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Breakout or bust: Second year quarterbacks

Fantasy football is back for 2020! We take a look at five second-year QBs and breakdown their fantasy football value.

Quarterback Kyler Murray #1 of the Arizona Cardinals scrambles out of the pocket as he is chased by defensive back Ugo Amadi #28 of the Seattle Seahawks during game at CenturyLink Field on December 22, 2019 in Seattle, Washington. The Cardinals won 27-13. Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images

After a year of NFL football under their belt, these second-year players should be ready to take on the league at full speed. For fantasy, second-year breakouts can often be had later in drafts if you get them right. In the NFL, even getting to the second season as a viable option for your team is an accomplishment.

Below, we’ll take a look at some second-year quarterbacks who will get a chance to shine this season.

Kyler Murray, Cardinals

Murray won Rookie of the Year last season by throwing for 3,722 yards (64.4 percent), 20 touchdowns and 12 interceptions while rushing 93 times for 544 yards and four more touchdowns. The rushing work helped put him over the top in voting, but there is plenty of room for improvement in year two. That improvement should get a boost with the addition of one of the best wide receivers in the league, DeAndre Hopkins.

He’s not a lock for fantasy, but all signs point to him keeping his fantasy floor high with his rushing while improving his passing stats with a year under his belt, better offensive line and Hopkins in the fold.

Daniel Jones, Giants

Jones flashed last season with four blow up games where he completed 105-of-159 passes (66 percent) for 1,318 yards (329.5 per game), 15 touchdowns and no interceptions. In his other eight starts, games, Jones completed 60 percent of his passes for 1,709 yards (213 per game), nine touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

Those big games are something to strive for moving forward and the team did upgrade on the offensive line, which should help Jones and his turnover troubles. I expect Jones to continue to be inconsistent, but he has a playmaking receiving back and a good mix at receiver. I expect him to take a step forward this season.

Dwayne Haskins, Washington TBDs

Haskins only started the last seven games of the season and it came behind an awful offensive line. Then they went out and got defensive end and running back with their first two picks. They did grab a tackle in round four but also weren’t able to entice Trent Williams to stay.

If you look only at Haskins’ starts instead of his dreadful Week 4 and Week 8 appearances where he had four interceptions, he wasn’t great. The good news is that he only had three interceptions to seven touchdown passes in his seven starts. But, with a patchwork offensive line and receivers after Terry McLaurin, Haskins will have trouble making a fantasy impact.

Drew Lock, Broncos

Lock started the last five games of the season and managed to help his team to four wins while only turning the ball over three times. He only had one fantasy relevant game in that stretch, but showed enough to be the starter heading into 2020.

The Broncos also stacked the offense around him, as they signed Melvin Gordon at running back and drafted Jerry Jeudy and K.J. Hamler at wide receiver. There are plenty of questions surrounding Lock staying fantasy viable for a 16 game season, but all signs point to him having the resources to be a usefll fantasy quarterback for at least stretches this season.

Gardner Minshew II, Jaguars

UPDATE: The Jaguars added Minshew to the Covid-19 IR list. He could miss a week or he could miss an extended period. We don’t know yet.

Minshew beat out Nick Foles in Jacksonville and looked pretty good doing so. He was drafted in the sixth round last year and the Jaguars are in a rebuild. Right now he has the job for 2020 but he’ll need to perform even better than last season to have a shot at keeping the job moving forward.

Minshew had one of the better rookie seasons for a quarterback historically. He led all rookie quarterbacks in passer rating, TD/INT ratio, win/loss percentage, passing yards per game and passing yards per attempt. He wasn’t perfect by any means, but his statistics show a player who “got it” from day one despite not getting starter’s reps in training camp and needing to step in Week 1 after Foles went down with an injury. His team isn’t going to be very good, but he also has rushing ability which can boost his fantasy numbers.