Based on this year’s value mixed with a keeper outlook.
1 – Aaron Rodgers – has the age, situation and ability to eclipse his previous season. If the rookie left tackle can help ease 15-20 sacks, then Rodgers will improve on just gaining those negative points back alone.
2 – Drew Brees – again, has the success rate and the army. However, he’s about five years older than Rodgers and has the Madden Grim Reaper calling. More yards than Rodgers, but less touchdowns.
3 – Peyton Manning – Brett Favre, the sequel. Age doesn’t stop this guy. And the Colts have an endless supply of great receiver talent and depth. Thirty-plus touchdowns is to be expected.
4 – Tony Romo – has the ultimate entourage. Jason Witten, Miles Austin, Dez Bryant, Roy Williams, Marion Barber and Patrick Crayton. He was a stud fantasy football quarterback without Williams and Bryant. Let’s see what he can do with both.
5 – Phillip Rivers – the Chargers have made the transition from LaDainian Tomlinson’s team to Rivers’ team. He’ll have a better running game to sell play action and still has Vincent Jackson and Antonio Gates.
6 – Tom Brady – a 50-touchdown campaign isn’t to be expected, but 4,000 yards is. Brady didn’t get any real receiver help this offseason. But if Torry Holt can replace Joey Gaffney and either Brandon Tate or Taylor Price play a role, he could surpass 30 touchdowns yet again. Wes Welker at practice is good news.
7 – Matt Schaub – whoever throws to Andre Johnson cracks the Top 10 by default. His injury history is a concern. Also, the idea of already hitting the ceiling and still below 30 touchdowns is a problem.
8 – Eli Manning – could be in for his career year. The troubles in the running game mixed with tons of wide receivers could lead to big numbers. His foot injury is worth noting.
9 – Kevin Kolb – played well in Donovan McNabb’s absence and is surrounded by premier talent. He could post higher yardage numbers than McNabb, but it may not be this season.
10 – Jay Cutler – twenty-five touchdowns is good. Twenty-six interceptions isn’t. I’m not thrilled with Mike Martz because Cutler could have built on last season and improved. However, now he has a whole new offense to learn.
11 – Brett Favre – he could provide Top 5 quarterback numbers. But the fact that he’s not even announced he’s back and his age move him down the ladder.
12 – Matt Ryan – Roddy White and Tony Gonzalez provide ample touchdown opportunities. His yards should have been higher with the absence of Michael Turner, but it didn’t happen. He should be in for 3,000+ yards and mid-20s for touchdowns.
13 – Joe Flacco – due to the new crew of wide receivers, I think that Flacco could have more touchdowns than Ryan. However, they are a run-first team, and he could have significantly less yardage. The Ravens defense will make sure that they are not playing from behind too often.
14 – Donovan McNabb – McNabb has always been hard to gauge. If Santana Moss doesn’t get suspended and Devin Thomas is a true No. 2 wide receiver, then McNabb will have the poor mans version of Jeremy Maclin and DeSean Jackson. How much he has left remains to be seen. Injuries are a big concern.
15 – Carson Palmer – he will never get back to his 35-touchdown form, no matter how many wide receivers he has. Though Jordan Shipley, Antonio Bryant, Jermaine Gresham and Chad Ochocino offer good targets, Palmer isn’t surpassing mid-20 touchdowns.