Is Blake Bortles fantasy football gold?


The Blake Bortles fantasy football hype train took off after his impressive second season, but is he going to be fantasy football gold in 2016?

It isn’t every season that a second year quarterback explodes onto the scene for 4428 yards and 35 touchdowns. And yet Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles did exactly that. He was one of the most productive quarterbacks in the NFL in 2015.

Can he do it again?

While the Blake Bortles fantasy football hype train has begun in earnest, it’s worth checking to see if he really can deliver. After all, Bortles also threw league-leading 18 interceptions and 14 fumbles. Those aren’t numbers that any fantasy football owner wants to see.

It’s this kind of split fantasy personality that keeps some potential fantasy football owners wary of Bortles in 2016. He can be completely dominant and still turn the ball over on a regular basis.

For those bold fantasy owners, Bortles makes sense. His positives (yardage and touchdowns) outweigh the negatives (interceptions and fumbles). Besides, anybody who can go from the worst QB in the NFL to one of the best in just one offseason certainly has a high ceiling, right?

That’s what we Jags fans certainly think. Besides, Bortles is already looking incredibly impressive this preseason. In fact, Bortles may even end up being the best quarterback in the preseason (or at least the best one that matters).

Preseason anointing aside, it isn’t just Jags homers that keep an eye on Bortles in fantasy football drafts these days. Fantasy Pros have him ranked as the 10th best quarterback and his average draft position is ninth among QBs. Further, 41 percent of their experts rank him at or better than his ADP.

That’s value for a quarterback you can afford to wait on and fill out your roster at other positions. It’s the kind of value that makes plenty of Blake Bortles fantasy football owners drool.

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Still, it isn’t the kind of value that will convince the most conservative fantasy owners. After all, if 41 percent think he’s better than his ADP, it means that 59 percent think he’s worse. Is it worth gambling on Bortles?

That’s exactly the conundrum with Bortles. No matter which way you look at it, from a fantasy football perspective, he’s going to be a gamble. He isn’t a perfect quarterback and he isn’t expected to be. For that, pick Aaron Rodgers or Tom Brady. And yet, the productive has a certain allure that is tough to ignore.

And that may just be the final word as the build up the 2016 season continues. Bortles really could be something special. Or he could end up being perfectly ordinary with a flair for mistakes. Personally, I believe the former over the latter.