Kolb's fantasy value skyrockets after McNabb trade

Donovan McNabb, welcome to our nation's capitol. Kevin Kolb, welcome to fantasy football relevance.

The Eagles have traded McNabb to the Washington Redskins for the 37th overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft and an additional third or fourth round choice in 2011. The move creates a domino effect in fantasy circles.

Let's start off with the Redskins, who surprisingly land a former NFC East rival to lead their offensive attack.

While the presence of new coach Mike Shanahan and the league's best FPA rating among quarterbacks are both positives in terms of McNabb's value, the Redskins have major question marks on their offensive line, none more glaring than pass blocking. McNabb is also leaving an Eagles offense that threw the football a ton.

That won't happen in Washington.

The addition of Larry Johnson and Willie Parker to a backfield that already includes Clinton Portis shows an obvious desire to find success on the ground, so McNabb won't see as many pass attempts. He'll also have less talent around him in the passing game, as Santana Moss and Chris Cooley are the lone proven options.

These two veterans will experience an obvious increase in value with McNabb at the helm, but not a major one. I also see a rise in the value of Devin Thomas, who'll be worth a late-round pick. The same can't be said of Jason Campbell, who is now a candidate to be traded and will have no value if he remains with the Redskins.

Moving up the I-95 north to Philadelphia, Kolb suddenly becomes ones of the hottest sleepers in fantasy football. He showed flashes of potential last season, throwing for a combined 718 yards and four touchdowns in two starts with McNabb on the sidelines.

Fantasy owners should take those numbers with a grain of salt, though.

In his first start, Kolb threw the football 51 times in an attempt to erase a large deficit against the New Orleans Saints. His second start came against the Kansas City Chiefs, who finished 22nd in pass defense.

Still, his status as the top quarterback in the pass-happy offense of coach Andy Reid is enough to make Kolb an attractive option in fantasy drafts.

He also has a tremendous core of weapons around him, including LeSean McCoy, DeSean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin and Brent Celek. None of these four players should see a significant decrease in value with Kolb atop the depth chart, either.

So, which of these two quarterbacks will be the better fantasy option in 2010?

Personally, I'm going with Kolb. The fact that he played his college ball at Houston, which produced such NFL quarterback busts as Andre Ware and David Klingler, might be enough to scare some owners. But there is a lot to like about this former Cougar standout.

He doesn't have the same sort of arm strength as McNabb, but Kolb does possess great accuracy and is a more athletic player. He also has a better offensive line in front of him, a more talented list of playmakers at his disposal and a coach who is going to continue to utilize a pass-laden offense.

Basically, the upside with Kolb is unreal. He's now a top-12 fantasy quarterback with added value in keeper and dynasty leagues. In seasonal drafts, he'll be worth a middle-round pick.

As for McNabb, he still has a chance to finish in the top 12 at his position as well. However, I would also argue that he now comes with more risk. McNabb has always been prone to injuries, so he could be more vulnerable if the Redskins don't improve their line.

With less talent around him and what looks like an imminent drop in statistical potential, McNabb is more of a borderline No. 1 or 2 fantasy option.

Michael Fabiano is an award-winning fantasy football analyst on NFL.com. Have a burning question for Michael on anything fantasy football related? Leave it in our comments section or send it to AskFabiano@nfl.com!

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