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Fantasy QB Tiers 2022: Josh Allen, Patrick Mahomes, and Justin Herbert Are Tier 1

Tiered quarterback rankings from Michael Fabiano will help you find value, when to reach and when you can wait another round.

We are inching closer to the start of the 2022 NFL season, and with that, we're seeing an obvious increase in the number of fantasy drafts. That makes it more important than ever to examine your fantasy positional "tiers." Unlike my regular player rankings, which you can also find on Sports Illustrated, tiers group players of similar value together. So, if you miss out on a particular player, you can see alternatives on his tier.

UPDATED: August 31 2022

Fantasy Tiers: QB | RB | WR | TE

Tier 1 – The Elite
Josh Allen, Bills
Patrick Mahomes, Chiefs
Justin Herbert, Chargers

Allen, Herbert and Mahomes will likely be the first three quarterbacks off the board in most 2022 fantasy drafts. That will keep them off the radar for managers like me, who wait on the position until the middle to late rounds. Allen has been the best quarterback in fantasy football the last two seasons, and you can argue he has better weapons now. Herbert would be my pick to usurp Allen at the position, as the third-year stud has been breaking NFL records at a high rate. Mahomes takes a slight step backward in an offense that doesn't have Tyreek Hill, but he's still a top-three option.

Tier 2 – High QB1s
Lamar Jackson, Ravens
Kyler Murray, Cardinals
Jalen Hurts, Eagles

Jackson and Murray are barely on the outside looking in as it pertains to the elite tier. The Ravens quarterback lacked consistency for a time last season, but he still averaged 20 points per game. He's also a threat to rush for over 1,000 yards (again). Hurts is coming off a top-10 season in the stat sheets, and now he'll have A.J. Brown to throw to in what figures to be an improved Eagles offense.

Tier 3 – Mid QB1s
Joe Burrow, Bengals
Tom Brady, Buccaneers
Russell Wilson, Broncos
Dak Prescott, Cowboys

Burrow was a star during the 2021 fantasy postseason, and the Bengals should once again be one of the league's top offenses. Brady might be 45, but he threw for over 5,300 yards with 43 touchdowns last season. The G.O.A.T. should continue to produce at a high level, even without Rob Gronkowski. Wilson should be allowed to cook in Denver, so look for him to rebound from what was a ho-hum 2021 campaign. Prescott lost Amari Cooper and doesn't have great depth at wide receiver, which is why he's fallen a few spots compared to previous years.

Tier 4 – Low QB1s
Trey Lance, 49ers
Matthew Stafford, Rams
Aaron Rodgers, Packers

I love Lance this season and wouldn't be a bit surprised if he's this year's version of Hurts. I can see a scenario where he becomes a top-eight fantasy quarterback. Stafford, who finished sixth among fantasy quarterbacks a season ago, should be in the top-12 mix again. Fantasy fans should monitor his status, though, as he's been dealing with a nagging elbow issue in his throwing arm. That's part of the reason he's in the "low QB1" tier. It's strange to label Rodgers as a low anything, but he does fit best into the list of low-end No. 1 quarterbacks. Can he repeat his 2021 totals without Davante Adams in the offense? My guess is no, but he's still one of the best quarterbacks of this era and will no doubt be in the mix as a top-12 signal-caller, albeit with a lower ceiling.

Tier 5 – High QB2s
Derek Carr, Raiders
Kirk Cousins, Vikings
Tua Tagovailoa, Dolphins

Carr should post career-best totals with Adams now in Las Vegas, so he now has top-10 potential. Cousins' ceiling has improved with a new, offensive-minded coach in Kevin O'Connell at the helm and in a system that will throw a ton. Tagovailoa has Tyreek Hill to go along with Jaylen Waddle, and Miami's offensive line should be better, too.

Tier 6 – Mid QB2s
Jameis Winston, Saints
Justin Fields, Bears

Winston looked good in his first stint as the New Orleans, at least before he went down with a torn ACL. If Alvin Kamara avoids a suspension, Michael Thomas is even 75% of what he was before ankle surgery, and Chris Olave emerges as a rookie, Winston will have some serious talent at his disposal. Fields has a lot of question marks around him in the pass attack due to a lack of defined playmakers, but his skills as a runner make him an interesting option late in drafts. He'll come off the board in the late rounds.

Tier 7 – Low QB2s
Ryan Tannehill, Titans
Trevor Lawrence, Jaguars
Matt Ryan, Colts
Carson Wentz, Commanders

Tannehill, Ryan and Wentz have all likely already reached their statistical ceilings at the NFL level, so I don't see them as more than No. 2 options. However, that doesn't mean they still can't be decent draft bargains. Lawrence has the most room for statistical improvement of this quartet (that's a no-brainer), and he'll have a much-improved cast of characters around him. Lawrence could push for a top-15 draft value.

Tier 8 – High QB3s
Baker Mayfield, Panthers
Daniel Jones, Giants
Mac Jones, Patriots
Zach Wilson, Jets
Jared Goff, Lions

Many of these quarterbacks won't even be drafted in smaller leagues, and none of them will be more than low QB2s in traditional formats. Assuming he beats out Sam Darnold, Mayfield could be a matchup-based starter for fantasy fans. Jones is in a make-or-break year, and many believe he can improve with new head coach Brian Daboll at the helm. Wilson has a big arm and improved weapons, so he could become a deep sleeper at the position. Goff has new receivers in his arsenal, including D.J. Chark and rookie Jameson Williams, so we may see a bit more from him in his second year in Detroit.

Tier 9 – Deep Fliers

Davis Mills, Texans
Mitchell Trubisky, Steelers
Marcus Mariota, Falcons
Jacoby Bissett, Browns
Geno Smith, Seahawks

This tier includes players who are projected to or are competing for a starting role. None of them will be selected (in most cases) outside of superflex or two-QB leagues, but Mills did show some promise in the second half of his rookie year. Trubisky looks like the favorite to start in Pittsburgh, though Pickett could see starts during the season.

Tier 10 – Deshaun Watson
Deshaun Watson, Browns

Watson will miss 11 games to start the regular season, which is nearly 70% of the fantasy season, so I doubt he'll be drafted in most traditional leagues. While he will be on a high percentage of rosters by midseason, how much can we expect from a quarterback who's played very little football since 2020? 

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Michael Fabiano is an award-winning fantasy football analyst on Sports Illustrated and a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA) Hall of Fame. Click here to read all his articles here on SI Fantasy. You can follow Michael on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Instagram for your late-breaking fantasy news and the best analysis in the business!