Geno Smith vs E.J. Manuel: Fantasy Football Comparison

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Rookie quarterbacks Geno Smith and E.J. Manuel were placed with lofty expectations as the potential franchise savors for two organizations that have had their share of struggles in the past couple of years. With similar physical stats (Geno- 6’3 221 pounds, Manuel- 6’4 237 pounds), these are big guys who are mobile and have big play ability. Many people are stashing E.J. Manuel for keeper leagues, but after watching the Bills and Jets game this past Sunday I am leaning towards the Geno Smith camp for not only this year, but for the future as well.

Throughout the entire game, I saw that Geno seemed to have a real sense of urgency. He wasn’t afraid to try to make a big play, while Manuel was afraid to make a mistake. Geno did throw two interceptions, but he did throw for over 300 yards with two passing touchdowns and had 14 rushing yards with a rushing touchdown. Manuel completed 19 passes with 42 attempts for 243 yards and one touchdown pass. He also carried the ball 6 times for 40 yards. In ESPN standard scoring leagues Geno finished week 3 with 24 points, and E.J. Manuel finished with 19. Fantasy wise, Manuel has had a better start than Geno, but I think Manuel’s production will start to suffer with some of the tougher defenses he will begin to face.

Their schedules are somewhat similar for the rest of the year, but the Jets seem to be coming together as a single unit instead of a group of individuals, and starting the season 2-1 helps build Geno Smith’s confidence. With the emergence of Santonio Holmes and Bilal Powell, Geno has some weapons around him that will continue to help him develop into a relevant fantasy quarterback. If Spiller or Fred Jackson suffer any type of injury, Manuel will face much more pressure.

Unless you somehow ended up with Christian Ponder as your first quarterback(how drunk were you?), you probably already have a better quarterback option and maybe even a better backup on your bench than Smith. If you are looking for some good matchups or have a bye week coming up, the Jets will be facing Atlanta in week 5 whose passing defense is ranked 25th allowing 296 passing yards a game, Buffalo once again in week 11 allowing 262 passing yards a game, Miami in week 13 with the 20th ranked pass defense, Oakland in week 14, and they will finish the season off with Miami in week 17.

Geno is not RG3, but in a deeper league or a two quarterback league, you may actually want to give Mr. Smith an opportunity to prove himself to you. 

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