August 17, 2020
Sometimes, it's easier not to play the game of chicken that can develop between fantasy football drafters hoping to nab Patrick Mahomes or Lamar Jackson at the right spot in your draft.
The two top fantasy QB's should probably go somewhere in the second-to-fourth rounds in most drafts, and with skill-position players oftentimes more elusive than reliable quarterback play, it can be a risk and a detriment to take a signal caller so early.
But let's pretend you load your roster with the best RBs and WRs money can buy, and all the quarterbacks you had hoped to target have trickled off the board. What do you do then?
We've found a handful of sleeper QB picks that could perform a lot better than their draft positions (and ironically, most of them are older players who used to be the cream of the crop).
Here's a look...
Roethlisberger has fallen off fantasy radars. He's seen his absolutely loaded stockpile of weapons depleted and has battled some injury issues in recent seasons. But he still has JuJu Smith-Schuster to throw to and James Conner to keep the defense honest (and to catch passes as well). There is reason to believe that Big Ben could still post start-able numbers for fantasy football owners.
He may perhaps be a stretch to be your QB1, but if healthy he could overplay his role as a backup. TheLines.com's consensus odds give Rothlisberger +1450 odds to lead the entire league in passing yards — the eighth best of any QB. TheLines.com also handicaps the Steeler QB's touchdown over/under at 26, a number if eclipsed would have been a top 8 TD total back in 2019. Rothlisberger could be productive in 2020 and is worth targeting.
Rivers is with a completely new team in 2020 and so it's hard to really know what he'll be able to do in Indy. New players to new teams will be at a disadvantage this offseason with many fewer in-person meetings and on-field practices, but Rivers is a borderline Hall of Famer and will command an offense with a few very talented weapons, like T.Y. Hilton and Zach Pascal.
There is a really good chance Rivers will overperform his absurdly low ranking — 26th according to ESPN.com. TheLines.com once again is high on a sleeper veteran QB, projecting that Rivers has +1225 consensus odds to lead the entire league in passing — better odds than Drew Brees, Russell Wilson and Carson Wentz. Rivers will likely wind up a streaming QB option in many leagues, but it's possible he throws up numbers better than a lot of quarterbacks who get drafted. Keep an eye out.
Detroit, according to FantasyPros, has the seventh (Kenny Golladay) and 33rd (Marvin Jones) best wideouts this season. They also have another potential sleeper tight end in TJ Hockenson (16th best). Someone has to throw to all of these weapons, and Matthew Stafford has a track record of posting eye-popping numbers on pretty bad teams.
During the eight seasons he started 16 games for the Lions, Stafford averaged 27 touchdowns, 14 interceptions and 4,466 passing yards. If he bounces back in 2020, and many believe he will, those type of numbers could emerge again and make him a startable option for fantasy owners.
Other sleeper options: Daniel Jones, Giants; Gardner Minshew, Jaguars
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