Fantasy Football Draft 2014: Quarterback Draft Strategy
Which Quarterbacks to Look for in Every Round of Your Draft
August 22, 2014
All this month, we’ve been celebrating the return of the fantasy football season with our annual rankings, sleepers, busts and strategy guides for the upcoming drafts out there. Today it’s time for another position primer, and this one will be focused on one of the lynchpins of any fantasy lineup, which is the quarterback slot.
QB is a vexing position, to be sure, as you can overspend and get a top-shelf name, or wait and try to find some value a little further down. We’ll be taking a round-by-round glance at the position in the next few minutes, to give you an idea of what you’re likely to find at each stage of your draft.
Round 1: As has been the case in recent years, you can pretty much expect Round 1 to be a running-back-exclusive affair. All the top guys will be coming off the board, and they should all have the RB tag next to their names. Do yourself a favor and nab a top-flight rusher with your first pick.
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Round 2: Here’s where you need to start thinking quarterback, if you want one of the three elite names in the draft. Depending on your league settings, you can expect the Broncos’ Peyton Manning to be the first off the board at around the mid-point of this round. He’ll come out after a handful of wide receivers and Jimmy Graham are gone, as far as the other positions besides RB go.
Shortly thereafter, Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers will be in play. Both will likely come off around the end of Round 2 or the start of Round 3. Long story short, if you want one of the top 3 quarterbacks, you’ll have to use your second pick on one--it’s doubtful any of them will last too deep into the third.
Rounds 3, 4 and 5: Once Brees and Rodgers are gone, you’ll probably see a lull in the QB action. Owners will gravitate toward RBs and WRs here, as there’s a marked drop-off in value after the Manning-Brees-Rodgers level.
Round 6: Right around the No. 50 pick overall, the market will shift back toward QB. Most owners will have their starting lineups set at WR and RB and may fish for a signal-caller with their next pick. Matthew Stafford will likely come off right around this area, and though we think he’ll provide some decent value, we don’t think he should be going that high. You’d be better served going with another WR.
Cam Newton will be in play toward the end of this round as well. Likewise, we’re not jazzed about that ranking, either. Save your pick.
Round 7: Here’s where you’ll start seeing things pick up again at QB. Andrew Luck will be going here (and should be a nice pickup), as will Tom Brady, Nick Foles and Jay Cutler. In that grouping, Brady is really the only one who jumps out, and a lot of that is based on name recognition.
Round 8 and 9: Tony Romo will come off here, and a little later Colin Kaepernick will as well. Romo should have some nice stats by season’s end if he can stay healthy, but we’re simply not that impressed with the Niners offense as a whole.
Round 10 and Beyond: Philip Rivers and Russell Wilson will come off around here, with either one likely outplaying his draft position. As far as later-round dark horses, you can find Ben Roethlisberger at around pick 100 and Carson Palmer at 130 or so.
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