QB Two-Step: The Best Fantasy Quarterback Pairings of 2024


Spending early-round fantasy football draft capital on a quarterback is an “all or nothing” proposition. Given the depth of the position, there is a wealth of value in the later rounds. If you select a quarterback early in our drafts, it needs to translate to a big fantasy season. If it does, you gain a huge advantage on your competition. If it doesn’t, you have missed out on RB, WR or TE value. 

My preferred strategy is to punt the position until later in the draft and load up on skill position players. One critical aspect of using this draft strategy is to protect yourself from that fragility of waiting on a quarterback. If you use an early pick to select someone like Josh Allen or Patrick Mahomes, you generally have a good feeling about what you’re going to get from week to week and feel comfortable sacrificing an early draft pick to secure it. By waiting on quarterbacks, you are vulnerable to a lower floor at fantasy’s most important position. To protect yourself, it makes sense to also invest in a second quarterback to avoid bust weeks and optimize the matchups. This applies to both best ball and redraft leagues. 

Now that the NFL has released the 2024 schedule, we can start formulating more concise draft strategies based on matchups in the fall. In this article, I’ll be looking at quarterbacks currently being drafted outside the top-100 picks in best ball leagues and the best complements that ensure optimal production for your fantasy teams for the upcoming season.

Best Schedule-Based QB Pairings for 2024

Tua Tagovailoa, Miami Dolphins

(QB14, ADP 113.9) 

Why, exactly, is Tua Tagovailoa getting selected outside the top 12 fantasy quarterbacks? He completed almost 70% of his passes and led the NFL in passing yards (4624) last season. Tagovailoa ranked second in yards per attempt (8.3) while posting 29 passing touchdowns. As long as Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle are healthy, he is an elite fantasy quarterback, as illustrated by our Splits Tool.

Miami improved its offensive line in the offseason with both new and familiar faces. The Dolphins re-signed guard Isaiah Wynn, who won the starting left guard job during training camp but was lost to a quad injury in Week 7 and brought in Tennessee’s Aaron Brewer to start at center. Those pieces should supplement the strong play of tackles, and second-round pick Patrick Paul brings massive size at 6-foot-7, 330 pounds. I will gladly target the league passing leader, with elite weapons and better protection, with an ADP after pick 100 in all fantasy football formats. 

Late-Round QB Pairing: Derek Carr, New Orleans Saints

(QB27, ADP 198.5) 

Haener, Rattler and Peterman. 

That’s not a law firm, that’s the three quarterbacks behind Derek Carr on the New Orleans depth chart. Jake Haener, Spencer Rattler, Nathan Peterman.

Derek Carr doesn’t elicit strong support in the fantasy community, but he is the perfect consistent complement as a QB2. Playing on the friendly indoor confines of the Caesars Superdome, Carr still has a plethora of speedy weapons in wide receivers Chris Olave, Rashid Shaheed and last season’s preseason start, A.T. Perry. The backfield also features the elite pass-catching skills of still 28-year-old Alvin Kamara and elusive Kendre Miller. New Orleans also secured Carr’s blindside protection by drafting Oregon State’s Taliese Fuaga with the 14th pick overall. Carr posted three or more passing touchdowns in three of his last four games and had over a 2-to-1 touchdown-to-interception ratio (25 to 11). Going as QB27 with an ADP of almost 200 is fantasy football larceny. 

Jayden Daniels, Washington Commanders

(QB13, ADP 105.1) 

Remember Anthony Richardson’s fantasy impact in just four games last season? Jayden Daniels could easily replicate that performance over a full season and become a fantasy league winner. 

TAMPA, FL – JANUARY 01: LSU Tigers quarterback Jayden Daniels (5) reacts from the sideline during the ReliaQuest Bowl against the Wisconsin Badgers on January 1, 2024 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Icon Sportswire)

Daniels was an elite dual-threat quarterback at LSU, posting 3,813 passing yards and 1,133 rushing yards during his Heisman Trophy campaign last year. He has prototypical size at 6-foot-4, 210 pounds, and has already impressed the Commanders coaching staff with his accuracy and arm strength. 

The second overall pick will operate inside Kliff Kingsbury’s offensive system, which features an up-tempo offense and heavy shotgun usage. Kingsbury’s offenses in Arizona featured one of the most efficient ground games in the NFL, and quarterback Kyler Murray averaged almost 6.0 yards per carry in his four years under Kingsbury. 

Washington has loaded their offensive attack with speed wideouts such as Terry McLaurin, Jahan Dotson and rookie Luke McCaffrey (4.46). They also brought in one of the NFL’s most elite pass-catching running backs in Austin Ekeler. 

With a projected win total of just 6.5 games, it’s reasonable to assume Daniels should also operate with an abundance of negative game scripts. This all serves as the foundation of a rookie quarterback with top-five upside, carrying a minuscule ADP of 105.1 on Underdog. 

Late-Round QB Pairing: Aaron Rodgers, New York Jets

(QB20, ADP 148.9)

Aaron Rodgers is the perfect “safe” pairing to the upside of the dual-threat ability of the rookie Daniels. The veteran signal-caller enters the season at the age of 40 but should produce solid weekly fantasy stat lines assuming good health. The Jets bolstered their offensive line with the addition of veteran Morgan Moses and rookie tackle Olu Fashanu. The Jets’ two elite offensive weapons (RB Breece Hall, WR Garrett Wilson) are fully healthy, and they added the deep ball prowess of veteran Mike Williams from the Chargers. Rodgers posted a 4,000-yard season in 2021, finishing as the QB8, on a team with far fewer weapons than the current Jets roster. The only time Rodgers has finished outside of QB20 in fantasy points per game was his last season in Green Bay. As long as the future Hall-of-Famer stays upright, he will smash his current 148.9 ADP.

Trevor Lawrence, Jacksonville Jaguars

(QB15, ADP 118.8) 

May I introduce you to the 2024 post-hype sleeper quarterback, Trevor Lawrence. 

CINCINNATI, OH – SEPTEMBER 30: Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) warms up before the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Cincinnati Bengals on September 30, 2021, at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati, OH. (Photo by Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire)

Lawrence was easily a top-10 fantasy quarterback by ADP entering the 2023 season, but finished a disappointing 13th in points per game with just 21 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. However, you could make a good argument that the Jaguars receiving core improved with the addition of veteran Gabe Davis, a healthy Christian Kirk and first-round explosive wideout Brian Thomas Jr. They still have an elite pass-catching tight end in Evan Engram, who ranked first overall at the position with 114 receptions last season. 

Jacksonville still resides in the fantasy-friendly AFC South, and Lawrence has posted consecutive 4,000-yard seasons. If he can enjoy some positive touchdown regression, Lawrence should blast beyond his QB15, especially when he finished as the QB13 in a very disappointing season. Selecting Lawrence in the middle round gives us a high-floor pick, which allows for the opportunity to take a risky second quarterback with high upside. 

Late-Round QB Pairing: Deshaun Watson, Cleveland Browns

(QB22, ADP 162.7)

Watson was another huge disappointment last season, finishing as a brutal QB31 in fantasy points per game. He had season-ending surgery after Week 12 and enters this season as an afterthought with an ADP of QB22. However, he is still only 28 years old, and has three consecutive QB5 or better finishes on his resume. 

Running back Nick Chubb is still rehabbing from his gruesome knee injury suffered in Week 2 last season, which could allow Watson to enjoy a strong passing start to the season. Cleveland faces one of the easier opening schedules per Vegas opposing win totals, as their first five opponents have an average of just 7.7 wins. They also have three consecutive home games before a Week 10 bye and added wide receiver Jerry Jeudy in the offseason. 

Cleveland’s offense is much more productive with Watson under center. Per our FTN Splits Tool, Cleveland averaged 28.7 points in the six games he played last year, and just 19.8 PPG in the 12 games he missed. 

A healthy Watson will reside behind one of the NFL’s best offensive lines, with an upgrade in receiving weapons and a lead running back returning from a challenging injury. Could Watson return to his overall QB5 level? Maybe, but a top-10 finish is certainly within his range of outcomes. At QB22, I’m willing to take that chance. 

Previous Small Ball: Fantasy Baseball Game Theory: Managing FAAB Next Trust the Gut: Fantasy Baseball FAAB Guide (Week 9)