Big Ten Fantasy QBs
Athlon continues its 2010 college fantasy draft kit with a look at Big Ten quarterbacks.
Big Ten Fantasy Quarterback Rankings and Profiles
Fantasy points based upon standard scoring system – passing touchdowns = 4 pts, rushing touchdowns = 6 pts, 25 passing yards = 1 point, 10 rush/receiving yards = 1 point, receptions = 0.5 points, 2 point conversions = 2 points
1. Terrelle Pryor, Ohio State (JR) – Bye Week – 10
The expectations are high in Columbus this fall and much of that has to do with how the uber-talented Pryor finished last season. He set career highs in attempts (37), completions (23) and yards (266) in the big Rose Bowl win over Oregon. His raw physical skills are second to none and if his passing efficiency starts to match his smooth, open-field running ability, he could be in-store for a big jump in production.
Athlon’s Take: With a loaded offensive line, excellent receiving corps and over 20 starts under his belt, TP2 could see a big jump in statistics this fall. A 2,500-yard passing, 1,000-yard rushing, 30 total TD season is within reach.
2009 Stats: 241.54 fantasy points
Passing: 2,094 yds., 18 TD, 11 INT
Rushing: 779 rush yds., 7 TDs
2. Tate Forcier, Michigan (SO) – Bye Week – 8
The brash signal-caller proved, if nothing else, that he knows how to win with a number of fourth quarter comebacks to start 2009. He just needs to learn to stay healthy and limit the mistakes that plagued him late last season. The offensive line is one of the conference’s best, but the skill players need some development, so even more of an onus needs to be taken in his second year under center.
Athlon’s Take: With Denard Robinson making waves in spring and Devin Gardner on the way this fall, Forcier’s leash will not be very long. He has to prove he can stay healthy and limit his poor decisions in order to keep those talented speedsters on the bench. He is easily the best thrower of the group, so he should post solid numbers if he starts all season.
’09 Stats: 169.6 fantasy points
Passing: 2,050 yds., 13 TD, 10 INT
Rushing: 240 rush yds., 3 TD
3. Kirk Cousins, Michigan State (JR) – Bye Week – 11
The quarterback yo-yo in East Lansing has finally stopped and Spartan fans should be excited about Cousins’ chances this fall. He has an excellent receiving corps and a very talented — albeit very young — backfield behind him, so he has a good opportunity to make a jump in production simply by taking every snap. He has improved his overall mechanics and should be one of the league’s top passers this fall.
Athlon’s Take: Buy the Michigan State offense. Cousins has a chance to improve in both yards and touchdowns this season with an outside chance at finishing as the conference’s No. 2-rated fantasy passer. If he adds 500 yards and 6 TDs to his resume, he could be a fringe every week starter in 120-leagues.
2009 Stats: 172.5 fantasy points
Passing: 2,680 yds., 19 TD, 9 INT
Rushing: 60 rush yds.
4. Ben Chappell, Indiana (SR) – Bye Week – 2
The elder statesman of Big Ten quarterbacks, Chappell proved to be a more than adequate fantasy option last season — especially late in the year. He had seven games with at least two TD passes, including his final four games. He also threw for at least 266 yards in each of his final three contests as well.
Athlon’s Take: With one of the nation’s best receiving corps surrounding him, Chappell has a chance to post some solid numbers this fall. He needs to cut back on the turnovers, and since he should be playing from behind often, has a chance to hit the 3,000-20 mark.
2009 Stats: 193.14 fantasy points
Passing: 2,941 yds., 17 TD, 15 INT
Rushing: (-9) rush yds., 3 TD
5. Kevin Newsome, Penn State (SO) – Bye Week – 7
This pick is all about upside. The former AC100 recruit has the best combination of size, speed, experience and passing skills on the Nittany Lion roster. The big, burly passer has excellent running skills and it could mean that the PSU offense looks more like the Michael Robinson attack than the Daryll Clark one of recent memory. The running game, receivers and O-line are all up to normal Penn State standards, so the pieces are in place for a solid opening campaign from Newsome.
Athlon’s Take: Newsome has loads of raw talent and should be the starter but will be looking over his shoulder at Robert Bolden, Paul Jones and Matt McGloin. Do not expect Newsome to post Clark-like passing numbers but rushing for 500-600 yards and 7-9 scores on the ground isn’t out of the question.
2009 Stats: 25.84 fantasy points
Passing: 66 yds.
Rushing: 95 rush yds, 2 TD
6. Dan Persa, Northwestern (JR) – Bye Week – 7
Much like Mike Kafka before him, Persa could step in with little experience and perform adequately. The junior will have to deal with a totally revamped set of receivers but tight end Drake Dunsmore should help ease the pain. Persa is a bit short (a generous 6-foot-1) and inconsistent as a passer but the Pennsylvania prep star is a natural leader and will be able to command the huddle.
Athlon’s Take: Has Northwestern’s quarterback turned into a plug-and-play fantasy position? Brett Basanez, C.J. Bacher and Mike Kafka were all very productive, and at times, must starts in the fantasy world. Persa needs time to develop but has the skills needed to be the next in line.
2009 Stats: 31.66 fantasy points
Passing: 224 yds, 2 TD, 2 INT
Rushing: 167 rush yds
7. Robert Marve, Purdue (JR) – Bye Week – 5
The Miami Hurricane transfer enters fall practice with the job. The once highly-touted recruit was beaten out by Jacory Harris on the field in Coral Gables, but he didn’t help himself with some off the field immaturity issues (missing class, car accidents, etc). He will have excellent skill players surrounding him this season, so this is likely his last chance to prove he can be productive.
Athlon’s Take: Marve is an all or nothing proposition. If the light bulb clicks on, he could post some very solid fantasy games and will be owned in most leagues. If not, he will be a fantasy afterthought and will lose the starting job to Caleb TerBush.
2009 Stats: None
8. Scott Tolzien, Wisconsin (SR) – Bye Week – 9
Why is it that the Big Ten’s most efficient passer, who posted the second best passing yardage total in school history, isn’t a regular fantasy option? Because he plays for Wisconsin. While coordinator Paul Chryst’s creativity has opened up the UW playbook a bit in recent years, the ground game should still dominate the stat sheet. Tolzien also needs to prove himself in big games — he had zero TDs and five INTs in back-to-back losses to Iowa and Ohio State.
Athlon’s Take: The heady passer has an excellent O-line, backfield, tight end and receiving corps at his disposal this season, so repeating his numbers from 2009 should be easy. However, that means five games without a TD pass and two games with four TD passes. The inconsistency in production will push the senior down draft boards.
2009 Stats: 157.98 fantasy points
Passing: 2,705 yds, 16 TD, 11 INT
Rushing: 8 rush yds, 2 TD
9. Ricky Stanzi, Iowa (SR) – Bye Week – 6
A poor-man’s Scott Tolzien (if there is such a thing), Stanzi enters what is basically his third season as the starter. Iowa has a sound collection of receivers, although replacing Tony Moeaki will be tough. The O-line needs to jell quickly and the ground game will be excellent. Eliminating the interceptions will be key for Stanzi, as he had four games of at least two interceptions last season as compared to only five games of two TDs or more.
Athlon’s Take: Stanzi has some nice weapons and the running game should be one of the nation’s best, so there are some positives — his turnover numbers were also skewed a bit by a 5-INT game against Indiana. However, the offense rarely calls for him to air it out so his value is limited in 120 leagues.
2009 Stats: 139.14 fantasy points
Passing: 2,417 yds., 17 TD, 15 INTs
Rushing: (-31) rush yds
10. Adam Weber, Minnesota (SR) – Bye Week – 12
Not too many four-year starters enter their senior season looking over their shoulder at a possible replacement. That is what Weber must deal with as MarQueis Gray is breathing down his neck after a regression last season. His passing yards (2,895/2,761/2,582), TDs (24, 15, 13), rushing yards (617, 233, -133) and rushing TDs (5, 4, 1) have all dropped two consecutive years. His interceptions also went up last season (8 to 15).
Athlon’s Take: Gray is a totally different athlete who brings an entirely new dimension to the offense. Should Weber struggle at all early on — especially for a coaching staff who could be fighting for its job — he could be yanked sooner rather than later.
2009 Stats: 139.64 fantasy points
Passing: 2,582 yds, 13 TD, 15 INTs
Rushing: (-133) rush yds, 1 TD
11. Nathan Scheelhasse, Illinois (FR)
12. Denard Robinson, Michigan (SO)
13. Devin Gardner, Michigan (FR)
14. MarQueis Gray, Minnesota (SO)
15. Paul Jones, Penn State (FR)
16. Matt McGloin, Penn State (SO)
17. Robert Bolden, Penn State (FR)
18. Joe Bauserman, Ohio State (JR)
19. Caleb TerBush, Purdue (SO)
20. Jon Budmayr, Wisconsin (FR)
21. Evan Watkins, Northwestern (FR)
22. Chandler Whitmer, Illinois (FR)
23. James Vandenberg, Iowa (SO)
24. Moses Alipate, Minnesota (FR)
25. Dusty Kiel, Indiana (FR)
26. Andrew Maxwell, Michigan State (FR)
27. Ken Guiton, Ohio State (FR)
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