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It’s Week 3 of the NFL season, and already, the quarterback ranks for fantasy football managers are depleted, with two potential QB1s either out for the season or for a significant amount of time.

Dallas’ Dak Prescott could miss at least a month, and San Francisco’s Trey Lance, who many adventurous owners gambled on as their QB1, is done for the season after a devastating ankle injury in Week 2.

Those injuries and underwhelming production from stalwarts Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady, both of whom have issues surrounding them on their offensive lines and with their receiving corps, have some owners looking for answers at quarterback. And quite a few of them are turning to Washington’s Carson Wentz.

Is Carson Wentz’s hot start just a tease for fantasy football owners?

Carson Wentz during a Commanders-Lions matchup in September 2022
Carson Wentz of the Washington Commanders plays against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field on September 18, 2022 | Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

In actual football, Wentz is on his third team in as many years. 

The Eagles handed the reins to Jalen Hurts, and the Colts stopped their QB roulette wheel on the aging Matt Ryan, shipping Wentz to the Commanders.

In actual football, the current incarnation of Wentz is something of a reclamation project. On the field, he’s a mixed bag of unquestionable talent and some very questionable decisions – highlights and lowlights, including epic turnovers, sometimes during the same game. His leadership has been questioned, as has the fragility of his ego.

But none of that translates into the fantasy game, so the question for Wentz fantasy managers is simple: Will Wentz put up the numbers – even with the occasional lowlight, boneheaded play – in Washington to translate into a legitimate QB1 for a fantasy team?

Not long ago, he was a fantasy football star

Wentz’s best fantasy season came all of five years ago in 2017, soon after he was drafted in the first round by the Eagles in 2016. In 13 games, he averaged 21.7 fantasy points per game and was a clearcut QB1. In 11 games in injury-shortened 2018, his fantasy production fell to 17.5 ppg, and he hasn’t approached his 2017 production since. At least not until now.

Over his previous three seasons, Wentz’s fantasy production has declined incrementally  (17.2 ppg in 2019, 16.5 in 2020, 15.2 in 2021).

During his lone season with the Colts, his per-game average of 15.2 points was his lowest since his 2016 rookie season in Philadelphia. However, he had 27 touchdowns and seven interceptions in a run-centric offense behind overall RB1 Jonathan Taylor.

The Commanders don’t have Taylor in their backfield but have a corps of talented receivers led by WR1 Terry McLaurin, rookie Jahan Dotson, and former Panther Curtis Samuel.

Can Wentz keep up his early-season performance?


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In each of his two games with the Commanders, a win over Jacksonville and a loss at Detroit, Wentz has thrown for over 300 yards, at least three touchdown passes, and completed over 65% of his passes. By comparison, Wentz only had three such games in his six prior NFL seasons, so maybe the Commanders have unlocked something. 

He scored 27.7 fantasy points in both games – good enough to be the No. 4-ranked QB behind Josh Allen, Lamar Jackson, and Hurts – as the model of fantasy consistency, but he faces an Eagles defense this week that is the best the Commanders have seen so far this season. The Eagles “D” intercepted Minnesota’s Kirk Cousins three times (two by Darius Slay) and sacked him twice.

If Wentz can put up similar numbers against the Eagles defense despite the pressure that comes with playing against the team that drafted him (at least the game is in Washington), fantasy managers, who have now rostered him in nearly 70% of ESPN leagues, should be inclined to roll with Wentz as a starter for as long as they can.

Stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference

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