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Fantasy Football Dynasty Draft Rankings 2023

2RHRYTH Atlanta Falcons running back Bijan Robinson (7) warms up before the first half of an NFL preseason football game between the Atlanta Falcons and the Cincinnati Bengals, Friday, Aug. 18, 2023, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

• Sam Howell is all of a sudden a dynasty asset: Howell is only QB22 in these rankings, but his promising preseason makes him a low-risk, high-reward option that dynasty managers can afford to roll the dice on.

• Dameon Pierce is the biggest RB riser: The Houston Texans' starting halfback won't face much competition for touches and is now up to RB12.

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Estimated Reading Time: 11 minutes

The 2023 NFL preseason is officially in the books, meaning fantasy football managers have had the opportunity to see rookies and veterans in action. Though the preseason doesn’t provide a complete picture for player evaluation, standout performances — good or bad — can sometimes be indicative of future regular-season trends.

Here’s a look at my updated dynasty rankings at the completion of the 2023 NFL preseason, including the biggest risers and fallers.

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Dynasty Quarterback Rankings

Biggest Riser: Sam Howell, Washington Commanders

There is a lot of hesitancy to overinvest in the former fifth-round quarterback in dynasty leagues, but for what it’s worth, Howell’s preseason answered lingering questions about his floor as a passer. Part of the appeal with Howell lies in his mobility, having finished as a top-12 fantasy quarterback in his lone start in 2022 thanks to 35 rushing yards and a rushing touchdown despite a down day as a passer. In his final season at North Carolins, Howell ranked second among quarterbacks with a 90.9 PFF rushing grade, one of three FBS quarterbacks with more than 1,000 rushing yards in the 2021 regular season.

Now, heading into his second NFL season, Howell seems to have a firm grasp on the starting role and is developing. On limited preseason snaps, Howell completed 75.7% of pass attempts, totaling 265 passing yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions for a 122.0 passer rating. His surrounding cast of skill players, including the wide receiver duo of Terry McLaurin and Jahan Dotson (entering his second season) should continue to boost his passing floor.

Howell is a low-risk, high-reward option that dynasty managers can afford to roll the dice on, especially in two-quarterback or superflex league formats.

Biggest Faller: Deshaun Watson, Cleveland Browns

At first glance, Watson’s preseason box score might indicate a “win” for the former Texans quarterback, who averaged 8.0 yards per attempt for 104 yards and a score. He also had a couple of scrambles in Week 1 of the preseason, which were almost reminiscent of the Watson dynasty managers valued so highly. However, regardless of the fact that Watson didn’t do anything wrong this preseason, per se, he has yet to showcase the passing upside along with the rushing upside that made him a top-end asset in years past.

Even with an offseason absent of distractions, Watson still doesn’t look overly comfortable executing the Browns' offense. Things looked forced — not fluid, as you’d hope for a scripted preseason drive. Among quarterbacks with 10 or more dropbacks this preseason, Watson had the eighth-lowest adjusted completion percentage (61.5%), with his 68.1 PFF passing grade also ranked eighth-lowest among the projected starters who saw snaps in the preseason.

If Watson doesn’t show the upside of yesteryear soon, he will likely see a further dip in his dynasty value, even despite the fact that the Browns are all but locked into that deal without much of a way out.


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