Each year, heading into draft season, we start to settle upon players we love and hate relative to ADP. This article will dive into the latter portion, my fantasy football fades. While we never like to see players perform poorly, identifying players that look to be in disadvantageous situations is important. Here are three fantasy football quarterback fades for 2021.
Fantasy Football Quarterback Fades for 2021
Before getting into these fantasy football fades, all of these are relative to ADP. Of course, if any of them slip a few rounds, they are worth taking a chance but that rarely happens. These are all based on Fantasypros PPR ADP data as of this writing.
1. Joe Burrow
Oh how quickly things can change in the NFL. Joe Burrow felt like a great value at his ADP last year and looks to be the opposite this year. Burrow was the 19th quarterback off of the board in his rookie year in 2020. He entered the league with plenty of promise as the first overall pick, a great set of weapons, and could do more with his legs than he was given credit for. The Cincinnati Bengals also looked like they were going to be a brutal defense once again, allowing Burrow to get involved in some shootouts. That came to fruition right away as Burrow attempted 61 passes in Week 2. He averaged more than 40 attempts per game and attempted more than 30 passes in all 10 games until his knee injury.
We always just say "torn ACL", but Joe Burrow tore his ACL and MCL *plus* had damage to his PCL and meniscus.
Week 1 is only 9 months, 21 days post-injury. Being ready for Week 1 should be considered a win. We shouldn't expect him to be near 100% for a while.
— Hayden Winks (@HaydenWinks) August 11, 2021
As shown, that is a devastating knee injury. Burrows will not even be a year removed until more than halfway through the season. The injury will bring some hesitation both physically and mentally. Seeing him gain many yards on the ground would be shocking, which is a big problem unless he gets far more efficient. Last year Burrow finished as the QB18 in points per game despite attempting the third-most pass attempts per game. For some reason, Burrow is currently going as the 13th quarterback off the board and his current ADP is 100th overall. He is going ahead of quarterbacks like Trevor Lawrence, Trey Lance, Kirk Cousins, Justin Fields, Tua Tagovailoa, and Ryan Fitzpatrick, all of whom are better draft choices.
2. Matt Ryan
2020 started hot for Matt Ryan with two great games, averaging 26.71 fantasy points per game. The season was all downhill from there as Julio Jones got injured in week 3. Regardless of Jones from an injury and age standpoint, he was still great when he was on the field and was crucial to Ryan’s fantasy success. In games that Julio did not play last year, Ryan averaged 15.7 fantasy points per game which would have put him as the QB26 on the season. When Jones played, Ryan saw a 45% boost, which allowed him to average 18.34 fantasy points per game and finish as the QB14.
In case you’ve been living under a rock for a few months now, Julio Jones is now a Tennessee Titan. Losing one of the best to ever do it is never a good thing, especially when he was not on the field with such a drastic drop in production. Although the Atlanta Falcons added another weapon in Kyle Pitts, he is no Julio Jones quite yet (despite what Twitter would have you believe). Currently going as the QB15 off the board (128th overall), a receiver like Mike Williams, Marvin Jones, or Corey Davis in that range is a much better option. Take one of the previously mentioned quarterbacks with more upside later on.
3. Aaron Rodgers
Fading Aaron Rodgers last year did not go so well considering he went on to be the QB5 averaging 24.20 fantasy points per game. Oh yeah, he was also the MVP of the NFL. Fading him twice in a row cannot be wrong, right? I am going to live a little and double down on one of my worst fades from the 2020 season. At the age of 37, Rodgers set career-highs in completion percentage (70.7%), touchdown percentage (9.1%), and passing touchdowns (48). What made this even more surprising was that most of his numbers had been trending down for a few years.
Aaron Rodgers TD/Fantasy PPG regression:
2020: 48 TD (9.1%) / 24.2 PPG (QB5)
Regress to 7.2% (T-NFL lead): 38 TD / 21.7 PPG (QB12)
Regress to 6.3% (ARod career AVG): 33 TD / 20.5 PPG (QB12)
Regress to 4.6% (ARod 2019): 24 TD / 18.2 PPG (QB15)
Current ADP: 56 OVR (QB6)#FADE
— ✴️Rob Norton✴️ (@norton0723) August 18, 2021
In fantasy football, efficiency drives quarterback scoring more than volume does. Aaron Rodgers is one of the most efficient passers in the NFL, but the spikes last year are just simply unsustainable. Even regressing his touchdown percentage back to 7.2%, which still would have led the NFL and is above Rodgers’ own career average, he would have dropped by at least 10 touchdowns. This would have dropped him to QB12 in fantasy points per game. Instead, on the back of outlier percentages, Rodgers is currently going off the board 56th overall as the QB and that’s far too rich. Just draft your favorite wide receiver in that area of the draft and either draft Ryan Tannehill 30 picks later or any of the quarterbacks that can run making Rodgers one of the best fantasy football quarterback fades for 2021.