Two Quarterback Rankings: Week 12
November 26, 2015 | Chet
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Another one bites the dust. Farewell Joe Flacco. Bon voyage Johnny Manziel. Another week, another shift in the quarterback landscape. We’ve lost a QB1 in Joe Flacco, and another great QBBC option in Manziel. On one hand, we’ve gained back Josh McCown, who has played like a valuable QB1 streamer when given the chance. On the other hand, we’ve been given a fresh brown turd in Matt Schaub. It’s been a tough journey so far if you drafted a quarterback early, but hopefully you’ve overcome that by acquiring a capable backup. If you lack a steady quarterback, sometimes playing the stock market is a useful strategy. If you still have the ability to add a quarterback, some names I like moving forward due to their schedule are Marcus Mariota, Brian Hoyer, and Matthew Stafford.
This week, I like Kirk Cousins once again. In another juicy matchup and coming off a down week, Cousins might be on your waiver wire or available for trade. In a do or die week for many, I like his odds going against a Giants defense that has given up 19 touchdown passes on the year. With DeSean Jackson back, Cousins has a good chance of improving on his 316/1/2 line against the Big Blue from earlier in the season. Even with the return of Prince Amukamara, the Giants’ secondary is extremely exploitable.
- Carson Palmer (@ SF) – Leading the NFL in touchdown passes, Palmer has thrown at least three scores in his last three and shouldn’t slow down against a 49ers defense that has been well below average.
- Cam Newton (@ DAL) – Since week one, Cam has put up no fewer than 16 points. With his upcoming slate, he may be the most attractive quarterback in FF.
- Aaron Rodgers (vs CHI) – After struggling somewhat in the second quarter of the season, ARod has now thrown for eight scores over his last three and plays a Bears defense that he’s been roasting as of late.
- Eli Manning (@ WAS) – After dropping 279/2 against them earlier in the year, Manning looks to take advantage of a defense that just surrendered five touchdown passes to Cam Newton.
- Tom Brady (@ DEN) – After starting off red hot, he’s now scored below 20 points in his last three, is losing weapons in the passing game, and now faces the league’s most difficult pass defense.
- Philip Rivers (@ JAX) – He just had what was easily his worst performance of the year, but last time he had a subpar game he bounced back with 350+ yards and three touchdowns. The Jaguars are currently allowing the seventh most points to quarterbacks.
- Drew Brees (@ HOU) – After struggling earlier in the season, the Texans have allowed a combined 33 points over their last three games.
- Matthew Stafford (vs PHI) – The Eagles have given up a whopping 20 touchdown passes on the year, including five last week to Jameis Winston. Playing well since the coaching change, Stafford is firmly in QB1 territory.
- Blake Bortles (vs SD) – He’s cooled off a bit, but Bortles is still the QB8 on the year and this is a matchup that can go either way for him.
- Ben Roethlisberger (@ SEA) – A brutal matchup, but you know the game will flow through him and he currently has the best pair of wideouts in the league. Don’t get cute and sit him.
- Tony Romo (vs CAR) – Tough matchup, but the short week helps and he should only play better as he gets more comfortable.
- Brian Hoyer (vs NO) – Your obligatory “start QB playing the Saints” plug of the week.
- Andy Dalton (vs STL) – Played well last week in a difficult matchup, showing us he still gets the benefit of the doubt.
- Derek Carr (@ TEN) – Struggled last week, but this is nice matchup for a rebound, as Tennessee is a bit banged up on defense.
- Jay Cutler (@ GB) – He finally (and predictably) cooled off last week against a top unit, but with Matt Forte and Alshon Jeffrey returning, there’s reason for optimism despite his historic struggles against the Packers.
High End QB2s:
- Russell Wilson (vs PIT) – Somehow the QB12 on the year, Wilson finally showed signs of life tossing three scores against the 49ers. The Steelers, however, will be a bigger test.
- Matt Ryan (vs MIN) – He’s been steady over his last three, but with a tougher matchup, expect more of the same mediocre Ryan.
- Marcus Mariota (vs OAK) – His rushing score saved his bottom line last week, but that’s what you want with a mobile quarterback. In a plus matchup where the Raiders are allowing nearly 300 passing yards a game, Mariota is basically a must start QB2.
- Jameis Winston (@ IND) – Currently the QB10 with a favorable matchup, it’s hard to sit Jameis, even if he is going against Vontae Davis (who just got torched by Julio Jones last week).
- Kirk Cousins (vs NYG) – Amazing matchup for Cousins and company, as the Giants are allowing the second most points to quarterbacks. Can he capitalize?
- Brock Osweiler (vs NE) – He had about as solid of a debut as you can ask for, but New England has really ramped it up on defense as of late.
- Josh McCown (vs BAL) – He already dropped 457/2 on them, but it’s tough to expect a repeat performance after practicing with the twos the past two weeks. Still, this is clearly a very favorable matchup.
- Tyrod Taylor (vs KC) – His playing status is uncertain after getting dinged up against the Patriots, and he hasn’t topped 16 points in his last three. Kansas City’s defense is on the rise again as well.
- Ryan Fitzpatrick (vs MIA) – He needs to find the Fitzmagic quickly. The Dolphins have improved considerably since they last played, but it’s still a matchup where he can produce as a QB2.
Low End QB2s:
- Ryan Tannehill (vs NYJ) – He had one of his worst games against them in London, but the Jets have been struggling as of late and just gave up a nice day to TJ Yates.
- Alex Smith (vs BUF) – The Bills finally learned how to slow down Tom Brady, and outside of week eight, Smith has failed to produce well…about a low end QB2.
- Teddy Bridgewater (@ ATL) – The Falcons are allowing the fifth fewest points to quarterbacks. He’s had only one multi passing score game and, as usual, the Vikings will pound the rock with Adrian Peterson.
- Sam Bradford (vs DET) – He’s hurt, been playing like booty, and the Lions are quietly playing good football on defense as they’ve just shut down the Packers and Raiders. Really tough to start him here unless you have to.
- Matt Hasselbeck (vs TB) – In his last two starts, he’s thrown for two scores and 213 yards per game. Another tough start with a limited ceiling, but you can certainly do worse.
- Blaine Gabbert (vs ARI) – Played well in an absolutely brutal matchup where he was basically left for dead.
- Matt Schaub (@ CLE) – Let’s see first if he can make it through an appearance without a pick six before we consider him a viable option again, although this isn’t the worst matchup if you are that desperate.
- Mark Sanchez (@ DET) – He’s a turnover machine. Last time he started on Thanksgiving, we were given the greatest mishap in the history of sports. History says don’t start him.
- Case Keenum (@ CIN) – Even if he manages to suit up, he’s still not worth starting.
- Nick Foles (@ CIN) – The Rams would rather leave a concussed Case Keenum in than play him (drops mic).