Carolina's Cam Newton had a rookie season for all time in 2011, racking up 4,757 total yards (4,051 passing) and 35 touchdowns.
Today's installment of "Choose Your Quarterback" pits Philadelphia's Michael Vick against Carolina's Cam Newton—the No. 8 and No. 5 passers in my pre-draft listing of the Top 25 quarterbacks.
Here's a week-by-week fantasy breakdown of Newton vs. Vick...just in case you're torn on which one to covet more on draft day:
Week 1—Vick (@ Cleveland) over Newton (@ Tampa Bay)
Week 2—Newton (vs. New Orleans) over Vick (vs. Baltimore)
Week 3—Newton (vs. N.Y. Giants) over Vick (@ Arizona)
Week 4—Vick (vs. N.Y. Giants) over Newton (@ Atlanta)
Week 5—Newton (vs. Seattle) over Vick (@ Pittsburgh)
Week 6—Vick (vs. Detroit) over Newton (BYE)
Week 7—Newton (vs. Dallas) over Vick (BYE)
Week 8—Vick (vs. Atlanta) over Newton (@ Chicago)
Week 9—Vick (@ New Orleans) over Newton (@ Washington)
Week 10—Newton (vs. Denver) over Vick (vs. Dallas)
Week 11—Newton (vs. Tampa Bay) over Vick (@ Washington)
Week 12—Vick over Newton—Head-to-head matchup (in Philly)
Week 13—Newton (@ Kansas City) over Vick (@ Dallas)
Week 14—Vick (@ Tampa Bay) over Newton (vs. Atlanta)
Week 15—Newton (@ San Diego) over Vick (vs. Cincinnati)
Week 16—Vick (vs. Washington) over Newton (vs. Oakland)
Week 17—Newton (@ New Orleans) over Vick (@ N.Y. Giants)
Newton edges Vick, 9-8
- For opening weekend, I love Newton and Vick's chances of registering 275 total yards and/or three touchdowns, the minimum threshold for star fantasy QBs. On the other hand, I doubt Newton will eclipse last year's Week 1 output of 422 yards passing and three TDs.
- We're splitting hairs with the matchups from Weeks 1, 10, 12, 13, 14 and 16, reiterating just how close Newton and Vick should be in the August drafts. Last year, ESPN.com guru (and fantasy football torchbearer) Matthew Berry touted Vick as the No. 1 overall fantasy asset in standard-scoring leagues. In the last two seasons, Vick has per-game averages of 303.4 total yards and two touchdowns. The potential for dominance is there...Vick just needs to stay on the field.
- Newton (4,757 total yards, 35 TDs last year) has the easier overall schedule, but the differences aren't that profound. For starters, the NFC South and NFC East teams play each other (round robin); plus, Vick catches a break by playing two late-season games in Dallas and Tampa Bay. Bottom line: Both QBs are looking at a maximum of two bad-weather games in November and December.
- I'm seldom a proponent of retaining quarterbacks in two-man keeper leagues—especially when my running back options are Chris Johnson, Ryan Mathews and Jamaal Charles. But I would be a damn fool to throw Newton back into the pile of available players...on the hope I could re-draft him in Round 1 or 2. In this case, I'll simply pray that Charles and Mathews sync up to their Average Draft Position values for the re-draft.
- Neither Vick nor Newton hold a distinctive edge for the fantasy-playoff period of Weeks 13-16. More importantly, both quarterbacks should rank in the top 10 for all four weeks of action.
Jay Clemons can be reached on Twitter, day or night, at @ATL_JayClemons.