For more fantasy football draft sleepers, check out Dalton’s 32 sleepers from every NFL team.
Ridder struggled with accuracy as a rookie but was an immediate upgrade over Marcus Mariota. Ridder should improve in Year Two, and he’ll benefit from playing indoors and throwing to emerging pass catchers Drake London and Kyle Pitts.
London had one of the best seasons ever by a player his age, and Pitts is ready to explode. The Falcons also have a strong offensive line and added electric receiving back Bijan Robinson early in the draft.
Yet, Ridder is going after Baker Mayfield and Jimmy Garoppolo in Yahoo drafts.
Richardson enters with fewer than 400 career college pass attempts but has immediate fantasy upside (and floor) given his rushing ability. AR is an athlete the QB position has never seen before. While raw as a passer, Richardson doesn’t take sacks, has a strong arm and should thrive playing for Shane Steichen. He also gets to play indoors and with a solid pass-catching group (Michael Pittman Jr. is a future star who’s better than his stats indicate).
Richardson’s ECR is simply way too low.
Jones is a very good runner who had the fifth-most rushing yards among QBs last season (and the fifth-most designed carries). He had just four fewer carries and only 54 fewer rushing yards than Josh Allen. Jones also had an NFL-high 81.1% adjusted completion rate. He could really break out in Year Two in Brian Daboll’s system while greatly benefiting from Darren Waller’s addition. Jones has thrown mostly to scrubs throughout his career, but the Giants enter 2023 with a much improved pass-catching group. Rookie speedster Jalin Hyatt has really impressed early on, and Jones is an underrated deep thrower who’s looked sharp in camp.
The jury remains out on Pickett, but he’s in a good situation to show real growth in Year 2. Pittsburgh frustratingly brought back OC Matt Canada, but at least the Steelers had an encouraging finish to 2022, ranking third in yards per drive after the team’s Week 9 bye. Pickett gets to throw to premier route-runner Diontae Johnson, and George Pickens looks poised to break out in 2023. Pat Freiermuth is one of the best young pass-catching tight ends as well. Pickett can also run a little, so he’s a Superflex target.
Purdy is in the world’s best system and just posted the best passer rating ever by a rookie, leading the league in touchdown passes after taking over SF’s starting role. He was “Mr. Irrelevant” despite breaking out typically when future stars do.
It’s clear Kyle Shanahan is sold on Purdy as his guy, and it’s hard to argue with the results. Purdy looks healthy after elbow surgery, and he’ll put up QB1 fantasy stats thanks to his system and the chance to throw to Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk, George Kittle and Christian McCaffrey.
Washington Commanders: Sam Howell
Howell had a college profile that typically gets drafted much higher, and he appears ready to take over Washington’s QB1 job. He’ll admittedly have to deal with one of the league’s shakiest offensive lines, but Howell also gets to throw to one of the league’s best WR duos in Terry McLaurin and Jahan Dotson. Howell can also run, with systems projecting roughly 40 rushing yards per game — equivalent to a passing touchdown in fantasy scoring. He’s a perfect Superflex target.