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A quarterback (often abbreviated as QB) is considered the most important position in American Football. The quarterback is usually responsible for initiating offensive plays, calling sometimes changing the coach's play by calling an "audible" after the players have lined up.

The most important traits for a quarterback are leadership, thriving under pressure, and a strong, accurate throwing arm. Quickness and agility are becoming increasingly important, in order to run occasionally for a first down and to avoid being "sacked". Throwing interceptions can be disastrous and single-handedly cause a loss for the team.

Due to their high visibility and level of importance, quarterbacks are usually the "star players" of a team, earning a large salary and lots of public attention.

Prominent quarterbacks include conservative Jack Kemp, who championed the Kemp-Roth Tax Cuts in the early 1980s, and pro-life, outspokenly Christian Tim Tebow, considered one of the greatest college players of all time.