Rent-a-Quarterback: Week 1 - Footballguys

Finding QB1 production from the waiver wire 

Late-round quarterback drafter? Had an injury to your starter? In need of a bye-week replacement? This is the place to find your weekly quarterback choices. In this article, which is new to Footballguys this season, I'll highlight a couple of quarterback options likely available in most leagues (we'll use players rostered in fewer than 60% of Yahoo leagues) who could provide some punch at the quarterback position.

Unless most teams in your league carry a backup quarterback, there should be plenty of starting NFL quarterbacks on your waiver wire. Instead of starting a low-end QB1 facing an elite secondary, look to the waiver wire and play the matchups. Ideally, a player who appears in this space gets hot for multiple weeks and becomes an every-week starter. But if not, throw him back to the wire and come back here next week. Quarterback is one of the most predictable positions in fantasy football. Simply by using matchups, fantasy GMs can start a mid-to-high QB1 every week by using the waiver wire.

Last Week's Results

In subsequent editions of this article, the previous week's selections will be listed here for transparency.

This Week's Candidates

Player Opponent Rk vs QBs Comments
Andy Dalton at IND 26 IND allowed second-most deep-ball completions in 2017.
Blake Bortles at NYG 32 Secondary should improve from 2017 but how fast can they do it?
Case Keenum vs. SEA 8 DEEP: Legion of Boom no more. Legit weapons for Keenum.
Joe Flacco vs. BUF 5 DEEP: BAL on the rise; looking to get off to good start against a bad team.

Commentary

Dalton has a top-5 fantasy quarterback season under his belt, and when are his unhealthy-in-2017 weapons going to be in better condition than in Week 1? Not only is Dalton's side of the ball a positive, but the defense he is facing provides a reason the be excited as well. Starting at cornerback for Indianapolis are Kenny Moore II and Pierre Desir.

Moore is a second-year undrafted free agent who was waived by New England in final cuts last season (and fantasy footballers should remember how bad their secondary was at the beginning of the season). And Desir has been cut four times in the last two seasons. If the only quarterback you drafted was Patrick Mahomes II II, Carson Wentz, or Jimmy Garoppolo, pick up Dalton and start your season right.

For Bortles, the case is simple: no team allowed more fantasy points to quarterbacks in 2017 than the Giants. Sure, they were involved in a semi-mutiny against their head coach and had talented cornerbacks protesting their situation by appearing to give less-than-full effort. But one of those talented players (Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie) is no longer with the team. While the secondary should improve, they're still a work in progress. And don't forget about how poor this team was at defending tight ends last season, allowing an NFL-most 13 touchdowns to that position on the season.

Nick Foles is also worth mentioning here, but Dalton and Bortles have better matchups. And Philadelphia's offensive injuries lower Foles' ceiling.

Deep Leagues Only

These selections are called out with the word "DEEP" in the table above.

  • This isn't your father's Seattle defense anymore. And Keenum is a home favorite with a pair of accomplished wide receivers at his disposal.
  • #NarrativeStreet can be where fantasy GMs take a wrong turn. But why wouldn't an offense that was stuck in neutral for most of 2017 look to get its new passing game weapons and now-healthy quarterback going early in the year? Expect Flacco early and Alex Collins late against what could be the NFL's worst team in 2018.
  • Tyrod Taylor gets an honorable mention here. His rushing ability, his weapons, and the likelihood of Pittsburgh forcing Cleveland to play up-tempo and throw often make him intriguing.

Looking Ahead

If others in your league are also playing the "Rent-a-Quarterback" game, it might be wise to get a jump on next week's potential choices.


Questions, comments, suggestions, and other feedback on this piece are always welcome via e-mail hester@footballguys.com