— Kansas City Chiefs (@Chiefs) May 26, 2021
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Patrick Mahomes ranked second in the NFL with 4,740 passing yards last season and had 38 touchdowns in just 15 games played. With 25.4 fantasy points per game, he led all quarterbacks who played 6+ games. The Chiefs’ offense continued to thrive with Mahomes as its leader, and the former Texas Tech passer earned his third-straight Pro Bowl nomination. Mahomes’s fantasy production was very consistent, as well, as he scored 19+ fantasy points in all but two of his games. As we enter the 2021 season, there’s no reason to expect that consistency to change at all.
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In the 2021 season, we will see NFL teams play 17 games for the first time ever. As such, I’m projecting Patrick Mahomes to hit a career-high passing yardage number. I don’t have him projected to hit his former MVP number of 50 passing touchdowns, but that upside certainly exists for him. The Chiefs will be introducing Orlando Brown and Joe Thuney as two newly acquired offensive linemen, as well as Mike Remmers, who struggled mightily as a spot starter in the Super Bowl. Ultimately, I trust Andy Reid and his coaching staff to make the new-look offensive line work for Mahomes and company.
ADP & Auction Value
ADP: 28, Round 3, QB1
Auction Value: $23
Patrick Mahomes is among the most overpriced QBs in 2021 1-QB Fantasy Leagues, even as my QB1.
JA, Kyler, LJax, & Dak offer similar upside but go 25+ picks later.
Opp cost of Mahomes = WR1s & RB1s (AJB, DK, Soph RBs). Opp cost of others = WR2s & RB2s (Thielen, Gaskin, Kupp)
— Wolf of Roto Street (@RotoStreetWolf) May 27, 2021
While Patrick Mahomes was the top per-game fantasy scorer at quarterback last season, he fared much worse in 2019. While his season totals can be excused a bit for missing two games, he ranked just sixth among quarterbacks in per-game fantasy scoring in 2019. However, it’s worth noting that Mahomes dislocated his knee on a fluky QB sneak play and that injury hampered him throughout much of the 2019 season. Barring another significant injury, it would be shocking to see Mahomes not finish as a top-five fantasy scorer at quarterback. However, with a selection in the first two rounds, you’re buying elite upside much more than you are on a high floor.
There’s no question that Patrick Mahomes has the ability to finish as the top fantasy scorer at quarterback this season. In his two non-injury impacted seasons, Mahomes has been the best fantasy scorer at quarterback in the NFL with 88 touchdowns to 18 interceptions. Mahomes has also run for over 200 yards and 2 touchdowns in each of the last three seasons, so he has the rushing production to supplement his passing upside. We’ve seen Mahomes be a dominant force for fantasy football in the past, and he absolutely has that same ceiling this year.
Kansas City Chiefs Offense
The Chiefs scored the 6th-most points per game in the NFL last season (29.6), which was frankly a down year for them as they were a top-five scoring team in each of the previous two years. Kansas City spent a first-round pick on running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire last year, but they still ranked in the bottom half of the NFL in both rushing yards and rushing touchdowns. This is clearly a passing-oriented teams as they ranked top three in passing yards and touchdowns last year. With Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce in tow, the Chiefs have plenty of pass-catching talent for Mahomes to take advantage of, and this team will continue to present challenges for opposing defenses this season.
Strength of Schedule
As if things needed to be more tacked in Mahomes’s favor, the Chiefs have the 10th-easiest schedule for fantasy quarterback scoring per Fantasy Pros. Last year, the Chargers, Raiders, and Broncos – the three other teams who play in the AFC West with the Chiefs – were all in the bottom ten in the NFL as they allowed 20+ fantasy points per game to quarterbacks. All three of these teams have struggled to keep Mahomes in check in the past. The Chiefs do have to play the Steelers and Washington, two of the top three pass defenses by fantasy points last season. However, Mahomes is fairly matchup-proof as arguably the most talented passer in the NFL. I have no concerns about the Chiefs’ schedule potentially hampering Mahomes’s potential for fantasy success this season.
There’s a lot to like about Patrick Mahomes for fantasy football this season. He’s one of the more talented passers in the NFL and is supported by arguably the best offensive coach in Andy Reid and the best pass-catching tandem in Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce. There also doesn’t seem to be any indication of the Chiefs becoming more of a run-heavy offense, as they still threw the ball more than just about anyone last year despite taking CEH in the first round. However, there’s one major issue with Mahomes and it basically has him off of my draft board this season – ADP. With guys like Josh Allen, Lamar Jackson, and Kyler Murray offering elite upside and being selected multiple rounds later, I’m hard-pressed to find the reasoning for spending a second-round pick on Mahomes. That said, he’s one of the safest players in fantasy football and is basically a guarantee to finish as a top-five per-game fantasy scorer at the quarterback position.
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