2012 Rookie Rankings: Quarterbacks
RGIII Leads the Way
Welcome back to Rotobahn, folks. We’re excited to be back for our third season. Today we are looking at the rookie quarterbacks, and though we’ll look at all the guys who were taken, we only see four names that might matter in seasonal leagues. Those four sit right at the top of our rankings. Obviously, there are two guys ranked well above the others and they went 1-2 in the draft. As you will see, though we fully understand Indy’s inclination to take Luck over RGIII, they get flipped for fantasy purposes. Griffin’s foot-point potential could rival that of Vick, Newton and a full-time Tebow, so he’s the guy with the massive ceiling for fantasy.
It’s hard to really rank for every scenario, league size and league type, so we’re ranking them for general fantasy purposes with extra credit given for immediate value. Read the Skinny for specifics. As usual, these are not generic scouting reports. This is what Coach Turner and I saw from these players on tape. If there’s a player we failed to include that matters to you, feel free to drop us a question in the Forums and we’ll give you our take. We’ll have the Running Backs posted tomorrow with Receivers and Tight Ends coming early this week.
With all that out of the way, here is our take on the year’s rookie passers.
|1||Robert Griffin||QB||WAS||Baylor||1 (2)||We love his game and we expect that they will unleash him in DC. There is always a risk with rookie QBs as we said last August with Cam Newton. However, as with Newton, Griffin's upside is just too ridiculous to ignore. RGIII has that same foot-point ability that we crave for fantasy purposes. He’s a nice guy to target as a late way to fill your QB spot. Just make sure you back him up with a quality player like Matt Schaub or Jay Cutler. In Dynasty formats, he should be one of the first players taken along with Luck, Trent Richardson and Doug Martin. Which one you take depends mostly on your needs. We're rolling with RGIII at QB and Martin at RB, but each case is very close. Apart from his medium size, we see no weaknesses in Griffin's game. He's an amazing athlete with good feet and a gun for an arm. He is simply a phenomenal prospect.|
|2||Andrew Luck||QB||IND||Stanford||1 (1)||His name is ironic, ‘cause it’s not luck that got Andrew taken ahead of RGIII. This guy has it all, and that includes the required skills from the neck-up. He’s unlikely to be a fantasy monster out of the gate as Griffin may be, but over the course of his career, he will be very good. Take him in Dynasty drafts right behind RGIII. He has the head, the feet, and the arm and he is very close to being NFL-ready. Frankly, we are more concerned with his coaches and teammates that we are with Luck himself. We think he’s a QB2 as a rookie with a little upside. He should be taken in most redrafts.|
|3||Brandon Weeden||QB||CLE||Oklahoma St.||1 (22)||This guy is no kid (already 28 years old) and he right away. We think he’ll play pretty well. He is a smart kid with a good arm and Cleveland has a solid team around him. He may be a solid QB2 at some point this year, but not yet a draft day target outside of large leagues and long term formats. Weeden played against top flight college competition, so he’s a good bet to handle the jump to the NFL. He also moves very well within the pocket. This dude has some Brett Favre in him in terms of confidence. He’ll throw the ball into tight windows. Frankly, we are surprised he has so many doubters. Things got better for Greg Little the moment they added Weeden. Cleveland’s offensive talent is underrated, folks. This year, they may start making some noise like Detroit did back in 2010.|
|4||Russell Wilson||QB||SEA||Wisconsin||3 (75)||Wilson is a very smart and very competitive kid. The obvious issue is his diminutive size, but we see him as a guy who can play at 5’11 in the NFL. He plays with tremendous poise and confidence. We realize that Seattle paid solid bucks for Matt Flynn, but on tape, Wilson is a better player. We like him as a dynasty add and would not be at all surprised if he ended up starting in Seattle at some point this year if not right away. This kid has great feet, and he’s cool in the pocket yet has the wheels to escape, and he can throw the rock. If you are looking for a young QB capable of being the next Drew Brees, this could be the guy. He’s a leader, an athlete and he has the poise you look for in an NFL QB. He’s a very nice mid-to-late grab in dynasty.|
|6||Brock Osweiler||QB||DEN||Arizona St.||2 (57)||He could be a stud when Manning retires, but he is a caddy for now. He landed in a great spot for his long term. Is there a better QB to be under than Manning? We don’t think so. Dynasty leagues only. The guy has the size and arm you look for in today’s NFL. He can see the whole field and make all the throws. We also like his make-up. He’ll be a good way to back up an aging Manning in dynasty leagues though he might not be effective if pressed into action right away.|
|7||Nick Foles||QB||PHI||Arizona||3 (88)||We like Foles quite a bit and he will be given time to learn in Philly while he sits behind Vick and Kafka. This guy could start for Philly some day, but for now, he is viable in long term formats only. He’s a big guy with a big arm.|
|8||Kirk Cousins||QB||WAS||Michigan St.||4 (102)||We like Cousins a lot. He made consistent year-to-year progress as a collegian and we like his chances of making it as a pro. He’s obviously headed for a reserve role behind RGIII, but he has a chance to start somewhere at some point.|
|5||Ryan Tannehill||QB||MIA||Texas A&M||1 (8)||We like his make-up and we like his arm, but he will need time. A good add in dynasty but not worth anything in redrafts unless he starts right away. The best scenario for Tannehill has him watching and learning for a half a season at minimum. He is not NFL-ready and Miami's receivers are awful.|
|9||Ryan Lindley||QB||ARI||San Diego St.||6 (185)||Lindley has an NFL body and an NFL arm. We think he could play sooner rather than later, but for now, HC Ken Whisenhunt sees him learning by watching. He could start by 2013 if Kolb and Skelton fail to get the job done. This kid has legit long term potential with all the weapons in Arizona. Not a bad late grab in long term formats.|
|10||Chandler Harnish||QB||IND||Northern Illinois||7 (253)||Harnish is a decent prospect, but he is obviously behind Luck for the foreseeable future. He does make a decent hedge pick in deeper dynasty leagues if you sink a lot of value into Luck. He’s a smart kid with a solid and accurate arm. he was a solid pick in round seven.|
|11||BJ Coleman||QB||GB||Chattanooga||7 (243)||Coleman has size and some solid fundamentals. He makes good reads but has some accuracy issues. He is a project and he’ll obviously have time to learn, watching Aaron Rodgers light it up. He could develop into a solid backup.|
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