These top five fantasy football quarterbacks will lead your teams to the dough.
5- Ben Roethlisberger (PIT), $12,850 @ (JAX)
It’s easy to lose sight of just how good Roethlisberger was in a game the Steelers pissed away against the Bucs. He threw for 314 yards and three touchdowns. The Steelers struggled mightily to protect him in the first half, but righted the ship in the second half. He gets another soft defense this week in the Jaguars, as they rank 29th in pass coverage, and perhaps equally important, 29th in pass rush according to Pro Football Focus (PFF). Football Outsiders is only slightly friendlier to the Jags ranking them 28th defending the pass. Vegas Insider has the game point total at 47 and the Steelers as a six point favorite currently. My biggest concern with Roethlisberger is that Le’Veon Bell will steal some of his thunder in the red zone since the Jaguars are also very giving on the ground. Regardless, the Steelers should do plenty of offensive damage and Big Ben’s price tag sets the bar low for him justifying his inclusion as one of this week’s top five fantasy football quarterbacks.
4- Eli Manning (NYG), $13,300 vs (ATL)
It looks like Manning might be getting the hang of offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo’s offense over the last couple of weeks. He torched the Redskins on Thursday Night Football last week, and this week he gets a soft Falcons defense. PFF ranks the Falcons 16th in pass coverage, and Football Outsiders ranks them 25th defending the pass. It’s not all about the Falcons defense being bad though. Manning has earned the 13th best PFF QB rating, and his standard stats certainly haven’t been helped by his pass catchers not doing their job and dropping 11 passes this season (tied for the third most). Accuracy isn’t often the first thing you think of with the younger Manning, but McAdoo’s offense is predicated on it, and Eli ranks tied for eighth in completion percentage. With the Giants serving as four point favorites in the game with the highest betting point total this week (50.5 points), and Manning’s cheap cost of being rostered, he’s an easy pick as one of the top five fantasy quarterbacks. Like with Big Ben, my lone concern is a leaky Falcons run defense resulting in Rashad Jennings vulturing some points in the red zone.
3- Matthew Stafford (DET), $15,000 vs (BUF)
The Bills run defense has been one of the best in the league, but the same cannot be said about their pass defense. They rank 24th in pass coverage according to PFF, and Football Outsiders grades them out as the 14th best pass defense. Stafford has undoubtedly been aided by Calvin Johnson over the years, but he has earned a respectable 12th best PFF QB rating this year, and has a strong arm that has resulted in a 7.95 yards-per-attempt (Yds/Att) number that ranks as sixth best. According to the Lions official NFL page, Megatron is feeling healthier this week than last, which is bad news for the Bills secondary, and good news for your third ranked quarterback in the top five fantasy football quarterbacks this week. The Lions are one of the bigger week 5 favorites as they currently have a touchdown plus successful PAT edge over the Bills, and the current total of 44 leaves plenty of room for Stafford to pile up fantasy points. Given the stout nature of the Bills run defense, expect an aerial heavy attack.
2- Drew Brees (NO), $16,900 vs (TB)
Brees has been one of the elite signal callers in the league since joining the Saints all the way back in 2006. He hasn’t been his usually super self, but ranking ninth in PFF QB rating so far this year is nothing to sneeze at. Brees has been the second sharpest passer this season, at least from an accuracy stand point. His surgical precision will be way too much for the Bucs to handle in New Orleans. The Bucs have been horrific in coverage this year, and that’s best reflected in them ranking dead last in PFF’s pass coverage grade. They get no reprieve from Football Outsiders either as they rank dead last in pass defense according to their defensive metrics as well. They’ve ceded over 300 yards passing and three pass touchdowns in consecutive contests, and perhaps even more condemning, they made Derek “Freakin'” Anderson look like a competent quarterback in their season opener. The Saints are projected to be the highest scoring team in week 5 as they are 10 point favorites in a game with a 48.5 point total. Even at his gaudy cost, Brees was a no-brainer as my number two quarterback in the top five fantasy football quarterbacks for this week.
1- Philip Rivers (SD), $15,050 vs (NYJ)
You’re looking at your top ranked quarterback in PFF QB rating, Rivers. He’s on fire this season ranking sixth in passing yards, first in Yds/Att, tied for fourth with nine touchdown passes, has thrown only one interception, and ranks third in completion percentage. No matter how you slice it, he’s been a monster. He’s eclipsed 250 yards passing and thrown for multiple touchdowns in three straight games. Furthermore, he hasn’t just feasted on cupcakes either turning in one of his best efforts of the year against the Seahawks and their esteemed “Legion of Boom” secondary. He carved them up to the tune of 284 yards passing and three touchdowns with zero interceptions. Back to this week though, he will have a chance to feast on a cupcake facing the Jets at home. The Jets rank 23rd in pass coverage according to PFF, and 16th in pass defense by Football Outsiders. Keenan Allen’s biggest game of the year came in week four, and alleviated concerns about his groin injury still hampering him. That means things could come even easier for Rivers than they have to date. That’s a fun thought for those looking to deploy Rivers on their DFS teams this weekend, and as my top ranked signal caller among this week’s top five fantasy football quarterbacks, you should be the folks rostering him heavily.