Fantasy Football 2021: Five Valuable Quarterbacks You Can Wait To Draft

Drafting a fantasy QB can be risky business

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In the world of fantasy football, drafting a quarterback is a precision play.

You don’t want to take a quarterback too early, as your first handful of draft picks are best served on wide receivers and running backs. That said, you don’t want to wait around too long to select a signal-caller, as the position still is one of the more important ones in fantasy.

Someone in your league all but surely will bite early on Patrick Mahomes. From there, the typical run of QBs probably will ensue, which should see the likes of Russell Wilson, Aaron Rodgers and Josh Allen come off the board. If you’d rather focus on skill-position players and be more patient with your quarterback selection, here are five who still should be available in the mid-to-late rounds but still present value.

1. Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans
Tannehill isn’t going to knock your socks off with his play, but since he’s relocated to Nashville, he’s been about as steady as they come. The 10th-year pro ranked seventh in fantasy quarterback points last season, ahead of Tom Brady, Justin Herbert and Lamar Jackson. Tannehill threw for multiple touchdowns in 11 of 16 regular-season games in 2020. He’s also a sneaky force on the ground, racking up seven rushing TDs last season. And while he lost Corey Davis and Jonnu Smith over the offseason, he gained one of the all-time great wideouts in Julio Jones.

2. Matthew Stafford, Los Angeles Rams
Sean McVay is one of the NFL’s sharpest offensive minds, but he’s had to work with a limited quarterback since arriving in LA. Now the Rams boast a signal-caller with a game-changing arm in Stafford, who should benefit from a move out of dysfunctional Detroit. Stafford’s style of play should fit well with an offense that features big-time playmakers like Cooper Kupp, Robert Woods and DeSean Jackson. Tyler Higbee also has emerged as one of the NFL’s better tight ends. Not to mention, the Rams could end up leaning on Stafford more than initially expected, as top back Cam Akers is out for the season.

3. Kirk Cousins, Minnesota Vikings
Is Cousins a top-10 quarterback in the league? No, but he’s still valuable in the fantasy realm. You might be surprised to learn Cousins ranked 17th in fantasy points last season among players at all positions. He’s not even the slightest of threats with his legs, but the Vikings quarterback has a pair of superstar wideouts and a Pro Bowl, dual-threat running back to work with. Cousins all but surely will frustrate his fantasy owners a few weeks this season, but for the long haul, he’s worth having on a roster.

4. Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns
Mayfield silenced some doubters last season when he helped lead the Browns to a Wild Card win in Pittsburgh. While he set a career low in passing yards, he trimmed his interception mark down to only eight — a sign that his game is maturing. Arguably the biggest reason for Mayfield optimism? The upcoming season will mark the first of his NFL career with the same head coach as the campaign prior. Kevan Stefanski’s offense is built around the run game, but Mayfield has plenty of options to throw to, highlighted by the wideout tandem of Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry.

5. Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals
There’s obviously some risk here, as Burrow is coming off a torn ACL. But how can you not be high on the ceiling of the 2019 Heisman Trophy winner, who racked up 16 total touchdowns over 10 games as a rookie before going down with injury. The Bengals helped out Burrow over the offseason, drafting the QB’s former LSU teammate Ja’Marr Chase and bringing in veteran tackle Riley Reiff. We’re not recommending you invest in the 24-year-old as your starter, but he could prove to be a steal in the late rounds.

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