This has been a weird seasons. A handful of typically reliable quarterbacks have been — well — awful. History and the eyeball test suggest that the other shoe will drop at some point. At least the household named quarterbacks, like Cam Newton and Carson Palmer struggling hope so.
As for your fantasy team, eventually owners of these QBs will need to make a decision about when to bench them or even release them.
Here's out best advice for 5 key quarterbacks:
Joe Flacco, Ravens (62.5 QB rating): Baltimore resembles a run-first team and Flacco's health hasn't been perfect. The Ravens face two tough defenses in the Steelers and Ravens in back-to-back weeks. If for some reason you have Flacco, keep him on the bench.
Andy Dalton, Bengals (69.6): Dalton may be worth starting in Week 4 against the Browns, but then riding the bench after that as the Steelers and Bills stellar pass defenses won't make things easy for the struggling quarterback.
Cam Newton, Panthers (69.7): Newton lost two of his best weapons in Greg Olsen and Kelvin Benjamin and he's thrown twice as many picks as touchdowns. He's also been much less mobile after battling injuries this offseason. The Patriots, Lions and Eagles defenses ar eon the docket for Carolina. Newton might bounce back, but probably not before Week 8 in Chicago.
Carson Palmer, Cardinals (76.1): A tough situation, the David Johnson-less Cardinals have given Palmer struggles as he's had to try and do too much himself. Manageable match ups are ahead in the Niners and pass-soft Eagles. Maybe he's worth a bench spot for a little longer.
Phillip Rivers, Chargers (81.7): The AFC West is loaded once again, and Rivers' fantasy owners shouldn't run away yet. With the NFC East's Eagles and Giants coming up on the schedule, there could be a breakout game or two in the near future.