryus Thomas (Eric Decker)
Anquan Boldin (Torrey Smith)
Michael Crabtree (Vernon Davis)
So, obviously mixed bags there too but outside of the Legion of Boom Seahawks, and Kaepernick's Niners,, that's a lot more offensive talent - whether it's safety blankets or dynamic field stretchers - than Mac has had to work with. Espeically in the last six years or so. A lot of them also had some top flight runningbacks to help out on the ground - which I think Rham can be and how New England won some of their titles of course - but I struggle to compare Mac when he doesn't really have a guy who can steal those catches and plays for him like a lot of those guys at the top can.
Not to make excuses for Mac on the whole - I have no idea how it'll turn out and I trust the team knows if and when they need to move on or what to do - but I do think that we need to consider surrounding talent and coaching for better (Rham is a monster, the defense makes his job a lot easier most days) and worse (the lack of high quality targets for instance).