With most fantasy football leagues beginning their playoffs this week, the decision of who to start at quarterback becomes even more important. All teams are up for grabs with the bye weeks over, so while streaming may not be all that crucial for some, there are still plenty of fantasy football owners without a weekly “mandatory start.” Our Week 15 fantasy quarterback rankings dive into posts, sleepers and potential failures before the first “win or go home” matchup of the season.
Again, no goodbye teams, so if you’ve got Patrick Mahomes, Kyler Murray, Jalen Hurts, Josh Allen, etc., you’re probably not checking the rankings anyway. It’s worth noting that Allen (against Panthers) has a tough matchup and is dealing with an ankle injury, but unless he has another stud, he’s likely to stick with Allen. However, Russell Wilson (@ Rams) could be reasonably seated depending on his other options.
Running backwards | Wide receiver | Tight end | D / ST | Kicker
Most people are here to watch the players in the 10-18 range, so let’s go to the top streamers. Tua Tagovailoa (vs. Jets), Taysom Hill (@ Buccaneers), Jimmy Garoppolo (vs. Falcons) and Taylor Heinicke (@ Eagles) are the ones you want to lead your team in the opening round of the playoffs if you don’t have one of the consistent studs. .
Running backwards | Wide receiver | Tight end | D / ST | Kicker
Tua, Jimmy G and Heinicke play on teams that are below average at containing fantasy quarterbacks, and all those signal callers have proven to be productive when the matchups are favorable. Tampa Bay’s numbers against quarterbacks have improved, but we’ve seen Hill have two 20-plus-point performances in two starts thanks to his career up. That said, this will be the toughest matchup to date, as the Bucs’ front-seven are one of the best in football. Ben Roethlisberger (against Titans) could also be a decent play, given the showdown, his recent play, and his expected number of pass attempts.
It’s also worth noting that Mac Jones (@ Colts), Baker Mayfield (vs. Raiders), Justin Fields (vs. Vikings), and Trevor Lawrence (@ Texans) have favorable matchups, but their floors have proven too low to trust. the first round of the fantasy playoffs. However, as we saw Sunday night, Fields clearly has a high ceiling, so he’s up for it in deep leagues.
On the other side of the start or sit bubble, Carson Wentz (vs. Patriots), Teddy Bridgewater (vs. Bengals), Matt Ryan (@ 49ers) and Ryan Tannehill (@ Steelers) are more likely to break through. their respective confrontations. Wentz has been one of the best talkers many times, but we’re not ready to fire him against the Patriots’ elite defense. Bridgewater is clearly reliant on matchups, and Ryan and Tannehill have been downed most of the time, so we don’t expect a change against elite attacks. It also doesn’t help that they’re both without their No. 1 WRs.
It’s easy to overthink the QB position, but in general, it’s best to rely on cleats if you have one. Chances are, if you made the playoffs, you have one, but if you’re playing the streaming game, there’s no shortage of options. Rely on recent matchups and trends, and enjoy the production.
We’ll update these quarterback rankings throughout the week, so check back for the latest player movement and analysis.
Fantasy QB Rankings Week 15: Who to start as a quarterback
Ratings are based on formats.
|one||Tom Brady, TB vs. NO|
|two||Justin Herbert, LAC vs. KC|
|3||Kyler Murray, ARI @ DET|
|4||Jalen hurts, PHI against WAS|
|5||Aaron Rodgers, GB @ BAL|
|6||Matthew Stafford, LAR v. SEA|
|7||Dak Prescott, DAL @ NYG|
|8||Patrick Mahomes, KC @ LAC|
|9||Russell Wilson, SEA @ LAR|
|10||Joe Burrow, CIN @ DEN|
|eleven||Josh Allen, BUF vs. CAR|
|12||Taysom Hill, NO @ TB. Hill has racked up more than 24 fantasy points in his first two starts and is realistically close to a “must-start” moving forward. Sure, the Tampa Bay defense isn’t kind to RBs on the ground, but Josh Allen only ran for 100+ yards against them, so Hill was able to do it too. We know by now that his lack of passing success is irrelevant when it comes to his fantasy prospects if he continues to rush north for 70 yards and a touchdown.|
|13||Taylor Heinicke, WAS @ PHI. Heinicke (knee) is expected to be ready for this showdown, and prior to his disastrous performance in Week 14, he was QB16 of the year. A favorable showdown with the Eagles defense puts him just above that in our rankings. Philadelphia allows the most fantasy points to quarterbacks and gave up more than 22 fantasy points to Zach Wilson and Trevor Siemian in weeks 11 and 13.|
|14||Kirk Cousins, MIN @ CHI. Chicago is a last-eight unit against fantasy quarterbacks, and we know that Cousins has been able to produce QB1 weeks several times in his season, so we understand if he opts for him over Heinicke. Heinicke’s mobility gives him only a small advantage, but Cousins is probably the “safest” play in this matchup.|
|fifteen||Jimmy Garoppolo, SF vs. ATL. Garoppolo is quietly having a solid fantasy campaign, having thrown more than one touchdown in five of his last six starts. Atlanta is the No. 2 defense in most fantasy points allowed, so look at Garoppolo as a top-tier streamer in this one. The only thing keeping him out of a top-12 play this week is the possibility that the Niners will simply take down the Falcons and subdue them. This game could get ugly, and we know Kyle Shanahan isn’t against passing a handful of times if that’s the way to win. If it’s a closed, back-and-forth affair, a final QB1 is certainly on the table.|
|sixteen||Tua Tagovailoa, MIA vs. NYJ. If you start Tagovailoa, you won’t see his fantasy point total increase dramatically or rapidly, but with volume and precision, he slowly racks up completions and yards and achieves a decent fantasy ending. In the past six games that Tagovailoa started and finished, he attempted an average of 38.5 passes and threw two touchdowns per game. In a showdown with the Jets (10th worst defense against fantasy quarterbacks) at home, he should have similar success, so we trust him as a streamer too.|
|17||Justin Fields, CHI vs. MIN. Fields is finally showing signs of life in fantasy, and against Green Bay, he passed for 224 yards and two touchdowns and added 74 rushing yards. If he can continue to log around 50 rushing yards, he’ll have sneaky fantasy playoff value, and with Minnesota giving up the sixth-most fantasy points to quarterbacks, we see Fields as a strong sleeper. Honestly, his ceiling is higher than the four ranked quarterbacks ahead of him, but we know his floor is much lower. Look at him as a boom or bust quarterback, and consider starting him if you’re a heavy loser.|
|18||Baker Mayfield, CLE vs. LV. While Mayfield showed life in Week 14, the Raiders defense was shattered by Kansas City with 48 points allowed. The Raiders team is falling apart, so you can do worse than Mayfield, who seems to be a little healthier after the bye week. As always, it has virtually no floor, but Cleveland should be in position to score early and often on Saturday afternoon.|
|19||Mac Jones, NE @ IND. The Colts present a decently favorable matchup for quarterbacks. Given that the Colts have a strong running defense, we don’t expect Jones to repeat his three-shot performance, but we won’t see a ton of explosive passes yet, so touchdowns are probably the only way Jones surpasses his QB19 rating. Like Mayfield, his floor is non-existent, but in deep leagues, he’s one of the last viable streaming options.|
|twenty||Ben Roethlisberger, PIT against TEN. Roethlisberger is capable of a 300-yard, three-touchdown performance as we saw against Minnesota, but that shouldn’t be the expectation. Although Tennessee’s season numbers against the quarterbacks are downright horrible, his passing career presents real problems for Pittsburgh. All that said, QB20 is about as high as we’ve ranked Big Ben this year, and we’ll draw the line here when it comes to streaming considerations.|
|twenty-one||Zach Wilson, New York @ MIA. Miami’s defense has risen to a top 12 unit against fantasy quarterbacks, so this isn’t a favorable matchup and Wilson hasn’t been productive often this season. That said, you’re more or less guaranteed 30+ pass attempts, so you can hit mid-level QB2 status with volume.|
|22||Carson Wentz, IND v. NE|
|23||Derek Carr, LV at CLE|
|24||Ryan Tannehill, TEN @ PIT|
|25||Trevor Lawrence, JAX vs. HOU|
|26||Matt Ryan, ATL in SF|
|27||Tyler Huntley, BAL vs. GB|
|28||Teddy Bridgewater, DEN v. CIN|
|29||Mike Glennon, NYG vs. DAL|
|30||Davis Mills, HOU @ JAX|
|31||Cam Newton, CAR @ BUF|
|32||Jared Goff, DET vs. ARI|