Quarterbacks love to bust. It’s a time-honored tradition in fantasy football.

Let’s just take a look at the best busts of 2016 for a moment. Cam Newton was the consensus No. 1 and finished 17th among quarterbacks in fantasy scoring. That’s amazing considering he was near a first-rounder and only failed to play in one game in 2016. Usually, the biggest quarterback busts are because of injury, but Newton is a rare quarterback.

He can be an MVP one year, and then not be able to complete a pass the next.

Russell Wilson, Carson Palmer and Eli Manning also competed well with Newton for the biggest busts. Wilson entered 2016 with an average draft position of three and finished 11th among quarterbacks in scoring. Palmer was putrid at times this season, finishing 19th among quarterbacks after entering 2016 with the seventh-highest ADP.

And Manning was his usual inconsistent self, going from an ADP of nine and finishing 21st among quarterbacks in fantasy scoring.

Be careful who you go after as your top quarterback. In 2016, two of the top three quarterbacks taken off the board finished outside the top-10 in fantasy scoring among quarterbacks.

Here’s three quarterbacks with bust written all over them in 2017.

Matthew Stafford is a possible bust for 2017. Flickr

Matthew Stafford, Detroit

I’ll be interested to see where Stafford lines up in 2017 in fantasy football drafts. This year was one of the best years of his career and he finished seventh among quarterbacks in fantasy scoring.

That doesn’t tell his entire story, though. He was a top-five option for much of the year, but an injury slowed him down in the final weeks. So where should he rank in 2017?

To me, it shouldn’t be in the top-10. Similar to Palmer entering 2016, I’m not buying the Lions stock. The team played way too many close games this season to give me confidence for the coming year. The NFL has a way to even things out with close games, so Detroit is on the chopping block in 2017.

That should mean less ability for Stafford to spread the ball around to a receiving corps that does little to excite me. Marvin Jones faded horribly down the stretch and Golden Tate isn’t a threat outside catch-and-runs. Detroit will get Ameer Abdullah back next year, which should give them even more reason to run the football.

Stafford isn’t on the don’t-draft list, but I’m waiting on him as more of a backup in 12-team leagues. The way he played this year, though, has me doubting he’ll be available at that level.

Kirk Cousins, Washington

Watching Cousins play is an interesting way to watch football. You leave the game thinking that Cousins is marginal at best, but when looking at the box score, you realize he had a monster fantasy day.

He finished fifth among quarterbacks in scoring in 2016 and that was just a repeat of his surprising performance in 2015. Many believed he would take a step back in 2016 in the fantasy ranks, but he only got better. However, despite his top-five finish this year, I’m skipping him in 2017 if his ADP creeps too high.

In 2016, he had five performances of more than 20 points, going for at least 24 in four of those five. That’s really good. But he also puts up marginal numbers, going for 16 or fewer in five games. That’s not terrible, but I’m not spending a third or fourth-round pick on a quarterback I can’t trust. And that’s probably the place where he’ll be drafted, unless he gets a major “X” through his name because of the departure of his offensive coordinator.

With his offensive coordinator leaving and Cousins just not being very good, I’m likely to avoid him based on what I believe will be a higher-than-supposed-to-be ADP.

Matt Ryan, Atlanta

Everybody loves Ryan now. He was a machine in 2016 and finished second among quarterbacks in fantasy scoring. He was the ultimate pick-up in fantasy, going off with an ADP of 140th (19th among quarterbacks) to finish with an MVP-caliber performance.

So naturally he’ll go from being the 19th quarterback off the board to likely a top-five QB pick. That screams of bust.

Ryan is good, but he hasn’t really been that great in recent years, even with an elite wide receiver. In the three years prior to this magical season, Ryan owned a TD to INT ratio of at best 4-to-2, with 2015 as 3-to-2.

He had never finished in the top-five in fantasy before this season and only saw the top-10 three times since 2009. That offense won’t be as good next season and we’ll see him drop considerably next season.

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