What we learned from the 2016 DFS season ¬– the quarterback position

One of the best ways to improve is to learn from history. In sports and fantasy sports recent history is better than ancient history.

Last season is recent history, but come August it will be ancient history. Most people will have forgotten everything except that New England Patriots won. They won’t remember that Falcons was the better team, was up 28-3 and only lost because the coach dropped his brain on the sideline.

Most people will not remember that Cleveland Browns sucked, because they went 1-15. To bad they didn´t go 0-16 because then media would’ve never let people forget it. The reason it’s bad is because Browns will be much improved this upcoming season. There is a chance that we’ll find a fantasy gem among the Cleveland Clowns.

But first thing first. Lets go through the QB-position and see what we can learn from the 2016 NFL season.

It’s true that more and more quarterbacks are putting up good and great fantasy numbers. Picking a cheap DFS option at the QB position that delivers takes you a long way.

But the quarterbacks are the ones producing the most points. If you miss you are climbing a steep uphill battle. It is a very important DFS position; I would argue the most important one of them all.

QB Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers, was the consensus number one ranked QB before the season. Rightfully so, after a very impressive 2015. But the price got out of hand, and there where several dark clouds on the Carolina horizon. If you picked him you more or less ruined your season. He finished 17th in fantasy points scored for QB’s. Did somebody say “Ouch”?

QB Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons, was considered a very good quarterback before 2015 but somehow was decided to be over the hill before 2016. Kind of ridiculous when looking in the rear mirror. He had great weapons to throw too, he played in a dome in a division with bad defenses, and Falcons had a bad defense themselves. Yet, he was consensus ranked at 21th.  He finished second in fantasy points scored for QB’s.

QB Tom Brady, New England Patriots, was a special option because he was out the first four games. That made him hard to rank. He was ranked 12th because he was out 30,1% (4/13) of the regular fantasy season. That was too much for my stomach, but he was an interesting strategy if you had a contingency plan for the first four weeks. The guys who picked him where happy since he averaged 20,11 fantasy points down the stretch. Good for second overall.

QB Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys, was the best option at QB the 2016 season. He wasn´t even ranked, and drafted on under 0,1 of the fantasy teams.  He was still only consensus ranked at 31st August 29th when Tony Romo had gone down. If you saw Dak Prescott coming you’re a better man than me. And everybody else for that matter. He finished 6th in fantasy production.

It’s quite a remarkable story. Tony Romo was the man in Dallas. The Cowboys entered the 2016 draft with a plan to acquire a young quarterback to develop behind their franchise QB. After they failed to trade up to select Paxton Lynch and Connor Cook they had to settle for Dak Prescott in the 4th round at the 135th pick overall. That’s all history now and Dak Prescott is the man in Dallas. Cowboys are looking to trade Tony Romo for some draft picks.

Some QB’s that over performed compared to their average draft position (ADP):


QB                                          Fantasy points       ADP                Place vs ADP


Matt Ryan                            348                            21                   +19

Marcus Mariota                 260                            23                   +10

Kirk Cousins                       300                            15                   +10

Matthew Stafford              280                            13                   +6


Some QB’s that under performed compared to their average draft position (ADP):


QB                                          Fantasy points       ADP                Place vs ADP


Cam Newton                       254                            1                     -16

Ben Roethlisberger          252                            7                     -11

Carson Palmer                   243                            8                     -11

Eli Manning                         224                            12                   -10

Russel Wilson                     270                            3                     -7


The lesson is clear: The QB position is very important. Don’t swing and miss.

The tip is to look at the ones that under performed that can turn it around like Matt Ryan did this season.

Carson Palmer and Eli Manning are finished, Big Ben is always injured and Russel Wilson needs a new O-line. Don’t sleep on Cam Newton this upcoming season, because he always plays his best when he has to prove himself. He’ll be a bargain, I promise.