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Quarterbacks going earlier than last year

Two drafts into the 2023 season, I am reminded that past results don’t guarantee future results. In both of my leagues so far, the quarterback position didn’t play out the way I expect. At all.

Starting with the auction in the magazine. Backing up to 2022, I purchased Joe Burrow and Dak Prescott for $15 each (out of a $200 cap). So I went into this year’s auction (against mostly the same opponents) figuring I’d buy one of the top half dozen quarterbacks. Trevor Lawrence was the first one nominated, and let him go for $11, figuring there would be a better deal to come – probably Justin Herbert or Lamar Jackson. But the deals never came. Instead, Mahomes, Allen, Hurts, Burrow and Jackson all went for at least $21. That left Herbert as the last of the franchise quarterbacks, and I had to pay $22 to get him (same as Allen and Burrow, and only $2 less than Mahomes).

Now I’m in the Fanex Analysis Draft, and things also went sideways at quarterback. With the 12th pick, I figured 5.12 was the spot to address the position, with Justin Herbert or Lamar Jackson being the guys I was hoping for. Last year only four quarterbacks were selected in the first five rounds in the league, and none were picked in the sixth round. So while there are six quarterbacks I really liked, I figured probably one of them would make it to the end of the fifth round. And that being the case, I chose to skip the quarterbacks at 3.12 and 4.01, where I could have had anyone except Mahomes (3.08).

But no. The top 4 quarterbacks went before the end of the fourth round, and Herbert, Jackson and even Trevor Lawrence went in the fifth. So I’ll have to move on to Plan B at the position, picking a pair of serviceable guys in this no-moves league.

This has been a weird draft for me. I’ve been picking out of the 12-spot, which I don’t care for. With it being PPR scoring (and with the ability to start 4 WR) I started with a pair of wide receivers, Adams and St. Brown. I’m not crazy about those picks, particularly with the possibility Jimmy Garoppolo gets hurt like he always does. Since then, I’ve taken Keenan Allen and three running backs – Kenneth Walker, Isiah Pacheco and David Montgomery.

I was hoping Travis Kelce and Cooper Kupp would make it to the end of the first round, but that didn’t happen.

While I don’t like this 12th draft position, I can’t complain about the results at running back. I was surprised when Walker made it to the end of the third round. I see him as more of a top-10 back. And I am very high on both Pacheco and Montgomery (pictured). I see Pacheco and Montgomery as top-15 running backs who should have gone 30 picks earlier.

This draft is unusual in that went I was on the clock at 1.12 and 2.01, I took a pair of wide receivers, even though there were higher-rated running backs available. I was figuring that some of the backs I liked might be available later, and it worked out just fine. The road not taken would have been to select Barkley and Derrick Henry with those early picks, and that would have left me selecting the two Christian receivers with my last two – Watson and Kirk. I instead have Adams-St. Brown-Pacheco-Montgomery. Checking my most current projections, the quartet I ended up with is worth 14 more points than the four I could have had.

1.01RBChristian McCaffrey
1.02WRJustin Jefferson
1.03WRJaMarr Chase
1.04RBAustin Ekeler
1.05WRTyreek Hill
1.06RBJosh Jacobs
1.07TETravis Kelce
1.08RBBijan Robinson
1.09WRCooper Kupp
1.10RBNick Chubb
1.11WRCeeDee Lamb
1.12WRDavante Adams
2.01WRAmon-Ra St. Brown
2.02RBSaquon Barkley
2.03RBJonathan Taylor
2.04WRStefon Diggs
2.05RBDerrick Henry
2.06RBTony Pollard
2.07WRA.J. Brown
2.08RBRhamondre Stevenson
2.09WRGarrett Wilson
2.10WRJaylen Waddle
2.11WRChris Olave
2.12WRDK Metcalf
3.01TEMark Andrews
3.02RBJahmyr Gibbs
3.03RBJoe Mixon
3.04WRTee Higgins
3.05RBAaron Jones
3.06RBNajee Harris
3.07WRDeVonta Smith
3.08QBPatrick Mahomes
3.09RBJ.K. Dobbins
3.10WRCalvin Ridley
3.11WRDeebo Samuel
3.12RBKenneth Walker
4.01WRKeenan Allen
4.02QBJosh Allen
4.03WRAmari Cooper
4.04QBJalen Hurts
4.05WRDJ Moore
4.06RBTravis Etienne
4.07QBJoe Burrow
4.08WRMike Evans
4.09WRDrake London
4.10RBBreece Hall
4.11QBJustin Fields
4.12RBRachaad White
5.01QBLamar Jackson
5.02RBMiles Sanders
5.03RBCam Akers
5.04RBAlexander Mattison
5.05QBJustin Herbert
5.06WRMichael Pittman
5.07QBTrevor Lawrence
5.08WRJerry Jeudy
5.09TET.J. Hockenson
5.10RBDameon Pierce
5.11TEGeorge Kittle
5.12RBIsiah Pacheco
6.01RBDavid Montgomery
6.02WRChristian Watson

—Ian Allan

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