Early 2024 Fantasy Football QB Rankings and Tiers: Can Patrick Mahomes Bounceback?

The quarterback position was a total wasteland this year. Between ineffective play (and an overall down year in scoring in the NFL) and key injuries– this position was rough!

When fantasy managers spent periods of the season starting guys like Joshua Dobbs, Tommy DeVito, Jake Browning, etc. you know things didn’t go according to plan.

Where does that leave us for next year, though?

As a general strategy rule, I usually like to avoid investing in a QB too early in the draft. I know recent years have shown that there is a significant gap between top-end QBs and the others. As such, I’m okay with taking one early if it fits your draft to do so. I just prefer to wait at QB on most of my teams.

I advocate waiting as the better bet for 2024. There was so much turmoil this year at the position. The top guys weren’t as productive as they have been in the past. Everything is relative, though. Others may have the same thoughts and if they ignore the position, bargains can be had.

Let’s take a look at my early 2024 fantasy football QB rankings, which may differ from The Wolf’s 2024 Fantasy Football Rankings.



Josh Allen is the clear choice for me as the top QB to take off the board. He has finished as a top 3 QB every year for the past three seasons. He also offers the most steady fantasy production. There is also no reason at the current moment to expect him to fall off. My opinion will change if Stefon Diggs forces a trade this offseason, but right now, he’s a good bet.

As the top QB on the board, I would feel comfortable taking Allen somewhere in the 3rd round in a 12-team league. Ideally, mid-to-late round. I would not spend a pick in the top 2 rounds on a QB (unless we’re talking SuperFlex, obviously).


Jalen Hurts had a crazy good 2022 season. I’m not entirely surprised that he’s taken a slight step back this year. However, he has still been the QB2 this year in ppg. All of that is to say, Hurts is still really good!

Much like Allen, there is no reason to expect a collapse of Hurts’ value. He still runs a lot, and he still has great receiving weapons. If the “Brotherly Shove” gets banned, I will drop Hurts lower on this list. I can foresee a situation where Hurts loses 8+ rushing touchdowns if he can’t run that play anymore—something to at least keep an eye on.

Hurts has had similar fantasy production to Allen in 2022 and 2023. I could justify taking him as early as the late 3rd round. I’d much prefer getting Hurts in round 4 (or later if the shove gets banned), however, I recognize somebody will probably go after him sooner.


Patrick Mahomes was the near-consensus pick as the top QB this season. That pick has proven costly for those who took Mahomes early. My ranking of Mahomes as the third QB off the board next year is based on a few thoughts:

  1. Mahomes has consistently been a top-end producer for most years of his career
  2. Mahomes has more upside than any other QB in the league
  3. There are no other QBs that have the proven track record to produce at the same level as Allen and Hurts
  4. The Chiefs absolutely have to address their lack of legitimate pass targets this offseason, which I think they will

All of those factors make me feel pretty confident that Mahomes will settle back in as a top end contributor at the position again next year. He’s probably the first QB I would consider taking if he falls behind the top two options in draft capital.

Mahomes makes sense as a pick anywhere in round 4. I think he’s a slam-dunk option if he falls to round 5.



This is where the QB tier 2 begins and ends for me. To be clear, I have no desire to be invested in this tier or even the next tier of QBs for the most part. I will be drafting Lamar Jackson in 0.0% of my leagues next year if he is, indeed, the 4th QB taken in the draft.

I mean no offense to Lamar (although I really have never liked his game as an NFL QB). He’s a very fantasy-friendly QB. There is no reason to believe that Lamar can’t still produce points with his legs. The Todd Monken offense is also starting to yield positive passing results. We can also expect Mark Andrews to be back healthy next year, and Zay Flowers is developing into a quality player. However, injuries are always a concern with Lamar’s style of play, and that will never change.

Overall, Lamar seems a reasonable bet to continue putting up good numbers next year. My only issue with taking him is that the next tier is all guys who could be just as good but will cost less draft capital. If I’m going to jump into tiers 2 or 3 of QBs at all, it will likely be towards the end of tier 3 rather than here for the value but if you love Lamar, have at it.

I think Lamar should start coming off the board in mid-round 6 to round 7. There is a gap in fantasy production between him and the earlier guys. This is likely to be where most home leagues differ from my advice. I fully expect that people will keep the early QB train going with Lamar and take him in round 4 or 5, thinking they need to fill that QB spot and that he’s the next guy behind Mahomes. Don’t do it!

If you miss out on one of the top 3, wait until round 6 at the earliest before considering a QB. I wouldn’t personally take Lamar unless I got a bargain in late round 7/early round 8, but I realize most leagues won’t go that way.



Joe Burrow is the start of tier 3 for me. Burrow, and the next four players, are all QBs who can produce close to or at Lamar Jackson’s numbers but each of them gives more reason to pause than Lamar. The extra risk that they represent beyond Lamar is why I gave them their own tier.

I am taking a bit of a leap with Burrow here, as he was QB26 before his season-ending wrist injury. Here’s the thing: sometimes, in sports, a guy has a lost season. In Burrow’s case, he battled the calf injury which led to inefficient play for the first month this season. Then, he hurt his wrist once he started looking like the old Joey B again. I don’t expect these injuries to carry over to next year. I also think Burrow has the ability to be the best passing QB in the league. He won’t run as much as the other top guys, which is why 5th is the highest I can go on him, but he should be a fairly safe pick next year.

If Tee Higgins, Tyler Boyd, and Joe Mixon all leave and the Bengals don’t restock the offense at all, then Burrow’s projection will take a hit. Otherwise, assuming the Bengals continue to field decent pass catchers, Burrow will be good.

I am hoping for a bargain with Burrow (i.e. I like him as QB 5 but I’m hoping others rate him closer to the 8-10 range at QB). Regardless, the 5th QB should not be coming off the board until at least late round 7/early round 8. I personally wouldn’t jump until late round 8/early round 9.

Again, I recognize in most leagues, you will see QBs coming off the board way earlier than this, but that’s okay! That means somebody else will end up with one of these guys in round 5. You’ll take a WR/RB and build depth and then you’ll get a similar guy 4 or 5 rounds later. Don’t sweat this at all!


This is the upside pick of tier 3. Justin Fields has always shown sparks of being good but has never really put it together for a sustained period of time. There are definitely deficiencies in his game, and there are always injury concerns with the volume of running he does.

One of two things will happen with Fields next year:

The first option is that the Bears commit to him as their guy and leverage all of their insane draft capital into making the team a contender- by adding Marvin Harrison Jr. and an elite offensive lineman. This would be a positive for Fields’ value.

The second option is that the Bears trade Fields and move in a new direction with their choice of Caleb Williams or Drake Maye. This would also potentially be good for Fields, as he would likely be going to a team that just needs a decent QB to compete. A new coaching staff and new scheme might be just what Fields needs.

Bottom line, Fields should end up in a better situation next year no matter what and his talent isn’t in question. Obviously, his QB12 status on the year this year per game shows the downside also, but there are a few options after the first couple of QBs who could be the overall top scorer at the position if things break magically, and Fields is one of them.

Much like Burrow, you shouldn’t reach for Fields before late round 7. I wouldn’t personally take him until round 9.


Dak Prescott is an interesting case for me. He was being hyped as a potential MVP candidate. That hype kind of died after his dud against Buffalo. Based on what has seemed like a huge run of big numbers recently, I kind of expected him to be higher than QB6 this year per game. His current level of production feels like his ceiling based on past performance. We know who he is at this point.

All of that is to say that I don’t really love ranking Prescott at QB 7 for next year. I also don’t see anybody else who deserves to be rated there, either. This is a ranking out of necessity rather than a strong belief in the player. I would not be surprised if Dak ends up anywhere from QB7 to QB14 next year. However, he is in a good offense with an elite playmaker at WR and an elite defense so his floor is also high.

I think it’s clear that I wouldn’t go out of my way to draft Dak but much like the previous few guys, if he’s available in round 8 I can justify you taking him (even though I’d rather wait).


My hardest decision on this list was where to rank Brock Purdy. He has been the QB5 per game this year and is getting heavy MVP consideration right now (along with Lamar Jackson). I am definitely in the camp that Purdy is a good QB in a perfect situation, not a great QB. I think it is all of the talent around Purdy on the 49ers that makes the scoring goodness happen.

The big question is can Brock Purdy do it again next year? I think, for the most part, yes. Purdy should still have great weapons around him so I would expect him to be a solid starting QB. However, I get a little anxious when I’m relying on the supporting cast to make my QB good and not on his intrinsic talents. As we’ve seen in select games this year, when any of the key players in the San Fran offense are injured, Purdy often lays an egg. Based on the injury histories of guys like Christian McCaffrey, George Kittle, and Deebo Samuel, I am not convinced we will see perfect health across the board next year.

I would much rather wait for some bounceback candidates later on this list when I draft a QB next year. If you’re a Purdy believer, though, there’s no reason he couldn’t be taken in the same area as Dak.


Another fantasy darling this year has been CJ Stroud.

The hype for Stroud has been unreal this season. I have to think it is a byproduct of the NFL media hype machine and the fact that many other viable QBs this year are injured or sucking. Hearing the Stroud hype train, you would think he has been a top 5 QB, at least this season in fantasy. That just hasn’t been the case. A top 8 average ppg output is still quite good for a QB that went largely undrafted, but let’s also not pretend that Stroud has been elite either.

Stroud doesn’t run a ton, and most of his points are tied into crazy passing yardage totals. There are generally two ways the second year plays out for any rookie QB. Either they improve in year two, or they take a dip in year two. Stroud has set the bar higher than should be expected in year one. Later in the season, there have also been signs that a dip feels more likely than an improvement. I could absolutely be wrong here and Stroud could ascend to tier 1/2 of QBs by the end of next season. I choose to be more cautious.

Somebody in your league will believe in CJ Stroud and take him about 3 or 4 spots higher than I have him ranked here. If not, then I’d be fine taking Stroud in round 9 or 10.



The final tier of my top 12 QBs starts with a huge upside pick. We have very little data to go on with Anthony Richardson right now. He was the QB11 in ppg this year, but that’s based on such a small sample size that it isn’t statistically reliable. Anybody who watched the games, however, probably saw what I saw. This guy has the potential to be an absolute stud! However, if he can stay healthy, which is a huge if.

Richardson isn’t in a higher tier because he’s the only QB on this list who requires a good backup. Every other guy in the top 12 should be fine to stand alone to start the season while using your full bench for other positions. At the least, you should be able to draft your backup QB in the later rounds with any of these other top 12. Richardson, however, necessitates that you take another QB in the top 15 to protect yourself.

He has the upside of a top 5 or 6 QB because of his run game. That makes it worthwhile to take him as QB10 and follow up with your backup QB in the next round for protection. Either way, I’m jumping in round 10 to get him if he’s there.


Suppose you wanted to argue that Justin Herbert could and should be rated five spots higher than his in the rankings, you can. However, Herbert has only been the QB16 on average this year in ppg and has been a bit sporadic in his career.

Always hyped. Not always delivering. I’m not a huge Herbert guy. It feels like he should be better, it just never seems to happen that way.

There will be a new head coach in Los Angeles next year. That is probably the most compelling reason to consider Herbert highly.

Keenan Allen will also be even older, though. Quentin Johnston will have to learn how to catch a ball. Mike Williams will have to play more than a handful of games. You see where I’m going with this, right? There are so many questions for the Chargers offense and enough mediocre seasons from Herbert that I just don’t want to invest heavily in him any higher than where I have him ranked. He does theoretically have the ability to be much better than this ranking, though.

In rounds 10 or 11, you’re fine taking a shot on Herbert. At worst, he shouldn’t be too much behind some of the guys in the tier above him, and at best, he could play better than most of them.


The last guy in my top 12 is Trevor Lawrence. Yet again, we’re looking at a guy who should be doing much better (like Herbert) but seems to keep putting out meh performances. The Jaguars just feel very similar to the Chargers, but in reverse. The Chargers feel like they should be a great team, but they keep finding ways to lose. The Jaguars feel like they should be a decent team, not great, but they keep finding ways to win more than they probably should.

Either way, his fantasy production has been solid, not spectacular. That could change. Lawrence could take a leap and have a huge 2024. This is part of why I am advocating waiting at the position.

It is just as likely that you could take a guy like Lawrence (or Herbert) and end up with more production than somebody who took Lamar Jackson or Joe Burrow. Or, you could end up with more ho-hum production, but at least it costs much less draft capital to find out.

Again, round 10 and beyond is fine for a guy like Lawrence.


Realistically, another 5 or 6 names could make a case for being in tier 4 (Kirk Cousins, Kyler Murray, DeShaun Watson, Jordan Love, Jared Goff, Tua Tagovailoa). Cousins and Murray would be the guys who would easily jump into my top 12 if I knew for sure where they would be playing next year (and health). Each of the other four names also has cases to be made.

When you can potentially get guys like Trevor Lawrence, Kirk Cousins, Kyler Murray, etc. as backup QBs, it’s hard to justify taking any QBs before them unless I’m getting one of the top 3 guys. There is only a 2-point difference per game this year between the QB3 and the QB12 in ppg. Think about the round you’d need to take the third QB vs. the round you can take the 12th QB… Not worth it! There is also only a 2-point difference per game this year between the QB12 and QB20.

What this all means is what it has always meant. There is a ton of parity at the QB position. Many fantasy analysts have been telling you there is a big difference between the haves and have-nots at QB. That’s true if you have a top 2 quarterback. Once you get past Josh Allen and Jalen Hurts, the playing field is much more even. My advice for next year is to take a top-two QB if you want to (just not before round 3). Otherwise, ignore the position until you have to!


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