Updated 10/7 at 6:30 PM ET. Moved Matt Ryan down.
Week 5 Quarterbacks
QB Notes: Neck and neck with Patrick Mahomes for the top spot, Kyler Murray will be facing a disintegrating 49ers squad coughing up the fifth most quarterback fantasy points. … As for Patrick Mahomes, he has provided three-plus scores in all four of his starts. Truly, the man treats the NFL like a videogame. The Bills are technically allowing the fewest quarterback fantasy points — by far — but it has come against Pittsburgh, Miami, Washington and Houston. Mahomes flattened the Bills in both 2020 matchups. … Opposing Mahomes will be Josh Allen, who has had a few strange days amidst the Bills’ bizarre schedule. He still checks in as the QB7. The Chiefs had out the second most QB fantasy points. You could rank Allen No. 1 this week and not be wrong. Vegas has installed a mountainous 56.5 over/under for Sunday Night Football. … Although he has posted just two total scores and 86 yards rushing over the past two weeks, Lamar Jackson enters Week 5 as the QB6. Expect some establishment with the Ravens operating as seven-point home favorites.
I can’t figure out what the level of fantasy buy-in should be on the immensely streaky Jalen Hurts, but he checks in as the QB3 by total points. He has finished as the QB6, QB12, QB10 and QB4. The Panthers’ Jaycee Horn-less defense just got touched up by Dak Prescott. The Eagles’ only rushing threat is Hurts. Garbage time or otherwise, Hurts is going to get his numbers. … Dak Prescott is down to QB12 status after averaging a modest 25 attempts over his past three starts. Even as the Cowboys have had success playing bully ball, Prescott does have seven scores since Week 3. The attempts should eventually stabilize in the 30 range, enough for an elite talent like Prescott to provide elite fantasy production. … Matthew Stafford had a Week 4 stink bomb, but we have to go back to the well vs. a Seahawks defense permitting the fifth most passing yards. There is also a 54 over/under for this rare good Thursday Night Football showdown. … Russell Wilson has a bit of a Dak Prescott attempts problem, but then again, he always does. He also has DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett for a short-week date with a reeling Rams defense.
Aaron Rodgers has surpassed two scores only once and has yet to post a 300-yard effort. The Packers have been beating teams too many different ways for Rodgers to stack up box scores. His floor is just so high that it is impossible to fade him out of the top 10. … Tom Brady has one score in two games since lighting the world on fire in Weeks 1-2. The Dolphins are not a plus defensive matchup but are so dysfunctional on offense that Tampa Bay should dominate possession, giving Brady enough volume opportunities to hit home. … Sam Darnold checks in as the QB4 by total points thanks in large part to his five rushing scores. That number feels fluky, but what this article will presuppose is, what if they’re not? With Christian McCaffrey (hamstring) still 50-50, read option QB keepers could remain the Panthers’ most dangerous goal-line play. … Justin Herbert made some excellent first half throws vs. the Raiders before ultimately looking a bit shaky in a game where he managed all of 47 yards after halftime. The Browns are fresh off locking down the Vikings’ passing attack. Don’t expect a ceiling day from the sensational sophomore.
Joe Burrow is posting similar workloads and production to Dak Prescott and Russell Wilson. I should probably afford him similar rankings cachet, I just want to see it another week or two. Tee Higgins’ (shoulder) return will be a nice boost. … You could rank Kirk Cousins as a Week 5 QB1 and not be wrong. The Vikings will have any number of ways to get home against the Lions’ undermanned defense, with this looking like a good opportunity to get injury-hobbled Dalvin Cook back on track. Either way, Cousins will probably throw for two scores in his sleep. … The QB9 by total points, Daniel Jones is coming off his first 400-yard performance. He did so on the road against a tough defense without Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton. This is probably too conservative of a ranking considering what Jones has done with his legs. We need to see more touchdown production and might get it in a 52-totaled game vs. a Cowboys D allowing the fourth most quarterback fantasy points. … Even were A.J. Brown (hamstring) and Julio Jones (hamstring) to return against the Jaguars, Ryan Tannehill has been feeling like something of a trap door. There is no real sense as to what his 2021 baseline is.
Trey Lance is this week’s Mystery Option. His own team keeps saying he’s not ready. He was also drafted to be a dual-threat in an offense based off the run. This is not going to be a Justin Fields-type situation where Lance’s play-caller refuses to cut him loose. The Cardinals are one of only seven teams to permit at least 100 quarterback rushing yards through Weeks 1-4. … Derek Carr finally crashed back to earth vs. the Chargers. The Bears are getting stung through the air but stacking up sacks. This one could go either way for the pressure-sensitive signal caller. ... Taylor Heinicke seems willing and able to be this season’s “mascot quarterback,” a more-bad-than-good-but-just-good-enough option for both the Football Team and superflex seekers. His raw volume could be down against a Saints squad trying to take the air out of the ball and make games as short as possible. … Matt Ryan finally had a useful week and now gets to host the Jets. Although New York has zero interceptions, it is top five in sacks. Maybe this won’t be as good of a spot as it appears at first blush. … Baker Mayfield has stunk so far. Supposedly his shoulder is to blame. The Chargers are allowing the seventh fewest yards per pass attempt.