Michael Beller
Michael Beller>INSIDE FANTASY FOOTBALL

Fantasy Player Projections: Week 1

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Quarterbacks

    1. 1
    2. Peyton Manning
    3. Peyton
      Manning
      QB
    4. PASS YDS344
    5. PASS TD4
    6. INT0
    7. RUSH YDS0
    8. RUSH TD0

    Just last week I predicted Manning would throw 45 touchdown passes this year. It all starts Week 1, as he'll toss two scores to Demaryius Thomas and one apiece to Eric Decker and Montee Ball.

    1. 2
    2. Drew Brees
    3. Drew
      Brees
      QB
    4. PASS YDS321
    5. PASS TD4
    6. INT0
    7. RUSH YDS0
    8. RUSH TD0

    What more can you say about Drew Brees? The guy is a fantasy monster, and now that he's officially reunited with Sean Payton, we're betting he'll welcome his coach back with a big day.

    1. 3
    2. Tony Romo
    3. Tony
      Romo
      QB
    4. PASS YDS322
    5. PASS TD3
    6. INT0
    7. RUSH YDS15
    8. RUSH TD0

    I'm on record as believing Tony Romo will finish the season as a top-five quarterback. It all starts against the Giants this week.

    1. 4
    2. Aaron Rodgers
    3. Aaron
      Rodgers
      QB
    4. PASS YDS314
    5. PASS TD3
    6. INT0
    7. RUSH YDS18
    8. RUSH TD0

    Rodgers was actually the third quarterback on my board behind Drew Brees and Peyton Manning, but that says more about the other two than it does about the Packers' star. He'll have a great game in a hostile environment Sunday.

    1. 5
    2. Russell Wilson
    3. Russell
      Wilson
      QB
    4. PASS YDS241
    5. PASS TD1
    6. INT1
    7. RUSH YDS49
    8. RUSH TD1

    He played third fiddle to Robert Griffin III and Andrew Luck, but it was Wilson who dominated the league across the second half of the season. If he runs as successfully as he did last year, he'll be a top-10 quarterback.

    1. 6
    2. Matt Ryan
    3. Matt
      Ryan
      QB
    4. PASS YDS351
    5. PASS TD2
    6. INT0
    7. RUSH YDS0
    8. RUSH TD0

    Ryan will wash the bitter taste of last year's NFC Championship Game out of his mouth against the Saints, throwing for 351 yards, the highest total of the week, and two scores.

    1. 7
    2. Michael Vick
    3. Michael
      Vick
      QB
    4. PASS YDS244
    5. PASS TD1
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS62
    8. RUSH TD1

    The NFL picked a great one for one of its Week 1 Monday night games, and a lot of that has to do with excitement surrounding Vick. He legitimately could be the fantasy MVP if he clicks in this offense.

    1. 8
    2. Tom Brady
    3. Tom
      Brady
      QB
    4. PASS YDS317
    5. PASS TD2
    6. INT0
    7. RUSH YDS6
    8. RUSH TD0

    No Welker? No Gronk? No problem. Brady will adjust to his new weapons just fine, bringing them into the fold without missing a beat.

    1. 9
    2. Matthew Stafford
    3. Matthew
      Stafford
      QB
    4. PASS YDS317
    5. PASS TD3
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS0
    8. RUSH TD0

    Stafford was one of the more inefficient quarterbacks a year ago, but that doesn't matter in fantasy leagues. What does matter is when your top receiver gets tackled at the 1-yard-line five times. Stafford has top-five potential.

    1. 10
    2. Robert Griffin III
    3. Robert
      Griffin III
      QB
    4. PASS YDS280
    5. PASS TD2
    6. INT1
    7. RUSH YDS21
    8. RUSH TD0

    We'll finally see Griffin on the field after he shredded his knee in the playoffs last season. Even if he doesn't run as often as he did last year, he'll likely be a weekly starter. He proved last year he's not a running quarterback. He's a quarterback who can run.

    1. 11
    2. Matt Schaub
    3. Matt
      Schaub
      QB
    4. PASS YDS276
    5. PASS TD2
    6. INT0
    7. RUSH YDS0
    8. RUSH TD0

    With a big lead for most of the game, the Texans will take the foot off the pedal, but Schaub will still give his owners a nice performance.

    1. 12
    2. Eli Manning
    3. Eli
      Manning
      QB
    4. PASS YDS311
    5. PASS TD2
    6. INT1
    7. RUSH YDS5
    8. RUSH TD0

    Manning enters the year right on the fringe of being a weekly fantasy starter. That likely means his owners will be making matchup-based decisions from week to week. Manning is a solid option against Dallas.

    1. 13
    2. Alex Smith
    3. Alex
      Smith
      QB
    4. PASS YDS254
    5. PASS TD2
    6. INT0
    7. RUSH YDS7
    8. RUSH TD0

    Smith will show right off the bat just how large an upgrade over Matt Cassel and Brady Quinn he represents. He won't be a regular starter, but will be worth owning this year.

    1. 14
    2. Cam Newton
    3. Cam
      Newton
      QB
    4. PASS YDS264
    5. PASS TD2
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS33
    8. RUSH TD0

    It was an up-and-down 2012 for Newton, but he still ended the year inside the top five at the quarterback position. He won't have his best game against the Seahawks, but a big season is ahead.

    1. 15
    2. Jay Cutler
    3. Jay
      Cutler
      QB
    4. PASS YDS292
    5. PASS TD2
    6. INT1
    7. RUSH YDS7
    8. RUSH TD0

    Cutler will get off to a nice start in Marc Trestman's offense, throwing two touchdown passes and nearly reaching 300 yards. Of course, he'll have one ugly pick after staring down Brandon Marshall for too long.

    1. 16
    2. Sam Bradford
    3. Sam
      Bradford
      QB
    4. PASS YDS276
    5. PASS TD2
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS22
    8. RUSH TD0

    This could be a make-or-break season for Bradford in St. Louis, especially since he has the best arsenal of weapons he has had in his entire career. It'll be a mixed bag on Sunday.

    1. 17
    2. Ben Roethlisberger
    3. Ben
      Roethlisberger
      QB
    4. PASS YDS263
    5. PASS TD2
    6. INT1
    7. RUSH YDS8
    8. RUSH TD0

    It'll be interesting to see how Roethlisberger plays without his two favorite targets from last year, Mike Wallace and Heath Miller. My bet? Expect a big season for Antonio Brown.

    1. 18
    2. Andrew Luck
    3. Andrew
      Luck
      QB
    4. PASS YDS255
    5. PASS TD2
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS19
    8. RUSH TD0

    The fantasy community was pretty divided on Luck heading into the season. If he's going to prove his doubters wrong, he'll have to take advantag of this great Week 1 matchup.

    1. 19
    2. Carson Palmer
    3. Carson
      Palmer
      QB
    4. PASS YDS284
    5. PASS TD2
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS3
    8. RUSH TD0

    Palmer may be on the downside of his career, but he found himself a great situation, teaming up with Larry Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd. He's a strong backup this year, and he'll get off on the right foot Sunday.

    1. 20
    2. EJ Manuel
    3. EJ
      Manuel
      QB
    4. PASS YDS231
    5. PASS TD1
    6. INT1
    7. RUSH YDS37
    8. RUSH TD0

    Manuel was able to recover from his knee injury suffered during the preseason to start Week 1, and he'll show some promise in the loss to the Patriots. He's worth owning for his ceiling, and could be a huge factor in two-QB leagues.

    1. 21
    2. Colin Kaepernick
    3. Colin
      Kaepernick
      QB
    4. PASS YDS220
    5. PASS TD1
    6. INT1
    7. RUSH YDS33
    8. RUSH TD0

    I'm not sold on Kaepernick as a top-10 quarterback, and we'll see exactly why against the Packers this week. He clearly has tremendous upside, but I don't trust him to be a consistent fantasy player.

    1. 22
    2. Terrelle Pryor
    3. Terrelle
      Pryor
      QB
    4. PASS YDS172
    5. PASS TD0
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS52
    8. RUSH TD1

    Pryor could be an exciting player thanks to his legs, but he's not exactly a guy you want to be counting on this year. He's worth a flier in deep or two-quarterback leagues.

    1. 23
    2. Andy Dalton
    3. Andy
      Dalton
      QB
    4. PASS YDS241
    5. PASS TD2
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS0
    8. RUSH TD0

    If the Bengals are going to fulfill the preseason buzz they've generated, it will fall on Dalton's shoulders to carry them deep into the playoffs. He won't look totally like that quarterback this week.

    1. 24
    2. Josh Freeman
    3. Josh
      Freeman
      QB
    4. PASS YDS276
    5. PASS TD1
    6. INT1
    7. RUSH YDS7
    8. RUSH TD0

    There are few players in the league with more on the line than Freeman this year. If he plays well, he could have the Bucs in the playoffs and earn himself a huge, multi-year deal. If he doesn't, he could be a backup next season.

    1. 25
    2. Ryan Tannehill
    3. Ryan
      Tannehill
      QB
    4. PASS YDS247
    5. PASS TD0
    6. INT1
    7. RUSH YDS27
    8. RUSH TD0

    If the Dolphins are going to challenge for a playoff spot like many writers believe they will, myself included, Tannehill will have to take a big step forward. With Mike Wallace and Lamar Miller, that could definitely happen.

    1. 26
    2. Joe Flacco
    3. Joe
      Flacco
      QB
    4. PASS YDS234
    5. PASS TD1
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS3
    8. RUSH TD0

    The last time we saw Flacco on a football field, he was holding the Lombardi Trophy on his way to becoming a very rich man. He won't be quite so happy Thursday night. Neither will anyone who starts him.

    1. 27
    2. Philip Rivers
    3. Philip
      Rivers
      QB
    4. PASS YDS230
    5. PASS TD1
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS6
    8. RUSH TD0

    Remember when Rivers was considered one of the best fantasy quarterbacks in the league? Times have changed. He's barely worthy of being a backup.

    1. 28
    2. Christian Ponder
    3. Christian
      Ponder
      QB
    4. PASS YDS191
    5. PASS TD1
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS8
    8. RUSH TD0

    I'm calling it now. Matt Cassel will start more games for the Vikings than Ponder. The quarterback situation will keep this team from reaching the playoffs again.

    1. 29
    2. Jake Locker
    3. Jake
      Locker
      QB
    4. PASS YDS225
    5. PASS TD0
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS24
    8. RUSH TD0

    Locker was underhwleming in every sense of the word last season. Opening with a tough road matchup against the Steelers, you'll want to stay away from him, even in two-quarterback leagues.

    1. 30
    2. Blaine Gabbert
    3. Blaine
      Gabbert
      QB
    4. PASS YDS198
    5. PASS TD0
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS12
    8. RUSH TD0

    Gabbert has one more chance to prove to the Jaguars he's worthy of being a starter in the NFL. He almost certainly won't be a presence in fantasy leagues, even when Justin Blackmon returns from his suspension.

    1. 31
    2. Geno Smith
    3. Geno
      Smith
      QB
    4. PASS YDS151
    5. PASS TD0
    6. INT2
    7. RUSH YDS23
    8. RUSH TD0

    With rumblings in New York that Mark Sanchez' shoulder injury is more serious than the Jets first let on, Smith may get an extended look as the starter. That's probably the best thing for the Jets' future, but it won't be pretty this year.

    1. 32
    2. Brandon Weeden
    3. Brandon
      Weeden
      QB
    4. PASS YDS185
    5. PASS TD0
    6. INT3
    7. RUSH YDS11
    8. RUSH TD0

    Weeden didn't do much of anything to contribute in fantasy leagues last season, save the times he turned around and handed the ball to Trent Richardson. Expect more of the same this year.

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