Coaching changes occur every year, and the result is new systems implemented around many NFL teams. That was certainly the case this offseason. Be it a new head coach or offensive coordinator, many teams have new offensive player callers ahead of 2022. Let’s take a look at the players impacted by these changes, along with their rankings and player notes.
Player rankings based on our redraft Expert Consensus Rankings for half-PPR leagues.
Quarterbacks With New Offensive Player Callers
Teams with new offensive play callers:
Buffalo Bills – Ken Dorsey, OC
The back-to-back reigning fantasy QB1 showed no signs of slowing down in 2021. Allen led the quarterback position averaging 24.6 fantasy points per game and a whopping 26.7 expected fantasy points – nearly three points more than the next closest signal-caller. The Bills quarterback’s dual-threat ability – third in rushing yards (763) and rushing attempts (122) – provides him a fantasy ceiling that only a few other quarterbacks can match. No quarterback had more top-3 finishes or top-8 weekly finishes than Allen did a season ago
That’s why he’s deserving of being the first quarterback drafted across all formats.
Because even after taking a slight step back as a passer in 2021 – 104.9 passer rating vs. 97.9 passer rating – a higher passing touchdown ceiling exists for Allen in 2022. His 5.6% TD rate was worse than in 2020 and ranked just ninth in 2021. Case in point: despite finishing No. 1 overall, Allen ended with the 5th-most fantasy points under expectation.
Carolina Panthers – Ben McAdoo, OC
Got off to a fast start in 2021, with five TD passes, five TD runs and three 300-yard games in his first four starts. Then the roof caved in, with Darnold throwing four TD passes and 10 INTs in his other seven starts. So much for the idea that Adam Gase was entirely to blame for Darnold’s non-development. He’s entering his age-25 season, so there’s a flicker of hope left, but time is running out, and he has rookie Matt Corral breathing down his neck.
Chicago Bears – Luke Getsy, OC
Justin Fields closed the season out with a promising stretch run as a top ten fantasy quarterback in each of his final four full starts. Fields showed growth in this quartet of games, completing 62.5% of his passes with 7.6 yards per attempt. The rushing is what we covet with the Windy City signal-caller, and we got a look at that as well, as he averaged 64.2 yards per game on the ground. Losing Allen Robinson hurts even more with the team replacing him with Byron Pringle, Equanimeous St. Brown, David Moore, and Velus Jones. The massive weekly upside is still in the cards for Fields with his playmaking ability, but he’s tough to trust as anything more than a QB2 or matchup play, considering the cast of characters surrounding him.
Denver Broncos – Nathaniel Hackett, HC
Hackett’s obviously had success with Aaron Rodgers that has translated into fantasy, so a top-five fantasy quarterback outcome is firmly in play with Wilson in 2022. After all, Wilson’s long track record of efficient fantasy play is undeniable – he has finished among the top-six fantasy QBs five times since 2014.
I like his chances of making it seven in 2022. Because Wilson is still among the league’s elite passers when healthy. Before the finger derailed his season, Russ led the NFL in yards per attempt (10.4), passer rating (133.6) and passer rating from a clean pocket (130.9) before Week 5. Wilson also finished the season on a high note, averaging over 24 fantasy points per game in his last three contests.
All in all, 2021 was a typical season for Wilson: peaks and valleys. He averaged 23 fantasy points per game from Weeks 1-4 and Weeks 16-18. In his six games post-injury, Wilson averaged an abysmal 13 fantasy points per game. Buy the inevitable 2022 dip on the future Hall of Fame quarterback in a new situation.
That combined with a plethora of weapons in Denver, makes it very plausible he sees similar immediate success that other quarterbacks like Tom Brady and Matthew Stafford have had since changing teams late into their careers.
Detroit Lions – Ben Johnson, OC
This season, Jared Goff is a sneaky streamer or QB2 option for Superflex leagues. The artillery cupboard is full to the brim with D.J. Chark, Jameson Williams, Amon-Ra St. Brown, T.J. Hockenson, and D’Andre Swift all at his disposal. After Week 11 last year, the Lions increased their passing rate to 55% (20th) in close games, and Goff responded with some efficient outings. He completed 69.5% of his throws in that five-game sample while throwing for multiple touchdowns four times (three passing touchdowns twice). You might have to pinch your nose when you press the draft button, but you could be smelling roses a few weeks into the season.
Houston Texans – Pep Hamilton, OC
Houston Texans quarterback Davis Mills is one of my biggest offseason risers. He ranked outside my top-40 dynasty quarterbacks as a rookie after being selected by the Texans in the third round of the 2021 NFL Draft. Mills was extremely shaky to start the year, sitting with the league’s 31st-ranked PFF passing grade through his first nine games.
The Stanford product turned it on over the final five weeks of the 2021 season, finishing with a 9-to-2 touchdown-to-interception ratio while averaging a respectable 17.4 fantasy points per game.
With a full offseason ahead as the presumed starter, Mills is shaping up to be a strong fantasy QB2 with room to grow in 2022.
Jacksonville Jaguars – Doug Pederson, HC
Joe Burrow‘s massive second-year jump is encouraging for this year’s second-year QBs like Trevor Lawrence. The Jags quarterback finished with the same expected fantasy points per game average as Burrow in 2021 (17.3) but underwhelmed tremendously in a poor situation. His -72.3 fantasy points versus expectation were the most of any QB in 2021.
Lawrence posted a season-high 85.1 PFF passing grade in the season-finale, offering some hope that he can turn things around in 2022 with a new coaching staff in place.
There’s a strong chance that Jacksonville dials up the passing attempts with Doug Pederson calling the shots on offense. During his five-year tenure in Philadelphia, only once did the offense not finish top-10 in pass attempts.
Las Vegas Raiders – Josh McDaniels, HC
The biggest winner in the aftermath of the Davante Adams trade is Derek Carr. He now has the luxury of throwing to a surplus of offensive weapons including arguably the best wide receiver in the NFL in his old college teammate.
Let’s not forget that when Carr had everybody available last season, the Raiders quarterback ranked second in the NFL in passing yards and 15th in fantasy points per game. However, his ceiling was limited due to his lack of mobility and weaponry; Carr did not finish better than a top-8 quarterback at any point in 2021.
But Adams figures to provide Carr with a red-zone weapon like no other that will unlock his fantasy ceiling. He’s the exact positive touchdown regression that should launch Carr’s fantasy numbers. Carr’s 3.7 TD rate in 2021 was below his career average (4.3). And his 23 total passing touchdowns were seven below expectation.
Fully anticipate Carr throwing for 30-plus laser scores bare minimum with Adams at his disposal. Every quarterback last season that threw for at least 30 touchdowns finished inside the top-10 in 2021.
Miami Dolphins – Mike McDaniel, HC
Somebody on the Miami Dolphins is in for a rude awakening come September. Mike Gesicki, Jaylen Waddle and Tyreek Hill are all being pushed up the rankings/draft boards with hopes that Tua Tagovailoa takes a massive step forward in Year 3 under first-year head coach Mike McDaniel.
I am not as optimistic that Tagovailoa can be the vehicle to deliver fantasy goodness to all these pieces in South Beach because this offense is going to be run-heavy. McDaniel made his way up the coaching ranks under Kyle Shanahan as a standout run-game coordinator. And should he follow in the footsteps of Shanahan as the offensive mastermind in Miami, fantasy managers should expect a lot of rushing and YAC schemes.
49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo ranked 29th in aDOT in 2021 (7.6) after ranking 39th and 35th in the category the two years prior. Tagovailoa’s aDOT was 34th in the league (7.6) in 2021.
Jimmy G’s most productive seasons have seen him average just north of 16 fantasy points per game – good for QB17 in 2021. Tagovailoa has yet to eclipse 14 fantasy points per game two years into his career. He also ranked 31st in throwing at the intermediate level (62.5 PFF grade) among 37 qualifying passers last season.
So although Tua is viewed as a popular late-round quarterback among fantasy circles, I have to admit I won’t be pulling the trigger on him in 1QB redraft formats. Especially with his brutal early schedule. New England, Baltimore and Buffalo are hardly the stream-worthy spots you will be confident in starting the southpaw QB. In the Dolphins quarterback’s four combined starts versus those teams in 2021, his fantasy finishes were QB23, QB24, QB18 and QB16.
Minnesota Vikings – Kevin O’Connell, HC
Kirk Cousins is the ugly duckling fantasy quarterback who found his way inside the top 12 producers (QB11, QB12) in back-to-back seasons. Cousins did so last season by directing a surprisingly up-tempo and more pass-heavy Vikings offense. Last year Minnesota was eighth and 12th in neutral pace and passing rate. With Kevin O’Connell at the controls this season, the passing rate could continue to be healthy (LAR, seventh), but the neutral pace could decline (LAR, 16th). If this happens and Adam Thielen takes a step back entering his age 32 season, Cousins will be rendered as a mid QB2.
New England Patriots – Joe Judge, Matt Patricia, or Bill Belichick
The rookie quarterback was highly efficient as a passer, finishing 18th in PFF passing grade, throwing 10-19 yards, 13th from a clean pocket, and 10th on early downs. Those specific metrics tend to be sticky year over year and more predictive than raw counting stats.
Still, those numbers were equally impressive for Jones, who posted the sixth-highest passer rating (92.5) and second-highest completion percentage (67.6%) for a rookie quarterback with at least 300 attempts in NFL history.
New Orleans Saints – Pete Carmichael, OC (he has been the OC, but Sean Payton called the plays while he was HC)
Last year the Saints put the handcuffs on YOLO Jameis Winston. They ran a slow as molasses offense, relying on their run game and limiting Winston to 25.2 pass attempts and 185.7 passing yards per game. This could easily be the case again in 2022, but there are some reasons for optimism here. Winston will be entering his third season of this offensive scheme, so he should know it inside and out by now. Hopefully, the Saints get Michael Thomas back healthy to pair with newly drafted Chris Olave. This moves Marquez Callaway into a more reasonable WR3 role. This cast of weapons with Alvin Kamara also on board could lead to more passing attempts that we didn’t see in 2021.
New York Giants – Brian Daboll, HC or Mike Kafka, OC
Daniel Jones finished last year as the QB17 in fantasy points per game, but his rushing (298 yards, 11 games) was a decent part of that production. As a passer, he still struggled, ranking outside the top 20 at his position in pressured accuracy, catchable pass rate, and true completion rate. Jones better hope Brian Daboll has the secret sauce to get him on track because it’s not looking good. This year, Jones is a matchup play that I’ll happily leave on the waiver wire in 12-team formats.
Quarterbacks joining new teams:
Deshaun Watson (CLE): QB13
Deshaun Watson‘s a no-doubt top-five option when he gets back on the field. He was exactly that from 2019-2020, and there is no reason to think the 26-year-old won’t pick up where he left off. During his last season of play, Watson led the NFL in passing yards and yards per attempt (8.9). Just be wary that a 4-8 game suspension will likely be coming down for Watson. However, that would not shy me away from him or any of his teammates because fantasy leagues – both redraft and best-ball tournaments – are won in November/December, not September.
Matt Ryan (IND): QB20
After spending his entire 14-year NFL career with the Atlanta Falcons, Matt Ryan will be the starting quarterback for the Indianapolis Colts in his 15th season. Atlanta traded Matt Ryan to the Colts for a 2022 third-round pick. It’s a major upgrade for Ryan’s fantasy appeal that he was able to get out of Atlanta – a franchise that looks to be in a massive rebuild. Last season, Ryan lacked a strong supporting cast which contributed to his lackluster numbers. Calvin Ridley played five games, and the Falcons owned the league’s second-worst blocking offensive line per PFF. Ryan faced pressure at the sixth-highest rate (40%). That won’t be the case in Indianapolis with a better offensive line in place, a stable running game, and playmakers like Michael Pittman Jr. and Jonathan Taylor to boot. Ryan was also vastly underrated as a passer despite the ongoing turmoil ranking above average in many of PFF’s sticky efficiency metrics in 2021: 12th in PFF passing grade from a clean pocket, second throwing at the intermediate level, and ninth throwing on early downs. Entering a Frank Reich system that prides itself on churning out play-action (5th) and screen passes (10th) will make Ryan’s life a helluva lot easier than it was in Atlanta. Ryan ranked 33rd in screen throw rate and 12th in play-action rate in 2021. The new Colts quarterback is back on the fantasy QB2 radar for 2022.
Carson Wentz (WAS): QB26
The Commanders will learn the same thing that the Colts did last year. Carson Wentz can manage a game, but don’t ask him to lift up your passing attack. Wentz was 20th in clean pocket completion and 32nd in catchable pass rates. Washington was 11th in neutral rushing rate last year, which could creep even higher in 2022. With their selection of Brian Robinson, this offense could be built around the run, which leaves Wentz as nothing more than a QB3 in Superflex or a waiver wire matchup target.
Marcus Mariota (ATL): QB29
At best, Marcus Mariota is Superflex bench fodder as a QB3 or a redraft streamer. Mariota has no assurances to even break camp as the Falcons’ Week 1 starting quarterback. The team only invested a third-round pick in Desmond Ridder, but if Ridder plays at a similar level in camp and the preseason, he could be under center to start the year. For now, we’re in watch and wait mode.
FantasyPros Staff Consensus 2022 Redraft Fantasy Football Rankings
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