NFL Free Agency/Trades: Where Do the QB's Stand?
There are still some quarterback free agents that can have some lasting relevancy throughout the coming weeks and into the 2019 NFL season for fantasy football, but the main players in this free agency and trading period have for the most part set their new destinations and new roles going forward. Those players will be profiled here and I will give you my takeaway on their fantasy futures. Don't forget to follow me on Twitter @ktompkinsii! Without further adieu...
Nick Foles, Jacksonville Jaguars
Nick Foles signed a lucrative 4 year, $88 million dollar dear to leave Philadelphia for the much warmer city of Jacksonville to play for the Jaguars. Foles. the MVP of Super Bowl LII, and a man who will never have to buy a drink in Philly again, will have a thinner supporting cast when he goes south to Florida.
As of this writing, he will have a much better running back to hand the ball off to in Leonard Fournette, but his pass catchers leave a lot to be desired. With pass catchers like Marqise Lee, who is returning from a gruesome knee injury suffered last preseason, to 2nd year pro D.J. Chark, to budding talent Dede Westbrook, this is a group that needs to prove themselves, especially as it comes to fantasy. Foles also needs to prove himself as well, as he's had exactly TWO weekly fantasy finishes above 16th at the quarterback position in the last three seasons. Foles is a back-end QB2 and at this point, is only a viable roster in superflex leagues or as a bye week fill-in for redraft leagues.
Ryan Fitzpatrick, Miami Dolphins
Owner of probably the most hackneyed nickname given to a quarterback since "Johnny Football", "Fitzmagic" signed a 2 year deal worth $11 million with the Miami Dolphins, who created room for him by shipping off the former starter Ryan Tannehill to Tennessee for a draft pick. Ryan Fitzpatrick now heads to South Beach, where new head coach Brian Flores will likely use Fitzpatrick as a bridge to a future franchise quarterback, whether that player is selected this year or next year, we will certainly see. I will say though, the shirt is DYNAMITE.
Fitzpatrick will have some options available to him, but nobody big on fantasy radars heading into 2019. Presumably, the best option currently in place in Miami would be Kenny Stills, who would benefit from the vertical "huck and chuck" that Fitzpatrick provided in spurts last season to varying levels of success. The mercurial and perplexing DeVante Parker remains in Miami, as does Albert Wilson, coming off of a mid-season ACL tear. These rather uninspiring options leave "Fitzmagic" as a "Fitztragic" option in most leagues, but he's very serviceable in best ball leagues as 2nd QB given his propensity to blow the lid off of defenses. In your redraft leagues, nothing really changes for him barring some unforeseen miracle.
Joe Flacco, Denver Broncos
Before the start of the new league year, Joe Flacco was traded from the Baltimore Ravens to the Denver Broncos, signaling the end of an era in Baltimore and ushering in... I don't know what to be honest, in Denver. GM John Elway gave Flacco pretty effusive praise saying the 34 year old Flacco is "just entering his prime". Some pretty slick public relations jargon being thrown out on the run by Elway, in typical fashion from his playing days. Simply put, Flacco has been putrid for a number of seasons in Baltimore, and the writing was on the wall when the Ravens drafted QB Lamar Jackson in last season's NFL Draft. Jackson took over for Flacco after Flacco had an injury and ran with the job, no pun intended.
With Flacco now in the Mile High city, Flacco finds much younger targets with upside that has yet to be realized, and a veteran who is coming off of an Achilles' injury. Emmanuel Sanders should find his way to being the top pass catcher in the Broncos' offense as long as he heals up as expected for the start of 2019. As for the younger, inexperienced options like Courtland Sutton, Daesean Hamilton, and the newly-resigned TE Jeff Heuerman, Flacco will likely give Sutton the uptick of those secondary targets. Sutton provides a huge 6'4" frame to target and could provide some red-zone looks in the short-term.
What does this do for Flacco? Honestly, not that much. Going from 2018's Case Keenum to 2019's Joe Flacco provides only a fungible option in a new calendar year. Could the Broncos draft a quarterback with this year's 10th overall pick? Absolutely. Players like Dwayne Haskins and Drew Lock could be available if they feel good about either (or any other option) for the future of the franchise. Elway has been putting bandages on gunshot wounds since the retirement of Peyton Manning as it pertains to the quarterback position and its future. Flacco is the newest, most fresh coverup and isn't viable as a fantasy option in all but maybe the deepest superflex leagues.
Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans
Often injured, which seems to be a running theme with the career of the college wide receiver turned NFL quarterback, Ryan Tannehill was traded last week to the Tennessee Titans for a mid-round draft pick. Tannehill comes into a low-volume, murky quarterback situation, where incumbent Marcus Mariota hasn't played a full season in his four year NFL career. Mariota hasn't been the franchise difference maker that Tennessee was hoping for when they drafted him 2nd overall in 2015's NFL Draft.
Enter Tannehill, who with that injury history of Mariota, should get a start here or there for the Titans in 2019, but is not an option in any fantasy league going forward.
Stay tuned as later on in the week, the NFL running backs with new locales and destinations will be profiled!