Welcome to my Dynasty Football QB Tiered Rankings.
When it comes down to building a successful dynasty team, I’ve found it a lot easier to use a tier-based approach to player values. When you are sticking to a straight rankings list a five-or-six spot difference can seem like a lot, but if the players produce at a similar level and the only difference is the other guy is a little older or has had one or two injuries you can use this to upgrade your roster in other areas.
For example, let’s imagine this is a Superflex league and you're looking at the leftover options to fill in as your QB2. At the time of writing this, Daniel Jones currently has an ADP of 32 or a mid-third-round pick. Going exactly one pick ahead of Jones is Travis Etienne, and exactly one pick behind is Chris Olave. While it can be tempting to lock up a QB coming off a career year in his mid-20s to slide into your Superflex spot, you are passing up some incredible value on the other guys going around him by doing so.
While he definitely has more long-term upside than the guys I’m about to mention, this is the type of situation that can improve your dynasty team quickly if you play it right. If you choose to pass on Jones here you can lock down an elite RB or WR, and then fill your QB2 spot in the fifth or sixth rounds with a guy like Derek Carr (ADP 58) or Matthew Stafford (ADP 64). In the short term, you are getting QB2 production right in the same ballpark as Daniel Jones, but you also waited for a few rounds and were able to stack up other areas of your roster first.
This same principle can be applied to trading. I have no problem trading down a tier (in this case Tier 6 down to 7 from Jones to Carr/Stafford) if I can get other players thrown in to improve other areas of my roster. As I mentioned earlier, a lot of times the biggest difference between two players that are only a tier apart is age or a recent injury. In the right situation, I’ll exploit this perceived difference in value to acquire the depth that will be needed once injuries start to hit.
Tiers also help me break ties in startup drafts. When you’re on the clock in round 6 and you know you won't be up again for 10+ picks it can be easy to default back to taking whoever is the highest-rated guy in your website's draft room. This can leave your team with positional weaknesses you’ll have to trade out of later. Looking at it from a tiers-based approach, if there are five RBs left in the top tier available but only two WRs, your team may be better served by grabbing one of those WRs with a lower ADP first, and taking whoever is left of those five RBs on your next pick.
Contending vs Rebuilding
Football changes fast, much faster than any other sport. For this reason, I don’t tend to look as far down the road as I would in a dynasty baseball or basketball league. I like to keep it very simple. If I’m a contending team I’m trying to build the best possible team in years one and two. If I'm rebuilding a team I’m building the best team for years two and three. Due to this, my ranks don’t change a ton between contending and rebuilding teams. There may be a few guys that would move up or down one tier, but it’s mostly the same.
If you make smart trades and hit on a few draft picks there is no reason for a rebuild to take more than three seasons. With how quickly injuries change things and GMs and coaches having a shorter leash than ever, I think it’s foolish to try to project out further down the road than that anyways.
Let’s go back four years to 2019 and look at Dynasty startup ADP. You’ll see names like Ezekiel Elliott, Odell Beckham, Michael Thomas, JuJu Smith-Schuster, David Johnson, and Melvin Gordon in the first round. At that time you probably felt like you had your RB1 or WR1 locked down for the future. Fast forward to now and most of these guys can be had for a second round rookie pick or less.
Football changes fast!
Dynasty Football QB Tiered Rankings
Make sure you also check out our other Award-Winning Rankings here at F6P. We have Draft Rankings, John LaPresto's Dynasty Rankings, and Jon Witt's Rookie Rankings.
*There is a table view below the blurbs and the rookies are below the table - keep scrolling!
Tiers 1-3 The Elite and Early-Round QBs
Tier 1 - Patrick Mahomes is in a tier of his own at that top and the no-brainer 1.01 in Superflex leagues. We’ve seen his floor this postseason when he was basically playing on one leg and that was still enough to win a Super Bowl.
Tier 2 - The second tier is made up of three guys I am more than happy to build my dynasty squad around. Despite playing through injuries in the second half, Josh Allen still finished as a top-5 fantasy QB. Joe Burrow may be the best pure pocket passer in the game sans Mahomes while Jalen Hurts made improvements as a passer to complement his already high weekly floor as a rusher.
Tier 3 - This is the group of QBs you’ll likely be staring down if you land a pick toward the back end of the first round in startups, and there is someone for everyone here. If you like to build your team around mobile QBs that rack up yards on the ground you have Lamar Jackson and Justin Fields. If you prefer a QB with a cannon that is more of a play extender than a pure runner you have Justin Herbert and Trevor Lawrence. I would feel confident rolling into next year with any of these guys as my QB1. Justin Fields is the guy I think has the best chance of making a huge Josh Allen/Jalen Hurts-type jump this year, especially if Chicago goes out and invests in a high-level WR1.
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Check out Jordan's TE Tiered Rankings