• After a slow start as a rookie, Fields finished at QB10 or better in his last four starts (Weeks 8-9 and 14-15) due to a new disposition to run the ball (8.4 rushing attempts per game in his last five games after averaging 3.75 carries in his first four).
• Fields’s newfound willingness to attack defenses with his legs is the key to him surpassing his ADP in 2022: 11 of the 12 quarterbacks who had at least 125 carries in a season went on to post a fantasy production among the Top 12 per game. .
• Click here to see the complete PFF fantasy football rankings.
The quarterback position has become more predictable in recent years, as a higher percentage of the top 12 quarterbacks in ADP finished inside the position’s top 12 final producers in 2021 than at any time since 2010. :
Consecutive decade-long highs in terms of highest percentage of ADP’s top 12 quarterbacks to finish in the top 12 pic.twitter.com/9D0mm232zc
— Ian Hartitz (@Ihartitz) July 21, 2022
General, lamar jackson Y Russell Wilson they were the only two quarterbacks with an ADP in the top 12 not to finish as such in 2021, and both instances were primarily due to injury. Rule changes, a plethora of dual-threat talent, and general offensive bursts have helped make our ability to predict the position better than ever in recent years.
However, there have certainly been some unexpected booms in recent history. 2018 patrick mahomes2018 matt ryan2018 ben roethlisberger2019 Dak Prescott and 2019 james winston all posted top-five fantasy finishes despite not having a preseason ADP inside the top-12 of the position.
On average, four quarterbacks have infiltrated the top 12 at the position after not having an ADP QB1 since 2010. The following signal-callers currently make up the rest of the top 24 according to Fantasy Pros ADP Data. Rounds refer to 12-team leagues, with lower-ranked quarterbacks sometimes going earlier in drafts due to sometimes extreme differences in their overall rank between ADP sources:
- San Francisco 49ers Quarterback trey lance: QB13, Pick 100, Round 8.3
- minnesota vikings Quarterback kirk cousins: QB14, Pick 107, Round 8.9
- las vegas raiders Quarterback Derek Carr: QB15, Pick 108, Round 9
- miami dolphins Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa: QB16, Pick 122, Round 10.2
- cleveland browns Quarterback deshaun watson: QB17, Pick 152, Round 12.7
- chicago bears Quarterback justin fields: QB18, Pick 121, Round 10.1
- new england patriots Quarterback mac jones: QB19, Pick 159, Round 13.3
- jacksonville jaguars Quarterback trevor lawrence: QB20, Pick 131, Round 10.9
- tennessee titans Quarterback ryan tannehill: QB21, Pick 144, Round 12
- Indianapolis Colts Quarterback matt ryan: QB22, Pick 142, Round 11.8
- new orleans saints Quarterback james winston: QB23, Pick 157, Round 13.1
- new york jets Quarterback zach wilson: QB24, Pick 179, Round 14.9
I’m going to require that a quarterback be picked in Round 10 or later to be considered. Lance, Cousins and Carr already have an argument for QB1’s legitimate treatment. In Lance’s case, he looks a lot like the next great fantasy football quarterback and enter as the QB7 in my fantasy football rankings. I’d be surprised if Lance’s ADP isn’t in the top 10 of the position by the end of August, and if not, he’ll be an absolute steal at that price.
After covering all the signal calls on my team preview seriesdiscussing the findings The PFF Fantasy Football PodcastY profiles of possible contenders for this same honormy official pick for the best last-round quarterback of 2022 is…
chicago bears Quarterback justin fields (QB18, pick 121, round 10.1)
The 2021 season started off pretty poorly with head coach Matt Nagy’s insistence on trying Andy Dalton as the team’s undisputed starting quarterback, while an already mediocre group of pass receivers struggled to make life easier for whoever was under center. For the season, the Bears (38.9%) posted the NFL’s lowest rate of pass receivers considered open or wide open last season. Not good!
The good news is that Fields doesn’t need to take a big step forward as a real-life quarterback to function as a solid fantasy option. Things started out pretty brutal, but by season’s end, the 11th overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft had racked up a handful of more-than-usable fantasy performances, showing off some really fun releases along the way:
- Week 3: QB34
- Week 4: QB31
- Week 5: QB30
- Week 6: QB19
- Week 7: QB24
- Week 8: QB3
- Week 9: QB9
- Week 14: QB8
- Week 15: QB10
The obvious boost for Fields was a newfound willingness to race as the season progressed. Overall, he averaged just 3.75 rushing attempts per game in his first four starts compared to 8.4 during his last five.
It’s unfair to simply take the most fantasy-friendly stretch of Fields and extrapolate that average over the course of a 17-game season. Still, the Ohio State product has never been a stranger to racking up yards on the ground and he looked pretty good doing it in 2021.
this was great pic.twitter.com/vfRF6hTu0P
— Ian Hartitz (@Ihartitz) July 6, 2022
There’s a legitimate fantasy ceiling here if Fields keeps his foot on the gas at running back. Overall, 11 of the 12 quarterbacks who got at least 125 carries in a season went on to post a fantasy production in the top 12 per game, with 2020 cam newton (QB17) being the only exception. Seven of the 12 qualifiers finished in the top five. per game, so quarterbacks aren’t being rewarded simply for staying healthy.
PFF currently projects Fields to rack up 140 quick attempts – fourth-highest mark among all quarterbacks. Even with a potentially horrendous supporting cast, he’s my QB15 ahead of Cousins and Carr right now. Basically, as the latest fantasy quarterback coaches can pick and feel even a little bit good going into Week 1, Fields is capable of being much better in fantasy football than he is in real life.
james winstonThe 0.64 fantasy point average per drop led the NFL last season among 36 qualified quarterbacks. It would make sense if the Saints’ rate of passes played increases with (hopefully) Miguel Tomas, Chris Olave Y Jarvis Landry now in the wide receiver room.
Even an outright boom in passing efficiency for Tua Tagovailoa might leave him out of the top 12 fantasy quarterbacks, just watch Jimmy Garoppolo. Overall, Fields and Tagovailoa each have four career top-12 finishes.
trevor lawrence He showed signs of a fantasy-friendly court thanks to 19.6 rushing yards per game. Also, things can’t get any worse than they were in 2022.
matt ryan was objectively more accurate than carson wenttz a all areas of the field last season. The 2016 league MVP has shown a tantalizing fantasy ceiling before, and quarterbacks don’t suffer as severe a drop in production as they age compared to other positions.
mac jones he was arguably the best quarterback in the 2021 draft class as a rookie. He provided legitimate high-end fantasy value down the stretch, garnering four top-10 finishes over the final nine weeks of the season. He would make sense if the Patriots put more on his plate after finishing last season as the league’s fifth-most-run offense in no-trash situations.
deshaun watson he has worked as a QB1, QB4, QB3 and QB6 in fantasy points per game during his only four professional seasons. He’s unlikely to finish in the top 12 for the entire season if he gets suspended too long, but he’ll be back in the top 12 once he’s eligible to start.
zach wilsonThe biggest draw before 2022 is the hope that things can’t go much worse than they do in 2021. Wilson at least managed two top-eight fantasy finishes over the last six weeks of the season, while Lawrence never finished by above the tenth during any given week. It is expected that a healthier open reception room and a natural jump to the year 2 bring out some of Wilson’s playmaking ability more consistently.
ryan tannehill is again set to potentially provide some sneaky upside QB2 value.