2023 Fantasy Football Outlook: Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills
By Kevin Hanson (@EDSFootball)
Updated: Friday, May 19, 2023
Fantasy managers know exactly what they're getting when they draft Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen.
Over the past three seasons, Allen has finished as fantasy's QB1, QB1 and QB2, respectively, and he's finished no worse than QB3 in fantasy points per game over that stretch.
Excluding last year's canceled Cincinnati Bengals game, Allen scored a minimum of 19.6 fantasy points in all but two games last season. In fact, he finished as a top-six weekly fantasy quarterback in 12 (75%) of his 16 games in 2022.
Few players, at any position, have as high of a floor and ceiling as the talented dual-threat quarterback.
Allen has thrown for a minimum of of 4,283 yards and 35 touchdowns in three consecutive seasons. In each of the past three seasons, he's finished no worse than eighth in the NFL in either passing yards or passing touchdowns.
The Bills would like Allen to run less for durability and career-longevity purposes, but he has rushed for a minimum of six touchdowns in all five of his NFL seasons. In addition, he has rushed for more than 700 yards in back-to-back seasons. Granted, he isn't an elite rusher like Lamar Jackson, Jalen Hurts or Justin Fields, but he has scored 6.97 fantasy points per game over his career from his rushing stats alone.
Allen and Stefon Diggs established instant chemistry, and his go-to receiver has accounted for nearly 31% of the team's receiving yards over the past three years. The passing offense will continue to go through Diggs and while Gabe Davis didn't have the breakout last year that many expected, he provides the strong-armed Allen with a deep threat capable of making plays down the field. Meanwhile, first-round pick Dalton Kincaid and Dawson Knox form a talented 1-2 pass-catching duo of tight ends.
Based on data from The Buffalo News, the Bills used two-TE sets on only five percent of their 2022 passing plays, and only the Bengals had a lower percentage. Kincaid was arguably the most talented pass-catcher (regardless of position) in the 2023 NFL Draft, so the rookie from Utah should be used prominently as a rookie.
The gap between the elite quarterbacks in 2022 was greater than it has been in recent seasons, and that's likely to help push up the average draft position (ADP) for Allen, Patrick Mahomes and Jalen Hurts this summer.
|Year||20+ PPG QBs||1st-10th Gap|
* Group above includes only those who appeared in at least half of their team's games.
Josh Allen Full-Season Projections
Here are our full-season projections for Allen:
Bottom line: Fairly Valued
Fantasy managers may balk at the draft-day cost for Allen, but the consistency and upside justify the hefty price tag. I prefer to have flexibility when drafting, so I wouldn't go into a draft with the mindset that I need an elite quarterback like Allen, but if the draft breaks in a way where the RB/WR options aren't as appealing, I'd be willing to consider Allen earlier than I would in years past when I've always adopted a late-round (or no higher than a mid-round) strategy.
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