As your fantasy football playoffs come to a close, I hope you did well this year. If you did try to stream quarterbacks this year and can smell the championship game, congratulations! But as the season comes to a close, so will this weekly article. I should be back with some strategy articles during the offseason though.
However, as you plan for the last two weeks of the season (who really has leagues with Week 17 anymore?), here are a few notes you may want to key in on before you set your lineups for the playoffs.
Young Quarterbacks Are Trending
Shoutout to my editor, Joshua Lake, for pointing out some efficiency marks this season:
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- Marcus Mariota is QB8 in efficiency on the season when looking at fantasy points per attempt.
- Fellow rookie quarterback Jameis Winston is QB12.
The 2014 draft class is making a name for themselves too:
- Of the 14 quarterbacks that were drafted in 2014, 13 are still in the league
- 3 of those quarterbacks haven’t made it past the practice squad
- 3 other quarterbacks have yet to make an NFL start but are currently the backup on their respective teams
- A.J. McCarron will be seventh quarterback from the 2014 class to make a start this season
- A third of the starting quarterbacks in the NFL have been drafted within the last two seasons
- Going back to 2012, there are currently 11 starting quarterbacks from those four drafts
- Another five quarterbacks have made starts this season, but aren’t currently starting as they are back to their backup role or injured
- Between the 16 quarterbacks that have started at least once this season there are 75 top-18 finishes among them in 2015
- The same group of quarterbacks have a total of 50 top-12 finishes in 2015
Three of those quarterbacks could be invaluable during the playoffs: Blake Bortles, Marcus Mariota and Kirk Cousins. Each of those quarterbacks have had a top-12 finish in three of the last five weeks. The young quarterback that is really on a hot streak though is Russell Wilson. He’s had a top-12 finish in each of the last five weeks after only having one in the first nine weeks of the season, and four of them were top-six finishes.
This isn’t to say that you must have a young quarterback on your fantasy team to win it all; not all are great options (i.e. Derek Carr the last two weeks). But finding the right one could be your ticket to a championship. So with that, let’s get some quarterbacks I want to and don’t want to start over the next two weeks. One thing to note, if I don’t mention a top stud such as Wilson, Cam Newton or Tom Brady, you’re starting them over most anyone.
5 Week 15 Quarterbacks I Love
Derek Carr/Kirk Cousins/Ryan Fitzpatrick – each of these guys are better streaming options than QB1 options. However, if you have a stud to pair with one of these three, expect a strong week from your quarterback position. Even without a stud quarterback to pair them with, each of these three could carry your team in Week 15.
5 Week 15 Quarterbacks I Would Take a Chance On
Alex Smith – the Chiefs’ quarterback has two more top-12 finishes than Stafford and Brees and is one of eight quarterbacks to have 10 or more top-18 finishes on the season.
Jay Cutler – he has eight top-18 finishes and is going against a defense that has given up four top-10 finishes in the last five weeks. Sounds like a good streamer to me.
Ben Roethlisberger – I’ve been a big proponent of sitting quarterbacks against Denver. However, if one quarterback were to put up a top performance against that stingy secondary, Roethlisberger could do it
A.J. McCarron – the second-year quarterback finished as QB15 in relief of Andy Dalton in Week 14. If you need to replace Dalton and you don’t like the quarterbacks you currently roster, McCarron could be worth a flier this week
T.J. Yates – the Texans’ backup was QB15 in Week 11 (against the Jets). In Week 15, he gets a Colts defense that is tied with the Jaguars in allowing the most top-18 finishes in the league (11).
5 Week 15 Quarterbacks I Want to Avoid
Teddy Bridgewater – the Bears may have allowed eight top-18 finishes this season, but Bridgewater only has four to his name. I’m not taking any more chances with the Vikings quarterback this season
Blake Bortles – the second-year quarterback is QB6 overall this season and is one of six quarterbacks with 11 or more top-18 finishes this season. But don’t let the QB5 finish from Cam Newton fool you; the Falcons hadn’t allowed a QB16 finish or higher in the five previous games.
Jameis Winston – the Buccaneers quarterback has eight top-18 finishes to his name, and the Rams have given up at least a QB15 finish in each of the last three weeks. But with so many plus matchups this week for the rest of the group, Winston may not be your best option in Week 15
Eli Manning – I know, he was the QB2 in Week 14 and has started to reap rewards with Odell Beckham Jr. again. However, the Panthers have allowed just four top-18 finishes and only one top-12 finish all season.
5 Week 16 Quarterbacks I Love
5 Week 16 Quarterbacks I Would Take a Chance On
5 Week 16 Quarterbacks I Want to Avoid
If you have any question for Week 15 or 16, please reach out to me on twitter! If not, good luck in your league’s playoffs or as you prepare for next season!