The public coming to grips with quarterbacks not mattering in fantasy football has made quarterback average draft positions far less infuriating in recent years, and 2019 is no exception.
Except for Patrick Mahomes, who is being drafted as early as any QB we’ve seen in recent fantasy football history — the No. 7 overall player on Fantrax — best ball drafters clearly understand that QB production is imminently replaceable. It wasn’t always that way, but today it is, and that’s what matters.
Below are some best ball bargains, QBs drafted well below where they should be. Probably you could make this argument for 20 signal callers. I’ve chosen the three absolute best bargains according to their ADPs as tracked by RotoViz Best Ball tools.
The quarterback who has effectively alienated teammates, coaches, and fans alike is going 40 picks after Mahomes in FFPC leagues, and now isn’t even the third QB after Mahomes and Andrew Luck. Baker Mayfield has inched ahead of him as well.1
Yes, the guy who’s averaged 26.4 fantasy points — thanks largely to 2.18 touchdown passes per contest — is available as the fourth QB off the board. I say capitalize on the deep Rodgers skepticism following his down 2018 campaign and grab a guy whose range of outcomes still includes overall QB1.
Rodgers topped 300 fantasy points last season despite being hobbled by a not-unserious knee injury and operating a totally dysfunctional Green Bay offense that had spiraled into disarray by midseason. And not to be ignored: Rodgers’ touchdown rate in 2018 dropped a whopping two percent below his career average, meaning the TD regression is set to hit, and hit hard. His touchdown rate in 2018 was less than half his career best TD rate of 8.9% in 2011.
Buffalo’s hair-on-fire signal caller, who in 2018 ran for more than 90 yards in four of his final six games, averaged a meager two fantasy points per game less than Drew Brees, who’s being drafted about 30 spots before Allen on Fantrax and 40 spots higher on FanBall.
So what if Allen barely completed 52 percent of his passes last year — the guy is a fantasy machine, a Konami code phenom unlike anything we’ve seen since … Lamar Jackson? Well, anyway. Allen, fantasy’s overall QB1 over the season’s final six weeks thanks to his unholy rushing production, is the 17th quarterback off the board on FanBall.
With Allen once again primed to face an ocean of negative game script in 2019, I’d be hard pressed to pick up this kind of monstrous weekly upside 130 picks into a best ball draft anywhere else.2 His rushing yardage and TD scoring certainly can’t maintain at 2018 levels, but that shouldn’t matter too much in best ball, where you’re looking to benefit from Allen’s nuclear weeks while drafting another QB or two with a more stable week-to-week floor.
The Baltimore quarterback, after mercifully slotting in for the utterly washed Joe Flacco in 2018, was fantasy’s fifth-highest scoring quarterback over the season’s final seven weeks. Like Allen, Jackson lit the world aflame almost entirely on the ground, racking up an average of 79.7 rushing yards per game over that stretch. L-Jax, as the kids are calling him, didn’t rush fewer than 11 times in any of his seven starts, indicating that we can expect consistent rushing opportunity in 2019 as he leads the Ravens’ offense. The way Jackson is deployed makes him a great high-floor best ball option, especially for those who fade quarterback for the first seven or eight rounds.
In Fanball leagues, Jackson spent much of March and April going after Tom Brady, who scored 42 fewer fantasy points than Jackson over the final seven games of 2018. Maybe you can’t stomach drafting a running quarterback like Jackson or Allen because of the injury risk they face outside the pocket, but at such price points, it’s worth the risk.3
For more insight into the QB position in best ball leagues, check out these strategy and player selection articles.
Best Ball Workshop No. 6 – Players to Target to Dominate the Onesie Positions
Should We Ever Draft 6 QBs and TEs in DRAFT Best Ball Leagues?
FFPC Best Ball Roster Construction: Where to Draft Winning QBs
Best Ball Workshop: One Key QB Mistake Dooms Owners in BestBall10s