Outside of 2-QB leagues, many of you – including myself – prefer the “late-round QB” or usually wait until around round six at the earliest to draft your quarterback. We see a lot of late-round quarterbacks, even waiver-wire QB’s bring people championships.
Emphasizing this strategy is great to use as there is 32 starting quarterbacks in the league with about 20 or so that most would feel comfortable going into a streamer group at the position and just play matchups.
Many will win, many will lose. One quarterback I am willing to draft this year is Aaron Rodgers. His finishes over the past seven seasons (2010-2017) in leagues where passing touchdowns are with six points were 1st, 2nd, 2nd, 18th*, 2nd, 11th, 1st and 28th*. The 2013 and 2017 season were both injury plagued seasons and 2015 is when Jordy Nelson went down.
Coming into the start of the season, Rodgers had an average draft position of 2.08, as the first quarterback off the board. Those of you that drafted him had a “set it and forget it” QB and more than likely did not draft a backup quarterback.
The season was going smooth as Rodgers was posting an average of 28.4 points over the first five weeks. If you were able to build a solid running back and wide receiver core, you were on your way to the fantasy playoffs. That’s at least what I thought to until week six came along.
Rodgers owners were thrilled going into week six as they possessed the quarterback on a 5-0 team, and even a tough matchup against the Vikings wasn’t going to stop you from using the man averaging nearly 29 fantasy points per game. All until Anthony Barr took Rodgers out with this tackle, which at the time, was considered season ending.
After he was placed on IR, many fantasy owners dropped him. Around week 14 he was back to throwing and getting prepared to come off the injured list and play the Carolina Panthers in a must-win, week-15 matchup.
For those who were fortunate enough to either scoop Rodgers off waivers, or were able to keep him as a roster stash, you were able plug him in at QB of the semifinals of the fantasy football playoffs. Even though he was rusty and not his typical self, Rodgers finished with 290 passing yards and three passing touchdowns to go along with three interceptions. Despite the three interceptions, he was able to soften the blow by rushing six times for 43 yards and finished with 30.9 fantasy points. The Packers went on to lose 31-24 and were eliminated from playoff contention, thus sending Rodgers back to the IR for week 16 causing fantasy teams to scramble for a quarterback for their fantasy championships.
Overall, when Rodgers was playing, he produced fantastic numbers averaging 28.83 fantasy points outside of his week six finish causing him to finish 28th overall at the position.
Is there really anything to say that most don’t already know? When Rodgers plays, he is one of the best out there on the field. Period. He will be the first quarterback off the board.
The contract extension of Davante Adams should help as he his locked up for another four years with Rodgers. What hurts the most to Rodgers is the release of his former number one receiver in Nelson who went on to sign with the Oakland Raiders.
What should make Rodgers happy is the signing of Jimmy Graham. Sure, Graham plays a different position than Nelson, but he is a fantastic red-zone weapon that should essentially replace what was lost through Nelson.
Furthermore, Green Bay drafted three wide receivers in J’Mon Moore, Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Equanimeous St. Brown in rounds four through six in hopes of one of them taking over the void Nelson leaves. We also can’t forget about Randall Cobb as he already has chemistry with Rodgers and he may turn into a mid-round steal with a current ADP in the eighth round.
Rodgers strength of schedule ranks 31st in the league according to fantasypros. Many may put up a red flag to this but it’s Aaron Rodgers. You know he’s going to pass for 30+ touchdowns while also potentially adding some on the ground. Plus, we never know how the upcoming season will be as the strength of schedule is based on defenses projected against a given offense. Take it into some consideration, but don’t hesitate to draft Rodgers.
I personally believe Rodgers is coming back this season with a vengeance. His current contract situation, the release of Nelson, and a handful of other offseason occurrences he doesn’t seem to be pleased about, leads me to believe he’s going on a 16-game F-you tour and will tear up the league like he did back in his MVP season in 2014.
Plus, with the addition of Graham and another year with the current stable of running backs and receivers, it’s hard to pass on him. He is currently going around the round 3/4 turn and if you feel comfortable with your first three to four picks, I think you should draft Rodgers. Most of you will disagree with me on this, and that’s fine, I totally understand. But this year I see him being very consistent and playing with anger.
I’m not going to rant on anymore, because we already know 99% of you believe he is the consensus QB1. I expect a full, solid return on investment in Rodgers compared to last season (second round). So get yourself a running back and a wide receiver or two, follow it up with selecting Rodgers and don’t look back.
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Be sure to check out the latest episodes of the Loaded Box Podcast as the guys are joined by Andrew Erickson of Gridiron Experts (Running Backs) and Mitchell Renz of Chat Sports (Wide Receivers) to play the fantasy football version of “Would You Rather”