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Fantasy Football: Anthony Richardson’s high-upside fantasy outlook for 2023

2RETDRP Indianapolis Colts quarterback Anthony Richardson throws at NFL team's football training camp in Westfield, Ind., Saturday, July 29, 2023. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

• The ideal scheme and scenario for fantasy gold: Anthony Richardson’s pairing with Shane Steichen in Indianapolis is exactly what he needs to be an immediate fantasy star.

• Athleticism like we’ve never seen: Richardson’s athletic ability should unlock significant rushing upside for fantasy success.

• League-winning upside: Going as QB12 or later, Richardson offers the potential to crush his ADP as a rookie.

Estimated Reading Time: 5 minutes

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Finding fantasy football success with a rookie quarterback isn’t an easy task, but under the right circumstances and with the right prospects, it’s far from impossible.

The Indianapolis Colts spending the fourth overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft on Florida star quarterback Anthony Richardson and pairing him with new head coach Shane Steichen could be the exact recipe needed for immediate fantasy success for Richardson as a high-upside sleeper in 2023.

With Richardson typically going outside of the top 10 quarterbacks drafted in 2023, there are several reasons to take a high-upside swing on the rookie in the middle rounds of fantasy drafts this season.

Opportunity and situation

Shortly after Richardson was drafted, Colts head coach Shane Steichen suggested he would see the field early in his NFL career. This was followed by Colts owner Jim Irsay’s comments that suggested, even with potential struggles, Richardson will need to play early and often to overcome them. With Gardner Minshew penciled in as the starter on a number of unofficial depth charts, nothing is guaranteed for Richardson to play Week 1, but he seems in line for QB1 duties.

The second day of training camp had Richardson taking first-team reps with the offense. He made at least one highlight reel throw, igniting excitement in Indianapolis and potentially putting the rookie on a fast track to starting in Week 1. Earlier this week, Richardson took all of the starting reps in camp, further supporting the case that he’ll get the nod to open the season.

Regardless of when Richardson starts this season, landing with the Colts is, perhaps, the most ideal scenario for his development, considering Steichen’s success in developing Jalen Hurts into an upper-echelon quarterback these past couple of seasons. Steichen took Hurts — a mobile quarterback with similar accuracy and passing concerns — and tailored the Eagles’ offense to his strengths, which allowed for noticeable progression. Hurts went from just a 57.5 passing grade as a rookie to an 80.6 mark and a Super Bowl appearance this past season. In both seasons under Steichen, Hurts was able to post at least 3,000 yards passing and 750 yards rushing, finishing as a top-10 quarterback for fantasy in both seasons.


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