After the Week Three rookie QB showdown in New York, RotoBaller Erin Lee takes stock of where each guy stands in the overall fantasy landscape and lets you know what you can expect going forward.
2013 Fantasy Football Rookie Quarterback Updates for Week 4
Rookie Update: The aftermath of the battle of the rookie starting quarterbacks in New York.
Geno Smith, QB, New York Jets:
In his two wins this season, Geno Smith’s pass completion percentage was 59.7; in his one loss, Smith completed just 42.9% of his attempts. His rookie status is still very much a factor in his success on the field, and while his fearless attitude earns him some big plays, it also gets him into trouble. Smith spends a lot of time in the pocket, and unlike Manuel, he makes way more mistakes than anyone could or should be comfortable with. His six interceptions against just three touchdowns so far this year is indicative of that willingness to take unnecessary risks. Facing a Titans' defense that has nine sacks and three interceptions, he won’t get any breaks in Week Four. They will be looking to force Smith to make mistakes and turn the ball over, and recent history indicates that shouldn't be a tall order for Tennessee.
EJ Manuel, QB, Buffalo Bills
EJ Manuel is getting the job done in Buffalo, much better than anybody anticipated. He’s 64 of 108 attempts this year, bringing his completion percentage to just about 60 percent. He has four touchdowns and just one interception. Manuel doesn’t make a lot of mistakes, which is not something we are accustomed to when it comes to rookies. His loss last week against fellow rookie QB Geno Smith was his worst performance thus far this year though, as his 45.2% completion rate just wasn’t enough to get it done. The Bills matchup with Baltimore this weekend, and it should be an interesting one. While the Ravens haven’t protected very strongly against the pass so far this year, Manuel’s offensive line hasn’t really done the job all that well this year, and the Ravens' pass rush will be coming hard and fast. His key focus will be on making sure he gets the ball away quickly and gives his receivers a catchable ball in-bounds.
Manuel might be too cautious while Smith might be too reckless. Manuel needs to do a better job of getting the ball to his receivers quickly and accurately, while Smith needs to be smarter when throwing into coverage. Both still have a lot to learn and aren’t ready to be reliable fantasy starters yet.