The Fantasy Footballers Rankings: Top 10 Quarterbacks Recap
Andy, Mike, and Jason continue the ranking series breaking down their top 10 QBs heading into the 2020 season on Thursday’s podcast. Make sure to listen to the Top 10 Running Backs and the Top 10 Wide Receivers episodes to see which players made the cut. Listen to the Top 10 QB Rankings episode for the Ballers’ takes and more in-depth discussion on each of these players.
Don’t forget to check out the Ultimate Draft Kit for even deeper analysis, video profiles, 2020 projections, and other helpful tools for your draft.
Rankings based on 6 points per passing touchdown
1. Lamar Jackson – Andy: 1/Jason: 1/Mike: 1
There is no surprise that the number one on this list is Lamar Jackson. He averaged a touchdown every 7.4 completions and 27 of his TDs came while he was in the pocket and not on the run. He is 19-3 out of his 22 career starts throwing for over 3,000 yards and 36 touchdowns while adding over 1,200 yards rushing and 7 touchdowns. He also only lost 2 fumbles despite massive rushing volume. He’s really good, in case you missed it.
2. Patrick Mahomes – Andy: 2/Jason: 2/Mike: 2
Over 14 games, Mahomes threw 319 completions on 484 attempts for 4,031 yards and 26 touchdowns while adding 43 rush attempts for 218 yards and 2 touchdowns. Like Jackson, he also only lost 2 fumbles with a 65.9% passing completion rate. He also averages 303 passing yards and 2.5 touchdowns per game. Again, no surprise here, except if you believe Mahomes should be number one overall.
3. Dak Prescott – Andy: 3/Jason: 3/Mike: 4
Andy and Jason both have Prescott as their third-ranked QB while Mike has him ranked as his QB4. Continuing the two-fumbles-lost theme, Prescott lost the ball twice on 52 rush attempts for 277 yards and 3 touchdowns. He also threw for more yards than Jackson with 4,902 on 596 attempts and 388 completions and 30 touchdowns. He is tied for 2nd most completions of 30+ yards since 2018. He has a 70% completion rate on play-action, which OC Kellen Moore focused on early in 2019.
Unlike Jackson and Mahomes, who threw six and five interceptions respectively, Prescott threw 11 INTs in 2019. It’s not horrible, but not all that great either. We could see the passing volume increase (and possibly the interceptions) with new HC Mike McCarthy. Unlike former HC Jason Garrett who ran the offense through RB Ezekiel Elliott, McCarthy should be adding more passing to the offense. With pieces such as Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, and rookie CeeDee Lamb for Prescott to target, we could see an even better passing year in 2020.
4. Kyler Murray – Andy: 6/Jason: 5/Mike: 3
Sure, the Ballers are Arizona Cardinals fans, but Kyler Murray at number four is without any “homer” bias. In his rookie debut, Murray had 542 pass attempts with 349 completions for 3,722 yards and 20 touchdowns. He rushed 93 times for 544 yards and four touchdowns, averaging 4.9 rushing fantasy points per game. He is tied with Deshaun Watson and Daniel Jones for interceptions with 12 and is tied with Jackson, Mahomes, and Prescott with only two fumbles lost.
Adding elite WR DeAndre Hopkins to the squad will give Murray more weapons, not to mention better talent to surround him. His UDK Average Draft Position (ADP) is toward the middle of the 6th Round, the fifth QB off the board.
5. Russell Wilson – Andy: 4/Jason: 6/Mike: 6
Russell Wilson’s 86 wins are tied only with Tom Brady for the most wins over a QB’s first eight seasons. He has never finished worse than a QB11 in his entire NFL career, with three top 3 finishes in 2014, 2015, and 2017, coming in as the QB4 in 2019.
Last year, Wilson threw 341 completions on 516 attempts for 4,110 yards and 31 touchdowns with only five interceptions. He has 30+ passing TDs in four out of the last five seasons with a 101.2 career passer rating. That is 2nd highest in NFL history. He added 75 rush attempts on the ground for 342 yards and three touchdowns and, again, only two fumbles lost.
Don’t miss Mike Wright’s game – Russell Wilson or Andy Dalton!
6. Drew Brees – Andy: 5/Jason: 4/Mike: 7
It makes me so happy so to see Drew Brees on the top 10 QB every year. Like our stud QBs so far, he produces when he’s on the field. Brees missed four games last year with a thumb injury, but still had six top 10 weeks in 2019. Excluding last year and 2017 when he finished as the QB11, Brees has never had worse than a QB8 end of season rank. Since 2011, he has finished as the QB5 or better five times.
He lacks any run game to speak of, so he isn’t as dynamic as our top 5 on this list in terms of utilization. The Saints will also use swiss-army knife Taysom Hill at the goal line, sniping fantasy points from Brees on an annoyingly regular basis. Still, in the last 25 games, he has a 116 passer rating with 64 touchdowns and only nine interceptions with a 74.3% completion rate.
He is a steal in drafts, going as late as the 9th Round or later, allowing you to load up your team and cap it off with a top 10 QB.
7. Deshaun Watson – Andy: 7/Jason: 7/Mike: 5
Call him Deshaun Warlock… If Hopkins is a boost to the Arizona Cardinals, then clearly losing him is a bane in Houston. With Hopkins as the WR1, Watson threw 333 completions on 495 attempts for 3,852 yards and 26 touchdowns in 2019. Hopkins usurped 150 of Watson’s targets, 105 completions, 1,165 yards, and seven touchdowns. By himself. His loss will be keen in 2020, which is why Watson is falling in rankings as well as ADP to the 6th Round.
He still has weapons around him, albeit not Hopkins-level talent, as well as two solid pass-catching backs in Duke Johnson and David Johnson. Watson also isn’t shy about putting his body on the line rushing 82 times for 413 yards and seven touchdowns last year, keeping him firmly in the top 10 QB discussion.
8. Carson Wentz – Andy: 9/Jason: 8/Mike: 9
Wentz has some interesting stat lines that many people may be overlooking. He has the second-highest passer rating on 3rd and 4th downs since 2017, behind only Mahomes. He led the NFL with 12 passes inside the 5-yard line in 2019, and he leads the NFL with a 55% success when “shuffling”, according to Sharp Football Stats. He completed 388 of his 607 pass attempts to an offense riddled injuries for 4,039 yards, 27 touchdowns, and seven interceptions.
His current ADP is at the middle to late 9th Round as the 12th QB to go off the board. Also interesting, the Eagles’ opening schedule consists of Washington, Los Angeles Rams, and the Cincinnati Bengals.
9. Josh Allen – Andy: 10/Jason: 10/Mike: 8
If you are surprised to see Josh Allen in the top-10 discussion, let’s look back at his 2019 season. He had seven top 12 (QB1) performances and six top 24 performances (QB2), finishing the year as the QB6. Because he is forced to rely on his legs, rushing 109 times for 510 yards and nine touchdowns last year, we forget that he does have a decent arm. He attempted 461 passes (Mahomes had 484 and Watson had 495) with 271 completions for 3,089 yards and 20 touchdowns.
His receiving corps consisted of John Brown, Cole Beasley, and a sprinkle of TE Dawson Knox. The Bills added Stefon Diggs for much-needed depth at the position. Their opening schedule consists of the New York Jets, Miami Dolphins, Los Angeles Rams, and the Las Vegas Raiders. Allen is being drafted in 9th Round as the 11th QB off the board.
10. Matthew Stafford – Andy: 8/Jason: 13/Mike: 10
As happy as I was to see Drew Brees on this list, I am even happier to see Matthew Stafford make into the Ballers top 10. The term “injury risk” has been thrown about in the same sentence as Stafford, and it’s an unfair description. Despite being hit by the equivalent of a Mack truck every week, Stafford has played 16 games of the season since 2011. It took literally breaking his back to keep him off the field last year. In the eight games he played, he finished as the QB6 or better with a QB13 to add in Week 2.
Stafford’s 16-week pace based on his first eight games could have been 582 attempts with 374 completions, 4,998 yards, and 38 touchdowns had he played the whole season. This would have blown out the rest of our top 10 in terms of passing, but alas, this will remain speculation.
Stafford is healthy once again and going criminally late in drafts, around the 10th Round in a 1QB, 12-person league.