Fantasy Football Rankings: Top 20 Quarterbacks

Photo: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome back for year two of The Draft Network’s preseason fantasy football rankings. The following is some quick background on how these rankings were determined. 

More than 40 hours of research went into the ranking process. It started by coming up with custom stat projections for more than 200 NFL players. From there I adjusted the order you’ll see below based on upside, injury risk, likelihood of reaching the projected total, etc. It’s important to keep in mind that the rankings are not simply in descending order of projected fantasy points. Finally, I placed each QB into a tier.

All of my rankings reflect the order in which I would take players if I were drafting today in a 12-team PPR league with ESPN scoring and no bonuses. These rankings will be updated weekly throughout the offseason, so be sure to check in with The Draft Network often to gain an edge on your league-mates.

If you have any specific questions or want to know more about what I think of certain players, hit me up on Twitter (@JaimeEisner). I’d be happy to chat with you! Also, tune in to the TDN Fantasy Podcast for in-depth audio breakdowns of these rankings and all the latest fantasy football news. 

For access to QB rankings 21-35 and stat projections, please click here and become a TDN Premium member.

Other rankings: RB | WR TE


TIER 1


1. Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs

2. Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens

No surprises here. Mahomes and Jackson are the two premier options at the position and you’ll have to pay a hefty price to get them. They’re both going in the second round in most leagues. Both quarterbacks have displayed league-winning ability—Mahomes in 2018 and Jackson last season—and each has a chance to replicate that success in 2020. If you can stomach the price point, you expect to get 300-plus fantasy points (through Week 16) out of each player in 2020. I favor Mahomes slightly more because I project significant passing touchdown regression from Jackson’s league-leading 9% touchdown rate last season. 


TIER 2


3. Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys

4. Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks

5. Deshaun Watson, Houston Texans

There’s no clear-cut QB3 according to ADP right now. The quartet of Prescott, Wilson, Watson, and Kyler Murray has an ADP between 4.2-4.8 among QBs, each coming off the board in the fifth round of drafts. Murray doesn’t quite make the tier two cut for me, so let’s focus on the other three passers. 

Prescott finished as the QB3 in total points and the QB5 in average fantasy points per game last season. New Dallas Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy is known for letting his star quarterback throw early and often, so Prescott’s counting stats should be at an elite level again. Wilson continues to get the job done year after year. He finished as the QB5 in total points and QB7 on a per-game basis in 2019. Given some of the injury issues at running back and the addition of tight end Greg Olsen, the Seahawks may rely even more on Wilson then they have before. Watson maintains top-five status despite losing his top receiver in DeAndre Hopkins. I expect plenty of passing volume and maybe an increase in his rushing stats in 2020. He won’t finish as the QB2 again, but ending up in the top five is very doable. 


TIER 3


6. Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills

7. Kyler Murray, Arizona Cardinals 

I really like the two players in this tier, but I fear they’ll be overdrafted. Both got a shiny new WR1 this offseason—Stefon Diggs for Allen and Hopkins for Murray—and a modest bump in production should follow. However, they performed at such a high level last season, particularly in the rushing game, that there isn’t much room for a spike in fantasy production. As long as you don’t pay a top-five price, you’ll be happy with your return. 


TIER 4


8. Tom Brady, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

9. Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints

10. Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers

11. Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons

Let’s call this the ol’ reliable tier. Everyone here is 35 or older and the top half is likely only one or two seasons away from retirement. However, this is the tier I’ll most likely get my quarterback from. 

Brady has one of the best group of weapons around him in the entire NFL and a head coach that isn’t afraid to air it out. He finished as the QB12 in total points last season with Julian Edelman and nobody. He now has Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Rob Gronkowski, and more. Brees, aside from last season, has remained remarkably healthy for the majority of his career. He’s got all-world wide receiver Michael Thomas to throw to along with the newly-signed Emmanuel Sanders. Oh, and he and tight end Jared Cook developed a strong relationship down the stretch last season. 

Rodgers’ bad 2019 season resulted in a QB11 finish. Yes, Green Bay decided to draft his successor instead of pass-catching weapons to help him, but his play-makers aren’t any worse than they were last season. Ryan is Mr. Consistent and won’t be playing through an injured ankle for much of the season. He missed a game and was a bit hobbled in the second half of the season and still finished as the QB9. 


TIER 5


12. Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers

13. Carson Wentz, Philadelphia Eagles

14. Jared Goff, Los Angeles Rams

Sixteen guaranteed games from either Roethlisberger or Wentz would likely propel them into the top 10, but injury risk must be factored in. Still, on a per-game basis, you’ll get QB1 production from both Pennsylvania QBs. Goff isn’t going to be great, but I expect him to be less terrible next season with some help from whatever Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay has cooked up this offseason. 


TIER 6


15. Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions

16. Kirk Cousins, Minnesota Vikings

17. Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals

18. Philip Rivers, Indianapolis Colts

19. Daniel Jones, New York Giants

20. Derek Carr, Las Vegas Raiders

This is the start of the No. 2 QB tier. You’ll be unhappy leaving your draft with any of these players as your starter, but they’ll be elite back-up and bye week fill-in options—the perfect group to pair with Roethlisberger, Wentz, or even Brees if you’re worried about injuries. My projections have a difference of less than .5 fantasy points per game between these six players. All of these players have risks, but they all also have borderline QB1 upside. If you have a deep bench, snag someone from this tier even if you have one of the better QBs on your roster. 


For access to QB rankings 21-35 and stat projections, please click here and become a TDN Premium member.

Written By:

Jaime Eisner

Managing Editor

Managing Editor of The Draft Network. He’s a former editor for Sports Illustrated, FanRag Sports and Arizona Sports. He’s the co-host of the TDN Fantasy Podcast and has an extensive background covering fantasy sports and sports betting.

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