Feb. 2, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA: Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers walks the red carpet prior to the Super Bowl XLVII NFL Honors award show at Mahalia Jackson Theater. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Early 2013 Fantasy Football QB Rankings

Here’s a column from our old friend Salvatore Stefanile.  He will be featured here a few times a week, and whenever he has some strong opinions about Fantasy Football….Which is always!  Check out Sal’s site www.2qbornot2qb.com


With the NFL off-season getting ready to head into the danger zone, as franchise tag designations are about to take place with teams being able to apply franchise tags to players starting February 18. Shortly after that the NFL Draft Combine takes place, running from February 20-26. March 12 at 4PM signals the start of free agency in the league and then the NFL Draft will be held from April 25-27. Busy, busy, busy…browns winners

With all that in mind there’s going to be a lot of change happening in the NFL very soon. That’s not surprising though, as the NFL is a league that’s always about constant change. If it wasn’t the Cleveland Browns would still be the Cleveland Browns and the Baltimore Ravens wouldn’t have two Super Bowl titles.

With so much about to go down in the NFL, like will the Ravens designate Joe Flacco as a franchise player and will, but more importantly when and where to, will Alex Smith get traded, we won’t know the starting QB situations for all 32 teams until we get deep into training camp and the pre-season. Still I wanted to put together an early fantasy QB rankings based on the current QB landscape in the NFL as I see it without making a whole lot of projections.


I tried to rank QBs based on how the past (can you believe there was no football yesterday? Darn) season unfolded and where it’s going and I didn’t include QBs like Smith and Matt Flynn because of their currently unsettled situations. As well, two names that aren’t included in my rankings either are Eagles QBs Nick Foles and Michael Vick. The Eagles aren’t tipping their hand as to what they’re going to do with their starting QB situation, with either Foles or Vick an option, and we shouldn’t forget the Dennis Dixon rumors. I expect Vick will start the 2013 NFL regular season starting for a team other than the Eagles and Foles, WHO HAS BIG HANDS!, to be the Eagles Week 1 QB.

Get a load of Foles' hands, will ya! Going to name him my starting QB because they're the perfect size. Photo from Zimbio.com (Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images North America)

What that all means is that my QB rankings took into account the starting situations for all 32 NFL teams from how each team ended the season quarterback wise, as best as I could gauge. If you’re wondering why I ranked Carson Palmer over Terrelle Pryor it’s because Palmer was the starter most of the season and if he didn’t go down with a late season ending injury Pryor wouldn’t have been granted a start. You might also be wondering why I included QBs like Matt Cassel, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Mark Sanchez in my rankings. Fitzpatrick and Cassel could easily not be the starters for their respective teams, the Bills and Chiefs, next season but until we know exactly who will be I left them in. Rex Ryan’s Mark Sanchez tattoo is Sanchez’s only credential and good enough to land him a spot on the roster. Although, if I were Ryan I’d be giving Ray Lucas a call to see how’s he doing and if he’s busy come September. Then there’s Blaine Gabbert, who’s ranked, and not Chad Henne, because new Jaguars GM David Caldwell said the team needs to build around Gabbert. Even if Caldwell is totally catfishing Gabbert I went ahead and included him anyway. Brandon Weeden is also another QB rumored to be replaced but until that happens he’s the Browns QB of the future and past.

So, with those explanations out the way below are my first official QB rankings of the off-season and make sure to keep checking out the site because they will be updated quite frequently throughout the course of the off-season…

My Early 2013 Fantasy Football QB Rankings (February 11, 2013):

1. Drew Brees (N0)
2. Aaron Rodgers (GB)
3. Tom Brady (NE)
4. Colin Kaepernick (SF)
5. Robert Griffin III (WAS)
6. Cam Newton (CAR)
7. Matt Ryan (ATL)
8. Russell Wilson (SEA)
9. Peyton Manning (DEN)
10. Matthew Stafford (DET)
11. Andrew Luck (IND)
12. Tony Romo (DAL)
13. Ben Roethlisberger (PIT)
14. Joe Flacco (BAL)
15. Eli Manning (NYG)
16. Josh Freeman (TB)
17. Jay Cutler (CHI)
18. Andy Dalton (CIN)
19. Ryan Tannehill (MIA)
20. Philip Rivers (SD)
21. Sam Bradford (STL)
22. Matt Schaub (HOU)
23. Jake Locker (TEN)
24. Carson Palmer (OAK)
25. Brandon Weeden (CLE)
26. Christian Ponder (MIN)
27. Blaine Gabbert (JAX)
28. Ryan Fitzpatrick (BUF)
29. Mark Sanchez (NYJ)
30. Matt Cassel (KC)
31. You can’t make me rank any of the Cardinals QBs. Fine. Kevin Kolb you win!

If you ain't first you're last so I might as well actually be last. Photo from Zimbio.com (Christian Petersen/Getty Images North America)

There you have it. Let me know in the comments what you think, what you agree with, what you disagree with, how you would have ranked the QBs, what rankings of mine are absolutely bonkers, etc. Just have at it.

If I had ranked Foles and Vick, assuming they’re both starting next year (Foles in Philadelphia and Vick elsewhere) Foles would have came in at 25 and Vick around 18, sandwiched between Dalton and Tannehill.

I ranked RG3 as if he were to be a healthy and Week 1 starter. Of course that’s not a guarantee as of this moment and if RG3 isn’t ready to go and is placed on the PUP list to begin the season I would have ranked Kirk Cousins somewhere in the 14-16 range.

Also, of note, a few QBs to keep an eye out that weren’t ranked and quite possibly will be by the time Week 1 kicks off are Alex Smith, Matt Flynn, Ryan Mallett, Drew Stanton, Dennis Dixon, Terrelle Pryor and, of course, Tim Tebow! We also can’t forget the incoming rookie QB class that could result in guys like Geno Smith, Tyler Wilson, or Ryan Nassib starting in their NFL freshman campaigns.

One thing I can guarantee you about the above early QB rankings you read is that they will change quite a bit in the next few months. Sure, that might seem like these rankings are meaningless but to me they’re a starting point and a tune-up for what’s to come.

Before I go I have one question for you and that is if you were drafting in a 2-QB league today what would be the most realistic dream 2-QB tandem you want? Aaron Rodgers and Drew Brees isn’t something likely to happen unless you were drafting in a two-team league and owned both teams so be truthful. However, in a deep league mock draft created by Pro Football Focus’ Mike Clay Rotoworld’s Evan Silva was able to snag Brady and Kaepernick in the 4th and 5th rounds so if you dream big your 2-QB league fantasy drafting dreams can come true. I’d be content with a Colin Kaepernick/Russell Wilson-Jay Cutler/Sam Bradford tandem if I were to go with one QB early and one QB late. How does that sound to you?

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