by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)
It doesn’t seem real, but it is already time for the 2017 NFL season to kick off. It feels like just yesterday that we watched the New England Patriots take the Super Bowl title, but here we are. Week 1 is often the toughest to plan for, as we are basing decisions off of expectations and past performance instead of the here and now (it’s not like we get clarity from the preseason). With that in mind let’s kick things off with our Top 25 quarterback rankings:
- Matt Ryan – Atlanta Falcons – at Chicago
- Tom Brady – New England Patriots – vs. Kansas City
- Aaron Rodgers – Green Bay Packers – vs. Seattle
- Drew Brees – New Orleans Saints – at Minnesota
- Russell Wilson – Seattle Seahawks – at Green Bay
- Marcus Mariota – Tennessee Titans – vs. Oakland
- Derek Carr – Oakland Raiders – at Tennessee
- Jameis Winston – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – at Miami
- Cam Newton – Carolina Panthers – at San Francisco
- Ben Roethlisberger – Pittsburgh Steelers – at Cleveland
- Eli Manning – New York Giants – at Dallas
- Carson Palmer – Arizona Cardinals – at Detroit
- Matthew Stafford – Detroit Lions – vs. Arizona
- Kirk Cousins – Washington Redskins – vs. Philadelphia
- Andy Dalton – Cincinnati Bengals – vs. Baltimore
- Carson Wentz – Philadelphia Eagles – at Washington
- Tyrod Taylor – Buffalo Bills – vs. New York Jets
- Philip Rivers – San Diego Chargers – at Denver
- Dak Prescott – Dallas Cowboys – vs. New York Giants
- Sam Bradford – Minnesota Vikings – vs. New Orleans
- Jay Cutler – Miami Dolphins – vs. Tampa Bay
- Alex Smith – Kansas City Chiefs – at New England
- Brian Hoyer – San Francisco 49ers – vs. Carolina
- Jared Goff – Los Angeles Rams – vs. Indianapolis
- Trevor Semien – Denver Broncos – vs. San Diego
- Yes you would’ve expected Dak Prescott and the passing game to play a major role given the suspension to Ezekiel Elliot, but they draw a tough matchup in Week 1. On December 11 he completed 45.9% of his passes, throwing for 165 yards, 1 TD and 2 INT against them. Don’t consider him more than a QB2, especially now that it seems far more likely that Elliot is on the field for the game.
- Both Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers have tough Week 1 matchups, but is anyone really going to consider sitting them down? Continue to view them as elite options, though that should go without saying.
- The Oakland defense has been consistently shredded this preseason, and while it’s just the preseason it also can’t be completed ignored. With an improved set of receivers around him, Marcus Mariota should be able to get off to a strong start and produce some big numbers for fantasy owners. A promising option all season, he’s a borderline Top 5 choice for Week 1 (it’s not like they are going to ignore the running game, which does cap his value).
- We’re going to be cautious with Cam Newton, as he’s been working his way back from injury, but he’ll be on the field for Week 1 and should be a QB1. If he had been healthy this preseason he’d likely be in the Top 5 options, so keep that in mind.
- In one game against Denver last season Philip Rivers threw 3 INT and completed just 42.6% of his passes. In the other he was more cautious and threw for 178 yards. Whichever way you want to cut it, he’ll be a tough sell as a QB1 this week in a difficult matchup (despite having a solid receiving corps at his disposal).
- If Joe Flacco was healthy he’d be in the Top 25, but he’s not necessarily 100% quite yet despite the expectations that he’s going to play. That makes him tough to trust, unfortunately, unless you are desperate in two-quarterback formats.
Make sure to check out all of our Week 1 Rankings: