The Broncos have made move after move this offseason to add weapons to the offense. This has made Broncos Country incredibly excited about what this offense could be in 2020.
Fans of the Broncos had to sit through a poor offense last year that scored just 17 points a game. This year, the Broncos could score around 24 points per game – a difference of a touchdown per game from the previous season.
Only 12 teams in the NFL scored 24 or more points in 2019. For the Broncos to make that jump into the 24-PPG club, the new pieces on offense will have to play at a high level. This would be good news for Broncos fans, but it would also be good news for fantasy football GMs.
With fantasy football drafts going on right now, (yes, this early), it’s interesting to note how the fantasy community is looking at the 2020 Broncos. In this series, we’ll look at the current ADP (average draft position) in 12-team PPR leagues for the Broncos offensive players at Footballguys.com. For those of you that don’t know, I have worked for Footballguys.com since 2005 and it’s where you can find all my fantasy football opinions.
Today, we look at Broncos quarterback Drew Lock. Where is he going in drafts, and what is the reasoning behind his ADP?
Drew Lock, QB16, 10.11
Fantasy GMs have really responded to the Broncos offense, selecting Drew Lock as a QB2 with upside in recent drafts. As a second-string quarterback, Lock could get in during a starter’s bye week. Lock might also see action if he gets hot or has a weak opponent on his schedule.
He’s currently going off the board as the No. 16 fantasy quarterback in the 10 round (11th pick) in 12-team PPR leagues. That’s a bold spot for a second-year quarterback who only played in five games last year. Fantasy GMs show a belief in Lock and what the Broncos have done this offseason to put better weapons around him.
Last Year’s Comparison
For example, the No. 16 fantasy quarterback in 2019 was Raiders quarterback Derek Carr. In 2019, Carr threw for 4,055 yards with 21 touchdowns and only eight interceptions. Projecting Lock to throw for over 4,000 yards in 2020 is a bit too high for my taste. I believe he can throw for around 3,500 yards this year with 25 touchdowns and let’s say 10 interceptions.
Also, in 2019 new Broncos offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur was the head coach of the Giants. His quarterback for most of the season (13 games) was rookie Daniel Jones. He finished last year as the No. 21 fantasy quarterback with 3,027 passing yards, 24 touchdowns, 12 interceptions, 279 rushing yards and two rushing touchdowns. Extrapolating those numbers over a full 16-game season would put him in the top-15 for fantasy quarterbacks.
Overvalued or Undervalued?
So, what could get Lock to play up to his draft status? His rushing statistics and potential rushing touchdowns are what could put him over the top. Carr only had 82 rushing yards in 2019 with two rushing touchdowns. Lock is much more athletic and could post around 300 yards rushing with two to three rushing touchdowns (maybe even a few more).
Look at what Jones did as a rusher last year under Shurmur and it’s easy to predict that Lock could do something similar. The Broncos may be a run-first offense in 2020, especially if Shurmur tries to recreate an offense similar to what he had with the Vikings in 2017.
That season, Shurmur’s offense ran the ball 48.8 percent of the time – a mark that was 11 percent higher than the league average. In 2017, Shurmur’s quarterback for most of the season (13 games) was Case Keenum. Where was Keenum ranked in fantasy leagues that year? Keenum finished that year as the No. 15 fantasy quarterback. Looking at who Lock is as a player, the coaches and the talent around him and the history/data points for quarterbacks in similar situations and you can see how Lock’s current ADP is right on the money.
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