The 2021 NFL season is in full swing and fantasy playoffs are approaching. While you already conducted your fantasy drafts long ago, we rank the top 20 quarterbacks in the NFL.
Each year there are a few quarterbacks who surprise the world as they ascend into fantasy football stardom. Last season, Josh Allen broke out in spectacular fashion for the Buffalo Bills. Who will be the 2021 fantasy football darling? There are several good candidates, especially with the incoming rookie draft class.
Updated weekly throughout the season, here are our top-20 NFL QB rankings.
20. Daniel Jones, New York Giants (Last week: 19)
- 2,428 passing yards, 10 TD, 7 INT
- 298 rushing yards, 2 TD, 16 receiving yards
- Daniel Jones Bye Week: November 14th, 2021 (Week 10)
Daniel Jones is perhaps the ultimate boom-or-bust candidate in fantasy football. Super athletic, Jones is always a threat to use his legs. We’ve already seen the third-year-pro reach new heights when Jones put up a career-high 402 passing yards in Week 4. But there have also been some lows since. Danny Dimes can bounce back without Jason Garrett‘s play calls anchoring him down, but he might have to get back to 100% first.
19. Teddy Bridgewater, Denver Broncos (Last week: 20)
- 2,518 passing yards, 15 TD, 5 INT
- 79 rushing yards, 2 TD
- Teddy Bridgewater Bye Week: November 21st, 2021 (Week 11)
While Teddy Bridgewater will never the be the type of quarterback who throws for 400 yards several times per season, he generally avoids mistakes while making enough plays to keep his team in the game. The same goes for his fantasy prospects. He won’t win you any matchups, but he may lose some by not having very many big days. The potential is there for Teddy Two Gloves to rip it against the Chiefs, as they’re allowing 7.0 yards per pass attempt. But the Chiefs have also been better as of late, I wouldn’t expect a big day for Teddy BridgeH2O.
18. Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks (Last week: 15)
- 1,811 passing yards, 12 TD, 3 INT
- 118 rushing yards, 1 TD
- Russell Wilson Bye Week: November 7th, 2021 (Week 9)
Wow. Russell Wilson has been horrible since returning from his finger injury. While he likely came back too soon, Russ has at least gotten better in each game since his return. He’ll have his work cut out for his this week, taking on the 49ers who are a top-ten team against the pass, but Russ has to get back to cooking at some point. Why not against a division rival with your back against the wall?
17. Mac Jones, New England Patriots (Last week: 18)
- 2,850 passing yards, 16 TD, 8 INT
- 71 rushing yards
- Mac Jones Bye Week: December 12th, 2021 (Week 14)
In leading the New England Patriots back to relevancy, rookie quarterback Mac Jones has been efficient, yet aggressive enough to win games, sometimes by 41-point margins as he did in Week 7. Getting more comfortable under center each week, the Mac Attack can help you win some fantasy matchups down the stretch. The Bills have a tough defense, but they are without star CB Tre’Davious White. Jones should be able to have an above-average day yet again.
16. Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans (Last week: 14)
- 2,774 passing yards, 14 TD, 13 INT
- 196 rushing yards, 5 TD
- Ryan Tannehill Bye Week: December 5th, 2021 (Week 13)
Ryan Tannehill is a safe fantasy pick, but he’s not real dependable for a big performance, due to Derrick Henry’s excellence. However, with King Henry going down for the fantasy season, Tannehill will likely be asked to do a lot more. Let’s just hope it doesn’t lead to more four-interception performances as it did against the Texans two weeks ago. Coming off two of his worst performances of 2021, Tannehill heads into a bye in Week 13.
15. Taylor Heinicke, Washington Football Team (Last week: 17)
- 2,613 passing yards, 16 TD, 10 INT
- 279 rushing yards, 1 TD, -2 receiving yards
- Taylor Heinicke Bye Week: November 7th, 2021 (Week 9)
Unless you’re in an extremely deep league, nobody drafted Taylor Heinicke in fantasy football coming into the season. After Ryan Fitzpatrick got hurt, here we are, Heinicke is performing as a top-20 NFL QB. What makes Heinicke a respectable fantasy option is his above-average athleticism which helps him produce fantasy points in both passing and rushing categories. After taking down Russell Wilson’s Seahawks, Heinicke heads to the Vegas desert to take on the Raiders. He could get into a high-scoring showdown with Derek Carr.
14. Derek Carr, Las Vegas Raiders (Last week: 16)
- 3,414 passing yards, 17 TD, 9 INT
- 73 rushing yards
- Derek Carr Bye Week: October 31st, 2021 (Week 8)
In what feels like a make-or-break season for Derek Carr, the eight-year pro was playing his absolute best. Nobody expected Carr to play like his hair was on fire after the Las Vegas Raiders retooled their offensive line, but he was a legit MVP candidate early on. We’ll see how he navigates an excruciatingly-tough season without his top 2021 receiver by his side, in Henry Ruggs. With the Raiders still having a shot at the playoffs, look for Carr to shred the Washington defense this week.
13. Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals (Last week: 12)
- 2,835 passing yards, 22 TD, 12 INT
- 63 rushing yards, 1 TD
- Joe Burrow Bye Week: November 14th, 2021 (Week 10)
It’s been an up and down year for anyone who drafted Joe Burrow in their fantasy league. Armed with three receivers with 1,000-yard potential and an RB in Joe Mixon who also collects yards after the catch, Burrow was off to a strong start but turnovers are holding him back. Still, his season has had several celebratory moments too. Burrow joined Dan Marino as the only QBs in NFL history to throw for multiple touchdowns in each of his team’s first six games. Taking on Justin Herbert, Burrow will be motivated to do well, but the Chargers have a top-five passing defense.
12. Carson Wentz, Indianapolis Colts (Last week: 11)
- 2,790 passing yards, 21 TD, 5 INT
- 159 rushing yards. 1 TD
- Carson Wentz Bye Week: December 12th, 2021 (Week 14)
Say what you want about Carson Wentz and his fumbling issues of the past, but he’s only lost four this season to go along with five interceptions thrown. Now he’s in the Ryan Tannehill role, handing the ball off to Jonathan Taylor and walking to the bench as he scores long touchdowns. Limiting turnovers, making plays with his feet, while being able to have an average passing performance has brought Wentz back into fantasy relevancy. He can show off his arm more this week facing a Texans team that is better against the run than they are against the pass.
11. Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys (Last week: 13)
- 2,932 passing yards, 22 TD, 7 INT
- 94 rushing yards, 1 TD
- Dak Prescott Bye Week: October 24th, 2021 (Week 7)
In the first half of last season, Dak Prescott had many fantasy owners feeling like they were set to win their league championship. Injuries happen. Prescott may have slipped a bit in some fantasy drafts, but his performances so far have shown Dak is back, and as good as ever, if not better. The Cowboys couldn’t overcome roughly a million defensive penalties, but Prescott was still able to go off for 375 passing yards without his top two targets in CeeDee Lamb and Amari Cooper on Thanksgiving. He should be able to come through with a decent performance Thursday as both his receivers are expected back in the lineup against a tough Saints D.
10. Kyler Murray, Arizona Cardinals (Last week: 10)
- 2,276 passing yards, 17 TD, 7 INT
- 147 rushing yards, 3 TD
- Kyler Murray Bye Week: November 28th, 2021 (Week 12)
Lamar Jackson won the 2019 NFL MVP award, having a historic fantasy season along the way. With the loaded Cardinals receiving corps, Kyler Murray could have put up similar numbers had he not missed three weeks. As soon as he returns to the lineup, Murray’s a top-ten fantasy QB. It could happen this week against the Bears. Even if he’s not 100%, Murray should always be in your fantasy lineup, as long as he’s active.
9. Kirk Cousins, Minnesota Vikings (Last week: 8)
- 3,013 passing yards, 23 TD, 3 INT
- 69 rushing yards, 1 TD
- Kirk Cousins Bye Week: October 24th, 2021 (Week 7)
Kirk Cousins is fairly inconsistent, but he hasn’t been hurting his fantasy owners by turning the ball over in 2021. Still leading the NFL with the fewest interceptions thrown, Cousins is usually good for about 260 yards and two touchdowns each week. With an aggressive game plan taking advantage of Justin Jefferson being a pure baller, Cousins has been flourishing. Without Dalvin Cook this week, look for the Vikes to air it out a lot more. Cousins will tear up a Lions defense that hasn’t been able to bite any kneecaps this year.
8. Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens (Last week: 6)
- 2,612 passing yards, 15 TD, 12 INT
- 639 rushing yards, 2 TD
- Lamar Jackson Bye Week: October 31st, 2021 (Week 8)
Recapturing his 2019 MVP form, Lamar Jackson is always a dangerous matchup for any opponent in fantasy football in that he rarely lets fantasy owners down on the ground. Nobody is more dangerous in the open field. Facing more defensive back blitzes than any other QB in the past four seasons, LJ struggled to move the chains, leading to just 10 points for Baltimore in Week 10. Throwing four interceptions against the Browns, Jackson said he “looked like a rookie”. Despite facing a typically tough Steelers’ D, don’t expect back-to-back duds from the Pro Bowl QB.
7. Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers (Last week: 9)
- 2,878 passing yards, 23 TD, 4 INT
- 76 rushing yards, 3 TD, -4 receiving yards
- Aaron Rodgers Bye Week: December 5th, 2021 (Week 13)
Perhaps no Week 1 story was bigger than Aaron Rodgers looking nothing like himself in his first test of the 2021 season. Though it was a strange game, the Packers haven’t lost since. The oddest thing is seeing Rodgers ranked 7th in any form of QB rankings, but he’s had a strange season. AR12 has a bye this week.
6. Matthew Stafford, Los Angeles Rams (Last week: 7)
- 3,316 passing yards, 27 TD, 9 INT
- 37 rushing yards
- Matthew Stafford Bye Week: November 21st, 2021 (Week 11)
Living it up in the sunshine of Los Angeles, Matthew Stafford is having a breakout fantasy year throwing to the Rams’ arsenal of weapons. Just don’t expect much help in the rushing TD department, as Stafford hasn’t scored on the ground since 2016. Stafford should have a massive fantasy performance taking on the Jaguars this week. He might even be able to spend the fourth quarter on the bench.
5. Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers (Last week: 5)
- 3,230 passing yards, 24 TD, 10 INT
- 243 rushing yards, 2 TD
- Justin Herbert Bye Week: October 24th, 2021 (Week 7)
As the top rookie fantasy quarterback in 2020, Justin Herbert was an extremely popular waiver wire pickup last year. Nobody’s overlooking Herbert as he goes through his second season. Now that he’s taken down the Chiefs and Raiders, thanks to his assertive play, Herbert has made a push to become a top-five fantasy QB. The 2020 Rookie of the Year battles against Joe Burrow this week, which should be a shootout.
4. Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs (Last week: 3)
- 3,200 passing yards, 25 TD, 11 INT
- 238 rushing yards, 1 TD
- Patrick Mahomes Bye Week: November 28th, 2021 (Week 12)
The NFL MVP version of Patrick Mahomes is back baby. He showed us a glimpse of his Mahomes Magic in Week 10 against the Raiders, throwing five touchdowns. Mahomes is back, but no one can take those interceptions away from him, even if his mom would prefer otherwise. Last week’s bye gave Mahomes more time to prepare for a Broncos defense allowing just over 200 passing yards per game. Expect a big day for the froggish QB.
3. Tom Brady, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Last week: 1)
- 3,403 passing yards, 30 TD, 9 INT
- 53 rushing yards, 1 TD
- Tom Brady Bye Week: November 7th, 2021 (Week 9)
Tom Brady is the undeniable GOAT when it comes to quarterbacks. Usually, his lack of mobility doesn’t always translate the best when it comes to fantasy football. Unless he’s on fire like he is now. From a pure passing perspective, TB12 puts up a lot of fantasy points. Tampa Tom is licking his chops as he prepares for another duel with Matt Ryan’s Atlanta Falcons. Divisional battle, history between the two, oh yeah, Brady’s having a big day.
2. Jalen Hurts, Philadelphia Eagles (Last week: 5)
- 2,435 passing yards, 13 TD, 8 INT
- 695 rushing yards, 8 TD
- Jalen Hurts Bye Week: December 12th, 2021 (Week 14)
Jalen Hurts has been a great fantasy QB through 12 weeks. Thanks to his ability to make plays with his arm or his feet, Hurts offers sky-high fantasy potential. As far as dual-threat quarterbacks go, Hurts is one of the best in the business. The former Alabama star hasn’t been spectacular in passing categories as of late, but he’s still a rock-solid fantasy option week in, week out thanks to his dynamic running ability. Hurts is a bit banged up, but he should still be able to thrive against a Jets defense allowing a league-worst 30.4 points per game.
1. Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills (Last week: 4)
- 3,071 passing yards, 25 TD, 10 INT
- 383 rushing yards, 3 TD
- Josh Allen Bye Week: October 24th, 2021 (Week 7)
If you drafted Josh Allen in your fantasy league last season, congratulations. In 2021, Allen has picked up where he left off with another dominant fantasy season. While the Bills are drifting a bit as of late, their offense revolves entirely around Allen. He’ll continue having strong performances down the stretch. The Patriots are headed to Buffalo this week, which means Allen could struggle as Bill Belichick’s defense comes in at No.1 in Sportsnaut’s defensive rankings.
Go to Source
Author: Andrew Buller-Russ