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Fantasy Football Busts: Awesemo’s Top Three Do-Not-Draft Quarterbacks

Nathan Joyce



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If you’ve been playing fantasy football for any extended period of time, you’ve probably heard — and lived by — the phrase “wait on quarterback.” Well, Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson squashed that theory in the recent past, but overall, it’s a pretty decent strategy to live by. Sometimes cliches are cliches for a reason, as cliche as that sounds. As you read down this article, it’ll be like a quick-and-dirty course — a CliffsNotes version of fantasy football picks you should, or rather, should not make. We’re going to be reviewing the top fantasy football busts, or, do-not-draft quarterbacks, based on Awesemo’s expert projections and rankings, in comparison to industry consensus draft positions and rankings.

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Awesemo’s Fantasy Football Busts: Top Three Quarterbacks

Deshaun Watson (Houston Texans)

It may seem a bit blasphemous to have last year’s No. 2 quarterback atop the do-not-draft list, especially when he’s as young and talented as Watson is. However, as good as was — and, he was good — there was no other quarterback who made as large of an impact than Jackson — but, friendly reminder, Mahomes was hurt for some of the year. Coming off his best season as a pro, Watson is being taken as the No. 6 quarterback overall in round 5. That fifth-round ADP is a bit of a tough investment, especially when you consider the handful of guys who Awesemo projects to be within seven points of him and coming at a four- or five-round discount. Add in the fact that Watson is now without the DeAndre Hopkins security blanket he’s been accustomed to over the last three years, and the premium seems like an even scarier proposition. There are myriad question marks swirling around Watson heading into 2020, such as who will emerge from hi receiver corps, how will he adjust without Hopkins and will he be able to duplicate the rushing output (seven touchdowns last season)? With questions like those, the safer — and smarter — play is to use that round 5 pick on a back or receiver and take one of Awesemo’s comparably scoring quarterback in the later rounds.

Drew Brees (New Orleans Saints)

If you told someone in 2013 that Brees would be on a do-not-draft list, they’d hit you with the Gary Coleman special. But here we are. This is 2020, after all, the year of everything we thought we knew being thrown out the window. Now, that’s not to say Brees isn’t properly ranked with his QB10 status — that seems about right. But the eighth-round tag … it doesn’t fit.

His status as an elite quarterback might still hold true in the real-life football world, but this is fantasy. His incredible completion percentages and steady production won’t lead you to weekly wins or fantasy championships. High-ceiling outputs and big weeks are what brings home your league’s championship. The downfield attempts and big play strikes are no longer a staple for Brees, with Michael Thomas basically being a human vacuum in the mid-route range. It’s more of a move-the-chain, protect-the-ball offense for Brees and the Saints now, and his numbers highlight that. Over the last three years, he hasn’t thrown more than eight picks in a single season but has also failed to top 4,500 yards. The last time he threw for 5,000-plus was 2016. After all, he’s over 40, and while the person behind the keyboard is no spring chicken, betting on an over-40 quarterback to return to 2012-2013 form, where he was a QB1, seems a bit far-fetched. The more likely scenario is Brees finishes as a bust than a QB1.

More Fantasy Football Busts

Drew Lock (Denver Broncos)

Only having a five-game NFL sample to go off of is a bit tough, but according to the Awesemo expert projections, Lock is far from the top of the list. The former second-round pick garners an overall Awesemo rating of 48.5, which is identical to Gardner Minshew. For comparison sake, fellow draft-class quarterback Daniel Jones rates out at a 75.5. In terms of positional ranking and ADP, Lock is 26th in Awesemo rankings but astonishingly has gone as high as pick 103 in some drafts.

In the five games he started, Lock threw for over 1,000 yards and had a 64% completion rating. His 7-3 touchdown-interception ratio was OK, but it was mostly on the back of a dumbed-down Broncos playbook. Even still, in his 156 attempts in five games, he had five additional interceptable passes that he got away with, and more than half of his passing yards were after the catch thanks to his receivers. Lock is the epitome of a volatile player, which is fine if the investment is little to none, but the hype surrounding him entering 2020 seems to be boosting him up draft boards. He’s a steer-clear option for now. There’s a reason he’s in the ballpark of Minshew, Baker Mayfield and Tyrod Taylor.

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I'm a wannabe athlete whose athletic career ended after a long tenure riding the bench through JV baseball. The fantasy sports and sports betting degen side of me blossomed at age 12 when I found fantasy baseball and football, and led to a 12-year submergence into the poker scene -- I started playing "secret" cash games in my parents' basements by age 14. Luckily, I've finally found what I love to do -- write about "fake sports," which my girlfriend refers to it as, though it only took me until age 30. If you decide you like the words I write and follow me on Twitter (@nd_joyce), I apologize in advance for the copious amounts of dog photos you will see.

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