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Buccaneers 2020 Fantasy Football Preview: Quarterback

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Starting our fantasy series with the man who finally brought national attention back to Tampa Bay

NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Training Camp Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

On August 6, 2020 Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were not scheduled to play football. However, two other teams were, and it was to signal meaningful games were just around the corner. As it is, we didn’t get the Hall of Fame Game between the Dallas Cowboys and Pittsburgh Steelers, making this period of inching closer to the NFL season seem longer than usual.

Football is on the horizon though, and if you’re a Bucs - or Brady (Hi Patriots people!) - fan you at least get to see your quarterback in official team gear now, instead of feeding on photoshopped products like you have for the past months.

Return to camp means we’re close to games. Getting close to games means you should be nearing your fantasy football drafts, and we’re going to do our best here to help you get ready by delivering some Buccaneers focused fantasy advice, as best we can.

Who better to start with than the GOAT himself, Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback, Tom Brady.

2019 FANTASY FINISH

If you had Tom Brady as your QB1 in 2019, you had the twelfth-best starting quarterback in the league according to The Fantasy Footballers. Of course, you likely drafted him after someone else drafted Drew Brees (New Orleans Saints) who finished as the league’s 22nd-Ranked passer in fantasy football (thanks to only playing in 11 games), so you were probably pretty happy with the value you got compared to at least one specific counterpart.

Some of the names who came in ahead of Brady in 2019 were no surprise. Guys like Aaron Rodgers (Green Bay Packers), Russell Wilson (Seattle Seahawks), and of course Patrick Mahomes (Kansas City Chiefs).

Others, like Josh Allen (Buffalo Bills), Kyler Murray (Arizona Cardinals), and Lamar Jackson (Baltimore Ravens) were probably not names you had higher on your draft boards entering last season.

Ok, I can see some of you having Jackson higher by a hair before the year, but if you claim to have seen what he did coming then go sit in the liar corner, because you are a liar.

The Top-12 finish for TB12 in 2019 marks the sixth time in the past nine seasons Brady has delivered QB1 numbers for fantasy football enthusiasts who rolled with him as their quarterback.

He’s finished Top-15 in all but one of those nine seasons. In fact, the only year Brady didn’t finish in the top half of the league among quarterbacks was in 2016, when he was suspended for four games.

Safe to say Brady has delivered at least moderately if not above expectation for the past decade of fantasy football. A trend anyone who tosses a selection his way in 2020 hopes to see continue.

Value is the key to winning your league however, so where will you have to invest to get Brady on your roster this year?

2020 PROJECTIONS

Sticking with The Fantasy Footballers for now the guys over there have Brady projected as their QB11 as we stand today. Coming behind Matthew Stafford (Detroit Lions), Carson Wentz (Philadelphia Eagles), and Deshaun Watson (Houston Texans) among others.

This is a conglomerate ranking however, as Andy has Brady ranked 11th, Jason has him 9th, and Mike has the GOAT all the way down at 14th.

So where does the 11th-best quarterback in 2020 fantasy football get selected? Apparently, at the end of the seventh-round.

Interesting to note as well, they have Brady’s risk rating at 5.3, which is relatively high, matching guys like Daniel Jones (New York Giants), Teddy Bridgewater (Carolina Panthers), and coming in a tad higher than Gardner Minshew (Jacksonville Jaguars; 4.7).

According to Jaime Eisner of The Draft Network, Brady comes in as QB8 and is part of his Tier 4 grouping consisting of Brady, Brees, Rodgers, and Matt Ryan (Atlanta Falcons) in that order.

We see the Buccaneers quarterback return to his 11th-best ranking in Pro Football Network’s list, as Tommy Garrett puts Brady (95) just inside the Top-100 fantasy football players to add to your roster.

WHAT THE EXPERTS SAY

Rankings and average draft positions (ADP) are great. But what about the details? Context matters, so we gathered some.

From The Fantasy Footballers:

“Embrace Brady in Tampa Bay or continue with the disdain and hatred of the ex-Patriots QB. Whether you think he is done or not, Brady had the 4th most passing attempts and the 5th most 20+ yard completions in the league. He also posted the lowest TD rate (3.9%) of his career but New England’s weapons pale in comparison to Mike Evans and Chris Godwin. With Rob Gronkowski along for the ride, Brady has the coach (Bruce Arians) and motivation to excel with the Buccaneers and finish as a QB1.”

Jaime Eisner of The Draft Network:

“Brady has one of the best group of weapons around him in the entire NFL and a head coach that isn’t afraid to air it out. He finished as the QB12 in total points last season with Julian Edelman and nobody. He now has Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Rob Gronkowski, and more.”

Tommy Garrett of Pro Football Network:

“Even though Brady ranked 29th in PFN’s Offensive Share Metric (OSM) out of 39 qualifying quarterbacks, given that he is now throwing to arguably the best WR duo in the NFL, we could see a resurgence in Brady’s stats.”

WHAT I SAY

Has anyone mentioned the differences between his weapons in New England in 2019 and in Tampa Bay in 2020? No? Ok, I will then.

Tom Brady has much better weapons with the Buccaneers in 2020 than he did with the Patriots in 2019. Boom.

Is it as simple as that? No, maybe not. But it’s a start, and when you’re drafting off projections - which you are in season leagues - this is enough to keep him on your draft board. It’s also enough to keep you confident rolling into 2020 with him as your QB1 as well.

No preseason might delay the full gelling of the Bucs’ offensive unit a bit, but when you’ve got guys like Brady, Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Rob Gronkowski and now LeSean McCoy on the roster, it’s not as big a concern as it might be in other situations.

I’d love to grab Brady in the seventh-round, as this is right in the area of my drafts where I like to target a quarterback anyway. I’m not really into taking a passer in the first three-rounds unless the value just can’t be denied.

If you get QB12 in the seventh-round, then you should have a stable of skill position players on your roster already to facilitate a playoff run. If you get QB5 or better in the seventh-round, then you should be firmly in position for a championship run. Unless you blow the six picks before him, of course.

Is Brady going to be QB5 when all is said and done? It’s hard to say - duh - but I wouldn’t put it past him, and he currently sits as my QB8.

WHAT DO YOU THINK?

Throw down your thoughts on Tom Brady as a fantasy football quarterback option in 2020 in the comment section, and vote to let us know where you think the sweet spot is for drafting the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ newest starting quarterback.

Poll

Where are you targeting drafting Tom Brady in season-long fantasy football leagues?

This poll is closed

  • 16%
    Rounds 1-3
    (11 votes)
  • 53%
    Rounds 4-7
    (35 votes)
  • 27%
    Rounds 7+
    (18 votes)
  • 1%
    Not At All
    (1 vote)
65 votes total Vote Now