Streaming QBs: Week 9

Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire

Welcome back for another week of quarterback streaming. We have reached the halfway point of the season, and this means we can now take a deeper look at our strategy. How successful have we been? Is this viable moving forward? What if we HAD spent the early pick on a superstar quarterback? Let’s take a look at the results to this point for the consensus preseason top-6 quarterbacks you could have drafted, along with the round you would have likely taken them:

  1. Aaron Rodgers (round 2/3, 21.1 pts/gm)
  2. Deshaun Watson (round 3/4, 20.6 pts/gm)
  3. Tom Brady (round 4, 19.5 pts/gm)
  4. Russell Wilson (round 4/5, 18.3 pts/gm)
  5. Cam Newton (round 5, 21.1 pts/gm)
  6. Drew Brees (round 5/6, 20.8 pts/gm)

So, each drafted quarterback has been pretty good so far. However, let’s take a look at their current season ranks. In order, they would rank 7th, 12th, 15th, 18th, 3rd, and 9th overall for points per game. Okay, so we missed on a lot of possible choices. Like who? Patrick Mahomes, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Matt Ryan, Mitch Trubisky, and Andrew Luck. Each of those 5 quarterbacks is currently in the top 6 and only Andrew Luck was being drafted in the preseason top-10. There was tons of value out their on waivers. If you happened to begin with a flyer like Ryan, Mahomes, or Luck, you have probably stuck with them all year now. Trubisky came on a little later, but he seems like a very safe commodity at this point. How about our “streamers of the week” though? Let’s take a look at that list:

  • Week 1: Andy Dalton, 17.5 pts.
  • Week 2: Case Keenum, 15.5 pts.
  • Week 3: Mitch Trubisky, 6.6 pts.
  • Week 4: Case Keenum, 8.8 pts.
  • Week 5: Blake Bortles, 24.6 pts.
  • Week 6: Jameis Winston, 32.9 pts.
  • Week 7: Joe Flacco, 19.56 pts.
  • Week 8: Case Keenum, 16.4 pts.

This would average us out to 17.7 points per week looking only at the guy I considered our best bet. Basically, that puts us right around Tom Brady and Russell Wilson for season averages. The other value of this approach is that we spent no draft capital on our guy. Finally, if you took a shot in week 1 with a “no name,” there was always the chance you liked him and stuck with him…ala Patrick Mahomes or Matt Ryan. Likewise, you could have caught on with Mitch Trubisky and been great for the last 3 weeks. I simply stream each week as our last resort, and one that hardly puts us at risk. All this being said, here was our top 12 for week 8:

Player Team Opponent Percent Owned Fantasy Points
Deshaun Watson Houston Miami 96% 31.0
Cam Newton Carolina Baltimore 99% 28.0
Derek Carr Oakland Indianapolis 26% 27.8
Patrick Mahomes Kansas City Denver 99% 27.0
Jared Goff LA Rams Green Bay 96% 24.5
Russell Wilson Seattle Detroit 92% 23.4
Carson Wentz Philadelphia Jacksonville 94% 23.2
Mitch Trubisky Chicago NY Jets 71% 21.9
Kirk Cousins Minnesota New Orleans 98% 21.7
Andrew Luck Indianapolis Oakland 93% 21.4
Andy Dalton Cincinnati Tampa Bay 76% 20.2
Blake Bortles Jacksonville Philadelphia 26% 19.7

The favorites ruled as only 2 names under 50% broke in. They were Derek Carr and Blake Bortles, and our streamers were Andy Dalton (20.2), Jameis Winston (12.8), Baker Mayfield (15.1), Case Keenum (16.4), Eli Manning (14.6), Joe Flacco (11.1). It certainly wasn’t a bad week, but definitely lighter on options than some others. Still, we came up with an average of 15 which isn’t bad. Andy Dalton was a great under-owned choice (Winston was NOT), and Keenum was decent as our streamer. Still, I think we can improve. Let’s take a look at week 9’s choices.

Alex Smith (43%, stream of the week)

It seems like an eternity ago that people were questioning the Chiefs for trading away Alex Smith. Smith was coming off a great season, the best of his career really, but his heir apparent was in waiting. Well fast forward to today, and no one questions the choice anymore. Patrick Mahomes has lit the league on fire, and Alex Smith has been all but forgotten. Still, Smith has put up a good season so far. He hasn’t scored lower than 12.4 fantasy points in any week and he has thrown at least one touchdown in 5 of 7 games. Basically, he is safe. In week 9, Washington draws the Atlanta defense which has been very kind to opposing QBs. I like this match up, and I’ll roll with Smith this week as my top streamer.

Baker Mayfield (38%)

Baker Mayfield has thrown a touchdown in 5 straight games. He threw for multiple touchdowns in 3 of those games. Cleveland fired head coach (I use that term loosely) Hue Jackson and I’m expecting a bump in motivation. We all knew Hue Jackson would be gone eventually, barring some miracle season this year. I expect the Browns to come out swinging this week, ready to show that they are better than their record. I also love the match up in that Mayfield gets to play the Kansas City defense that has, thus far, been very beatable. Feel confident starting Mayfield this week and know that in every game he’s started, he’s scored at least 13 points.

Joe Flacco (36%)

After a brilliant 4 game start to the season, Joe Flacco has certainly cooled off a bit. He had 8 touchdowns in his first 4 games and only 4 more in the last 4 games. He had 2 interceptions in his first four games and double that in the last four. Still, Flacco is good enough to be played in the right match ups each week, and Pittsburgh could be the right match up. They have given up a lot of points to opposing quarterbacks, including Flacco when they played earlier this season. Flacco’s recent slump does worry me, but I would start him if all previously mentioned options are taken.

Derek Carr (32%) 

Last but not least, we have Derek Carr. Carr has had a quiet season for a struggling Raiders team that is obviously building towards the future. They traded away their best defensive player before the season and they moved Amari Cooper before the trade deadline. Still, Carr is getting a lot of passing game volume, and this always has the potential to turn into points. Let’s not forget that the San Francisco defense has given up 2+ passing touchdowns in 7 of their 8 games, including last week to Josh Rosen. Let’s also add in that the 49ers have only picked off two passes all year. This looks like a good match up for the Raiders passing attack, and a chance for them to finally get a second win. I would feel good starting Carr this week, despite losing Amari Cooper.

Michael Miklius

Mike is a lifelong Bears fan just waiting for the rise of his team's first ever stud quarterback. He's hoping Mitch Trubisky is that guy.

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