Top Five Quarterbacks

(Rich Schultz/Getty Images North America)

Fantasy football players and analysts alike are starting to organize for the upcoming season so of course, I am currently working on getting my rankings updated. Putting my quarterback ranks together has been a challenge, specifically the top 5. Aaron Rodgers, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees occupy most people’s top 3 in some order. After that there are a few names that are part of the discussion for the final two spots.

 

(Dave Reginek/Getty Images North America)

(Dave Reginek/Getty Images North America)

Matthew Stafford

Why he should be in your top 5?

Matthew Stafford seems to be getting a ton of love heading into the 2014 season. He has everything going for him including the best receiver in the game, Calvin Johnson. The Lions also added two play making pass catchers in Golden Tate and Eric Ebron. Tate and Ebron should see plenty of single coverage and have the athleticism to take advantage. He also has two running backs who are dynamic pass catchers in Reggie Bush and Joique Bell. Everything seems to be pointing towards Matthew Stafford being an elite fantasy quarterback this season.

Why wont he make it?

Matthew Stafford has been highly sought after and ranked well going into fantasy drafts year after year, yet when the season comes to a close his numbers just aren’t there. While its safe to assume Stafford should be a top 12 quarterback and likely top 10, the top 5 numbers likely are not coming. Stafford has never been a huge touchdown producer. Outside of his 2011 season when he had 41 including 16 from Megatron, he has not reached 30 touchdowns. Some players are able to supplement passing touchdowns with rushing scores but Stafford cannot be expected to produce on the ground averaging less than two per season. Stafford has only been a top 5 quarterback once in his career. In 2011 he threw for over 5,000 yards, his only time doing so, and 41 touchdowns. This was by far his best season and yet he was only the number five quarterback.

 

Cam Newton

(Streeter Lecka/Getty Images North America)

(Streeter Lecka/Getty Images North America)

Why he should be in your top 5?

Typically a lock to make most if not all top 5’s, Cam Newton enters the 2014 with more questions than answers. However Cam is still a dynamic option both passing and rushing. His dual threat ability vaults him in most rankings. Your league scoring will affect where Newton sits in your individual ranks, especially if you play in a league with six point passing touchdowns instead of four. Check out Joshua Lake’s article for a great breakdown on why.

Why won’t he make it?

Cam Newton has reportedly been showing a noticeable limp during OTA’s. I assume his ankle will be fine before the season starts but training camp and preseason games will be telling. A quarterback that utilizes his athleticism and explosiveness needs to be able to rely on his base for power and acceleration. My other concern is who will be catching passes from Cam Newton this season. While Cam has never been surrounded by dynamic pass catchers, this season looks especially bleak. Jerricho Cotchery and Jason Avant are likely to be on the outside come Week one. Newton will have Greg Olsen at tight end which should provide some familiarity and will prove to be a fantasy stud this season. The Panthers drafted Kelvin Benjamin who is a major project that will need a season or two to be a dynamic receiver.

 

(Adam Bettcher/Getty Images North America)

(Adam Bettcher/Getty Images North America)

 

Robert Griffin III

Why should he be in your top 5?

After an injury plagued 2013 season that left fantasy owners with a bad taste in their mouth. Dont shy away from RG3 because of last year. He has the potential to be dynamic this season. Jay Gruden brings a pass first offense that should allow RG3 to utilize his dynamic weapons including Pierre Garcon, Jordan Reed, and recently signed DeSean Jackson. Jackson had 1300 yards and 9 touchdowns last season. He should be able to attack the deep part of the field and allow the other receivers to see more single coverage.

Why won’t he make it?

Risk averse people will shy away from Robert Griffin III. His injury history is not without blemishes especially for someone who utilizes their athleticism to be dynamic. For me his ceiling is good enough to be the number one quarterback in fantasy but his floor has the potential to be guy who is not anywhere near the top 10. With so much depth at quarterback this season, RG3 is worth the gamble with the ability to find a guy on the waiver wire or if you want to guarantee insurance add a second quarterback late in your draft.

 

(Andy Lyons/Getty Images North America)

(Andy Lyons/Getty Images North America)

Andrew Luck

Why should he be in your top 5?

Andrew Luck is an elite level quarterback. He is everything an NFL team wants in a quarterback. He is a leader, poised and makes good decisions. The addition of Hakeem Nicks to a receiving core that features T.Y. Hilton and Reggie Wayne has all the makings for an explosive offense. The return of Dwayne Allen to complement Coby Fleener will surely help the passing game as well. The Colts running game has been less than ideal the past few season putting more pressure on luck to be effective. Luck’s athleticism is a key component to his fantasy value. He provides rushing yards and more importantly rushing touchdowns when the Colts get in the red zone.

Why wont he make it?

A poor offensive line would be my first concern. However we have seen elite passers who make quick decisions show the ability to overcome poor offensive lines; just look to Green Bay where Aaron Rodgers is amongst the most pressured quarterbacks in the league. My second concern would be the potential for his receiving core to be depleted. Reggie Wayne is a 35-year-old receiver who is coming off of an ACL tear. This is usually an arduous task for even the most physically gifted athletes. Hakeem Nicks, who was signed in free agency is not a bastion of health himself. With injuries to the receiving core and offensive line issues, the Colts offense could look a lot like the 2013 Atlanta Falcons, which may leave Luck owners frustrated and disappointed.

 

(Rich Schultz/Getty Images North America)

(Rich Schultz/Getty Images North America)

Nick Foles

Why should he be in your top 5?

Nick Foles had his coming out party last season. Foles was a top 12 quarterback despite starting only 10 games. He was also turnover adverse throwing only 2 pick in those 10 games. If you take Foles numbers and expand them over 16 games he would have thrown for 4200 yards and 40 touchdowns. While I expect some regression, especially with outlier against Oakland, 3900 yards and 35 touchdowns is a pretty safe assumption. Those numbers would put him inside the top 5 and more yards and/or touchdowns is definitely possible. The Eagles will get a healthy Jeremy Maclin back this season. They also drafted Jordan Matthews and Josh Huff to add depth to the receiving core. The Eagles acquired Darren Sproles add depth in the back field. Sproles is most effective as a pass catcher and gives Foles another target to utilize.

Why wont he make it?

Losing his best receiver will hurt. DeSean Jackson accounted for 1332 yards and 9 touchdowns. The additions of Matthews and Huff should help offset some of the production but there is a real possibility they underproduce. Jeremy Maclin could continue to battle injuries and be ineffective. Riley Cooper could return to the marginal receiver he was. The Eagles still utilize Lesean McCoy and the running game quite a bit.

 

(Ronald Martinez/Getty Images North America)

(Ronald Martinez/Getty Images North America)

Tony Romo

Why should he be in your top 5?

Tony Romo is consistently one of the most overlooked fantasy options. He will show up in the ranks between ten and twelve every season. The common theme with Romo is his ability to be solid but never elite. I think this season will change people’s opinions. Romo has all the weapons to produce with Dez Bryant, Terrance Williams, and Jason Witten. The Cowboys took a severe blow with Sean Lee going down for the year. The loss of Lee and Demarcus Ware who left during the off-season will hurt a defense that already had question marks. The Cowboys will throw early and often, likely in catch up scenarios most of the season.

Why wont he make it?

Jason Garrett as a play caller strikes fear into fantasy owners and Cowboy fans alike. This season Scott Linehan has been brought in to take over those duties. The Cowboys reluctance to throw in the red zone may continue and that hurts Romo. The Cowboys may also run the ball in attempt to keep their beleaguered defense off the field.

 

It is not June yet, but as of May 29th, my quarterback ranks are as follows:

01. Peyton Manning
02. Drew Brees
03. Aaron Rodgers
04. Nick Foles
05. Cam Newton
06. Andrew Luck
07. Robert Griffin 3
08. Tony Romo
09. Matthew Stafford
10. Tom Brady
11. Matt Ryan
12. Philip Rivers

 

I’d love to hear who’s in your top five or why you think I’m correct/crazy.
Find me on Twitter @Notoriouskro

3 Comments

  1. Rik Gee

    May 31, 2014 at 8:12 pm

    My top 5are the following
    1. Manning
    2.Rodgers
    3 Brees
    4stafford
    5. Luck

    Newton and Foles has nooooo WR

  2. Kyle Robert

    May 31, 2014 at 8:25 pm

    The top 5 makes a ton of sense. I like Foles more but its close. He has Riley Cooper, Jeremy Maclin, Jordan Matthews, Brent Celek, Zach Ertz, LeSean McCoy and Darren Sproles. I agree Cam is lacking at receiver but i’m not sure how much worse it is than past years.

  3. Dakota Vires

    June 5, 2014 at 8:41 am

    No no no. The top 5 are as followed. 1.) Tom Brady. 2.) Aaron Rodgers 3.) Drew Brees 4.) Peyton Manning 5.) Joe flaco. The reason I rank Tom Brady #1 is for the simple fact that he led the Patriots to the AFC Championship with no WR’s other than Julian Edelman and I ranked Rodgers and Brees above Peyton Manning is because Peyton Manning gives up right when he throws an interception.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>