It is pretty amazing that the most important position to a football team is also the one you can wait on in fantasy. Many draft analysts are advising to select your starting quarterback in later rounds, and while I agree there is a balance of depth, there are some you might want to pay extra attention to. Keep in mind when doing my projections I assume healthy seasons for all players, and round up what I think their ceiling can be for this season. This is done across the board so it does not affect their ranking on my list.
..:: Three Up ::..
Josh Freeman, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
I am not worried about the way in which he finished the 2012 season. What I see is a quarterback who is still just 25 years of age, has nice options as his receivers, and is playing in a contract season. He has shown in the past he can be very efficient and this is the season he breaks out and puts up similar numbers to his 2010 season, when he finished with a QB rating of 95.9. An average draft position of 156 is a sign many people are down on him going into this season, but I have him finishing in my Top 10. QB1 value that you can get after the 12th round can only be viewed as a Super Sleeper. Feel comfortable taking Freeman no later than the 10th or you may lose out to another savvy owner.
Andy Dalton, Cincinnati Bengals
By the time the season begins, and HBO’s Hard Knocks has concluded, Dalton may have won over quite a few new fans. Entering his third professional season he looks to continue his trend of increasing passing yards, completion percentage, and touchdowns, while lowering his interceptions. The Bengals went out and added some weapons for Dalton to play with and the results should be terrific. He is on the verge of cracking the Top 10 for QB’s and this year could even threaten to be in the Top 5. An ADP of 120 means you can get a steal by drafting a stud at a bargain price. I would not hesitate to take him as my first quarterback around the 8th round.
Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts
While all the rage surrounds RG3, Colin Kaepernick, and Russell Wilson, last year’s number one pick is quietly still better than all of them. An improved running game led by Ahmad Bradshaw, an added deep threat in Darrius Heyward-Bey, and a change in the offensive game plan will all add to an increased completion percentage, passing yards, and touchdowns. Don’t forget he too will get you some added yards and touchdowns with his legs, numbers not as gaudy as the aforementioned but still appreciated. I have Luck finishing as the number four quarterback this year, yet he is being drafted as the 10th QB off the board. Risk waiting for him to fall to you in the 6th, or be bold and take him in the 4th? My money says you will be much happier with the latter.
..:: Three Down ::..
Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49’ers
This is not to say I think he, or any one on my Busts list, will have a bad year but they are being ranked way too high for you to gamble with them being your starting quarterback. As efficient as Kaepernick was in leading the 49’ers to the Super Bowl, the bulk of it came from his ability to scramble. Questions concerning his receivers, as well as teams having a better game plan for stopping him, will all lead to him taking a step back from his breakout 2012 performance. He may very well finish among the top 15 (I have him at 11) but an ADP of 60 translates to reaching too high for similar production that can be obtained later on.
Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks
Many of the same questions and criticism that I have about Kaepernick are also true for Wilson. I loved him coming out of college, and like everyone else I was blown away by his productive rookie season. However, it is ridiculous to expect him to be that efficient again. A slight regression does not mean a bad season for he or the Seahawks, it just means I do not want to put all of my eggs in his basket this year as my fantasy starter. Currently going as the 75th pick, you could easily get the same numbers from someone else 2-3 rounds later.
Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys
Every year it seems as though Romo appears on multiple sleeper lists, and this season is no different. Those predictions have never panned out. Is he good? Yes. Is he great? No. The biggest problem I have with Romo is not just his inconsistency, but he does nothing to excite me as an owner. An ADP of 81 puts him near the end of the 6th round, and to me that is very high for a weekly unknown who is boring. You could do worse than to have him but you can also do a lot better. Let someone else take the gamble that this is finally the year he puts it all together. Draft with caution and at your own risk.
The Peoplez Perspective 2013 Fantasy Football Quarterback Projections:
(Rankings based on 6 pts per TD pass/rush, 1 pt per 20 yds pass, 1 pt per 10 yds rush)
|7||Robert Griffin III||WAS||3500/25/10||600/6||65.8|