There is a significant gulf between the sport of soccer and the game of fantasy soccer. There’s no denying how closely connected the two are, as the vast majority of thought leaders in the industry are intertwined and entangled in the exact same things. Fantasy is not yet reality. The most glaring example of this disconnect is when dealing with quarterbacks.
The man under center is the leader of the offense, if not the entire team. He is the field general and the most important person on the field in every single game. Until the advent of Superflex formats, the quarterback was the at least important position in fantasy football. Even though two quarterbacks can be included in the starting 11, it’s arguable that running backs and wide receivers are still more critical to a team’s success.
Dynasty Fantasy Football, especially in the preferred Superflex format, restores the importance of strengthening quarterback position. Good ones can easily carry a dynasty team and keep the championship window open for years to come. Bad quarterback play can’t fail a team, but they might always be chasing that breakout performer in position to tie it all together. Here are four quarterbacks who have just enough juice to break Dynasty’s radar and enough red flags to scare the risk-averse away from them completely.
Matt Ryan (QB – IND)
Younger fans may not know this, but Matty Ice is one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL. This is a real football attribute, more than one for fantasy. The 37-year-old was slammed behind a cruel offensive line with just a rookie tight end who made big plays on the field last season. Arthur Smith pounded opponent after opponent without even a shred of running play to take the pressure off. Ryan is now free and has landed a brand new lease as quarterback for the Indianapolis Colts. For my part, I’m very excited to see him operate in an offensive that has tons more to offer.
Ryan is twice the quarterback as Carson Wentz (QB – WAS), who put up some pretty decent fantasy numbers for Indy last season. The obvious highlight for him is his advanced age, which shrinks his dynastic window to a maximum of two or three years. There’s plenty of evidence to suggest last season’s QB20 has plenty of potential in its new digs to justify the roster spot until it decides to hang up its cleats.
Jameis Winston (QB – NO)
Here’s another quarterback who’s still wrongly judged a poor fantasy quarterback based on years of real-world football narrative that he’s too vulnerable to turnover. Mr. 30-30 himself was QB4 that fateful time of year in Tampa Bay. Just last year, Winston was at a peak with 14 touchdowns and just three interceptions in seven games before tearing his ACL (including two weeks as a top-five QB).
Winston received the keys to this offense in New Orleans and is still only 28 years old. His decision making has improved dramatically since his early years and now accompanies the same incredible arm talent he has always possessed. Winston is the only weekly QB1 upside quarterback currently rated QB3 in the Dynasty. The Saints laid the groundwork around Jameis with a good offensive line and some talented young receivers like Marquez Callaway (WR-NO), Adam Trautman (TE-NO) and rookie first-round pick Chris Olave (WR-NO). If Michael Thomas (WR – NO) rejoins the fray alongside Alvin Kamara (RB – NO), Winston could be a QB1 option going forward.
Jared Goff (QB – DET)
Goff is the poster boy for quarterbacks who have a bad reputation (and only partially deserve it). He wasn’t great often, but it happened. Cal Berkeley’s top overall pick in 2016 was terrible as a rookie under Jeff Fisher’s regime. When Sean McVay took over, Goff was an instant QB1 (QB12 in 2017 and QB6 in 2018). In 2019, Goff rushed for over 4,600 yards but saw his yards per attempt and touchdowns plummet. Passing yards followed in 2020, falling short of 4,000 on 552 attempts. At no point was Goff considered “terrible” by NFL quarterback standards, but his fantasy shine was gone and McVay was just as unhappy with the unrealized potential.
Jared Goff still has a very strong arm and is a wise decision maker. The main problem with his game in recent years has been his reluctance to push the ball down the field and make big plays when available. He’s proven to be shy in big moments and might rather be looking at an outlet receiver than throwing a deep ball to a man in man marking. The Lions pick of Alabama’s Jameson Williams (WR – DET) in this year’s first round, along with Not The addition of another quarterback gives some optimism that they think Goff can “make it” as a long-term starter in this anything-or-anything season. The offense has many talented young skill players, like Williams, D’Andre Swift (RB – DET), TJ Hockenson (TE – DET) and Amon-Ra St. Brown (WR – DET). Still only 27 years old, Goff has recent achievements on his resume.
Draw lock (QB – SEA)
This is the most shaky of the four, with perhaps the tallest ceiling for dynastic purposes. The first task for Lock is to land the starting Seattle job for 2022 via Geno Smith (QB – SEA). I suppose Smith could be the “sleeper” here if he gets his way. Lock will continue to receive every opportunity from OTAs and training camps to showcase the arm talent and penchant for big plays that made him a Denver second-round pick in 2019. The 24-year-old is an NFL quarterback and has three seasons in only played 24 games.
The most intriguing feature of Lock’s fantasy game is its superb athleticism. Even when he looks completely confused on the field, the 6-4, 228-pound signal caller from Missouri seems constantly on the verge of making a big play. Pete Carroll came out and praised Lock’s talent and offered his opinion that the quarterback would have been the first pick had he been part of the 2022 class. Seattle might have just one excuse for not pulling the trigger any future face of the franchise after selling Russell Wilson (QB – DEN) this winter. They also didn’t move star receivers DK Metcalf (WR – SEA) and Tyler Lockett (WR – SEA). Carroll is infinitely more comfortable with a heavy run play in support of his quarterback as the club seeded a second-round pick on top-running back Kenneth Walker III (RB – SEA). Lock is definitely a wildcard dynasty quarterback, but one whose value could absolutely explode if a few things go his way.
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