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Fantasy Football players are accustomed to wide receivers and running backs not living up to our expectations, but it feels more unnerving when you draft quarterback busts.

For a position that offers relative stability, why do certain quarterbacks not live up to our expectations? One of the biggest reasons is draft position and injuries. If you spent a second- or third-round pick on Aaron Rodgers in 2013, you expected that you would have an edge at the quarterback position.

Your early-round investment didn’t work out as Rodgers only competed in nine games, and you probably had a hard time replacing the value you lost. All though it was through no fault of his own, Rodgers became a bust because he couldn’t complete a 16-game season.

Quarterback busts often occur because of big-name recognition as well. Whether you have played Fantasy Football for the last decade or the last three years, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees always draw a crowd of supporters who think they can offer the same exact production from year to year. Age and changing philosophies in play calling could limit their production more in 2015, but most people just want to believe that Manning and Brees are easy and safe bets to finish as Top 5 quarterbacks year after year.

Every Fantasy Football player has different expectations, so of course, it depends on your own philosophy whether a player has exceeded your expectations. If you were able to draft LeSean McCoy in Round 3 last season, you would have been pleased that he was able to finish as a Top 15 back. Since everyone drafted him in Round 1, however, most owners were disappointed. It all depends on where you draft players and your expectations for them.

Three Quarterback Busts for 2015

Below are a few quarterbacks who won’t return the value you may expect.

1. Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers

In my best Dwight Schrute voice —

“Fact: 37 percent of Roethlisberger’s touchdowns for the season were accounted for in two games. Fact: Roethlisberger had nine performances of 300 or more passing yards. His second-highest during his entire career is five. Fact: 9 percent of Roethlisberger’s passing production came from one game.”

I don’t think Roethlisberger will exceed expectations like last season, and he will have a hard time even maintaining the type of production he had in 2014. He has very strong weapons, but how many games will he have where he throws for six touchdowns?I don’t think he will live up to his status as a fifth- or sixth-round pick.

2. Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons

I think Ryan will finish as a Top 10 quarterback, but he isn’t going to finish in the top five. He is only part of the quarterback busts list in the sense that I believe many people believe he could become a sneaky option, but he has never offered any reason to believe he can exceed his production. Some Fantasy players think they are getting a steal when they draft him, but they end up disappointed when he only serves as a mediocre option.

I posted an article last season about how Ryan should not be a quarterback Fantasy Football player should be targeting in 2014. As I showcased in the article, here were his finishes from 2010-2013 on NFL.com leagues.

  • 2010: 8th
  • 2011: 7th
  • 2012: 7th
  • 2013: 15th

I have always said that if he couldn’t offer better performances with a healthy Julio Jones, a younger Roddy White and one of the best tight ends to play the game, Tony Gonzalez, why would he have better seasons with an aging White and almost no other developed weapons outside of Jones?

If you want to draft a Top 10 quarterback, Ryan won’t be a bust. If you think you are being sneaky and grabbing a top-five candidate in the later rounds, however, you are going to be disappointed.

3. Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins

I always held out the hope that RG3 could return to the production he offered as a rookie, but I’m passing on him and not looking back.

The buzz around the NFL is that the 25-year old quarterback is not known for putting the time in to watch tape or improve his performances. That concedes with the fact that there were “character concerns” surrounding RG3 before he was drafted, even though he had no known issues off the field. Perhaps a poor work ethic classifies as character concerns.

He only appeared in nine games last season, and he was ineffective in all of his performances. It’s also not a good atmosphere where you have to constantly worry about your starting job, so I believe the young quarterback is not in the most nurturing environment.

Even if he’s available in the last round of a draft, he still would have a hard time exceeding my expectations.

Here are some links to our other 2015 Fantasy Football Rankings:

Check back with the “So-Called Fantasy Experts” over the coming days!

We’ll be posting our running back busts, wide receiver busts and tight end busts for the 2015 Fantasy Football season!

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Jack Delaney

Jack's love of craft beer and gangster rap is only surpassed by his love of pass-catching running backs. He was a top-40 finisher and $1,500 prize winner for the 2014 RotoBowl, a top-50 finisher in the 2015 Mock Draft Online Championships, finished first in draft accuracy for quarterback rankings in 2015 on Fantasy Pros, and was a contributor to the 2015 and 2016 The Fantasy Football Guide.
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