Ryan Parish: Sam Darnold, QB NYJ
When you look around the NFL landscape, you could make the argument there has never been as many fantasy-relevant quarterbacks as there are heading into the 2019 season. NFL offenses are emphasizing the pass more than ever and, for the most part, coordinators are getting smarter about tailoring their offenses to get the most out of the skill set their starting QB possesses.
That’s why when it comes to drafting and trading for the position in fantasy, I am always looking for players with both upside and bargain-basement pricing. Heading into this season, the quarterback that best satisfies both of those qualifications - talented and relatively cheap - is Sam Darnold.
In DLF’s May 2019 superflex mock drafts, Darnold was QB20 with an average ADP of 62.40. That placed him just behind Drew Brees, but ahead of guys in the old guard like Ben Roethlisberger, Matthew Stafford, Philip Rivers, and Tom Brady. We conducted four more superflex mocks in June, with Darnold moving up two spots to QB18 (ADP 59.40), leapfrogging Brees and passing Josh Allen who fell three spots.
What really stands out here, however, is that among the much publicized 2018 first-round QB class, Darnold trails all but Josh Rosen in ADP. While we all know Baker Mayfield earned his elevated status after his record-breaking rookie season, it’s a bit surprising to see Darnold frequently going after both Lamar Jackson and Allen in drafts.
From DLF’s Data Analytics Tools
While Darnold doesn’t have the floor the other two have thanks to their rushing ability, he is still a far better passer and projects to have a significantly better career in my eyes.