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ADP Showdown - Drew Brees vs. Russell Wilson


Many fantasy owners these days employ the strategy of waiting on drafting quarterbacks until the mid to late rounds. With the amount of talent that is available early at running back and wide receiver, it's better to attack those positions. After the top 3-4 QBs are off the board, a case could be made that the players after are all in the same mixed bag. The point differential among the players down to QB16 is small enough (83.4 FP) that you could make the case that any could help you win a title. No longer does getting the right QB make or break your fantasy season. It's more about how well you can build a complete team through the draft.

Two QBs that you will be faced with are very similar but oh so different in terms of what they can bring to your fantasy roster. Drew Brees and Russell Wilson are mainstays among the Top 10 at the position, and the 2019 season should be no different. Brees brings the classic pocket-QB mentality to an offense with upside in passing yardage. While Wilson limits his attempts, is very efficient, and brings the upside of a running QB to your team. Owning either one of these QBs gives you the safety of knowing that you have a locked-in starter each week. Sure, there may be some ups and downs through the season, but you will see that among all the QBs.

But which of these two QBs will be the best option for your team come draft day? That is what I aim to down as I dive into the numbers. Then give you an answer on who to drat in this ADP Showdown.

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Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints

ADP: QB7 (78th Overall)

The 2018 season was another year for Brees finishing inside the top-10 at the position. But he finished outside the top-seven for the second consecutive year and could only manage six top-10 scoring weeks on the year. He finished outside the top-10 in pass attempts, completions, and yardage for the first time since 2019. That shows that since the team brought in Alvin Kamara, the Saints offense has become more balanced. Also, with the defense no longer being one of the worst units in the league, Brees no longer benefits from playing with a deficit. Still, even if the numbers have somewhat regressed, he still brings to the table a consistent option that will finish as a quality starter in fantasy.

Heading into the 2019 season, don't expect to see many changes in what the Saints do on offense. They have found success with this balanced attack and as long as the defense plays well, it will limit the opportunities for Brees. He is surrounded by a wealth of talent. Kamara is a weapon out of the backfield, while Michael Thomas is among the elite receivers in the league. The secondary players on this offense (Jared Cook, Tre'Quan Smith, Tedd Ginn) are players that go overlooked on any other offense. But playing for the Saints and with Brees ups their values. Brees should continue to find success in 2019 playing against the 17th ranked schedule for QBs. There will be big weeks for him, but also a few duds. But nothing that you shouldn't be able to work around as a fantasy owner.

 

Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks

ADP: QB8 (79th Overall)

Coming off of a stellar 2017 season (finished as QB1), Wilson fell off to QB9 last season. The Seahawks moved to a more run-based attack and it showed as Wilson's attempts (427) were his lowest since 2013. His touchdown totals from the last two seasons (34 and 35) are primed for a regression in this offense in 2019. It's hard to maintain that level of efficiency when the attempts continue to drop. Also, Wilson remains one of the most sacked QBs in the league at a rate of 10.7% of his dropbacks. Showing that the offensive line will continue to be a problem for this team.

As we enter the 2019 campaign, what we saw from the Seahawks offense a year ago will likely be the same this season. The run game behind Chris Carson and Rashaad Penny will be highly focused upon, which will again limit the attempts for Wilson. Outside of Tyler Lockett, the receiving corps is largely unproven and doesn't bring much excitement. If rookie D. K. Metcalf can come in and be that true number two target in this offense, it could help to add some upside to the passing attack. But at the end of the day, the Seahawks will continue to do what they do best. Control the clock with a balanced offense and rely on the defense to keep them in games. Not exactly the mantra you want to hear for your QB1 in fantasy.

 

Verdict

Call me a traditionalist all you want, but I feel that having a QB as your starter that is in a high-powered offense leads to success. That is exactly what we have in this showdown. Brees, coming from the uptempo Saints offense, going against Wilson and his ball-control Seahawks offense.

Sure, both are trending in the wrong direction with scoring, but Brees still can be a top QB in fantasy. Unfortunately, I don't see that from Wilson this year. So if I am faced with the decision and the time is right to draft my QB, give me Brees all day for 2019.

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