Fantasy Football 2015 Preview: Quarterback ADP’s

In my first segment of my 2015 fantasy football preview, I looked at Average Draft Position as a whole and gave you one overrated, one underrated, and one outdated player at the Tight End, Wide Receiver and Running Back positions. The ADP used for these articles comes from and is based on PPR leagues. For the June edition of my article I would like to focus primarily on quarterbacks, giving three overrated and three underrated, and I will end up doing a similar follow-up on the other three positions later during the offseason. Let’s dig in.

Overrated QB’s (based on current ADP)

Peyton Manning

Sure he was the number three QB last year, and hopes are whatever fatigued him in the second half of last season has healed, but at his current ADP of 4.05 you’re putting a fourth rounder on an older player who showed a lot of decline last season. He’s currently going as the QB3, which I don’t have as big of a problem with as I do the fact he’s going in the fourth round (wait on QB’s people!). Fourth round aside, even at QB3 you are still drafting him over QB’s Russell Wilson (5.01), Drew Brees (5.09), Matt Ryan (6.09), and Ben Roethlisberger (6.12) who all have much higher floors, and are all safer picks if you want to invest an earlier pick on a QB. Peyton started off strong last season and looked like he even had a chance at living up to his crazy first round ADP, but late in the season he wore down and the Broncos decided to go with a run heavy attack to get it done. Trends like that don’t often reverse, and why would they with CJ Anderson running the ball. Anything can happen, but I believe that Peyton’s top 5 fantasy QB days are over.

Colin Kaepernick

Grabbing Colin Kaepernick in the 12th round at his current ADP of 12.04 doesn’t sound too bad. Why not take a later round gamble on a guy with a rocket arm that can run? Well he just hasn’t done enough with his physical talents to warrant a fantasy selection from you. He finished as the QB17 last season, and that’s where he’s being drafted so there isn’t any disconnect, but the 49ers really haven’t done much to improve his fantasy situation over the offseason (in fact, it likely got worse). To me, it’s just about the players you are passing up. If you draft Kaepernick in this spot you are more than likely taking him over Joe Flacco (12.09), Carson Palmer (13.01), and Jay Cutler (13.05). This late in the draft you should be looking for upside, and I like the situation in the passing games for all three of those guys more than Kaepernick’s.

Cam Newton

When healthy, and in the past, Cam Newton has finished as a top six QB three times. Two exceptions there: when healthy, and in the past. This is the present Cam we have to consider here and his current situation. His receiving corps is easily one of the worst in the NFL, and he didn’t run the ball nearly as often or as effectively as he had in the past. He’s currently being drafted 7.03 as the QB8, but are reaches and are probably based on stats produced by his former self. I’m not a doctor and can’t say that Cam won’t come back completely healthy this season, running the ball often, and showing more zip on his passes. What I can say is if the Cam Newton you draft here is the same Cam Newton from last year, you’re wasting a pick. Why take that risk when you can get safe options behind him in Tony Romo (7.11) and Tom Brady (8.03). A lot of people take Cam for the upside that comes with his legs, for his huge week-winning games, but more important to me is consistent production. Cam missed two games last year so take that into consideration, but he finished with only four weeks of at least 19 fantasy points, whereas Tom Brady and Tony Romo both doubled that with eight. Take the players who consistently produce for you on a week to week basis, Cam’s 35 points from three week’s ago aren’t helping you this week, and they didn’t help you last week or the week before that (hint: they won’t help you next week, either).

Underrated QB’s (based on current ADP)

Eli Manning

Eli is being drafted 9.04 as the QB12 after finishing as the QB9 last season. He learned a new offense which slowed him for the first couple weeks of the season, played without Odell Beckham Jr. for the first four weeks of the season, and without Cruz for the final 10 games. Eli’s arrow is very boldly pointing up in this offensive scheme with his full arsenal of weapons on the field together for once. There was a lot of talk about this Giants offense heading into last season, and they really stumbled out of the gate, but Eli came around and the quick hitting offense proved to resurrect his career, as he posted a better than 2:1 TD to INT ratio for only the second time in his career. The 14 INT’s Eli had last year were his fewest in season since 2009, and the 30 TD’s were his most since 2010. It is always a little scary putting your faith in Eli, but this system works for him and if that isn’t enough for you, just remember he has the potential number one fantasy WR on his team as well.

Sam Bradford

I am not a Sam Bradford fan. I am, however, a Chip Kelly QB fan. The situation in Philadelphia seems to gradually be getting better, they made the decision to move on from the inefficient Foles last season, and Mark Sanchez proved to be a decent fantasy contributor filling in, but Bradford has more talent than either QB and will be a plus in production for the Eagles (and fantasy footballers) as long as he’s healthy. I have always viewed injuries as freak accidents and don’t necessarily believe that one person has a much greater chance at getting injured than another, especially with the shape you have to be in the even get on the field in the NFL, so I personally am not too worried about Bradford’s health. I think the *insert Philadelphia QB here* will work for your lineups as long as they are playing up tempo, lack of a defense doesn’t hurt either. I’m a huge advocate of waiting on QB, and Bradford would be one of my prime late round targets if you use this strategy in your draft(s).

Carson Palmer

Remember that Cam Newtown had four games with at least 19 fantasy points in his 14 games played? Well, Palmer had three games with at least 19 fantasy points and only played six games last season. Carson is a consistent producer with a current ADP of 13.01. He is the 19th QB going off the boards even though he finished as a top 12 QB in every single week that he played an entire game (left early week 10 with ACL tear). I understand if you are questioning his health coming off an ACL tear, but the 13th round is getting a little late to take a gamble on a player who  can put up legit top 12 QB numbers. Carson Palmer is being overlooked and undervalued, and you would be smart to grab him late and hope for good health.

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Jake Zavoral
Jake Zavoral is an XN Sports contributor, Longtime fantasy football player from Minnesota and Vikings fan patiently waiting for them to win a Super Bowl. BBA from the University of North Dakota. Follow Jake on Twitter @jakezav