2020 NFL QB class comes in as a potential all timer
Outlandish. Defined as bizarre and unfamiliar as in this QB class in compared to others is quite different. Why? Well hell to start it’s an actual legitimate class with franchise level talents. As we see the annual panic to grab the QB of the future, we finally as viewers can get excited as well. We may be seeing the earlies stage of one of the best QB classes of all-time and approaching the NFL Combine and Draft, there’s much buzz for many different players.
Now I’m not attempting to slander the following classes. Obviously, we’ve seen classes come out with a multiple all pros. “The Draft of a Decade” with Mahomes and Watson provided to be quite fruitful. Not to forget about the clear excelling class of Wentz and Goff… Ok maybe I’m being a touch bit unfair in my comparisons. But its hard to find a relatable class to this one where I personally see three week one starters who feel like they have all pro floors and following behind them, three dark horse players as well. So, when I look a my personal 2020 QB rankings, I know I must breathe for a second before I lose my mind on where to project their talents reaching. Before we step into that, lets look at the bare rankings I have.
*A lot of numbers here. Some struggle to compare to others and I want to establish truth to them right here off the bat. This is career numbers for the QBs in college. Clearly there was a remarkable difference in starts and injuries also provided to be a factor.
We see a lot of fluctuation amongst the players and their stat breakdowns. Important clarification is needed to be pointed out again. This is career long numbers. We can fully see the stagnation and growth of players when we look at their passing yards throughout their college careers:
Growth of players is better understood in the chart. We see a better mental picture on the yearly growth of players and how everyone stacks up to the competition around them. Obviously there are some outing issues. First, Tua’s injury of 2019. Secondly, Hurts playing behind Tua in his Junior year. Finally, all the years of absent stats due to playing behind someone, being redshirted, ect. We see the same outlying issues in the TD graph:
What we can take away from these stats is how the QB is able to continue improvement when stepping into the NFL. Immediate growth perhaps may be most highly touted for NFL scouts. Having a player that can pick up a scheme quickly is the utmost important in a world the strives for immediate success. Being able to show high levels of growth to go along with stats and measurables will lead to a higher faith in a prospect. In turn this comes with better draft capital invested in the player and higher chances of success at the next level. What we can gain as fantast football players in these graphs is a better understanding of the QBs arm as well as how they grow. If we can take QBs with solid passing abilities, solid improvement and playmaking skills, in Dynast leagues, we have better chance of increasing hit rate on picks and can in turn grow our teams for higher successes.
QB1- Tua Tagovailoa, Alabama
Coming in as my QB1, I strongly believe when we see a healthy Tua, we are seeing one of the best QB prospects of all-time. I had recently done a film study covering his LSU tape. Seeing what he could do coming off of surgery 3 weeks prior and still be able to navigate the pocket and field successfully proves enough to me why he should be placed above Burrow. His stats don’t lie, he keeps the ball safe, he has the best pocket presence in the class and has deadly accuracy. Any QB in this day in age that can lay a ball into a WR at any place on the field would be a top scouted QB. Add that he has deadly legs and an internal sense of what’s around him, he becomes one of the most elite prospects in history. Don’t let injuries fool you into forgetting the dangers of Tua Tagovailoa.
QB2- Joe Burrow, LSU
Greatest season by a QB ever. I’ll live with that statement until someone else can break the yards and touchdown record in a single season. However, he isn’t my QB1. Sure, he flipped the script from 2018 to 2019 largely due to the change in OCs to Joe Brady. He flew up his completion percentage (18% increase) which is huge for me. The yards (almost 3,000 more) and touchdowns (46 more) as well spiked up but why I find him at 2 is not harshly negative for him. I think that he is a spectacular talent but his single season sample size will follow him until proven he is consistent enough to do it again. Not to say he won’t, but until it’s seen, I can’t trust him to step on to a team and instantly transform an offense like Tua has the proven ability to. The other thing that hurts Burrow and has been clear from after the National Championship, his landing spot is dreadful. I’m sure if your reading this in February, you’re obviously a diehard fantasy fan so you don’t need another analyst pounding it into your head, and I won’t. But position is key. Look for an effort of growth in free agency and drafting for the Cincinnati team on the O-line and defensive side of the ball, or Burrow will be running for his life and running from behind.
QB3- Justin Herbert, Oregon My QB3 and QB1 last year, the Senior out of Oregon, Justin Herbert (May have just set the record for capitals in a sentence). Herbert is an all around well versed QB from the Pac 12 who has built a profile of solid accuracy in the short and mid-range parts of the field. Herbert has shown the ability to also be mobile in order to keep plays extended and his jersey relatively clean at the next level. Ability to drop in balls and lead receivers well, his major flaw comes in his deep play ability. While showing improvement in his arm throughout his Senior year,
the QB didn’t establish more than we already knew. A player that has take over ability and can make the important plays, but lacks the ability to stretch out a defense. I saw him as a guy who could flourish with time on a team last year but by giving himself that time this year, he has become more immediately ready. All that’s left for him to prove is can he consistently improve at the next level. I see him along with Burrow and Tua as week 1 starters, showing why they are in tier 1.
QB4- Jacob Eason, Washington
Nicknamed, “The Cannon” by me and only referred to as that by me, Jacob Eason kicks off the tier 2 of QBs. While other analysts have Fromm sitting in this position I can’t see why people aren’t taking a QB with better overall weapons in his personal arsenal. From his nickname, you can see as to why he developed that name. Arguably one of the top QBs in the class at putting balls in the tightest of windows, the Junior QB walks with a swagger shown only by few on the football field. In my tape watching career, there is limited comparison to the balls this man has to throw some of the attempts he does. This however does lead to problems. His abilities are not refined to be a day one starter, but I don’t think they need to be yet. F Jacob Eason lands at a spot where he is given proper guidance, we may see the development of a future star. He doesn’t have the new NFL style of mobility, but as a traditional NFL pocket QB, many teams will be interested in acquiring a talent like Eason.
QB5- Jordan Love, Utah State Probably the biggest wildcard in the class is a man from the Mountain West, Jordan Love. Big play ability, shows signs of a strong arm, solid mobility though not used often, and has the talent to extend plays well. On the flip side he faced limited competition, makes very poor decisions at times, and forces plays to work unsuccessfully. I think there’s a lot of refining to do for him but if done correctly, can give a team a solid QB. I think he shows the ability to make plays and extend for his receivers and while he doesn’t have peak talent around him, still finds ways to make things work for himself. Unfortunately, especially in his 2019 season, we saw him try and force balls into poor places. While he doe have solid accuracy, he does have a cannon and can’t rely on putting balls into windows that are slim to none. If Love is put on a team that is confident in him and puts in the work to make him a solid pro, I think he can do wonders for a team and for Fantasy.
QB6- Jake Fromm, Georgia
Game manager. And I mean no disrespect to the three year starter from UGA. The best QB in this class at monitoring the game, keeping it in his control, and taking over when needing to. I see Dak Prescott as a perfect example. Perhaps that may clear my views up on him. A guy who can sit behind a solid o-line and a good RB and slow the game down. However, he isn’t a QB that just takes whatever is given and plays okay. There is still a dog (no pun intended) in him that will go out and take games for his team. Perfect example: Georgia vs. Florida 2019. Fromm’s ability to when put in a position of take over or lose, takes the offense in his hands and wins the game offensively for UGA. He has the ability, like Dak to take over when running isn’t getting it done, and I believe him to be a solid NFL QB but I struggle to believe he’ll become anything more than a real solid game manager.
QB7- Bryce Perkins, Virginia 2020 classes version of Lamar Jackson, a QB with great legs and solid development of an arm, sits Bryce Perkins as my number 7 QB in my ranks. Incredible pocket presence, wonderful speed/agility and a clean delivery of balls to his WRs is why I see Bryce Perkins as a highly productive future NFL QB for any team looking to capture what the Baltimore Ravens are doing. Having a playmaker like Perkins to keep defenses constantly guessing and chasing is shown to be quite effective in modern NFL and I personally believe that Perkins has a more developed arm his senior year than Lamar. Unfortunately you don’t step on an NFL field and be given the same chances as college. Linebackers are faster, Secondary, and Lineman the same. It takes the drive of Lamar to show rapid improvement to adjusting to the league. If we see Perkins do this however and take the necessary steps, hopefully with a team willing to do the same, we may not only get a good young NFL QB, but an excellent fantasy QB.
QB8- Anthony Gordon, Washington State
Another prodigy of the Mike Leach offense, Anthony Gordon of Wazzu. However out of the gates, I want to debunk the fact that he’s just another stat stuffing one year player. Gordon threw for almost 1000 yards more than 2018 starter Gardner Minshew and 2000 more yards than 2017 QB Luke Falk. He put up 10 more TDs than Minshew and almost 20 more than Falk. However there was a large uptick of interceptions that we’ll get to in a moment. Obviously you can tend to blend in when tucked away in the upper corner of the North West. However that was highly prevented from happening posting over 400 yards in 9 out of 13 games and even sprinkled in a 9 TOUCHDOWN GAME! So the man can sling it well. His stats scream of success and his 71% completion does the same but there is one issue. Turnovers. If Gordon is able to cool down on the interceptions he can become a very solid pocket QB in the NFL. I do sincerely believe he will be able to do so with how much volume he was getting in college. Again another prospect who with the proper guidance can flourish. I can’t state enough the importance of coaching.
QB9- Jalen Hurts, Oklahoma Openly a hater of the QBs of Oklahoma does not mean I don’t appreciate what the program is doing. While I predicted a fizzle out of relevancy for Baker Mayfield and eventually the same for Kyler Murray (however with an adapting NFL, survival may be more likely for Murray), I can say with confidence I don’t see a stage where Hurts can peak in the NFL to eventually fizzle. I believe he will be lost in the class and eventually faded away from the game. Its incredibly harsh to say as a writer for Fantasy Football to completely judge a guy who is attempting to make his dreams work, but that’s what I make content for. Lincoln Riley is one of the best NCAA coaches and a genius offensive mind. He knows how to nurture his QBs into success and puts together the best system for their abilities. And this isn’t me saying Hurts is so schlub but I do believe he isn’t ready for the next level. Unfortunately, he’s out of time in college and must take the leap. I think he has good legs and mobility and a solid pocket presence, but doesn’t show the ability to compete with primer talent. What keeps him alive in the NFL is draft capital and legs.
QB10- Nate Stanley, Iowa
While I see the potential of QB success dying out around Gordon and Perkins, Nate Stanley has NFL size and an arm that can keep him on a roster. He doesn’t have any flashy abilities and struggles to remain consistent. However his traditional pocket QB ability will help turn Stanley into an enticing player for scouts. I believe with Hurts, there is rapid growth that needs to be made in a short time. He has to improve on mobility and consistency as a QB if he wants to gain any successes as a QB in the NFL. There’s a lot of question marks and work that must go in to turn Stanley into a reasonably competitive QB at the next level.