Daniel Jones 2023 Fantasy Outlook: The Next (Diet) Josh Allen

You need to draft 'Vanilla Vick' in 2023.

I know the title may read like clickbait. But I truly believe Daniel Jones has the upside to be the next (diet) Josh Allen in Fantasy Football. At minimum, Daniel Jones is a screaming BUY at his price in all formats, particularly Best Ball. The floor: his QB10 performance from last year. 

The ceiling: There’s a compelling argument that Jones, with a steep weapons upgrade + Year 2 of Brian Daboll, could follow in the footsteps of the fantasy football sensation, Josh Allen. He could become the next elite Konami Edge, at a fraction of the price.

Daniel Jones’ 2022 Recap: QB10 Finish, Promising Signs of Growth

Almost miraculously, Jones finished as the QB10 in 2022 fantasy, despite throwing only 15 passing touchdowns (QB21).  Given his moniker “Vanilla Vick” from his teammates, he managed to climb the rankings with his remarkable rushing prowess. His 120 rushes (4th), 708 rushing yards (5th), and seven rushing touchdowns (3rd) highlight his versatility as a fantasy asset.

Yet, to truly evaluate Daniel Jones’ potential, it’s crucial to analyze his performance over the second half of the 2022 season. From Week 7 onward, the team seemed to realize Jones could be their guy. Daboll started calling his number more, and Jones demonstrated a substantial improvement. 

Ultimately, Jones was QB6 in fantasy points per game (FPPG). The only QBs to outscore him were Jalen Hurts, Patrick Mahomes, Justin Fields, Joe Burrow, and Allen. Impressive company. 60% of his games from this point onward landed Jones in the Top-12 QBs, with 7 out of 10 games generating over 20 fantasy points and 3 of those games soaring above the 30-point mark. Via RotoViz’s NFL Stat Explorer:

With Jones now locked and loaded as the Giants’ QB for the future (4-year, $160M deal), Jones’ 2022 second-half performance honestly feels like the QB’s floor. 

That’s because many signs point to an even greater ascension situations in 2023:

Ascension Imminent? Weapons Cabinet + Year 2 in System 

The Potential for Doubled Touchdowns

One of the most exciting prospects for Daniel Jones’ fantasy value is the potential for a significant increase in passing touchdown production. Beyond just taking another step forward as a player:

    1. Weaponry Upgrade: The addition of Darren Waller has the potential to unlock new dimensions in the Giants’ offense. The fact Waller was absolutely peppered in training camp and during his brief preseason appearance (Jones’ first three targets) illustrated the consistent hype he’d been generating.

    No, this isn’t a Stefon Diggs level of upgrade. Still, Waller’s ability to move the chains AND spread the seam makes him a true WR1 in a TE package. His position coach even joked Waller watches more film of Julio Jones and AJ Green than of other TEs, recognizing his value as a pass-catcher. Side note: I am in LOVE with Waller in 2023 Drafts as well, and I think stacking these two up could be an elite edge.

    Additionally, Parris Campbell has reportedly been an A+ fit as a more explosive Richie James in the slot. Darius Slayton returns, motivated on a fresh contract, to prove he can be a true WR1. Isaiah Hodgins— who led the team in receiving touchdowns despite joining in Week 10— will give Jones a reliable Red Zone body, too.  Last but certainly not least, the team added Biletnikoff Winner Jalin Hyatt, fresh off a 1267-yard, 15-TD season in the SEC, who brings a speed element that this offense, and most in the league, did not possess. He flashed all camp and Preseason, and the offense should only get more dangerous the more Hyatt emerges.

    Oh, and that Saquon Barkley guy is back on a one-year deal.

    1. The Brian Daboll Effect

    A notable parallel can be drawn between Daniel Jones and Josh Allen when considering their similar tutelage, usage, and potential development under the guidance of Brian Daboll. Josh Allen’s transformation from a promising young quarterback to a fantasy football juggernaut is well-documented:

    – In Allen’s first full year as a starter under Daboll, he finished as QB14 in FPPG, throwing for 3,089 yards and 20 passing touchdowns.

    – In Year 2 of the offense, Allen catapulted to QB3 in FPPG, throwing for 4,546 yards and an impressive 37 passing touchdowns.

    While Jones’ trajectory will almost assuredly not mirror Allen’s perfectly, the similarities in their playing styles (cannon arms, Konami Mobility) & Daboll’s knack for creating mismatches and big plays suggest a “Diet Josh Allen” jump is surely possible. 

    Daniel Jones’ 2023 Fantasy Outlook

    A whopping 38.8% of Jones’ fantasy production came on rushing in 2022, which stabilizes a “Konami floor & ceiling” only a handful of players can claim.

    Between the weapons upgrades & playcalling familiarities, expecting a bump in Jones’ passing production feels reasonable. 

    Look no further than how effortlessly he drove down the field in his lone 2023 Fantasy Preseason appearance: 8/9, 65 yards, 1 TD. Surgical. Effortless. His protection was great. His rapport with his new weapons, especially Waller, was on point. Daboll’s playcalling was brilliant and confirmed stronger faith in his QB (as if $160M wasn’t enough).

    Let’s say he bumps that passing production to 4,000 yards & 28 TDs, and keeps the rushing floor. This is a big leap, but it doesn’t feel unattainable given that Jones chucked 24 TDs as a rookie in his only other year under a qualified NFL play caller (Pat Shurmur).

    Based on typical scoring settings, this would have Jones finishing with roughly 374 fantasy points. Good for 22 per game & a QB4 finish in 2022, behind only Jalen Hurts, Patrick Mahomes, and Josh Allen. 

    Sure, that’s a ceiling projection. And yes, the LOWS with Daniel Jones are often much lower than a typical pocket-passer. That also assumes he doesn’t progress majorly as a passer in 2023, which I think he will, and which would steady out those valleys. 

    Regardless, his ~115 ADP, QB15 pricetag on Underdog Fantasy is LAUGHABLE. I have over 43% exposure to Daniel Jones for more money than I care to admit (or that my marriage could withstand). 

    Jones has long been my QB9 on my 2023 Fantasy Big Board (& Best Ball Rankings). He came out as my QB5 in my initial 2023 Fantasy Projections, & even getting much more conservative, he hasn’t dipped below my QB8. I am in love with Jones and think this is the type of 10th Round Pick that can swing titles. Pair him with the steadier Brock Purdy in your last few rounds, or, better yet, have Jones as your upside QB2 to a Round 5 Justin Herbert.


    • Founder of Roto Street Journal. Lover of workhorse backs, target hog wideouts, and Game of Thrones. Aspiring to be the "Brady" and "Leo" of the fantasy universe.


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