Week 2 Rankings (2016): Top 25 Quarterbacks

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

How much does a Week 1 performance change our opinion of a player?  Do we give someone who had a monster opening week a big bump up our rankings, regardless of how we felt entering the season?  How about a player who struggled, do we simply send them spiraling down?  We never want to react hastily, but the fantasy football season is a lot more like a sprint than a marathon.  With that in mind let’s take a look at how things stack up for Week 2:

  1. Aaron Rodgers – Green Bay Packers – at Minnesota
  2. Drew Brees – New Orleans Saints – at New York Giants
  3. Cam Newton – Carolina Panthers – vs. San Francisco
  4. Andrew Luck – Indianapolis Colts – at Denver
  5. Eli Manning – New York Giants – vs. New Orleans
  6. Carson Palmer – Arizona Cardinals – vs. Tampa Bay
  7. Ben Roethlisberger – Pittsburgh Steelers – vs. Cincinnati
  8. Derek Carr – Oakland Raiders – vs. Atlanta
  9. Russell Wilson – Seattle Seahawks – at Los Angeles
  10. Blake Bortles – Jacksonville Jaguars – at San Diego
  11. Matt Ryan – Atlanta Falcons – at Oakland
  12. Jameis Winston – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – at Arizona
  13. Matthew Stafford – Detroit Lions – vs. Tennessee
  14. Andy Dalton – Cincinnati Bengals – at Pittsburgh
  15. Philip Rivers – San Diego Chargers – vs. Jacksonville
  16. Marcus Mariota – Tennessee Titans – at Detroit
  17. Joe Flacco – Baltimore Ravens – at Cleveland
  18. Jimmy Garoppolo – New England Patriots – vs. Miami
  19. Carson Wentz – Philadelphia Eagles – at Chicago
  20. Trevor Siemian – Denver Broncos – vs. Indianapolis
  21. Ryan Fitzpatrick – New York Jets – at Buffalo
  22. Tyrod Taylor – Buffalo Bills – vs. New York Jets
  23. Kirk Cousins – Washington Redskins – vs. Dallas
  24. Dak Prescott – Dallas Cowboys – at Washington
  25. Alex Smith – Kansas City Chiefs – at Houston


  • The New York Giants defense fared well in Week 1, but was that due to the improvements they made or taking on a rookie QB?  It’s probably a little bit of both, though in what will likely be a shootout with the Saints (and given the display New Orleans put on in Week 1) there’s no way to consider Drew Brees anything but one of the elite in the league.
  • Speaking of the Giants-Saints game, New Orleans gave up 319 passing yards to Derek Carr and company in Week 1.  What do you think will be possible for the Eli Manning-Odell Beckham connection?
  • Taking on the Miami Dolphins, it’s hard not to be disappointed with the Week 1 performance from Russell Wilson (27-43, 258 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT).  He should improve, assuming he’s healthy (there’s been mixed reports about the severity of his ankle injury) but is there really a guarantee?  He averaged 251.5 yards per game last season, the difference was his 34 TD throws.  He remains a QB1, but it’s impossible to keep him near the top of the rankings.
  • After watching Jameis Winston throw for 4 TD against the Buccaneers, it’s hard not to get excited about the prospects of Derek Carr in Week 2.  As it is he’s coming off a big opening week himself, having thrown for 319 yards and 1 TD against the Saints.  There is a chance that the team leans on Latavius Murray, but at this point he is a viable QB1 in all formats.
  • Matt Ryan threw for 334 yards and 2 TD in Week 1, now he draws an Oakland defense that allowed 423 yards and 4 TD.  Granted Ryan is not Drew Brees, but there’s obviously reason to believe in Julio Jones lighting it up and Ryan posting QB1 type numbers.  There is risk, but there’s also more than enough reward.
  • Philip Rivers always seems to find a way, but without Keenan Allen is he really a quarterback you want to be depending on?  The fact that he also draws a tough matchup in the Cardinals and he needs to be dropped to QB2 status thanks to the unknown of where the targets are going to go (though that doesn’t mean there isn’t potential, like Tyrell Williams).
  • While we want to get excited about Marcus Mariota, especially after the Lions got torched in Week 1, he isn’t Andrew Luck and the Tennessee are going to try and feature the running game.  He’s a viable QB2, but not more than that.

Make sure to check out all of our Week 2 rankings:

Week 2 Rankings (2016): Top 50 Wide Receivers
Week 1 Rankings (2016): Top 15 Kickers


  1. Gern says:

    Morning Prof,
    So I awoke to T Coleman still available and a FA! The question I have is whether I drop Michael Thomas for him (and Funchess for Foster tonight) to leave me 6 rostered RBs and no WR depth behind my starting 3 (Green, Edelman, and Matthews) or stick with the original plan and just pick up Foster (for Funchess). My current RBs are:
    Peterson, Williams, Martin, & Bernard.

    • L says:

      Funchess for Coleman.

      Thomas for Foster (are you still #2 waiver wire priority?)

      or (if #1 waiver wire dude gets him)

      Thomas for another WR: Benjamin, Kerley, Sharpe (if any of them are available)

      If you get Foster look to shop one of your RBs for a WR in a trade.

      • Gern says:

        Good thought L! I think I might try to flip Funchess into D Parker and use M Thomas for Foster. Still #2 on the waiver wire and with Foster, Coleman, and Blount (yes, all three are sitting ther in my 10 team league) available I try to keep one WR just in case of an injury. Appreciate your insightful feedback!

    • Don’t think you need both, and I don’t like the idea of leaving yourself w/no WR depth (injuries happen)

      • Gern says:

        Thanks Prof! In a 10 team league there is a lot of talent left on the FA/Waiver list. I think I’m going to try to trade Funchess for D Parker and then use Thomas to pick up Foster off waivers. This will give Parker some time to get healthy and productive in the new system and provide a solid WR4 for bye weeks. Williams blew up last night, but I know his production is Bell-dependent and I’m not really sold on Martin as my RB2 behind Peterson at this point.

  2. Alphonse Nguyen says:

    Question for you: would you drop Josh Gordon for Tevin Coleman if you have DeMarco Murray and Adrian Peterson as your RB, Allen Robinson, Mohammed Sanu, Doug Baldwin, Eli Rogers and Chris Hogan as your Wide Receivers. This is a PPR League.

    • No, I wouldn’t. Could easily argue Gordon will be your WR2/3 once he returns and Coleman won’t be better than what you have. I could see dropping one of your end WR (Rogers/Hogan) though

  3. Drew says:

    Hi Professor, would you start Andrew Luck over Matt Ryan this week? I know you have Luck as #4 on your list but I’m nervous about Denver’s defense demolishing the Colts O-line. Thoughts?

  4. Dion says:

    Do I drop C-Mike for Tevin Coleman?

  5. Kenny Isham says:

    Who do I start MAtt Ryan or Luck? I also have the option to go get NE QB since the guy I am going against has Edelman And Gronk. Also who benefits the most from Allen injury Woodhead Benjamin or Gates

  6. Mike says:

    I have Cousins and Dalton. There are some streaming options available this week (FitzP, Flacco, Wentz, Cutler)…not sure if I should stick with these two guys or stream based on matchups. Thoughts?

  7. K says:

    There’s a lot of talk about Stafford having a big week at home vs. TEN…and though he’s still available in one of my leagues (8 team standard), it’d be insane to drop him in when I have Big Ben and Brown, right?

    Just looking for a quick sanity check.

  8. MikeP says:

    In the “Thoughts” section regarding Rivers it says “The fact that he also draws a tough matchup in the Cardinals…”.

    SD is playing Jacksonville, not AZ, so I gotta assume a mistake was made. Clearly Rivers would merit a lower slot on the list if facing AZ this week than the Jags.

    With that in mind my quandry: Rivers or Matt Ryan? I’m leaning Ryan, mostly due to how badly Okland got scorched last week and the question marks surrounding Rivers in the wake of losing Keenan Allen but I more or less see this as a coin flip….

    Standard league scoring.

  9. Carmen says:

    Hey there- Big Ben or Bortles for week 2? Ben played some of his worst games vs cinci last year and bortles is still putting up sufficient numbers…would you still start Ben?

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