by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)
The football season goes by in the blink of an eye, doesn’t it? It feels like things just got started and now this week marks the championship game for most leagues. If you are still standing you likely have a steady quarterback, or maybe you have more than one. Who should you start with your season on the line? Let’s take a look at our rankings for the week:
- Tom Brady – New England Patriots – vs. New York Jets
- Matt Ryan – Atlanta Falcons – at Carolina
- Aaron Rodgers – Green Bay Packers – vs. Minnesota
- Andrew Luck – Indianapolis Colts – at Oakland
- Drew Brees – New Orleans Saints – vs. Tampa Bay
- Philip Rivers – San Diego Chargers – at Cleveland
- Jameis Winston – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – at New Orleans
- Kirk Cousins – Washington Redskins – at Chicago
- Ben Roethlisberger – Pittsburgh Steelers – vs. Baltimore
- Cam Newton – Carolina Panthers – vs. Atlanta
- Russell Wilson – Seattle Seahawks – vs. Arizona
- Andy Dalton – Cincinnati Bengals – at Houston
- Joe Flacco – Baltimore Ravens – at Pittsburgh
- Matthew Stafford – Detroit Lions – at Dallas
- Derek Carr – Oakland Raiders – vs. Indianapolis
- Eli Manning – New York Giants – at Philadelphia
- Tyrod Taylor – Buffalo Bills – vs. Miami
- Marcus Mariota – Tennessee Titans – at Jacksonville
- Carson Palmer – Arizona Cardinals – at Seattle
- Dak Prescott – Dallas Cowboys – vs. Detroit
- Trevor Siemian – Denver Broncos – at Kansas City
- Colin Kaepernick – San Francisco 49ers – at Los Angeles
- Blake Bortles – Jacksonville Jaguars – vs. Tennessee
- Matt Barkley – Chicago Bears – vs. Washington
- Robert Griffin III – Cleveland Browns – vs. San Diego
- The last time Matt Ryan faced the Panthers “all” he did was put up 503 yards, 4 TD and 1 INT. On the season he has 32 TD vs. 7 INT and, while he would look that much better assuming Julio Jones is back in action, there is no reason to consider Ryan anything but one of the best options in the league.
- After back-to-back miserable performances Drew Brees rebounded strong, against a tough Arizona defense on the road, putting up 389 yards, 4 TD and 0 INT. While his matchup with Tampa Bay isn’t necessarily an easy one, his strong play at home and the questions hovering over the running game will buoy his upside. Slide him back into the top options with your season on the line.
- You may want to push Matthew Stafford up the rankings, especially against Dallas, but where have the TD gone? Over his past eight games he’s failed to top 2 TD in a game, and has only reached that many twice in this stretch (in other words he has 6 games of 1 or 0 TD). That’s simply not a lot of upside to bank on.
- Despite back-to-back less than stellar performances (including 3 INT against the Cowboys on Sunday), there’s reason to believe in a bounce back from Jameis Winston. The running game is questionable and he’s going to be asked to guide the offense in a likely shootout with the New Orleans Saints (who have just 7 INT on the season).
- Interesting how bad Andy Dalton has been over the past two games, without A.J. Green (a total of 337 yards, 2 TD and 1 INT). He does have a favorable matchup this week, though, and there’s also a chance that Green returns. Consider his spot on these rankings dependent on Green being active, so if he’s out be prepared to send him down into QB2 territory.
- Eli Manning hasn’t topped 257 yards in his past eight games, including four straight of 201 yards or fewer. Granted, he’s always a threat to post a monster game with Odell Beckham Jr. at this disposal, but at this point it’s impossible to consider him anything more than a QB2.
- Sure Dak Prescott was better (279 yards), but he failed to find the end zone. He now has 3 TD over his past four games, draws a difficult Detroit defense (fewest points per week to opposing QB over the past four games) and could easily watch the offense run through Ezekiel Elliott. In other words, don’t consider him a great option.
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