Fantasy Football: Tyrod Taylor offering surprising value in 2016

(Photo By: Daniel Kucin Jr./Icon Sportswire)

When considering a quarterback target for your fantasy football team, the Buffalo Bills’ Tyrod Taylor probably isn’t the first player to pop into your head. That is likely because the young signal caller finished the 2015 season as just the 14th-ranked fantasy quarterback.

But there is a reason that the Bills’ front office is working hard to lock up the passer. Despite his fantasy finish in 2015, Taylor should be getting your fantasy attention as well this season. 

The deeper you look at his QB14 rank from last season, the more deceiving it really is. That QB14 rank just doesn’t do Taylor the justice he deserves. Taylor missed two games to injury in 2015. Meaning Taylor’s total fantasy points total is going to be lower than the quarterbacks that played 16 games.

But when looking at some other more telling measures, Taylor had a nice 2015 season that should translate into an even better fantasy output this year. The first and most basic of these other measures is taking a look at fantasy points per games played instead of just total fantasy points. Injuries are obviously not good for fantasy production. But when the player is on the field it is important to look at the production.

In the case of Taylor, the Bills’ quarterback averaged 19.6 fantasy points per game played in 2015. At that measure, he graded out much higher in fantasy. In 2015, he had the sixth-highest fantasy points per game average among quarterbacks.

Another measure supporting Taylor’s case as a fantasy option in 2016 is the fantasy points per touch (FPPT) ratio. For quarterbacks, this ratio takes both passing and rushing attempts into consideration. In 2015, only Cam Newton (0.62 FPPT) and Russell Wilson (0.59 FPPT) had a higher fantasy points per touch ratio than Taylor (0.57 FPPT) at the quarterback position.

Taylor’s play down the stretch last season should have fantasy players excited. From Week 9 on, the Bills quarterback was the ninth-highest fantasy scoring quarterback. The big reason for his improvement was his ability to run the football. In 2015, the quarterback averaged 6.5 rushing attempts and 35.5 rushing yards per game. But over his last five contests, he really stepped it up, averaging 9.6 carries and 55.6 rushing yards per game.

Currently, Taylor is the 17th quarterback being chosen in fantasy drafts with a current average draft position (ADP) of 123.8.  In addition to his 14th-ranked finish in 2015, many will be sour on him because he is part of a Bills offense that was 31st in pass attempts last season. However, that actually is a positive for 2016. Fantasy owners do not have to worry about a risk of a volume decline for the Buffalo passer.

 Taylor appears to be sliding under the fantasy radar in 2016, thanks, in part, to the two games he missed due to injury. With his way too low ADP, the Bills’ duel threat provides plenty of value at his current draft slot. This is an opportunity for fantasy players to continue to implement the wait and see approach for the quarterback position while still getting a passer with top-10 upside that Taylor provides.

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