The 7 QBs To Draft On Underdog Fantasy

May 11th 2024

Hayden Winks

My full rankings are here, updated on May 7th. The QBs in this column are organized by Underdog Fantasy ADP. You can draft today for a chance to win a piece of the $15M prize pool. Click the link below to sign-up with a bonus offering:

Jalen Hurts (ADP: 36.8)

Last year's play-calling and Hurts' own leg injury completely tanked the season. Here are some stats to show the obvious dropoffs directly tied to those two problems. Keep in mind, the Eagles now have a new OC in Kellen Moore and Hurts is likely to be healthier in 2024.... And even with those issues last year, Hurts finished as the 38th overall player in fantasy points over replacement per game. He was 11th overall in 2022 when things were firing.

  • Play action per season: 111, 133, then 81!!!

  • RPO passes per season: 95, 122, then 89!!!

  • Blitzes faced per season: 124, 172, then 185!!!

  • Throwaways per season: 22, 23, then 35!!! (because of the blitzes)

  • Rush yards per season: 52, 50, then 36!!!

  • Rushes per broken tackle: 15, 21, then 52!!!

Patrick Mahomes (ADP: 44.2)

Adding Hollywood Brown and Xavier Worthy can't be overstated. The Chiefs were only 20th in big play passes, 23rd in deep-target catch rate, and 30th in average depth of target in the pass game. It was the most sluggish-looking good offense in the NFL, one that only was 15th in plays per game. They were still 4th in neutral pass rate, but their explosive play rate will unlock the ceiling games we've missed with Mahomes. In best ball, Mahomes is easily stacked with Isiah Pacheco, Brown, Worthy, and Rashee Rice being drafted shortly after. Mahomes was 16th in fantasy points over replacement in 2022 when he wasn't only throwing to MVS, Skyy, Kadarius, and the boys.

Anthony Richardson (ADP: 56.2)

The Colts were 3rd in plays per minute under coach Shane Steichen, a similar trend he had with the Eagles' aggressive offense during their Super Bowl run. Richardson has the dual-threat ability in a fast-paced offense to reach elite QB upside, especially with AD Mitchell replacing Alec Pierce and with the entire starting OL returning and Day 2/3 backups coming in from the draft. Last year as an inexperienced rookie, Richardson was the QB1 in fantasy points per dropback. He's the most likely QB to break into the top-3 range.

Jordan Love (ADP: 88.1)

From Week 12 on, Love was 1st in EPA per play, 2nd in success rate, 2nd in PFF grade, 1st in completion percentage over expected, 1st in pressure to sack rate, and 4th in big time throw rate. All while he was rotating his WRs, TEs, and RBs around. There should be a better understanding of the personnel, and Love added a versatile 1st-round OT in the draft. The Packers will need to be better than 21st in neutral pass rate and 21st in plays per minute for Love to graduate from the QB1/2 borderline, but if they do, there are a lot of value options in Green Bay. Love has 8 stacking partners (2 QBs, 4 WRs, 2 TEs), with 5 of them being drafted after Love's ADP. He's a great back-stacking QB with upside.

Jayden Daniels (ADP: 112.9)

There are legit worries about his frame and rushing style lasting, but the passing bar for Daniels to be fantasy football relevant is very low because of how insane he is as a rusher. He's averaged 79 rushing yards per game since 2021 (including sack yards as negatives) and has put up 125+ carries in all 4 seasons as a starter. As you can see before, almost every QB with 125+ carries in an NFL season has been a top-12 QB, often much higher. And Daniels' environment is at least okay. From the great Pat Throman, "Kliff Kingsbury’s offense ranked first in both situation-neutral pace and no-huddle rate during his four seasons in Arizona." Even if the OL is worrisome and the WR group is overrated, Daniels can put up fantasy points in Washington. I especially like him as a QB1 for 3-QB best ball teams. His injury downside is mitigated by the 3rd QB, but his upside late in the year if he struggles early could create some low-advance rate advantages.

Geno Smith (ADP: 172.4)

Smith has been 111th and 144th in fantasy points over replacement per game in recent seasons, and 2024 profiles as his best environment for production yet. New Seahawks OC Ryan Grubb called the 8th-highest pass rate and 4th-highest deep pass rate of all Power 5 colleges last season with the Washington Huskies. That's how you put up 300+ yard, 3+ TD games, especially when Smith has three WRs and a TE capable of stretching the field. Since starting for the Seahawks in 2021, Smith has the best completion percentage over expected. If he gets more opportunities in this fantasy-friendly scheme, then Smith can be a borderline QB1 despite being an in-pocket signal caller. Not to mention, the NFC West is loaded with offense.

Bo Nix (ADP: 207.6)

He averaged 300 passing yards, 2.7 passing TDs, 28 rushing yards, and 0.7 rushing TDs per game across his two seasons at Oregon. Nix also had outlier levels of avoiding negative plays, both in turnovers, sacks, and throwaways. All of that led to 97th percentile EPA per play among drafted QBs since 2005. Statistically, Nix has reasonable odds of being an NFL starter and the Broncos have nobody in his way. It'd be a surprise if Nix wasn't starting for close to the entire season.