Start Mayfield over Rivers in Week 6?

Hello clans -
These 2 QBs are my only options as the ones available on the waiver are all duds. Rivers is my all time starter but this week I have been hearing and reading that he should be benched. Thoughts? Should I start Mayfield and bench Rivers?

I don’t mind it. I’m starting Mayfield across a few leagues right now.

Rivers would probably be my choice here generally, just from a safety perspective. If you got in an early hole from Thursday Night Football or are just a big projected underdog, I wouldn’t mind playing the upside of Mayfield in the matchup though.

I actually think mayfield has a safer floor than Rivers. Rivers is the one I’d be playing if I got in a hole.

The Browns D IMO might be the best in the NFL. Second only to the jags. They are criminally underrated. Especially when playing at home. And old man rivers is known to just go out there and throw a few picks every once in a while. This might be that game.

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That’s true, that defense is the exact reason why I don’t see a high ceiling for Rivers. But he is one of the best quarterbacks in the league and hasn’t been under 17.5 fantasy points this year with a couple touchdowns a week. I’m not sure I see a rookie quarterback who has completed just over 50% of his passes and has 3 interceptions in his two full starts as the highest floor option compared to Rivers.

Agreed. Rivers is a fantasy darling and always has been. Criminally underrated. I’d say that this year, he’s been performing above his draft stock. If you look at his entire history/career though, he is someone who goes out and just throws a crapload of interceptions. Although he’s been doing great so far, he’s been doing it against pretty trash defenses. Like bottom 10 in the league (KC, 49ers, rams, Oak, Buffalo). This is the first Elite defense he is playing and on the road none the less. If i were to bet, I’d say this could def be one of those tragic games he always has.

I think this is a pretty misleading stat for a couple of reasons.

  1. His current unadjusted completion percentage is actually 59%, so closer to 60 than 50 like you said.

  2. The browns are 2nd in the league in drops. When watching the film, I counted 3 drops the 1st week he took over to lead a comeback vs the jets, 8 drops the 2nd week vs raiders, and 4 drops last week vs the ravens at a minimum. Didn’t have a chance to do complete film review but those are just the ones I noted down while watching the game live.

His adjusted completion percentage is actually around 73%. Only drew brees has a better completion perecentage right now in the NFL and the saints have like fewest dropped passes in the league. I think they have like a couple via Meredith.

  1. I’d say only 1 of the 3 interceptions was Baker’s fault. Others were like in and out of his receivers hands. Can’t really put that on him.

  2. He just put up what he did against one of the best defenses in the league in his 3rd start. And all of this time, he wasn’t even taking 1st team reps (cause hue is a moron). He will only get better from here. I am all in on Baker. Have him in a keeper Superflex for the next 5 years and I couldn’t be happier. When it’s all said and done, he is going to be up there and known for being one of the most accurate passers in the league.

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These are good points. Rivers has been more efficient the last couple years than rest of his career as he has the best team around him he has probably ever had and is relying more on short passing game so I don’t expect huge spikes ROS in interceptions. As far as the Baker side, I really like Baker, and I am not saying he is playing poorly by any means. But my % was referring to only the game he started and teams prepared for him, and 59% isn’t good anyway. The drops are a legit issue, but are they fluky or is there some reason to believe they won’t continue? Idk that there is. Ultimately in fantasy it doesn’t matter how they play in real life (newsflash Baker is good), the supporting cast around him does matter, and drops and interceptions that are other peoples faults still count against him.

Rivers has still been throwing bombs. That’s why i love him. As a rivers owner. But he hasn’t faced a legit defense until now. So I am actually benching rivers this week. May regret it, but just a gut feeling.

Well don’t think it’s fair to just pick his lowest completion percentage where the team dropped over 8 passes. Without those drops, he’s 70% which again, is only behind drew brees. And that was his first start in the NFL. Also, he was a starter vs Baltimore. They had 2 games of film on him as one of the best defenses in the league, and they were not able to stop him, despite his receivers dropping 4+ passes.

I think it will still be an issue going forward but I do think it improves. Part of it is timing/reps. Baker didn’t take any 1st team snaps in practice until the Oakland week. Like zero reps. So there’s going to be bumps that come with that. I don’t expect them to be completely erased going forward, but i do expect it to improve just based on more reps alone. 8-9 drops in a game is well above the norm even for the teams with worst drop rates. I don’t think that is sustainable at all.

Yeah I agree. In fantasy, its the points that matters. But also, you expect things to revert to the norms. And from a drops and int perspective, the past couple games have definitely not been the norm and despite of all of that, he still produced last week only putting up only 1 TD. I fully expect his TDs to go up as well. And by that same notion, even if people keep dropping passes, his completion percentage shouldn’t be that relevant. He provides a pretty decent rushing floor and is going to be one of the highest volume passers in the league. based on games he’s started, he is on pace to throw the ball for 670+ times. Chargers D has also been pretty putrid. You don’t need a high completion % to be relevant. Watson only completing 62% of his passes. I think Baker exceeds that season long.

I will concede that completion percentage is extremely flawed, and I know that overall Baker is an accurate quarterback. But even if it does go up (when it goes up) I think we have to account for the fact that if you expect his efficiency to regress to the mean, than the volume does too. We can’t pick and choose. Are we expecting him to throw 670 times on a team with a really good defense and a stable or talented running backs who have performed well this year? I doubt it personally. And while I think Baker is/becomes a very good quarterback I just don’t associate the words “high floor” with a rookie quarterback that has receivers who struggle to catch and the worst coach in the NFL. I hope I’m wrong cuz I love Baker, and like I said his ceiling is legit, just don’t have quite the steady confidence you do I guess.

I think this is where we disagree. If it regresses or when it regresses, I still think he is going to be pretty much on a 600-650 pace type season if it were a full 16 games. That’s just part of the Todd haley offense. He is a pass first OC. Not a run first OC. Look at steelers. Best RB in the game and prior to last year, had one of the better defenses in the league. Still throws the rock a tonne. And the mean has shifted this year. Every team is up there slinging the ball a tonne. Both Cousins and Luck are on pace to break the NFL single season passing attempt record set by stafford in 2012 with 720+ and 780+ respectively. And compared to last year where no team attempted more than 600 passes, there are multiple teams currently on pace to break the 600 pass mark. I think browns will be one of them.

And as good as Browns D is, they are still going to be going up vs teams that can put up points. And they’re going to need Baker to do the same.

Normally, I’m with you. I don’t trust rookie QBs very often. Only times I’ve ever done it of note was once with Cam and once with Luck. This is my 3rd time doing it with Baker. I agree it’s definitely risky. But it’s a risk that can pay off. Btw, I’m starting him mostly in my leagues where it’s superflex. And although hue jackson is arguably one of the worst coaches in football (i’d say wilks, garrett are right up there), he doesn’t handle play calling. That’s Haley and Haley is a volume passing OC. That’s why I’m betting here.

And I think we’re getting a bit away from the point. Point of the post here is who to play in week 6. We both differ on opinions here which is totally cool. I just don’t think it was a fair characterization to say baker doesn’t have a good floor cause of a 50% completion rate in one game, which was on the road. And honestly, a game they also should’ve won if the refs weren’t 100% rigged.

Sidenote: Pro tip, do not bet against Oakland spread in oakland’s home games. I’ve paid the price now 2 years in the row.

Perhaps you are right about the volume. I know Tyrod was not nearly the passer that Baker is, but they were just so run heavy early in the year, I believe it evens out to somewhere in the middle there. I still stand by the point that Baker is the ceiling option here, nothing in this convo has changed my mind there. I still trust Rivers, who is playing at MVP level to give me a floor, but I admit that may be bias against the Browns on my part. I hope the best for baker.

Man what a week. I’m def eating crow on that one. I started Mayfield on my own teams myself so feeling the pain there. That early injury really hurt him I think, specifically regarding his mobility and these WRs continue to struggle. Cleveland needs help at WR. They should probably trade for Cooper. I’m still going to be fine playing Mayfield for the upcoming slate of games, but will be watching closely going forward. And definitely won’t be making the mistake of thinking he’s safer floor than Old Man Rivers.

@zdhaugen Great call on Rivers man! Looks like he had the better floor AND the better ceiling. Those 2 passes to Williams were insane. Williams has 1 game like this every year, def didn’t think it would be this game, although he does do it when you least expect it. Kind of like Cooper.

Rivers is quietly having an MVP caliber season. Everyone is going crazy for Mahomes but statistically speaking, Rivers is doing just as good, if not better from an efficiency stand point. Here are their stats for comparison so far this season:

Mahomes: 212 attempts, 1865 yards, 18 TD, 4 Int, 63.7% Comp, 112.2 passer rating
Rivers: 194 attempts, 1702 yards, 15 TD, 3 Int, 68.6% comp, 115.1 passer rating

Most importantly, he is winning for his team and putting them in the playoff picture. Definitely think Rivers deserves to be in the conversation alongside Mahomes and Brees for MVP.

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Yep… but both came short in regards to fantasy points/ Mayfield with 14 points and Rivers with 15 :unamused: