2022 NFL Draft Rookie Landing Spots: QBs (Fantasy Football)
The QB position saw it’s greatest decline in terms of draft capital in quite some time. With only one 1st rounder and none taken in the second, NFL teams were adamant about declaring that this QB class lacked high-end franchise signal-callers.
However, it is worth noting that the landing spots and depth charts many of these QBs find themselves in are encouraging for their dynasty prospects. Some of them have an aging veteran in front of them or a team willing to transition within the next year. Let’s look at the landing spots for these QBs and briefly discuss their fantasy outlook.
Kenny Pickett – Pittsburgh Steelers
Round 1, Pick 20th overall
Home sweet home. Seriously, this was a fairy tale unfolding before our eyes as In a draft bereft of QB talent, Pickett had the combination of the landing spot, the narrative, and the system that should set him up for NFL success. Pittsburgh has success developing WRs and the entire cast (including Najee Harris, Pat Freiermuth) makes this a win for Pickett as well.
Fantasy Outlook: It’s only a matter of time before Mitch Trubisky is unseated by Pickett. There is no exact timetable that takes Pickett off any redraft radar for 2022. However, in SuperFlex dynasty rookie drafts, he’s a top-5 pick and an early 2nd rounder in 1QB leagues.
Rookie QB leaders in adjusted completion % on throws 10-19 yards down field last year:
1. Kenny Pickett 69.7%
2. Carson Strong 69.1%
3. Matt "Golden" Corral 68.9%
4. Sam Howell 68.7%
5. Brock Purdy 67.7%
6. Bailey Zappe 62%
7. Desmond Ridder 61.9%
8. Malik Willis 50% 😬 pic.twitter.com/ZrMKMD7Bo9
— Fantasy Footballers (@TheFFBallers) April 6, 2022
Desmond Ridder – Atlanta Falcons
Round 3, Pick 74th overall
The Falcons patiently waited for a QB and selected Ridder in the 3rd round, only the 2nd QB off the board at that point. He finds himself in a great situation behind Marcus Mariota with the potential to be eased into an eventual starting role. He’s oddly similar to the veteran in terms of dual-threat ability. Ridder is responsible for putting Cincinnati on the map as a legitimate college football program after starting all four years in college. His senior season was by far the best and he likely moved himself up a round or two from his combine performance. He outpaced all the other QBs clocking in at 4.52 as well as throwing the ball downfield accurately, a trait he did not showcase a ton in college.
Fantasy Outlook: Ridder might find his way onto the field at some point this year, especially as the Falcons project to be one of the worst teams in the NFL. In dynasty leagues, he’s a worthy stash in the early 3rd round of rookie drafts.
Malik Willis – Tennessee Titans
Round 3, Pick 86th overall
This was the shocker of the draft. At one point, Willis was the betting favorite to go No. 2 overall to the Lions. But as we inched closer to the draft, it was clear that the NFL teams obviously thought there were some major holes in his game especially adjusting to this level of competition. I wrote his Rookie Profile and noted “He can give Jalen Hurts-like rushing numbers from Day 1. As a passer, he has better raw tools but his decision-making is going to be his biggest litmus test at the next level.” It’s clear he’s not ready so expect 2022 for him to be used as a gadget player and an understudy to Ryan Tannehill.
Fantasy Outlook: He’s still compelling in dynasty as Tannehill’s cap number goes down tremendously in 2023 where the Titans could trade or cut him for $18.8 million. Willis now slides to the back of the first round in SuperFlex rookie drafts and a late 2nd round rookie pick in 1QB leagues.
Matt Corral – Carolina Panthers
Round 3, Pick 94th overall
Corral was one of the more intriguing options coming into the draft given his quick decision-making and mobility. The landing spot with the Panthers is ideal and the fact Carolina traded a 4th and a 2023 3rd round pick to move up to get him is encouraging. The Panthers had very little draft capital to work with. It shouldn’t shock anyone if he starts for this team at some point in 2022.
Fantasy Outlook: The Panthers will likely start the year with Sam Darnold but it’s clear he’s not the long-term answer. Corral showed up in big-time spots in the SEC and has the type of competitiveness and mobility to be able to play at the next level. He’s a roll of the dice but grabbing him at the end of your rookie drafts.
Bailey Zappe – New England Patriots
Round 4, Pick 137th overall
Zappe has a ton of CFB records to his name including the single-season records for passing yards (5,967 yards) and passing touchdowns (62). It was still a bit surprising New England spent a 4th round pick here a year after taking Mac Jones 15th overall. But at the end of the day, the Patriots’ draft board is compiled completely different from everyone else in the league. We can’t argue with Uncle Bill on much but drafting offensive players has not been his strong suit.
Fantasy Outlook: Zappe will battle Brian Hoyer and Jarrett Stidham for the backup job behind Mac Jones.
Sam Howell – Washington Commanders
Round 5, Pick 144th overall
A year ago, Howell was one of the betting favorites to go No. 1 overall and fell after many of his North Carolina teammates (Javonte Williams, Michael Carter, Dyami Brown) went to the NFL. UNC had inexperienced skill position players and Howell’s early performance in college was washed out but a less than stellar final campaign. Washington is a spot where he can wait and bide his time.
Fantasy Outlook: It’s rare to be able to call a 5th-round QB selection as a steal and perhaps a dynasty stash worth making but Howell finds himself in a situation where within a year, his name could be called upon. Who knows how the Carson Wentz experiment will go with his 3rd franchise. A year
Chris Oladokun – Pittsburgh Steelers
Round 7, Pick 241th overall
You probably need to Google the name before realizing Oladokun transferred twice in college starting at South Florida, then to Samford and finishing up his collegiate career as a South Dakota State Jackrabbit. It’s odd after taking Pickett in the 1st they would close out this draft with another QB. But when you have Mason Rudolph on the roster, you need all the chances you can get to bring in some competition.
Fantasy Outlook: Zilch. None.
Skylar Thompson – Miami Dolphins
Round 7, Pick 247th overall
This dude has been around forever as Kansas State’s QB since 2017! His age (24) and lack of any high-end production make it shocking he was drafted. Thompson never threw for more than twelve passing TDs in a season. Yes, he battled injuries but he’s likely a practice squad guy behind Tua Tagovailoa and Teddy Bridgewater in Miami.
Fantasy Outlook: None to speak of.
Brock Purdy – San Francisco 49ers
Round 7, Pick 262th overall
Mr. Irrelevant (aka the last pick in the draft) was one of the more relevant college football players over the last four years. He’s been around a while playing with NFLers Hakeem Butler, David Montgomery, Kene Nwangu, Breece Hall, and Charlie Kolar at Iowa State.
Fantasy Outlook: He’ll battle Nate Sudfeld for the No. 2 job but likely will be 3rd or leading the practice squad.