Anthony Richardson surpasses Patrick Mahomes in ESPN's latest ranking

Will the second-year pro live up to the hype?
Indianapolis Colts, Anthony Richardson
Indianapolis Colts, Anthony Richardson / Michael Hickey/GettyImages

While fans wait for training camp to kick off in a few weeks, it's all about the hypotheticals. And boy, oh boy, have there been some loaded hypotheticals for second-year quarterback Anthony Richardson.

The Indianapolis Colts passer enters just his second season, and after injury forced him to miss 13 games in 2023.

Yet, the expectations for the Florida product continue to skyrocket. In some of the latest rankings built by ESPN fantasy football analyst Field Yates, last year's first-round pick made quite the jump.

How high was Richardson listed? How about higher than Patrick Mahomes, Lamar Jackson and Joe Burrow? See for yourself:

If Anthony Richardson meets these expectations, the Colts will be a playoff team in 2024

Taking a look at the top five fantasy quarterbacks in terms of winning percentage, for the entirety of the 2023 season, all of them belonged to playoff teams. The top five passers (fantasy winning percentage) in 2023 were:

1. Josh Allen (0.553)
2. Dak Prescott (0.552)
3. Jalen Hurts (0.534)
4. Brock Purdy (0.518)
5. Tua Tagovailoa (0.517)

(Data taken from CBS Sports leagues for the 2023 season)

Now, looking at Yates' latest rankings, one could only assume that teams like the Bills, Eagles, Ravens and Chiefs will make the postseason. With Richardson firmly entrenched in the top five, by this logic, then the Colts will be a playoff team this season, too. In fact, they'll be more than just a divisional contender.

If we simply looked at Hurts' 2023 season as the no. 3 quarterback, he posted a line of:

3,858 passing yards
23 passing touchdowns
15 interceptions
605 rushing yards
15 rushing touchdowns

Minus the higher interception number, I'd assume Colts fans would be very pleased with a season like the above for Richardson, especially as a second-year pro. If Richardson threw for nearly 4,000 yards while also adding 500-plus on the ground, totaling over 35 touchdowns, then the sky is the limit for this Colts offense.

Will Richardson live up to all the hype being built behind him for this coming season? There are some tall orders being placed for the young quarterback, and the pressure continues to grow for a guy who started just four games in 2023.

But, Colts fans are hopeful that he is the guy to lead this franchise to the promised land.