Week 1 started with a bang especially at the top with some true week-winning performances. Here are the top-12 scoring fantasy QBs for Week 1 and a notation on the correct prediction from last week’s article.
- Lamar Jackson– 33.56 pts (x)
- Dak Prescott– 33.4 pts (x)
- Deshaun Watson– 30.72 pts (x)
- Matthew Stafford– 27.6 pts
- Patrick Mahomes– 27.32 pts (x)
- Case Keenum– 27.2 pts
- Tom Brady– 25.64 pts (x)
- Carson Wentz– 25.02 pts (x)
- Marcus Mariota– 24.32 pts
- Philip Rivers– 23.92 pts (x)
- Kyler Murray– 21.62 pts
- Drew Brees– 20.8 pts (x)
Eight out of 12 is a great start to the season including all four of the top-tier and hitting on a couple old-timers in Brady and Rivers, who were both outside of the consensus top-12. The biggest wins of last week were fading some elite QBs that all finished outside the top-12: Ben Roethlisberger (QB27), Aaron Rodgers (QB24), Matt Ryan (QB14), Jared Goff (QB28), and Cam Newton (QB34).
Here is a reminder on how I organize each week’s top-12 before we move on to discuss Week 2.
Four-Sures: Top-4 for the week and definite must-starts.
Com-Four-table: Four QBs with relatively safe floors with added upside to be a solid top-12 choice.
Four In the Door: Four QBs who could sneak into the top-12 including the Ballers “Stream of the Week” options and at least one daring dart throw.
Four-Get-About-It: Four QBs I’m fading this week and projecting to finish outside the top 12. Often this includes some higher-profile QBs with tougher matchups that could underperform.
***IMPORTANT NOTE*** There are 15-20 viable QB starts each week. If you don’t see your guy listed on here, that’s ok. This article is about predicting the top 12 not necessarily who is safest. I’d strongly advise you to follow Andy, Mike, and Jason’sadvice for where they have QBs ranked for Week 2.
Patrick Mahomes @ OAK
This guy is from another planet. The Chiefs have a 31 point team implied total on the road against a team that was dead last in pass DVOA in 2018. Mahomes is completely immune from any road woes as he averaged 30 fantasy points away from Arrowhead, best in the NFL. He’s the QB1 every week even without Tyreek Hill for the time being.
Tom Brady @ MIA
THE PATRIOTS ARE 18.5 POINT FAVORITES… ON THE ROAD. I’ll stop my yelling now but that is an insane spread which shows the massive discrepancy between arguably the best and worst teams in the NFL. The Dolphins basically rolled over and played dead last week as Lamar Jackson threw for 324 yards and five TDs on only 20 attempts. Last year, Miami was bottom-4 against pass-catching RBs, WR1s, and WR2s in DVOA. Atrocious. With or without Antonio Brown, Brady is a top-tier play in what should be an absolute steamroll. Ignore any historical narratives about how the Patriots travel poorly to Miami… this will not be close.
Deshaun Watson vs JAX
Watson came through last week in a big way but was sacked six times. That type of weekly abuse isn’t going to hold up long-term. This divisional matchup sets up well as the Texans are 9-point home favorites against rookie Gardner Minshew. The Jags were destroyed last week by Patrick Mahomes & Co. and Watson and his arsenal of pass-catchers should be able to get the job done. He’s the Ballers Consensus QB4.
Lamar Jackson vs ARZ
LJax balled out last week as the #1 QB and could definitely turn in a fantasy changing season. He didn’t even have to use his legs last week, but he averaged 70 rushing yards per game over the final eight weeks of 2018. With the 3rd highest team implied total (29.8) of the week at home against the lowly Cardinals, the Ravens should roll once again. Jackson is the Ballers Consensus QB3 for Week 2.
Carson Wentz @ ATL
Wentz and the Eagles got into a 17-0 hole early on against the Redskins last week but he fought back with a couple of monster TDs to new teammate DeSean Jackson. The Falcons have been one of the worst pass defenses in the league ranking 29th in pass DVOA and 31st in overall defensive DVOA. Even on the road, the Eagles are 1-point favorites with a 26 point team implied total. Wentz is Mike’s QB3 on the week.
Dak Prescott @ WAS
Dak is set up to dominate once again after throwing for over 400 yards and 4 TDs. The change in offensive coordinator (Kellen Moore) has sparked this Cowboys passing attack to move into the 21st century and adapt with 3WR looks. The Redskins gave up 25 fantasy points per week (23rd in the league) last year and we shouldn’t be intimidated at all by Josh Norman. He’s is not the same player anymore and was roasted last week by Alshon Jeffrey and DeSean Jackson. Dak is Andy’s QB Start of the Week.
Jared Goff vs NO
Goff looked rough last week on the road but hopefully, you didn’t play him per this article advice. The Rams are due for a shootout at home against New Orleans with a 28 point team implied total. Last year, Goff averaged the most fantasy points (25.4) of any QB at home. Many owners likely dropped Goff so if you are in need of a streamer, Goff is a great option in Week 2. Goff is Mike’s QB Start of the Week.
Matt Ryan vs PHI
The Falcons fell flat last week in Minnesota but Matty Ice was a recommended sit. Ryan at home is a different animal as he completed 72% of his passes and averaged 296 passing yards per game in 2018. The Eagles made Case Keenum into the QB6 last week and they ranked 23rd against fantasy QBs in 2018. Ryan is the Ballers Consensus QB6.
Four in the Door
Josh Allen @ NYG
Josh Stallion led the Bills to a comeback victory against the Jets and now he gets to face New York’s other team. The Giants ranked 26th in DVOA versus the pass in 2018 and made Dak Prescott look deserving a major contract extension with 406 passing yards and 4 TDs. Allen had a league-leading 11.2 aDOT so he’s not afraid to push the ball down the field. We all know about his rushing equity as he added 38 rushing yards and a TD last week.
Ben Roethlisberger vs SEA
Big Ben at home isn’t a new narrative to share but a constant storyline that he’s embraced his entire career. After being embarrassed by the Patriots last week, Roethlisberger is a fine streamer as noted by Andy on Tuesday’s podcast. Andy Dalton lit up these Seahawks last week allowing over 400 passing yards. Roethlisberger is Jason’s QB9 and should see the type of passing volume we’re chasing for fantasy QBs.
Derek Carr vs KC
Carr looked competent last week in his Monday Night win over the Broncos. However, he has been otherworldly the last two seasons when playing the Chiefs at home. Carr went for 417/3 TDs and 285/3 TDs in those two contests. The Chiefs ranked 26th in pass DVOA and gave up the most 20+ yard pass plays in 2018. Carr will have to match Mahomes if he wants to keep up in a game with the highest over/under (53.5) of Week 2.
Kirk Cousins @ GB
This is a complete dart throw. I’m assuming fantasy owners are disappointed with Cousins as he attempted 10 passes last week against the lowly Falcons defense. He needs to be on our radar this week even on the road in Lambeau as the Packers ranked 28th in DVOA versus the pass and dead last against pass-catching RBs in 2018. They also allowed the 4th most fantasy points to opposing WRs. Cousins torched the Packers last year en route to finishing as the QB4 and QB2 in his two starts against his NFC North rival. He’s more of a contrarian DFS play as you likely have better options in a redraft league.
Drew Brees @ LAR
I hate going against the future Hall of Famer as the Saints could go off in any game. But the home/road splits for Brees are drastic as he averaged just 217 passing yards on the road versus 321 per game at the Superdome. The Rams ranked 9th best in DVOA versus the pass in 2018 and have a disruptive defensive line that could cause some major issues. The game total is worth the price of admission but Brees doesn’t fully have my trust on the road.
Aaron Rodgers vs MIN
It was tough to fade Rodgers last week so why am I doing it again as he returns home to Lambeau? He’s had particular trouble with these Vikings finishing as the QB21 & QB25 versus his division rival last year. The Vikings gave up the 2nd fewest fantasy points to QBs and ranked 5th in pass DVOA in 2018. He’s always a candidate to go off but this isn’t the same Rodgers of years ago who was automatic for fantasy.
Kyler Murray @ BAL
The rookie showed some moxie coming all the way back to lead the Cardinals to an overtime tie versus the Lions. But this week… Yikes. Baltimore is where fantasy points go to die. The Ravens ranked 3rd best in pass DVOA and gave up the 3rd fewest passing TDs. As 13 point underdogs on the road, it doesn’t look pretty. There could be some garbage time and the Cardinals will amass yards based on the sheer number of plays. Murray is a recommended sit.
Matthew Stafford vs LAC
After finishing as the QB4 last week, Stafford has equaled his total from 2018 as he registered only one top-12 performance. The Chargers have an excellent secondary that gave up the 7th fewest fantasy points to opposing QBs in 2018. As a 2.5 point home underdog, I don’t love what Vegas is telling us about Stafford and the Lions.
Last Week: 8/12
2019 Overall Percentage: 66.7%