Fantasy Football: Quarterback updates…

30 07 2008

1) Tom Brady (NE) Will Brady throw for 50 TD this year? No. Peyton Manning followed up his record 49 TD season with 28 TDs. You can count on Brady to top that. He is still the number one QB on the board so don’t hesitate to nab him if you don’t like the RB or WR staring you in the face with your pick. Resigning Moss was huge. The offense will be just as good and the division still stinks.

2) Peyton Manning (IND) Peyton Manning has averaged “only” 30 TD’s per season the last 3 years. Some owners that spent a first round pick on him may be disappointed by that. Ludicrous. Just temper your expectations. Harrison is nearing the end of his career and the run game is still prevalent for the Colts. But Manning will rarely lose you a week and will win you plenty. He is a reliable for sure.

3) Drew Brees (NO) Brees was hurt by McAllister’s injury early on and the Saints slow start in general. But he had some monster games and Colston remains a fantasy stud. Despite all the adversity, Brees still ended up with 28 TD passes and over 4400 yards. An even better 2008 is well within his sights. Brees is definitely a top 5 QB in any format.

4) Tony Romo (DAL) Romo took a lot of heat for whatever reason last year – some of it from Dallas fans. Strange considering he finished second only to Brady in QB Fantasy scoring. He did finish the year with 4 sub-par game in a row, but with another year as a starter under his belt and the Dallas offense expected to be explosive again – Romo is in line for another big year.

5) Carson Palmer (CIN) It’s not too often that 1 players success can be so closely tied to another but it is for Palmer in 2008. If Chad Johnson does not play for the Bengals this year, Palmer’s stock will drop considerably. The Bengals have already lost Chris Henry and there are only so many weapons a QB can lose before he drops back to the back. Expect a solid season but not a great one.

6) Derek Anderson (CLE) Throwing for 29 TDs (and 3 rushing) and almost 3800 yards when you don’t begin the season as the starter is nothing short of amazing. Cleveland has a top 5 WR in Braylon Edwards, a top pass catching TE, and an improved line. It will not be surprising (at least to GTD) if Anderson tops last year’s numbers. Don’t shy away from Anderson if he slots to you.

7) Ben Roethlisberger (PIT) Something seems not quite right when a Pittsburgh QB accounts for 34 TD’s (32 passing). But these are not your Steelers from years past. Yes, they still run the ball and run it often, but they are not afraid to throw deep and they throw it plenty in the red zone. Big Ben increased his TD passes by 14 and cut down his INTs by 12. Consider him a top tier QB for 2008.

8 ) Matt Hasselbeck (SEA) Seattle’s lack of a running game last year was the root cause for Hasselbeck posting career highs in both attempts and TD’s. Throw in the fact that he only had 2 stinker games and you realize that he is a solid, if unspectacular, Fantasy QB. Hopefully, with an improved running game and healthier WRs – Hasselbeck will produce good numbers again.

9) Donovan McNabb (PHI) This one is simple – if McNabb is healthy, he is a top Fantasy producer at QB. But that is a BIG if. McNabb averaged over 2 TDs per start from 2004-06. Last year was a down year numbers-wise but a lot of that had to do with the Eagles having a down year. If the Eagles stay healthy and are in the playoff hunt, expect a much better year from McNabb.

10) Eli Manning (NYG) Unlike his brother, Eli will lose you weeks. He is prone to some very bad performances every year. He is durable though. He has started every game the last 3 years. IF the Giants lose Shockey, that will hurt some, but he still has weapons and some good young receivers that could have breakout years in 2008. Expect a TD total in the mid 20’s from Manning.

11) Marc Bulger (STL) Bulger appeared to be on the verge of Fantasy stardom after a great 2006 season. But an injury to Steven Jackson and Orlando Pace doomed Bulger and the Rams offense from the beginning of the season. A respectable 2008 is clearly within reach and if the O-line improves, he could return to his 2006 numbers. If you wait for a QB, Bulger is not a bad choice.

12) Philip Rivers (SD) Good thing that being a punk does not cut against you in Fantasy Football. If it did, Rivers would not be worth drafting. The addition of Chambers dramatically increased his options and if Vincent Jackson rebounds from a disappointing year, Rivers could improve upon his 21 TD passes from last year. His rehab from off season surgery is on target and he is not expected to miss any games.

13) Jay Cutler (DEN) Cutler being diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes will have no affect on his 2008 season. What may have an effect is an iffy WR crop beset by an injury to Brandon Marshall and a new #2 in injury prone Darrell Jackson. If the WRs stay healthy, Cutler could be a nice low-end #1 in his second full season.

14) Matt Leinart (AZ) Who didn’t enjoy the photos of Leinart in the Jacuzzi with a bunch of hotties?! How about his coach and GM. Adding to his problems is that he is still healing from his broken collarbone. If Leinart stays focused (and healthy), and if the Cardinals keep Boldin happy with a new contract – Leinart could post good numbers. Those are a lot of “ifs” but he is worth a flyer in the middle rounds.

15) Matt Schaub (HOU) Schaub was a big trendy pick heading into the 2007 Fantasy draft. Prior to his injury (which led to shoulder surgery), his numbers were pedestrian. If you want to rely on Schaub as your # 1 starter next year – good luck. If you draft him as your backup – he has potential.

16) Aaron Rodgers (GB) This is one of the great unknowns heading into the 2008 Fantasy draft. His season could be surprisingly good – or less than mediocre. He has good receivers, a potential star in RB Ryan Grant, and a solid O-line. Don’t’ hesitate to take him as your backup.

17) Jon Kitna (DET) Another QB with really high Fantasy expectations heading into 2007. The Lions, as a team, disappointed again and that hurt Kitna’s numbers. Throwing for over 4000 yards 2 seasons in a row is impressive. But throwing only 29 TDs in that same period in a Mike Martz offense is not. With Martz now gone – we can’t recommend.

18 ) Vince Young (TEN) Remember Kordell Stewart. Well Vince Young is turning in the new millennium’s version of that. He will have some great games this year. But there will be too many 10-21 for 104 yard games that will drive you crazy. The Titans had 10 games without a TD pass and only amassed 2878 yards passing. Do yourself a favor and pass.

19) David Garrard (JAX) Garrard is the anti-Rivers. Classy, reliable, and humble. He also had good numbers in his first full season. In 12 games started he threw for 18 TDs (1 rushing) and had only 3 interceptions. That is the amazing part. Garrard is a great decision maker. Having said that, he is a low-end #1 – high end #2 Fantasy QB.

20) Jason Campbell (WAS) Campbell is a better real life QB than a Fantasy QB. The Redskins added some depth at WR from the draft but if you take a good look at his 2007 numbers – they just don’t inspire. If you want to hope for a breakout year, draft Campbell as your #2 and hope for the best.

21) Jake Delhomme (CAR) Look up Fantasy Sleeper QB in the Sport’s dictionary and you will see Delhomme’s picture. The last 2 seasons that Delhomme played 16 games (2004 and 2005) he threw for 53 TDs (and added 2 rushing). These are excellent Fantasy numbers. If he is healthy heading into the season opener (coming off elbow surgery), gel confident in drafting him in the middle rounds.

22) Jeff Garcia (TB) If you are high on 38 year old QBs that play in non-explosive offenses – have at it. Garcia totaled on 13 passing TDs in 13 games started so don’t expect much more in 2008.

23) Kellen Clemens (NYJ) It’s hard to devote much attention to a QB that may or may not be a starter all year. Having said that – if Clemens has a healthy Coles and Cotchery all year and the Jets offense improves, Clemons could be a decent spot Fantasy starter. The division is weak (except for N.E.).

24) Matt Ryan (ATL) The Rookie was drafted by The Atlanta Falcons with the 3rd over all pick in the 2008 NFL draft. Ryan has plenty of upside & weapons that will make him look good this season, but he still has to compete against Chris Redman & Joey Harrington for the starting QB job in Atlanta this year! Matt has the most upside of all these quarterbacks, so don’t b surprised if you see the Rookie behind center by week 6 of the season.

25) Alex Smith (SF) Smith is back at full strength after surgery. That’s the good news. The bad news is that he has never been a reliable Fantasy QB in his short career. The 49′ers may be better this year as a team but expecting much more than mediocrity from Smith is a stretch.

26) Brodie Croyle (KC) New offensive coordinator Chan Gailey could make a slight difference but the Chiefs stink and Croyle had 6 TDs and 6 INTs last year. Worth a late round flyer at best.

27) Rex Grossman (CHI) Beating out Kyle Orton (if he even does) is nothing to shout about. Grossman went from the promise of a 23 TD season in 2006 to an injury marred and mistake prone 2007. Compared to other QBs at this ranking, he is worth more than most with a 20+ TD season under his belt.

28 ) J.P. Losman (BUF) Losman has lost his starting jobs multiple times in the past 3 seasons. He has even made his intentions known of wanting to be traded. The best you could hope for from Losman is one or 2 good games so why bother?

29) Trent Edwards (BUF) Edwards is the starter heading into 2008 after starting 10 games last year (going 5-5). Besides Lee Evans, the Bills passing game lacks firepower. Edwards did have a 4 TD, no INT game so perhaps there is some upside – if the Bills improve offensively.

30) Tarvaris Jackson (MIN) What can you say about a QB that started 12 games and threw for only 9 TD against 12 picks? Not much. Jackson is asked to manage the game for the Vikings and not lose – as opposed to winning with his arm. Bernard Berrian will help but it would be wise to see how Jackson fares before adding him to your roster.

31) JaMarcus Russell (OAK) Russell is not technically a rookie but should be treated as one. Although rookie starters do not usually fare well, Russell could be an exception. He’s incredibly big and strong and the Raiders like to go for big plays. With the additions of McFadden and Javon Walker to the Raiders attack, Russell could be a decent #2 by season’s end.

32) Jon Beck (MIA) Beck may not even win the starting job and Miami’s offense is horrible. Take a wait and see approach before considering adding Beck to your roster.

33) Chris Redmond (ATL) Redman performed pretty well for the Falcons in his 4 starts (and 3 others played) but with top pick Matt Ryan looming, don’t count on Redman starting many games.

34) Kurt Warner (AZ) When Warner starts and does not get hurt, he’s still an intriguing start. The Cardinals have weapons and when Warner gets time he can still produce the big game. But he goes into this season as the clear backup.

35) Damon Huard (KC) Another QB that enters the season without knowing whether he’s the starter or backup. Huard had decent numbers at times but is still not worth a draft pick.

36) Sage Rosenfels (HOU) Rosenfels posted good numbers last year while Schaub was hurt. Unless Schaub gets hurt again, there will no reason to pick up Schaub. If Rosenfels does get the call again, he could be a decent fill-in.

37) Trent Green (MIA) Green will more at home back in St. Louis than he was in Miami. If Bulger gets hurt, he may be worth picking up as a Fantasy backup.

38) Chad Pennington (NYJ) Pennington is only 1 season removed from starting 16 games with 3352 yards and 17 TDs. Now he’s fighting for the starting job with Kellen Clemens. If he wins the job, keep your eye on him as a viable backup.

39) Josh McCown (OAK) The good news is that McCown could win the starting job. The bad news is that he plays for the Dolphins. Look elsewhere.

40) Kyle Boller (BAL) The Ravens offense is bad and Boller is – bad. If he’s on your team this year you have problems. Look for Joey Flacco to take over the Baltimore offense by mid season.

Honorable Mention: Brett Favre (TBD) I’m not shocked to see that Brett “has the itch” to come back and play. I will be shocked if the Packers just release him and he ends up torching their secondary if he ends up on the Vikings this season!Brett will come screaming into the top 10 as soon as he signs with a team!

The Football Consigliere

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