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FANTASY FOOTBALL DRAFT KIT

2013 Player Rankings: Quarterbacks
Updated: September 4, 2013   Print this page Print 
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Sam Bradford - STL YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 18
Keeper: 15
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 2%
2010 STL 16 354 590 3512 18 15 27 63 1
2011 STL 10 191 357 2164 6 6 18 26  
2012 STL 16 328 551 3702 21 13 37 127 1
Avg   14 291 499 3126 15 11 27 72 1
Proj STL       4060 26 10   80  

(+Upside) Bradford had an incrementally better season in 2012 - more along the lines of what was expected after 2010 when he was the rookie of the year. Bradford ended with 3702 yards and 21 touchdowns against only 13 interceptions and ran in one other score. He remains outside the realm of fantasy starters but changes in this offseason may change that. New HC Jeff Fisher installed the new offense in 2012 and spent the offseason professing confidence in Bradford and saying that the problem was a lack of receivers - and there is some truth there. The Rams drafted top rookie wideout Tavon Austin and brought over TE Jared Cook. Brian Quick and Chris Givens are both entering their second season and overall it all looks up here for Bradford. The rushing effort has lost Steven Jackson and may take a step backwards but even if that happened it would just mean even more passes.

Tom Brady - NEP YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 6
Keeper: 7
Auction 10: 8%
Auction 12: 10%
2010 NEP 16 324 492 3900 36 4 31 30 1
2011 NEP 16 401 611 5235 39 12 43 109 3
2012 NEP 16 401 637 4827 34 8 23 32 4
Avg   16 375 580 4654 36 8 32 57 3
Proj NEP       4560 33 8   60 3

(-Risk) Brady enters his 14th season and at the age of 36 he is definitely playing the back nine. But his level of play has not diminished and he comes off a solid 2012 campaign with 4827 yards and 34 touchdowns with only eight interceptions. He even had a career best four rushing scores. Brady will show his age soon enough but no reason to expect it to show up this season. He has a bad passing schedule but he always does and this one is relatively lighter than most. He will have to make do without Wes Welker. And there are at least potential problems with Rob Gronkowski back and arm needing offseason surgeries. This appears to be the least formidable group of wideouts that Brady has employed in quite a while led by the ever-injured Danny Amedola. But if there is any offense that can make-do with whatever they have on hand it is the Patriots. This season won't be any easier for Brady, but there is no reason to shy away from him either.

09-26-13 Update: The release of Aaron Hernandez today means that Brady is going to need to completely remake his receiver corps unless Gronkowski gets healthy in time. Brady has excelled at making stars from average players in the past but he'll be challenged with the toughest challenge he'll have in a decade.

Drew Brees - NOS YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 1
Keeper: 1
Auction 10: 11%
Auction 12: 12%
2010 NOS 16 448 658 4620 33 22 18 -3  
2011 NOS 16 468 657 5476 46 14 21 86 1
2012 NOS 16 422 670 5177 43 19 15 5 1
Avg   16 446 662 5091 41 18 18 29 1
Proj NOS       5000 40 16   20 1

Brees will be a fantasy legend long after he's stopped playing. At 34, that time is coming but there is hardly any signs of aging for the only quarterback who not only threw for 5000 yards in two successive years, but of the six times any quarterback exceeded 5000 yards - Brees had half of them. And two of the top three of all time. He returns almost the exact same players from last year and HC Sean Payton and all that distraction from last year is over. For seven seasons in New Orleans, Brees has been an elite quarterback every single year.

Matt Cassel - MIN YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 36
Keeper: 36
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010 KCC 15 262 450 3116 27 7 33 125  
2011 KCC 9 160 269 1713 10 9 25 99  
2012 KCC 9 161 277 1796 6 12 27 145 1
Avg   11 194 332 2208 14 9 28 123 0
Proj MIN       1000 8 6   40  

After cashing in on his one magic season running the Patriots offense, Cassel leaves the Chiefs after four seasons. He's been an injury problem with only nine games played in each of the last two years but he's been adept at scoring touchdowns when healthy. Unfortunately, his yardage was rarely much and the Vikings prefer to let Adrian Peterson score those shorter touchdowns. Cassel may end up the starter again though since Christian Ponder is just above to use up the last of the Vikings patience unless he shows significant improvement this year. In either case, Cassel is not worth owning unless you somehow got stuck with Ponder in a 32 team league.

Kirk Cousins - WAS YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 39
Keeper: 39
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010                    
2011                    
2012 WAS 3 33 48 466 4 3 3 22  
Avg   3 33 48 466 4 3 3 22 0
Proj WAS       400 4 2   20  

Cousins only really started only one game for the Redskins but he rolled up 329 passing yards and two scores in Cleveland during week 15. His value is entirely contingent on the health of Robert Griffin and Cousins may end up as the starter in week one. His fantasy value lies only in being insurance for the RG3 owner.

Jay Cutler - CHI YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 11
Keeper: 13
Auction 10: 3%
Auction 12: 3%
2010 CHI 15 261 432 3274 23 16 50 232 1
2011 CHI 10 182 314 2319 13 7 18 55 1
2012 CHI 15 255 434 3033 19 14 41 233  
Avg   13 233 393 2875 18 12 36 173 1
Proj CHI       4100 25 14   100 2

(+Upside) Four seasons in Chicago have not done much for the fantasy fortunes of Cutler but that may be changing this year. Marc Trestman imports a West Coast offense this year that loves to throw to tall receivers. The quick drop and release should help Cutler stop being the leagues favorite tacking dummy for defensive ends. Back in Denver, Cutler was as good as 4526 passing yards in a season and many of those went to Brandon Marshall. The passing schedule is about average and the Bears are shifting away from being a defensive/rushing team to a more pass-intensive attack. That has to help Cutler's stats and gives him more upside than any year he has been in Chicago. He has the potential for top ten numbers and if the other wide receivers step up - he could be a very nice surprise for fantasy drafters.

Andy Dalton - CIN YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 15
Keeper: 14
Auction 10: 3%
Auction 12: 3%
2010                    
2011 CIN 16 300 516 3398 20 13 37 152 1
2012 CIN 16 329 528 3669 27 16 47 120 4
Avg   16 315 522 3534 24 15 42 136 3
Proj CIN       4000 27 15   100 1

Two seasons in and the Bengals are still not happy with Dalton. He does come off a very credible season with 3669 yards and 27 scores but that's mostly playing pitch-n-catch with A.J. Green (97-1350-11). No other wideout gained more than 533 yards or four touchdowns. OC Jay Gruden says that Dalton must work on both his touch and deep ball. Problem is that Dalton is considered as a weak arm and is not likely to develop into a deep thrower. But the team drafted Tyler Eifert as the best tight end in the draft and there is hope that all the injury problems for wideouts are over. The schedule is worse than most though the two matchups with the Ravens may be better from now on. Dalton needs to take the next step and should have at least an incrementally better offense this season. He still remains a great fantasy backup but not quite good enough to merit being an every week starter.

Ryan Fitzpatrick - HOU YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 35
Keeper: 35
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010 BUF 13 255 441 3000 23 15 40 269  
2011 BUF 16 353 569 3832 24 23 56 215  
2012 BUF 16 306 505 3400 24 16 48 197 1
Avg   15 305 505 3411 24 18 48 227 0
Proj HOU       1100 9 9   20  

Fitzpatrick left Buffalo after four seasons of being an albatross around Chan Gailey's neck. In fairness, he was relatively productive with 23+ touchdowns in each of the last three years but his yardage was always below average and worse yet he was more noted for making bad decisions and losing games. He replaces Matt Hasselbeck as the back-up for Jake Locker which so far means Fitzpatrick will need to fill in for at least four to eight games while Locker is injured yet again. His fantasy value - if any - comes later in the year when he gets to play.

Joe Flacco - BAL YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 23
Keeper: 20
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010 BAL 16 306 489 3622 25 10 43 84 1
2011 BAL 16 312 542 3610 20 12 39 88 1
2012 BAL 16 317 531 3817 22 10 32 22 3
Avg   16 312 521 3683 22 11 38 65 2
Proj BAL       3700 22 12   40  

Credit Joe Flacco with being the master of timing and good fortune. No matter that a Flacco offense has never been more productive than ranking 14th best in yardage or 15th best in passing touchdowns, he rode the Super Bowl win to a monster paycheck. As happens nearly every season, the Ravens were the improbable "play like they never played before" team and Flacco passed for three scores in each of his last three playoff games. He only had three in all of the regular season and threw for just 20 scores. This season Flacco lost his #1 wideout Anquan Boldin who was not replaced. The Ravens did not even bother with offense in the NFL draft until their fifth pick. Flacco has been locked at around 3600-3800 yards per season and roughly 20-25 touchdowns. That will be challenging enough to reach unless Jacoby Jones can stop dancing and morph into being the next Boldin.

07-30-13 Update: The loss of Anquan Boldin to the 49ers and now Dennis Pitta is gone means Flacco is missing a huge chunk of his passing game. Pitta was his safety blanket and the outlook for Flacco takes a significant hit.

Matt Flynn - GBP YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 33
Keeper: 38
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010 GBP 7 40 66 433 3 2 9 26  
2011 GBP 5 33 49 518 6 2 13 -6 1
2012 SEA 3 5 9 68     4 -5  
Avg   5 26 41 340 3 1 9 5 0
Proj GBP       1500 12 15   20 1

Flynn tries to reboot his career again. After spending four seasons in Green Bay, he went to be the starter in Seattle. But one Russell Wilson later, Flynn once again was holding a clipboard. Now he has a legitimate chance to be a starter with nothing more than Terrelle Pryor and rookie Tyler Wilson to get in the way. The Raiders have a softer passing schedule than most and are installing yet another new offense. This time OC Greg Olson will be installing a more traditional scheme that hopes to return the run game to the Raiders. The same mediocre receivers are on the offense so there is no reason to expect any quarterback to have enough success to merit a fantasy start.

Nick Foles - PHI YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 38
Keeper: 37
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010                    
2011 CIN 16                
2012 PHI 7 161 265 1699 6 5 11 42 1
Avg   12 81 133 850 3 3 6 21 1
Proj PHI       800 5 5   30  

Foles played well in his rookie season when he replaced the injured Vick. He threw for over 300 yards twice and was on a four game scoring streak before missing the final week with a hairline fracture in his throwing hand. He was also the subject of much trade speculation which never materialized. Foles is in the running for the starting job but he's less likely to start in week one and in a long-term sense Matt Barkley is more likely to take over. Barring training camp developments, Foles returns to being the #2 QB and may remain that way all year even when Vick is injured.

Josh Freeman - FA YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 20
Keeper: 26
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010 TBB 16 291 474 3451 25 6 68 364  
2011 TBB 15 346 551 3592 16 22 55 238 4
2012 TBB 16 306 558 4065 27 17 39 139  
Avg   16 314 528 3703 23 15 54 247 1
Proj FA       3900 24 18   70  

Freeman used his fourth season to set career marks in yardage (4065) and touchdowns (27) though his rushing stats were the lowest. That's in no small part thanks to Doug Martin's success. Freeman ended up ranked around 13th in most league scoring so right outside of a fantasy starter. But he also slowed down his pace from week 12 onward. In the first ten games, he tossed 21 touchdowns but then only managed six over the final six games. This is the final year of his rookie contract, so Freeman has every reason to want to show up big this season and get paid. Otherwise, the Buccaneers might move on to someone new in 2014.

Blaine Gabbert - SFO YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 28
Keeper: 28
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010                    
2011 JAC 15 210 413 2214 12 11 48 98  
2012 JAC 10 162 278 1662 9 6 18 56  
Avg   13 186 346 1938 11 9 33 77 0
Proj SFO       3400 18     50 1

Gabbert enters training camp "on equal footing" with Chad Henning and there will be a competition as if there is something new to discover after two years of Gabbert and a season of Henne. When it was just Gabbert in 2011, the Jags placed 31st in passing yardage and Gabbert only threw 11 touchdowns with his 2214 passing yards. Last year he was on a similar pace with 1662 yards after ten games he injured his elbow and did not play again. Henne looked great in relief, if only because he was compared to Gabbert. There is no fantasy value here and if Gabbert somehow wins the competition, it means a downgrade to the receivers that already are short Justin Blackmon for the first month.

Robert Griffin III - WAS YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 9
Keeper: 8
Auction 10: 5%
Auction 12: 5%
2010                    
2011                    
2012 WAS 15 258 393 3200 20 5 120 815 7
Avg   15 258 393 3200 20 5 120 815 7
Proj WAS       3800 25 7   480 4

(-Risk) No questions still lingering about the 2012 Rookie of the Year's skill set. RG3 brought the Redskins into the playoffs, he passed for 3200 yards and 20 touchdowns while also rushing for 815 yards and seven more scores. He landed top ten among fantasy quarterbacks no matter what scoring you used. But he also suffered tears in his ACL, LCL and PCL ligaments. His rehabilitation has gone well by all accounts and while some speculate he will be ready to go in week one, even he said he won't play unless he is 100%. HC Mike Shanahan who was crucified for letting him play on a bad knee also said he will wait for RG3 to be completely healthy before he plays. So until the season draws very close and his knee status is definitively known, RG3 is at risk of missing training camp and opening the season on the PUP list. Backup QB Kirk Cousins played very well in relief last year and gives them confidence should they want to go that route. The Redskins did nothing to upgrade his receivers which will depress what he could do with even one above average receiver.

Chad Henne - JAC YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 34
Keeper: 34
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010 MIA 15 301 490 3301 15 19 35 52  
2011 MIA 4 64 112 868 4 4 15 112 1
2012 JAC 10 166 308 2084 11 11 19 64 1
Avg   10 177 303 2084 10 11 23 76 1
Proj JAC       1300 7 10   50  

Amazingly the Jaguars did not acquire any more competition at QB and yet will allow Blaine Gabbert to openly compete for the starting job even though Henne was everything that Gabbert has never been. Henne stepped in and started the final seven games. He threw three games over 298 yards and had multiple touchdowns in three matchups. Chances are good that Henne wins the job but even if they go with Gabbert in week one, there is no lock that they will stick with him. Messy situation to steer clear of for now.

Colin Kaepernick - SFO YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 12
Keeper: 9
Auction 10: 3%
Auction 12: 3%
2010                    
2011 SFO 3 3 5 35     2 -2  
2012 SFO 13 136 218 1814 10 3 63 415 5
Avg   8 70 112 925 5 2 33 207 3
Proj SFO       3200 21 10   580 4

If you take Kaepernick's production from last year and extrapolate it over a 16 game season (using the 3 playoff games as well), his pace would have produced 3849 pass yards, 23 touchdowns, 800 rush yards (thank you GB game) and eight rushing touchdowns. This year he'll be more experienced and gets one of the softest passing schedules in the league. The 49ers also added Anquan Boldin to the mix which should help out with a few more possession catches. This should be a very good year for Kap and one that is a consistent fantasy scorer so long as he continues to run 20 to 30 yards each week at a minimum and usually throw at least one or two scores as he has been doing. Even better is that his schedule from week 11 to week 16 contains three home games (STL, SEA and ATL) and three road games (NO, WAS and TB). Those are three very soft secondaries on the road and at home only week 14 against SEA as a tougher matchup. The 49ers are not likely to get into many shootouts which limits Kaepernick and losing Michael Crabtree for most and maybe all the season will make it tough for Kaepernick to improve on 2012. He'll do well enough to match the pace given he lost his best receiver.

Jake Locker - TEN YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 29
Keeper: 31
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010                    
2011 TEN 5 34 66 542 4   8 56 1
2012 TEN 11 177 314 2176 10 11 41 291 1
Avg   8 106 190 1359 7 6 25 174 1
Proj TEN       2300 12 12   340 1

(-Risk) The Titans are going to give their 2011 first round pick one more year to deliver on his promise and if he doesn't, Ryan Fitzpatrick could get the call. Locker has been a bit of a disaster do far, missing 16 games in the last two years because of injury and not performing well when he was on the field. After 16 career games, he only has 14 touchdowns and last year's 11 games played only produced 2176 passing yards. Locker has been given plenty of tools up until this point including a highly drafted wideout each of the last two years. The plan is also to include more rushing from him which would help his fantasy value but probably not his durability. Locker will be a big risk to rely on as a fantasy starter and his history so far suggests he remains on the waiver wire.

Andrew Luck - IND YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 8
Keeper: 5
Auction 10: 5%
Auction 12: 5%
2010                    
2011                    
2012 IND 16 339 627 4374 23 18 62 255 5
Avg   16 339 627 4374 23 18 62 255 5
Proj IND       4350 27 13   250 3

(+Upside) He isn't making anyone forget about Peyton Manning so much but Luck came into his rookie season with minimal expectations. The coaching staff was new and then Chuck Pagano missed the year getting treated for Leukemia. The Colts had stripped out most of the skill players other than Reggie Wayne. And yet Luck ended up as a top ten quarterback and his 4374 yards were seventh best in the league - one yard better than a guy named Aaron Rodgers. Luck threw for 23 scores against only 18 interceptions. The Colts went to the playoffs. All in all it was a season that wildly exceeded expectations and primarily so because of Luck. He threw six games with over 300 yards and topped 400 yards once. The offense may change slightly with Bruce Arians gone to Arizona but OC Pep Hamilton is trying to keep the offense as similar as it can be. Consider that playing in the same place, Peyton Manning opened his career with 3739 yards and 26 scores with 29 interceptions and he had Marvin Harrison and Marshall Faulk. Luck threw for 4374 yards and 23 scores with 18 interceptions using just an over-the-hill Reggie Wayne and Donald Brown. Luck also rushed in five scores and the Colts did nothing to upgrade their rushing game.

Peyton Manning - DEN YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 3
Keeper: 4
Auction 10: 11%
Auction 12: 12%
2010 IND 16 450 679 4700 33 17 18 18  
2011 IND                  
2012 DEN 16 400 583 4659 37 11 23 6  
Avg   11 283 421 3120 23 9 14 8 0
Proj DEN       5000 38 10   10  

Manning was one of those golden draft picks last year. Naturally a big risk after missing a year from neck surgery and even admitting he had less arm strength, Manning dropped in drafts. All he did was to throw for 4659 yards (career 2nd best) and 37 touchdowns (again - 2nd best in career). Now he gets to add Wes Welker to the arsenal along with a hot rookie running back. And as if the world was not already unfair, Manning receives the easiest passing schedule in the entire league. It is primed for a Super Bowl run and Manning even says his arm strength has returned.

Eli Manning - NYG YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 16
Keeper: 16
Auction 10: 2%
Auction 12: 2%
2010 NYG 16 339 539 4002 31 25 32 70  
2011 NYG 16 359 589 4933 29 16 35 15 1
2012 NYG 16 321 536 3948 26 15 20 30  
Avg   16 340 555 4294 29 19 29 38 0
Proj NYG       4040 28 16   40  

Manning enters the prime of his career at 32 and he's become a consistent fantasy factor over the last four years. In 2011 along with the rest of the league, he experienced a career year with 4933 yards and 29 scores but the other three were all carbon copies with right around 4000 yards and 27 or so touchdowns. That's not hugely difference making anymore but it makes a solid enough starter in a league with lower QB scoring or in a very large league since you can pick up Manning much later than most starters. The Giants passing schedule is lighter than most and the same offense and crew return for yet another year.

E.J. Manuel - BUF YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 24
Keeper: 24
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010                    
2011                    
2012                    
Avg   0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Proj BUF       3400 16 17   280 2

(+Upside) Manuel was a major surprise when the Bills tabbed him with the 1.16 pick given he had second round grades and was considered less ready to play in week one than several others. The Florida State signal caller displaced Ryan Nassib who had played for new head coach Doug Marone at Syracuse. Manuel was selected to compete for the starting job in training camp even though many analysts were convinced that he'll need seasoning. Manuel has been very productive and yet also inconsistent along with needed development work on his technique. He was the starter at FSU for only two seasons and never passed for more than 3392 yards and 23 touchdowns. Training camp will determine who gets the week one nod but Manuel is certain to become the starter. It is only a question of when.

08-03-13 Update: Manuel has already been outplaying Kolb and should see the start week one.

08-18-13 Update: Manuel required a minor knee procedure and is not expected to play any more during the preseason and may miss a week or more in the regular season. He clearly remains the preferred starter when healthy.

Cam Newton - CAR YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 5
Keeper: 6
Auction 10: 8%
Auction 12: 10%
2010                    
2011 CAR 16 310 517 4051 21 17 126 706 14
2012 CAR 16 280 485 3869 19 12 127 741 8
Avg   16 295 501 3960 20 15 127 724 11
Proj CAR       4000 24 12   600 5

Newton gets a new offensive coordinator but Mike Shula was his QB coach and the move was made to ensure that Newton gets continuity. His second season was far less prolific than his rookie year but it really broke down into halves. The first half was when they overloaded Newton with too much new material and he struggled. Once that was realized by mid- season, they backed off and Newton's play returned. He only threw six scores in the first eight games and then 13 the rest of the way.His role as a runner was down played as would be expected though he still had the odd big rushing effort. Newton's problem is mostly that everything has remained the same. The Panthers acquired no new receivers and Steve Smith is one year older. To his benefit, the Panthers have one of the easier quarterback schedules in the league.

Carson Palmer - ARI YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 17
Keeper: 17
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 2%
2010 CIN 16 362 586 3970 26 20 32 50  
2011 OAK 10 199 328 2753 13 16 16 20 1
2012 OAK 15 345 565 4018 22 14 18 36 1
Avg   14 302 493 3580 20 17 22 35 1
Proj ARI       4100 26 15   20 1

(+Upside) Comes over after two seasons in Oakland where no receiver even remotely resembled Larry Fitzgerald. At 34 Palmer is no youngster but should still have plenty in the tank for this year. He’ll have a refreshing change from the Raiders mishmash of receivers in an ineffective offensive scheme. Bruce Arians brings his sizable success with quarterbacks to the table and the rushing effort here still looks sub-par. The Cards have wallowed in the bottom five for passing since Kurt Warner left but that should change this year. Even as a Raider, Palmer comes off a season with 4018 yards and 22 passing scores. The schedule is about average and the offense will resemble the same one that gave the Colts surprising success last year. This will be a pass-first offense and Palmer gets good weather and an upgrade to the talent of his receivers. The only downside here is the week 16 matchup in Seattle.

Christian Ponder - MIN YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 31
Keeper: 32
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010                    
2011 MIN 11 158 291 1853 13 13 28 219  
2012 MIN 16 300 483 2935 18 12 60 253 2
Avg   14 229 387 2394 16 13 44 236 1
Proj MIN       2500 11 10   120 1

Ponder enters his third season and he needs to step up this year and silence the naysayers. He only passed for 2935 yards and 18 touchdowns in 2012 but his 234 yards and three scores in week 17 came at home against a Packer team that did not care. After two years as the starter, he has a total of only 31 touchdowns against 25 interceptions. Nine games saw him throw for under 200 yards and he even stayed under 100 yards in three different games. Granted, the Vikings live and die with Adrian Peterson but this is why. Percy Harvin left but the Vikes added Greg Jennings and drafted Cordarrelle Patterson so Ponder has decent targets. And Peterson commands so much respect from the defense that Ponder should much more effective. Last year he only managed 9.8 yards per completion. The Vikes acquired Matt Cassel and will not hesitate to use him if Ponder doesn't show marked improvement this year and more consistency. Even worse - MIN has one of the toughest passing schedules in the NFL.

Terrelle Pryor - SEA YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 30
Keeper: 30
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010                    
2011 OAK 1                
2012 OAK 3 14 30 155 2 1 10 51 1
Avg   2 7 15 78 1 1 5 26 1
Proj SEA       1800 14 16   300 2

Pryor enters his third season with the Raiders but adding Matt Flynn means that the best Pryor can hope for is to remain a backup. He'll also have to battle Tyler Wilson who the Raiders selected with their 4.15 pick. No reason to draft Pryor.

Philip Rivers - SDC YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 25
Keeper: 18
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010 SDC 16 357 541 4710 30 13 29 52  
2011 SDC 16 366 582 4624 27 20 26 36 1
2012 SDC 16 338 527 3606 26 15 27 40  
Avg   16 354 550 4313 28 16 27 43 0
Proj SDC       3750 21 17   20  

Hard to believe that only three years ago that Rivers led the league in passing yardage (4710) and threw for 30 scores. These two years since have been a sharp decline. After dipping slightly in 2011 (4624 yards, 30 TDs) in a season where five QBs actually had more, Rivers bottomed out with only 3606 yards and 26 scores last year. Not to mention Rivers lost the ball 20 times in 2011 and then 22 times last year. HC Norv Turner and company was sent packing and now Mike McCoy shows up after a few years leading the Denver offense. Ken Whisenhunt inherits the offense after never being able to pull the Cardinals out of their perpetual nosedive. What this mostly means to Rivers is that while the coaches are all saying the rosy and optimistic things you would expect, the reality is that this is not a very talented team any more and this could be Rivers final season here. This is a rebuilding year for a team that is either old or coming off injury. The Chargers were a top ten passing team every year until 2013. Now with lesser talent, these team no longer features any elite fantasy players much less Rivers.

08-07-13 Update: Losing Danario Alexander makes the passing game even worse with no proven star material on hand.

Aaron Rodgers - GBP YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 2
Keeper: 2
Auction 10: 11%
Auction 12: 12%
2010 GBP 15 312 475 3922 28 11 64 356 4
2011 GBP 15 343 502 4643 45 6 60 257 3
2012 GBP 16 371 552 4295 39 8 54 259 2
Avg   15 342 510 4287 37 8 59 291 3
Proj GBP       4400 36 8   250 4

Rodgers signed a five-year, $110 million extension in the offseason so financial problems are not likely. He started 2012 slowly according to most owners when he only scored three times over the first three games but by the end he ranked #2 in most scoring rules. Rodgers passed for 4295 yards and 39 touchdowns with only eight interceptions. Since becoming a starter in Green Bay, he has been a lock for 4000 yards and 28 passing scores as a baseline with most seasons well exceeding that mark. Last year he only scored twice via the run for his lowest total since becoming a starter. The only difference this year will be the absence of Greg Jennings (who missed most of last year anyway) and the specter of a better ground game. He has always been a difference maker on a fantasy team.

Ben Roethlisberger - PIT YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 21
Keeper: 21
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010 PIT 12 240 389 3200 17 5 34 176 2
2011 PIT 15 324 513 4077 21 14 31 70  
2012 PIT 13 284 449 3265 26 8 26 92  
Avg   13 283 450 3514 21 9 30 113 1
Proj PIT       3600 24 14   90  

Roethlisberger comes off his worst season since 2005 thanks in part to rib and shoulder injury in a season the Steelers struggled. That marks the fourth straight season that Big Ben was unable to play all 16 games though he has never missed more than four weeks in any season. The Steelers rarely rank better than 10th in any passing category and realizing that Roethlisberger is going to miss a game or three makes him only worthy of being a fantasy backup. This season's outlook is even less appealing with the normal tough passing schedule and yet without Mike Wallace and at least partially Heath Miller. The Steelers did not replace Wallace at all and Miller's sub is Matt Spaeth. This is the least attractive Big Ben has looked going into a season and even he admitted publicly that they are really going to miss Wallace both from his production and what he did to opposing defense.

Tony Romo - DAL YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 7
Keeper: 12
Auction 10: 5%
Auction 12: 5%
2010 DAL 6 148 213 1605 11 7 6 38  
2011 DAL 16 346 522 4184 31 10 22 46 1
2012 DAL 16 425 648 4903 28 19 30 49 1
Avg   13 306 461 3564 23 12 19 44 1
Proj DAL       4900 32 16   40 1

Romo has been a top ten quarterback in every season that he remains healthy and finally made it through an even-numbered year without some season-ending injury. He was rewarded richly with a $108 million contract in the offseason with $55 million guaranteed. Not bad for an undrafted 33 year-old QB who led the NFL in interceptions last year. In fairness, he did throw for a career best 4903 yards and 28 touchdowns. He returns all the same cast of receivers which includes Dez Bryant who finally caught fire and turned into an inferno in the second half of last year. Romo has also been given influence on the play calling and personnel. He's been empowered and has a very talented cast of receivers. He also will enjoy one of the softest passing schedules in the NFL. The only thing that will keep him from yet another top ten season - and maybe top five - will be another injury.

Matt Ryan - ATL YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 4
Keeper: 3
Auction 10: 10%
Auction 12: 10%
2010 ATL 16 357 571 3705 28 9 46 122  
2011 ATL 16 347 566 4177 29 12 37 84 2
2012 ATL 16 422 615 4719 32 14 33 138 1
Avg   16 375 584 4200 30 12 39 115 1
Proj ATL       4700 33 12   100 2

After five seasons in the NFL, Ryan progressively improved and finally ended in the top five for both pass yards (4,719) and touchdowns (32) last year. He returns the exact same set of receivers and while Tony Gonzalez is in his final season, Julio Jones is one year better. The rushing game has been at least slightly upgraded with Steven Jackson electing to join Gonzo by settling down for a swan song. The schedule is about average this year and all the pieces nearly the same. No reason to expect anything different than another top 10 showing with a chance to maybe flirt with a top 5 finish.

07-25-13 Update: Ryan got paid with a $103 million, 5-year contract. No distractions and no problem with the check at the restaurant.

Mark Sanchez - PHI YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 37
Keeper: 33
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010 NYJ 16 278 507 3291 17 13 30 105 3
2011 NYJ 16 308 543 3474 26 18 37 103 6
2012 NYJ 15 246 453 2883 13 18 22 28  
Avg   16 277 501 3216 19 16 30 79 3
Proj PHI       800 6     20  

(-Risk) Aside from 2011 when he passed for 26 touchdowns, Sanchez has led the Jets to below average passing yards and scores in every year as a starter and 2012 left the Jets 30th in yards (3136) and 29th in scores (14). What's worse is that Sanchez throws for 18 or 19 interceptions the last two years and lost a league leading 8 fumbles in each year. The only thing that Sanchez can hope for at this point is that Geno Smith either gets hurt or somehow stumbles enough in training camp that the team elects to start Sanchez to start the season before eventually handing it over.

Matt Schaub - OAK YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 26
Keeper: 23
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010 HOU 16 365 574 4370 24 12 22 28  
2011 HOU 10 178 292 2479 15 6 15 9 2
2012 HOU 16 350 544 4008 22 12 21 -9  
Avg   14 298 470 3619 20 10 19 9 1
Proj OAK       3800 20 14   20  

Schaub seemed to be having a bounce back year in 2013. He was limited to only ten games due to injury in 2012 but was back to form last year. He threw for 290 yards and four scores in Denver and later managed a mind-bending 527 yards and five scores against the Jaguars. But the final four games of the season - when you needed him most - he only threw one touchdown total. Aside from his unusual two monster games, Schaub only scored 13 times over 14 games. He's lost the confidence of any fantasy team as a starter but this year will finally have an upgrade in his receivers.

Geno Smith - NYJ YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 32
Keeper: 25
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010                    
2011                    
2012                    
Avg   0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Proj NYJ       2300 13 12   50 1

Smith went from being a highly anticipated top ten draft pick to falling until the 2.07 pick of the Jets. He threw for over 4200 yards in each of the last two seasons and passed for 42 touchdowns last year with only six interceptions. To his detriment, he ended 2012 on a far lesser note than the red hot start he had with 24 touchdowns and no interceptions over the first five games. He has great tools in the right conditions but was downgraded for having his confidence lowered after last year. Going to the Jets seems wildly entertaining if nothing else. Smith has been prolific in many games and yet his weakness is playing badly in poor weather. And now he'll be in New York. Smith has to outplay Mark Sanchez to become a starter. That will happen at some point, the only question is if he starts in week one or is delayed. Smith is a decent dynasty pick but year one looks unlikely to produce a fantasy starter. His receivers are all sub-par, so dynasty picks here need to consider a couple of years out when assumedly he gets an upgrade in targets.

Alex Smith - KCC YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 19
Keeper: 19
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010 SFO 11 204 342 2370 14 10 18 60  
2011 SFO 16 273 445 3144 17 5 52 179 2
2012 SFO 10 153 218 1737 13 5 31 132  
Avg   12 210 335 2417 15 7 34 124 1
Proj KCC       3800 24 14   100 1

(+Upside) This will be one of the most interesting teams to watch. HC Andy Reid brings in his West Coast offense that is actually rather suited to Smith who was maligned mostly for having a weaker arm that won't matter in the dink-n-dunk world of the WCO. Reid specifically wanted Smith and he knows a thing or two about quarterbacks given that the Eagles were a lock for 4000 passing yards and 20+ touchdowns for as long as Reid was around. Even last season, they passed for 4012 yards and 27 touchdowns. Now comes in Smith who was the first overall pick of the 2005 NFL draft. The best season he ever had was 2011 when he passed for 3144 yards and 17 touchdowns. What we are treated to now is proof just how good Reid and Smith actually are. Smith had problems staying healthy in most years for the 49ers but that was with a constant stream of new offenses and schemes, new coaches and an offensive line that only recently was rebuilt well enough to protect anyone. Realize too that Smith was saddled with some horrible teams that had no decent receivers. Smith tried to create a career on a bad offense that constantly changed and his best receivers include Arnaz Battle, Brandon Lloyd and the final years before retirement for Darrell Jackson, Antonio Bryant and Isaac Bruce. Now Smith is in a proven offense that should suit his skills and has at least better tools with Dwayne Bowe and a great running back in Jamaal Charles. This all means that Smith cannot be considered a fantasy starter but he's definitely worth watching and owning as a backup from his upside alone. As it works out, the Chiefs have one of the softest passing schedules in the NFL this year. Bottom line - the situation is better for Smith than it has ever been.

Matthew Stafford - DET YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 10
Keeper: 10
Auction 10: 5%
Auction 12: 5%
2010 DET 3 57 96 535 6 1 4 11 1
2011 DET 16 421 663 5038 41 16 22 78  
2012 DET 16 435 727 4967 20 17 35 126 4
Avg   12 304 495 3513 22 11 20 72 2
Proj DET       4800 24 16   100 1

Stafford tailed off from 2012 - down only 71 passing yards but with 21 fewer touchdowns (41 vs. 20). He also developed an interesting trend. Stafford was great at home where he totaled 2761 yards and 12 scores but only managed 2206 yards and eight scores away from Detroit - and that includes the 329 yards and three scores in MIN. Stafford came up big in yardage in every home game with never under 270 pass yards and four times topping 350 yards. But on the road, he had just two 300 yard games and was stuck at around 250 yards and one score in almost every game. He's facing one of the very worst passing schedules this year which will not help. The same offense and players are there other than Reggie Bush. His monster 2011 year looks more like an exception now.

Ryan Tannehill - MIA YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 27
Keeper: 29
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010                    
2011                    
2012 MIA 16 282 484 3294 12 13 49 211 2
Avg   16 282 484 3294 12 13 49 211 2
Proj MIA       3400 15 16   200 2

The Dolphins are sticking with Ryan Tannehill saying that while he needs to improve, there was enough last year to encourage them about 2013. While last year OC Mike Sherman insisted that the offense did not need a true #1 receiver to produce, now $60 million later they picked up Mike Wallace. And Dustin Keller. But Tannehill has a long way to go before fantasy teams are going to take notice. Tannehill was a 16 week starter and yet only threw for 3294 yards and a paltry 12 touchdowns. Four of those came in the final two home games. Seven games failed to reach 200 yards and only one topped 300 yards. Tannehill will be better since he has little room to get worse but that still won't likely equate to being even a decent fantasy backup.

Michael Vick - NYJ YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 14
Keeper: 27
Auction 10: 3%
Auction 12: 3%
2010 PHI 12 233 372 3018 21 6 100 676 9
2011 PHI 13 253 423 3303 18 14 75 590 1
2012 PHI 10 204 351 2362 12 10 62 332 1
Avg   12 230 382 2894 17 10 79 533 4
Proj NYJ       3600 22 20   390 3

(-Risk) (+Upside) The Eagles offense will be the most watched units this year as new HC Chip Kelly imports his hyper-scoring offense that he ran in Oregon. It is a fast-paced offense and one that saw QB Marcus Mariota not only throw for 32 touchdowns, but also rush for five more while being the Duck's second leading rusher (106-752). That would suggest that Vick is a lock for this role given that Nick Foles and rookie Matt Barkley are both pocket passers. Before that lights any fireworks, also consider that Kelly is adamant that he wants a string ground game and that he will merely make use of the strengths of the players that he has. That he drafted fellow Pac 12'er Matt Barkley says a bit about that relationship. Even if you could be secure in thinking Vick is the QB all year (and you cannot), realize that Vick missed six games last year. He has missed at least three each year in Philly and has only one 16 game season since entering the league in 2003. So he will miss a few games in the best case. Given the optimism surrounding the new offense, it may not be a bad strategy to just grab Vick cheaply and then insure him with Foles or Barkley depending on which looks most likely to trot in when Vick is injured. What you have to love is that NFL defenses will take at least a month or more to get used to a new offense and figure out how to slow it down.

08-11-13 Update: Vick is still no lock for the starting job but has taken more first team reps while Foley has been out injured. It looks likely that Vick will be the starter but for how long is anyone's guess.

Brandon Weeden - DAL YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 22
Keeper: 22
Auction 10: 1%
Auction 12: 1%
2010                    
2011                    
2012 CLE 15 297 517 3385 14 17 27 111  
Avg   15 297 517 3385 14 17 27 111 0
Proj DAL       3800 19 14   100 1

While new HC Rob Chudzinski has not named Weeden as the starter and claims there is an open competition with Jason Campbell, Weeden will start. He is a better fit for the offense installed by Norv Turner and realistically Campbell's time has already passed. Weeden was thrown into the fire as a rookie and passed for 3385 yards and 14 touchdowns. As bad as that may sound, the Browns rose to 20th ranked in pass yards after placing 25th and 30th in the two previous seasons. There is optimism that the Browns are on the right track with two very accomplished offensive minds in Turner and Chudzinski. That will benefit Weeden though it still likely won't make him a fantasy starter anytime soon. He also is saddled with missing Josh Gordon for the first two games due to a suspension.

Russell Wilson - SEA YEAR TM GMS CMP ATT PYD PTD INT CAR RYD RTD
Huddle Rank: 13
Keeper: 11
Auction 10: 3%
Auction 12: 3%
2010                    
2011 CHI 16                
2012 SEA 16 252 393 3118 26 10 94 489 4
Avg   16 126 197 1559 13 5 47 245 2
Proj SEA       3260 25 10   440 3

Wilson was one of the biggest surprises at quarterback last year. The 3.12 pick in the draft was only supposed to challenge for the backup spot but ended up beating out free agent acquisition Matt Flynn. Wilson only passed for 3118 yards because he only needed to throw 393 passes - tied for 25th most in the league. And yet he scored 26 touchdowns to tie the all-time rookie record. He also tacked on 489 rushing yards and four more touchdowns. HC Pete Carroll said he believes that Wilson could have a break out season in 2013 but by the same token he also reiterated that they will remain a run-first team and with that defense - why throw any more? THe nice part about Wilson is that he scored almost every week and more than once in over half his games. Plus he adds about 20 to 60 rush yards each week with the odd rushing touchdown as well. He'll never challenge for a top five ranking but he has lower-end fantasy value from his consistency and surprisingly good fantasy points from someone who doesn't throw that much.

07-25-13 Update: The injury to Harvin won't make passing any easier this year. Early speculation is that Harvin will miss some time but he may even end up missing the season.

07-31-13 Update: Yeah, so Harvin needs surgery and is a non-factor plus Sidney Rice went to Switzerland for a knee treatment. Hard to expect anything more from Wilson this year.

   
 
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