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Quarterback Watch - Week 17
Scott Boyter
December 27, 2005
Top Ten Fantasy QB’s to own Comment
1 CIN Carson Palmer Palmer gets the final No. 1 nod only because he played a full game against the Bills. But if you’re looking for him to help you this week, you need to look elsewhere, since Palmer is iffy at best.
2 IND Peyton Manning If you were relying on him to get you to a Week 17 championship game, well, you should have known better and gone in another direction. Manning has once again proven to be an elite fantasy QB, but don’t look for him to play much more against Arizona than he did against Seattle.
3 NE Tom Brady Monday night was textbook Brady, nothing spectacular, but a solid enough game to help your squad. He’ll probably play quite a bit against the Dolphins at home, so he should be a good play.
4 SD Drew Brees Brees was mediocre at best when fantasy players needed him most (161 yards, one TD, one INT against K.C.), but he did enough throughout the season to merit top 5 consideration. It’s very likely he’ll play the full game against Denver’s No. 29 pass D, so he’s definitely worth a start.
5 KC Trent Green Green heated up down the stretch and helped a lot of teams win titles. If Kelly Holcomb could light up the Bengals for 308 yards and a score, Green should be able to do at least that much.
6 SEA Matt Hasselbeck Hasselbeck, like Manning, is a huge risk this weekend. He’ll probably be gone by the end of the first quarter. But he’s still a solid top 10 fantasy QB.
7 NYG Eli Manning He’s been steady enough to warrant a top 10 ranking, but hasn’t been spectacular. He should do enough to help your team this week against the Raiders, since the Giants still have something to play for.
8 DEN Jake Plummer If Plummer gets a full load, he should be great against the Chargers’ No. 30 pass defense.
9 CAR Jake Delhomme Delhomme showed he could put up a good game even without Steve Smith (Smith had only one catch before his ejection), throwing for two TDs and 260 yards against the Cowboys. The Falcons are a middle-of-the-road pass defense, so Delhomme will be worth a start in a must-win game.
10 DAL Drew Bledsoe Believe it or not, Bledsoe did enough to be considered top 10 material. The Rams have surrendered 25 TDs through the air, so Bledsoe is worth starting, regardless of whether or not the Cowboys still have a shot at the playoffs come game time.

(Note – this listing considers the rankings of QB’s if a draft was held today)

Climbing Up The Ladder

Kyle Boller (BAL) – The guy has been the hottest fantasy QB the last two games, with a combined six TDs and an average of nearly 300 yards. Is it too little, too late for his future with the Ravens? Who knows? But there’s no reason to believe he’ll cool off against a Cleveland defense that’s allowed 19 passing TDs.

Jamie Martin (STL) – Yes, it was the 49ers, but Martin’s 354-yard, one-TD effort can’t be overlooked. He’ll probably get the start against Dallas, but isn’t worth the risk.

Sliding Back

Brett Favre (GB) – Give him credit for putting up 317 yards against the Bears, but his four interceptions made that yardage useless from a fantasy perspective. The saddest sight this season has been Favre’s struggles. You’ve got to believe he’s not going out like that. He’ll drop like a rock in a lot of drafts next season, but he could be a supreme steal with a healthy running game and if he gets Javon Walker back.

David Garrard (JAX) – Even though he guided the Jags to a 3-1 record in Byron Leftwich’s absence, it’s likely he’ll surrender some snaps to the incumbent against Tennessee.