Each week, I rank each fantasy football position (Quarterback, Running Back, and Wide Receiver & Tight End) as if you were drafting today. This approach looks at actual statistics earned through games played, as well as preseason expectations and future game's projections. I have found that there are plenty of weekly projections to help determine starters for any given week. And there are multitudes of fantasy cheat sheets, average draft position lists, and player rankings to help you with your drafts prior to the season. But there is not much help in determining which players to keep, trade for, or pickup as the season goes. So, this list (sort of an in-season fantasy cheat sheet) will help you with all of your roster decisions for trades, free agency, and waivers. Simply stated, try to get the highest ranked player and keep for the remaining fantasy season. The higher the ranking, the higher the expected fantasy performance.
Fantasy Quarterback Power Rankings - Week 5:Fantasy points are based on standard Yahoo! fantasy football league scoring rules.
1) Drew Brees - New Orleans Saints:Previous Rank: #1
94.90 fantasy points
1,350 yards passing, 10 TDs, 5 INTs, -1 yards rushing, 1 rushing TD.
2) Aaron Rodgers - Green Bay Packers:Previous Rank: #2
74.66 fantasy points
1,064 yards passing, 7 TDs, 3 INTs, 51 yards rushing, 1 2pt. conversion.
3) Matt Ryan - Atlanta Falcons:Previous Rank: #3
99.28 fantasy points
1,162 yards passing, 11 TDs, 2 INTs, 48 yards rushing, 1 rushing TD.
4) Robert Griffin III - Washington Redskins:Previous Rank: #4
105.00 fantasy points
1,070 yards passing, 4 TDs, 1 INT, 252 yards rushing, 4 rushing TDs, 1 Fumble.
5) Tom Brady - New England Patriots:Previous Rank: #5
83.18 fantasy points
1,227 yards passing, 7 TDs, 1 INT, 11 yards rushing, 1 rushing TD.
My top 5 remain unchanged, as Week 4 of the NFL season found all 5 in the top 10 QB performers for the week. Brady was the #1 QB in Week 4 with 340 yards passing, 3 TDs, 0 INTs, 1 rushing TD. and 32.00 fantasy points. Brees was #3 with an impressive 446 yards passing, 3 TDs, 0 INTs, and 29.84 fantasy points (however in another losing cause). And Rodgers finally justified his high ranking with 319 yards passing, 4 TDs, 1 INT, 13 yards rushing, and 29.06 fantasy points (ranking #4 for the week). Ryan and Griffin also produced very well with 25.76 and 23.22 fantasy points, respectively.
6) Cam Newton - Carolina Panthers:Previous Rank: #7
84.22 fantasy points
1,013 yards passing, 4 TDs, 5 INTs, 167 yards rushing, 3 rushing TDs, 1 Fumble.
7) Eli Manning - New York Giants:Previous Rank: #6
77.10 fantasy points
1,320 yards passing, 7 TDs, 4 INTs, 3 yards rushing.
8) Peyton Manning - Denver Broncos:Previous Rank: #11
77.58 fantasy points
1,162 yards passing, 8 TDs, 3 INTs, 1 yard rushing, 1 2pt. conversion.
9) Ben Roethlisberger - Pittsburgh Steelers:Previous Rank: #9
68.36 fantasy points (only 3 games played)
904 yards passing, 8 TDs, 1 INT, 12 yards rushing.
10) Matthew Stafford - Detroit Lions:Previous Rank: #8
67.18 fantasy points
1,182 yards passing, 3 TDs, 4 INTs, 36 yards rushing, 1 rushing TD, 3 yards receiving, 1 2pt. conversion.
With Newton's huge Week 4 performance (215 yards passing, 2 TDs, 0 INTs, 86 yards rushing, 1 rushing TD, and 31.20 fantasy points - #2 among QBs in Week 4), he has moved up to #6. If he can keep the INTs down, a move back into the top 5 is probable. Peyton Manning joins his brother, Eli, in the top 10 after posting solid Week 4 numbers. If not for the 3 INTs in one quarter in Week 3, Peyton would be a spot or two higher. Roethlisberger maintains his number 9 ranking despite being on a bye last week. And Stafford drops two from #8 to #10 as his Detroit Lions continue to struggle in the early part of the NFL season. Maybe a Week 5 bye will help.
11) Michael Vick - Philadelphia Eagles:Previous Rank: #10
68.84 fantasy points
1,146 yards passing, 4 TDs, 6 INTs, 130 yards rushing, 1 rushing TD, 3 fumbles.
12) Joe Flacco - Baltimore Ravens:Previous Rank: #16
80.36 fantasy points
1,269 yards passing, 7 TDs, 3 INTs, 6 yards rushing, 1 rushing TD, 1 fumble.
13) Andy Dalton - Cincinnati Bengals:Previous Rank: #18
80.04 fantasy points
1,111 yards passing, 8 TDs, 4 INTs, 36 yards rushing, 1 rushing TD, 1 fumble.
14) Andrew Luck - Indianapolis Colts:Previous Rank: #13
55.84 fantasy points (only 3 games played)
846 yards passing, 5 TDs, 4 INTs, 80 yards rushing, 1 fumble.
15) Ryan Fitzpatrick - Buffalo Bills:Previous Rank: #21
82.84 fantasy points
931 yards passing, 12 TDs, 7 INTs, 60 yards rushing, 1 fumble.
Vick drops one spot to #11. His problem in the early going is turnovers (9: 6 INTs and 3 fumbles), but he did not commit a turnover in Week 4. His rating remains high due to his ability to get fantasy points through the air, as well as on the ground. If Vick can limit his turnovers, he should work his way back into the top 10. Flacco and Dalton have both been fantastic this season as their offenses have transitioned to more of a passing attack and no-huddle scheme. Luck returns this week from a bye with his reward being the Green Bay Packers. He may have to put up the ball 50+ times in this one to keep pace. Fitzpatrick doesn't put up the yards (only 931 in 4 games), but he is leading the league in passing TDs (12), and finds himself in my top 15.
QBs (#16 - #25, with previous week's rank in parentheses):
16) Tony Romo - Dallas Cowboys (#12)
17) Philip Rivers - San Diego Chargers (#14)
18) Matt Schaub - Houston Texans (#19)
19) Carson Palmer - Oakland Raiders (#15)
20) Jay Cutler - Chicago Bears (#17)
21) Matt Cassel - Kansas City Chiefs (#22)
22) Alex Smith - San Francisco 49ers (#20)
23) Christian Ponder - Minnesota Vikings (#25)
24) Kevin Kobb - Arizona Cardinals (Not Rated)
25) Sam Bradford - St. Louis Rams (#24).
Please make sure to watch for this list every week. Use it to guide your team through setting starting lineups, making trades, and picking up players through free agency and waivers. Other articles ranking the running back and wide receiver & tight end positions are also available each week and can be found by clicking on my name at the top of the article and accessing my Yahoo! profile. Also, please feel free to read my many other fantasy football articles found there as well. Good luck with your fantasy team!
Brian Music is one of five inaugural inductees to the 2011 Toyota Legends of Fantasy Football Hall of Fame on Yahoo! Sports. He has participated in fantasy football for 23 years and began playing Yahoo! fantasy football league in 2001, winning trophies in 17 of the 25 leagues that he has played.