2018 Preseason Rankings: Updated Top 20 Quarterbacks: Are Watson/Wentz Trustworthy, Mahomes Continues To Climb & More

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

We all know that the quarterback position is fairly deep, though that doesn’t mean that there aren’t significant questions facing several of the top options (despite avoiding significant injuries this preseason, two of the potentially better options still face health concerns).  Throw in suspensions and supporting casts and who is the preferred options?  Who should we avoid?  Let’s take a look at how our rankings currently stand:

1) Aaron Rodgers – Green Bay Packers (1)
2) Russell Wilson – Seattle Seahawks (2)
3) Tom Brady – New England Patriots (3)
4) Cam Newton – Carolina Panthers (4)
5) Drew Brees – New Orleans Saints (8)
6) Deshaun Watson – Houston Texans (6)
7) Carson Wentz – Philadelphia Eagles (7)
8) Matthew Stafford – Detroit Lions (10)
9) Ben Roethlisberger – Pittsburgh Steelers (11)
10) Jimmy Garoppolo – San Francisco 49ers (9)
11) Patrick Mahomes – Kansas City Chiefs (NR)
12) Kirk Cousins – Minnesota Vikings (5)
13) Matt Ryan – Atlanta Falcons (13)
14) Philip Rivers – San Diego Chargers (12)
15) Jared Goff – Los Angeles Rams (15)
16) Andrew Luck – Indianapolis Colts (NR)
17) Marcus Mariota – Tennessee Titans (NR)
18) Jameis Winston – Tampa Bay Buccaneers (14)
19) Derek Carr – Oakland Raiders (NR)
20) Mitchell Trubisky – Chicago Bears (NR)

Thoughts:

  • Deshaun Watson appears to be healthy, with reports that he’s not wearing a knee brace during the preseason.  At the same time he didn’t look spectacular when on the field and you have to wonder if he’s going to be able to maintain his TD rate from last season (he threw a TD pass once every 10.7 attempts, significantly better than Tom Brady’s TD every 18.2 attempts, Russell Wilson’s TD every 16.3 attempts and even Carson Wentz’ TD every 13.3 attempts).  The reward is high, but the risk simply outweighs it heading into the year considering the draft day cost.
  • It’s looking more and more like Wentz is going to miss at least Week 1 (though we should have a definitive answer later today), and then you have to wonder how effective he’ll be over the first few weeks once he does return to the field (especially with Alshon Jeffery expected out).  He could be a difference maker later in the year, but we can’t ignore the early season risk.  If you are going to invest in him make sure that you back him up with a strong alternative.
  • Patrick Mahomes is getting a lot of hype, and his performance this preseason is only going to add fuel to the fire (31-43, 367 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT).  He has the weapons to thrive, with the ability to make a big play at any time.  He doesn’t have much experience, which adds to the risk, but he’s settled in as a low-end QB1 and could really emerge as one of the better options by year’s end.
  • Why is Matthew Stafford consistently undervalued by fantasy owners?  He just keeps on producing, and there’s something to be said for the “safe” selection.  You can pretty much write down 4,000+ yards and nearly 30 TD year in and year out, so don’t disregard that.
  • Is anyone going to argue that Andrew Luck has the upside of a Top 10, and maybe even a Top 5, option?  Of course not, but is anyone also willing to bet that he stays healthy all year long or that he’s guaranteed to produce considering the missed time?  Probably not.  Consider him a high risk, high reward option and a potential value selection as a QB2.

Make sure to check out all of our 2018 preseason rankings:

Position
Date Updated
Quarterback08/31/18
Running Back09/02/18
Wide Receiver 08/29/18
Tight End08/24/18
Kicker08/28/18
Defense08/09/18
2018 Preseason Rankings: Updated Top 40 Running Backs: What Does Jerick McKinnon's Loss Mean & More
2018 Preseason Rankings: Updated Top 50 Wide Receivers: Some Notable Names Falling, Josh Gordon On The Rise & More

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