Fantasy Football Projected Strength of Schedule 2022: Which quarterbacks have the easiest path to success?

Fantasy Football managers have it good when it comes to the quarterback position. You know this is a fact when the back-to-back NFL MVP isn’t considered a consensus top-10 option.

So what do you do when there are too many good players at the same position? The same thing when there are too few good players at the same position — you have to differentiate them to find the little edges and advantages that help build your confidence in them.

The advantage I prefer to work with involves the matchups. If I knew which quarterbacks had better schedules this year, I’d chase them before the ones with neutral or bad schedules.

So that’s what I tried to do here. I graded every defense, including every pass coverage unit and every pass rush unit, to concoct a Projected Strength of Schedule (PSoS) for every team’s quarterbacks. It took a lot of time and studying, and even though I know it won’t be a perfect result (injuries and other unpredictable things impact how defenses do, obviously), it should still guide me on Draft Day.

I’ll use this information to help sort out all of the starting-caliber quarterbacks in drafts. It will especially act as a sort-of tie-breaker between two quarterbacks I have evenly ranked. The PSoS should also help me find streamable quarterbacks and maybe even some sleepers.

Season-long PSoS for QBs

SF 1 LV 17
PHI 2 SEA 18
LAC 3 CHI 19
DEN 4 NYJ 20
FOR 5 NO 21
NYG 6 ARI 22
WSH 7 KC 23
IND 8 TB 24
HOU 9 BUF 25
GB 10 ATL 26
DAL 11 DO NOT 27
LAR 12 BAL 28
MIN 13 MIA 29
TEN 14 CLE 30
JAX 15 PIT 31
CAR 16 CIN 32

Weeks 1-4 PSoS for QBs

PHI 1 PIT 17
IND 2 CHI 18
DEN 3 CAR 19
LAC 4 TEN 20
SF 5 LV 21
SEA 6 BAL 22
CLE 7 ARI 23
NYG 8 ATL 24
WSH 9 JAX 25
GB 10 CIN 26
NO 11 MIA 27
LAR 12 BUF 28
FOR 13 MIN 29
HOU 14 NYJ 30
DAL 15 TB 31
KC 16 DO NOT 32

Weeks 15-17 PSoS for QBs

FOR 1 CAR 17
NYJ 2 CHI 18
BUF 3 IND 19
JAX 4 WSH 20
ARI 5 DAL 21
NO 6 NYG 22
BAL 7 MIN 23
TB 8 DEN 24
SF 9 CIN 25
KC 10 LAR 26
DO NOT 11 ATL 27
HOU 12 MIA 28
PHI 13 GB 29
SEA 14 CLE 30
TEN 15 LV 31
PIT 16 LAC 32

Biggest winners

Jalen Hurts: I’m not the biggest fan of Hurts’ arm talent, but even I can’t overlook his schedule. The Eagles are in a great spot with their toughest matchups of the year against the Saints, Packers, Steelers and Cowboys. Realistically, that’s it. With AJ Brown joining and DeVonta Smith in his second year (who also benefits from these matchups), there should be some efficiency increase for Hurts.

Trey and Lance: It’s not a lock Lance will start Week 1 for the 49ers, but things sure seem to look that way. If so, the inexperienced second-year passer will face the easiest full-season projected schedule and, just for good measure, a top-5 early-season slate. Tack on his rushing prowess and Lance has a little more potential than we give him credit for.

Matt Ryan: The former Falcon begins his time in the AFC South with divisional matchups in five of his first seven games. The whole schedule is actually good for Ryan. Keep it in mind if you’re streaming to begin the year or looking for a sleeper QB2 in Superflex/two-QB drafts.

Biggest losers

Joe Burrow: While the casuals might race to draft Burrow because of how he ended last year, there are some rather concerning numbers that make me nervous. Tack his PSoS onto the list of worries — no team has a worse projected schedule for quarterbacks than the Bengals, and they’re in the bottom-8 in early-season and late-season PSoS. While I have Burrow as a top-12 Fantasy passer still, he fell behind a couple of other quarterbacks in part because of his schedule.

Deshaun Watson: The Browns drew the third-worst season-long projected schedule, a large part of it being in a tough division (Baltimore and Pittsburgh also didn’t fare well). However, the early part of their schedule is pretty nice. If Watson isn’t suspended, he’ll enjoy those games; if he is suspended, he’ll miss them and deal with the jaws of their poor PSoS grade. After not playing football last year and settling into a new offense with a different receiving corps, I don’t think giving Watson the benefit of the doubt is a good idea.

Your Tagovailoa: The third-year passer gets Tyreek Hill but also picks up a bottom-5 projected schedule for the year, complete with a bottom-6 early-season PSoS. One of the reasons why Tagovailoa rarely tried deep throws last year was because his O-line couldn’t give him time to throw. The same problem is on the table in 2022.

tom brady: Here’s an example of using the PSoS information to help you create a tiebreaker. Pretty much everyone is past the point of doubting Brady in Fantasy, but there’s no denying a tough schedule. If it comes to pass that Chris Godwin isn’t ready for the start of the year, and that Rob Gronkowski isn’t coming back, and that the Buccaneers offensive line isn’t patched up like it was last year, a second-worst early-season slate combined with a bottom-10 overall outlook won’t help Brady notch another huge season.

Two to stream early

(These quarterbacks have an easy early-season PSoS but their schedule gets tougher starting in October.)

  • James Winston
  • whoever the Browns quarterback is

Two to stream later

(These quarterbacks have a tough early-season PSoS but their schedule improves dramatically starting in October.)

  • Kirk Cousins
  • Trevor Lawrence

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