Late Round Fantasy QB Would You Rather: Tom Brady or Jimmy Garoppolo?

SI Fantasy analysts Ben Heisler and Bill Enright debate the better fantasy draft pick between the two former Patriots teammates.
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Over the next several weeks, the SI Fantasy team will be taking a look at two different players; either on the same team as part of a desirable fantasy offense or two players close in ADP (average draft position). The goal is to answer the following question: “Would you rather take Player X at this ADP, or Player Y at that ADP?”

This exercise is particularly helpful in fantasy football drafting to help prepare in real-time for when the desired player gets “sniped” by another fantasy owner in drafts.

In our continued installment of “Would You Rather,” SI Fantasy analyst Bill Enright will be making the argument that new Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Tom Brady is the better overall pick based on talent, projections, and value. SI Fantasy analyst Ben Heisler will make the counterpoint argument for San Francisco 49ers QB Jimmy Garoppolo.

Tom Brady, Buccaneers QB

Bill Enright’s argument for Brady or Jimmy G based on ADP

The ageless wonder finds himself on a new team for the first time in his 20-year career and wow, what a team it is. Head coach Bruce Arians loves to dial-up passing plays, and even when Jameis Winston was under-center in 2019, he had no problem calling 626 attempts. That led to Winston leading the league in yards with 5,109, finishing aas the only quarterback in the NFL with over 5,000 yards. Meanwhile, Brady has shown no signs of slowing down, even at 43-years-old. Brady’s 613 attempts from a year ago was his highest total since 2015. Operating under the logic that Brady is superior than Winston, it should be clear that the Buccaneers passing attack should be humming like a well-oiled, luxury European automotive vehicle in 2020.

And as for Brady’s playmakers?

Mike Evans is just one of two wide receivers (Randy Moss) to eclipse 1,000 yards in his first six seasons. Chris Godwin is coming off a monster breakout year in which he hauled in 1,333 yards and nine touchdowns off 86 catches. Add in a trio of talented tight ends, including long-time Patriots teammate Rob Gronkowski and the Tampa Bay playmakers make up perhaps the best group of offensive weapons Brady has in his arsenal since his magical 2007 season when he threw for 50 touchdowns.

Jimmy Garoppolo, 49ers QB

Ben Heisler’s argument for Jimmy G over Brady based on ADP

I’m not going to waste anyone’s time discussing ADP for this particular “Would You Rather.” Brady comes in on SI’s Advanced ADP list as the ninth QB off the board. The disregard for Garoppolo as a potential QB1 is staggering, as he comes in as the QB23.

Many of you reading may see the discrepancy in rankings from the elite players in the industry and ask the following question.

“You know, Benny, if the best fantasy players think Jimmy G is a bonafide fantasy scrub, why are you still so high on him to the point where you have him ranked HIGHER in your rankings than Tom Brady?”

For starters, the 49ers are going to pass more in 2020 than they did in 2019. Last year, San Francisco finished 29th in pass attempts and 2nd in rush attempts. Yet Garoppolo still finished as the QB14 a season ago due to terrific efficiency numbers, including finishing in the top four in yards per pass thrown. Where did Tom Brady rank? He finished 30th in yards-per-pass attempt in 2019..

49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan is one of the most creative and well-rounded offensive minds in the game and understood that having a dominant defense allows for more opportunities to run late in games to preserve leads and run down the clock. The 49ers still have a solid defense, but they’re a prime regression candidate in 2020, headlined by the trade of DeForest Buckner to the Indianapolis Colts.

Garoppolo had three 4-TD performances in 2020, showcasing an ability to be one of the QBs in the league when allowed to throw. Tom Brady also did it three times, but just with 3-TD games.

Garoppolo has arguably the most passer-friendly fantasy schedule in the first six weeks of the season, with three matchups against three different teams with Pass DVOA ratings of 27th or worse from 2019. Having beneficial matchups will help in dealing with the loss of top wideout Deebo Samuel for the first several weeks of the season as he recovers from a broken foot. And even if Jalen Hurd is lost for the year with a torn ACL, the 49ers still have plenty of playmakers. Brandon Aiyuk is a perfect fit in this offense, Kendrick Bourne doesn’t ever leave the field, and perhaps more of a receiving role is in the cards for Jerrick McKinnon, who SI 49ers insider Grant Cohn recently discussed as a prime comeback player candidate in 2020.

Factor in my projections for George Kittle to take the top tight end spot away from Travis Kelce in 2020, and all of a sudden, Garoppolo is set to take another massive leap in the fantasy standings, even ahead of his former Patriots teammate.

FFWC Rankings

While many sites offer ADP data, SI Fantasy’s Advanced ADP takes ADP data collection to the next level. Each player’s unique draft position is not just an overall average, but it also has takes the last 10 high-stakes drafts in the Fantasy Football World Championships. Who cares where your neighbor Bob decided to draft this year’s breakout sleeper candidate? Wouldn’t you like to know where the BEST fantasy players are in the world are taking him?

To find out where BOTH Tom Brady and Jimmy Garoppolo are going based on the most recent 10 Online Championship and World Championship drafts, subscribe to SI Fantasy Plus’ Advanced ADP and use code TD30 for 30% off your first two months!

Would You Rather? Tom Brady or Jimmy Garoppolo


Ben Heisler: Jimmy G. You read the article!

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Tell us what you think! Who do you prefer at the QB spot in 2020? Let us know at our new community page HERE and tell us if you’re on #TeamBrady or #TeamJimmyG.