Every year at this time, one of my favorite duties as a dynasty owner is to stash away players who could sprout growth in 2018 to fill up roster spots I had been using for depth. This is especially cathartic when I’m refreshing the roster of a team that just missed or got eliminated from the playoffs. Let’s look at quarterbacks, which have become much more important with the rise of 2QB and Superflex leagues.
Blaine Gabbert, ARI - Gabbert could easily be the starter for the Cardinals next year. He’s plenty athletic - enough to add value as a runner, he’s in a vertical passing offense, and he is playing for a coach that can get the best play out of quarterbacks. He had the best fantasy line of any quarterback to face Jacksonville this year. It’s time to be open to Gabbert being more than a punchline.
DeShone Kizer, CLE - If Kizer was dropped in your dynasty league because he is seen as a failure, rectify that. He’s a good runner with a nose for the end zone and he has grown this year. We’re about to see him with two real downfield threats. This could get fun.
Ryan Tannehill, MIA - Remember me? Check to make sure Tannehill wasn’t dropped in leagues with limited injured reserve slots.
Brett Hundley, GB - Hundley’s offseason trade value was seen as bottoming out a few weeks ago, but he has flashed enough and grown enough to make a quarterback-poor team give him a shot in a year or two.
Teddy Bridgewater, MIN - The free agent will start someone in 2018 as long as his knee is sound. His fantasy ceiling is modest, but he still has a lot of room to grow as a player.
Nathan Peterman, BUF - I know it was a complete disaster, but we shouldn’t write off Peterman yet. Remember Jared Goff last year? Obviously, McDermott and company have a good view of Peterman and they will likely enter the offseason with him as the leader to start in 2018. The offense and Peterman will be groomed for each other, it seems like the Bills are frustrated that they haven’t had more of a chance to do that this year. I’m not saying it’s going to work, but he’ll get a shot.
A.J. McCarron, CIN - The league clearly thinks more of McCarron than we do. Both the price the Browns were willing to pay and the fact that Bengals were willing to ask it show that at least the perception of McCarron is around that held of Jimmy Garoppolo, who isn’t even on this list because I assume he’s owned everywhere. McCarron looks like a competent backup to me (which is still in short supply in the NFL), but someone will give him a chance to start.
Josh Dobbs, PIT - If Ben Roethlisberger decides to retire, the Steelers will pray that Dobbs is ready to commandeer this offense. They’ll also likely sign another quarterback and even draft another, but there’s a non-zero chance Dobbs will figure into the Steelers plans at quarterback in the future, and that future could be coming fast. He’s athletic and smart, but not very intuitive, as Matt Waldman has told us.
Davis Webb, NYG - There were some indications before the draft that at least a few organizations thought highly of Webb. I don’t, but the Giants will get to see him, and the new head coach may only have him on their initial roster. Like Dobbs, he has value because of the non-zero chance that he figures into an impending new world at quarterback for the franchise.
Cardale Jones, LAC - Jones was reunited with someone who coached him in his rookie year, Anthony Lynn. He liked Jones enough to endorse trading draft capital for the right to develop him. We know Jones is a good runner and he’s a bold downfield passer. He has Philip Rivers to watch and learn from and the clock is ticking on Rivers time as a starter. I like Jones better than the SCUBA quarterbacks, but he is more likely to be available on the waiver wire, so he’s down here in SUBMARINE.
Chad Kelly, DEN - Maybe he was drafted as a favor. The Broncos will surely draft a quarterback high next year. Kelly is still facing long odds. He has the mindset, athleticism, and arm to succeed in the NFL. I’ll spend a roster spot this offseason to see if the Broncos know that and give him a fair shot to win the job.
Chase Daniel, Taysom Hill, NO - Daniel could be a caretaker quarterback if the Saints decide to not pay Drew Brees, but can’t execute a plan to get a quarterback better than Daniel. Hill was plucked from the Packers at the beginning of the season, so they obviously see something in him, and his running ability enhances his fantasy upside.
Colt McCoy, WAS - Kirk Cousins and Washington are likely on the outs, which would leave McCoy as the starter. He is hypercompetent, but we also know exactly what he is and he won’t be more than that. Still, he can probably pilot a Jay Gruden offense to some measure of success and at least generate value in 2QB/Superflex leagues if Washington doesn’t hold onto Cousins or make a splashy move to distract from losing him.