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What is the fantasy shelf life of the top current quarterbacks?

SEATTLE, WA - OCTOBER 29: Quarterback Deshaun Watson #4 of the Houston Texans cheers as DeAndre Hopkins #10 scores a 72 yard touchdown against the Seattle Seahawks in the fourth quarter at CenturyLink Field on October 29, 2017 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

Mortality is something we all have to deal with, sooner or later. Even Kevin Durant addressed it recently, with a rather gross Taco Bell analogy that nonetheless was one of our top athletic specimens in the world coming to terms with the fact that he won’t do this forever.

In football, more than just about any other sport, that mortality is front and center, even if it’s more career mortality than, you know, mortality mortality. Players come and go in the NFL with remarkable speed, and a player who looked like a perennial star one year can be an afterthought the next.

The one position least subject to these vagaries is quarterback, but even there, Father Time can be a harsh opponent. Just ask Peyton Manning. SO with that in mind, over the next few weeks, three PFF Fantasy writers (Dan Clasgens, Michael Moore, Dan Schneier) and I will be attempting to figure out how long the current fantasy starters will remain as such.

The premise: You can keep Player X for as long as you want, but you have to decide on that duration right now.

The cost: You can keep the player indefinitely at the cost of the last starter at the position. So a quarterback will cost you the draft slot of the 10th quarterback off the board, while a wide receiver will cost you the 20th receiver. In short, the question at hand is: How long will Player X be a fantasy starter?

Below is the chart of their answers, followed by individual bios with some comments on each player. We’ll hit the other positions over the next few weeks.

How long will the top  quarterbacks be fantasy starters?
Number of years
Team Age Clasgens Moore Schneier
Tom Brady NE 41 2 1 1
Drew Brees NO 39 1 0 2
Derek Carr OAK 27 0 0 5
Kirk Cousins MIN 30 3 3 3
Jimmy Garoppolo SF 26 4 3 5
Jared Goff LAR 23 2 2 4
Andrew Luck IND 28 0 1 0
Marcus Mariota TEN 24 3 1 0
Cam Newton CAR 29 3 4 4
Dak Prescott DAL 25 0 3 5
Philip Rivers LAC 36 1 1 1
Aaron Rodgers GB 34 4 5 5
Ben Roethlisberger PIT 36 1 1 1
Matt Ryan ATL 33 0 2 2
Matthew Stafford DET 30 1 3 5
Deshaun Watson HOU 22 4 5 8
Carson Wentz PHI 25 6 5 10
Russell Wilson SEA 29 3 5 8
Jameis Winston TB 24 0 1 3

Tom Brady, New England Patriots

Age G Passing Yds TDs INTs Rush Yds Rush TDs Fantasy rank
41 16 4577 32 8 28 0 QB3

1 year: For Brady, it's not about how much longer he has left as a viable fantasy starter but about how much longer he has left in the NFL. Take it with a grain of salt, but after watching his Tom vs. Time series, you get the feeling the soon-to-be 41-year-old quarterback could pull the plug at any time. — Dan Schneier

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