Fantasy football: Do NOT draft a rookie QB if you want to win your league

However excited you may be to watch Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota on the field this year, resist the temptation to add them to your fantasy football roster.

Ray Flowers and Kyle Elfrink cautioned against drafting rookie quarterbacks this week on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio.

“You can take a rookie running back and that can totally work. You can take rookie wide receivers in the right scenario, and that can work. … Rookie quarterbacks are tough,” Flowers said. “When we’re talking about the guys at the top this year like Mariota, is that team capable of supporting these guys the right way? Are they going to change schemes? Are the players going to develop? Can the guys operate under center? Can they operate in a non-spread offense? How do they read defenses? How do they understand playbooks? I mean, there are so many moving parts beyond actually performing on the field.”

Elfrink took on the comparison some analysts are making between Winston and Cam Newton.

“I’m not getting 14 rushing touchdowns from Jameis Winston,” Elfrink said. “I don’t think I’m getting 25 passing touchdowns from Jameis Winston. I’d love to say, ‘Cam Newton is what I’m shooting for,’ but frankly, Winston doesn’t play that sort of game. And if Mariota tries to run that much, he’ll get Manziel-ed. He’ll get clobbered.”

That doesn’t mean Winston and Mariota don’t have the potential to be QB-1 caliber players down the road. Just don’t expect it to happen this year.

“I think Winston has the pieces,” Elfrink said. “He’s landing in a situation that is beautiful with the receivers that he has to work with. But I think there is so much to learn and so much to deal with, and again, it is absolutely more trouble than it is worth with these guys.”

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