Oct 7, 2012; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) shakes hands with Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) following the game at Gillette Stadium. The Patriots defeated the Broncos 31-21. Mandatory Credit: Stew Milne-USA TODAY Sports

Fantasy Football 2013: Quarterback rankings after preseason dress rehearsal

Aug 23, 2013; Green Bay, WI, USA; Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) warms up prior to the game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

There is nearly no better feeling for a NFL fan than your team winning the championship; that is, your fantasy football championship.

While your opponents are using lists from websites and magazines two weeks old, be a step ahead and utilize the lists below. These fantasy football rankings are based on projections following the final dress rehearsal, preseason Week 3, a.k.a. the game in which 2012 season-ending injuries are finally healed and the playmakers return to the field (i.e. Maurice Jones-Drew).

These are the players you will spend a precious top-three round draft pick on. Or maybe you want sweet late-round value from a rookie who struggled with the playbook early on but showed a spark during the real audition for coaches and future fantasy football owners. Last season, three of the top 11 fantasy football point leaders were rookies who were picked up in the seventh round or later (Robert Griffin III, Andrew Luck, Russell Wilson).

It’s time to stop procrastinating and prepare. Your team of winners awaits.

(All stats were based on standard fantasy football league scoring. Values were determined by preseason play, last years FF results from CBS Sportsline.com and NFL.com, coordinator and scheme changes, and strength of opponents in running and passing game).

QUARTERBACK (posted 8-26-2013)

Rank Player Bye Wk Notes
1 Aaron Rogers 4 Nelson and Cobb are back along with a fancy new running game
2 Drew Brees 7 Lots of points needed to save their defense which just lost leader Will Smith.
3 Matt Ryan 6 Second best set of receivers to catch all those balls in a week division
4 Peyton Manning 9 Did he really need Welker and promising rookie TE Julius Thomas too?
5 Tom Brady 10 Not sure who is catching all the balls but he is still throwing them
6 RGIII 5 The knee is OK. And Pierre Garcon and TE Fred Davis both are back and healthy.
7 Tony Romo 11 Austin and Bryant will terrorize the secondaries of Giants, Washington, and Philly. Twice.
8 Andrew Luck 8 No Arians means less sacks. Not less TDs.
9 Matthew Stafford 9 Reggie Bush gives Stafford that No. 2 receiver he has needed.
10 Russell Wilson 12 No. 11 in FF pts 2012. With this deep roster, Wilson will spread the wealth.
11 Colin Kaepernick 9 A full season as starter means big numbers for multi-talented QB.
12 Michael Vick 12 Looks very comfortable in the fast-paced Chip Kelley offense. Offensive line has improved as well.Vick Part III?
13 Cam Newton 4 Has not looked happy or comfortable under new O-Coor Mike Shula. Top WR Steve Smith is 34 and questionable talent at WR2 and WR3. His rated high by everyone else but I think he has some bad games (faces NFC W).
14 Eli Manning 9 Nicks, Cruz, Reuben Randle, and RB Wilson ready and waiting. Will miss TE Martellus Bennett’s talent, but not his mouth.
15 Matt Schaub 8 New coordinator and new WR has Schaub looking like a nice sleeper.
16 Ben Roethlisberger 5 His arm looks stronger than ever and everyone understands Haley’s offense in year 2. Should be Ben’s best FF season.
17 Joe Flacco 8 You cannot move the ball in AFC North on the ground. And Flacco wants to go back to Disney anyways.
18 Jay Cutler 8 Improved line play, more weapons, and a high-octane new offense. These are not last year’s Bears.
19 Andy Dalton 12 So many receivers in a pass-happy system. I still don’t trust him under pressure.
20 Josh Freeman 5 Throws to 2 WRs in top 20 of FF pts 2012. Good back-up QB choice.
21 Alex Smith 10 Now working with Andy Reid and top RB Jamal Charles. Looked efficient in preseason and can run. Sleeper surprise.
22 Carson Palmer 9 Arians loves Carson + Fitzgerald. Hopefully o-line can hold up.
23 Ryan Tannhill 6 Wallace can’t wait for all the attention he is going to get from Tannehill in Miami.
24 Sam Bradford 11 NFC West is a tough division for Qbs but non-divisional match-ups vs AFC S and NFC E are weak in pass defense.
25 Philip Rivers 8 New o-coor Whisehunt will be better for Ryan Mathews FF numbers than Rivers.
26 EJ Manuel 12 Banged up but huge upside in this new face-paced offense.
27 Brandon Weeden 10 Young receivers looks ready to contribute. Still throws to low.
28 Blaine Gabbert 9 Plays in same division as Luck and Schaub. He is going to have to throw the ball better this season. Shorts III & Blackmon look great.
29 Jake Locker 8 Needs to take a step forward. Has two 1st round WRs and a 2nd round WR to throw to.
30 Christian Ponder 5 Not a lot to do when AP is your RB.
31 Geno Smith 10 Dead even tie with Sanchez. Give it to the guy who has the upside.
32 Terrelle Pryor 7 Same as above. Plus the issues on that o-line work better with a mobile QB.


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