Jordan Love fantasy outlook and projection for 2021

So long as the Aaron Rodgers saga in Green bay remains in flux, fantasy football managers need to consider what Green Bay’s offense could look like with Jordan love under center. Having not played since 2019, what is a reasonable fantasy outlook for Jordan Love, and should you select him at his current ADP?

Jordan Love fantasy outlook for 2021

When I start deciphering roles and how players will fit into their schemes during the NFL offseason, most of them are relatively straightforward. Sure, there might be some position battles here and there, but we tend to have a decent idea, so long as the personnel and coaching remain the same. That is not the case for the Green Bay Packers right now and especially for Jordan Love.

His entire fantasy outlook and relevance depend on the result from the ongoing Rodgers saga. Should Rodgers return to the Packers, barring injury, Love won’t see the field except for preseason games or potentially in Week 18. If the two sides end up parting ways, the Packers will likely thrust Love into the starting role. But what would that even look like?

Love was a healthy scratch all of 2020, and the last time we saw him throw a pass in a meaningful game was in December of 2019 against Kent State. Where is he in his development? What about his progression on the speed of the game? Indeed, the Packers have talented players on offense, but can Love make the most of their talent? Also, does he even keep the starting role all season? 

It is worth noting that the Packers have another QB option should Love struggle in Blake Bortles. Can you imagine the blowback if the Packers go with Bortles over the guy they selected in the first round just one year ago, which led to this drama in the first place? 

Remember, QB is extremely deep in fantasy

The QB in fantasy, outside of superflex formats, is deep and one you should wait on. The difference between QB1 and QB10 in 2020 was just 2.5 ppg and 1.4 points from QB12 to QB18. Love’s 2021 fantasy outlook has him outside this conversation; he is someone I would only consider as a QB3 in superflex formats. In 1QB leagues, he should go undrafted even if he is the eventual starter, as there are safer options with more upside.

Love’s fantasy projection

Projections are a labor of love and frustration. Going through the nuances of previous seasons and tendencies of coaches and game scripts produces an idea of how an offense will perform. If we are projecting the Packers with Love as the QB, we don’t have this luxury. Sure, there are stats on the surrounding players, but that was with one of the greatest QBs ever to play the game, not someone looking to take their first snap. 

If we look at 2020, the Packers ran 61.9 plays per game with a passing percentage of 55.3%. But on those passing plays, they were incredibly efficient. En route to his MVP recognition, Rodgers threw for 48 touchdowns at a 9.1% rate. The next closest teams were the Bills and Buccaneers (tied at 6.71%). That simply will not happen should Love be at the helm in 2021.

Efficiency continues to be an issue for Love’s fantasy projection

We will see a reduction in overall efficiency along with big plays and scoring opportunities. Even at a slightly reduced rate of 60 plays per game and 53% passing rate, that’s only 541 total dropbacks. Take out the sacks, and we are looking at 499 total attempts for both him and Bortles. 

Assuming we see Bortles play in Week 18 and a few other snaps along the way, Love comes in with 439 attempts. This would have been the QB22 in attempts last year but last amongst QBs who played in all 16 games (Ryan Tannehill – 481). With a generous 65% completion percentage and 7.66 yards per attempt, Love ends up with 285 completions on 439 attempts for 3,364 yards. 

With touchdowns a less sticky stat given the likely reduction of drives hitting the end zone or break-away plays, 21 TDs (4.78%) is in the realm of possibility with the talent on this offense. Factor in his rushing ability we saw at Utah State (170 attempts for 403 yards and 9 TDs) along with his passing stats, and Love ends up with 221.38 points (4 points per TD) at 13.84 ppg. In points, this would have been QB22 last season. However, this is also last amongst QBs who started in 15 or more games in 2020.

I do want to say this is still early in the process. Even if these numbers change slightly, I believe Love struggles, and his fantasy outlook reflects as much.

Love’s fantasy ADP

When looking at ADP, the site you are playing is a factor. Currently, Love is going off the boards in 1QB formats at QB46 (Sleeper), QB37 (MFL), and QB38 (Underdog), with ADPs at 341, 193.6, and 215.7, respectively. With that being said, when it comes to Love, they all tell a similar story — do not draft.

In superflex drafts, Love’s ADP does climb a touch, hitting 209 on Sleeper but well outside the draftable range.

There is just no incentive to select a QB who will never see the field. Yet, as this article has theorized, all of this would change depending on Rodgers. Should the two sides find their differences unreconcilable, Love enters the season as the Week 1 starter. Due to positional scarcity, he needs to be considered in superflex formats.

For 1QB, even if he is the starter, unless he comes out with a Justin Herbert-type start to his redshirt rookie season, Love is best left on the waivers. There are too many proven QBs available, even if you are one of the last to draft a quarterback. 

In superflex formats, Love deserves to be drafted in fantasy but nothing higher than a QB3. Given the wide range of variance in his potential fantasy outlook, I would not feel comfortable needing to rely on Love despite the weapons around him. 

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Tommy Garrett is a writer for Pro Football Network covering the NFL and fantasy football. You can read more of his work here and follow him at @TommygarrettPFN on Twitter.

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