Alright, it’s time for some of you to wake the $%&# up, because you have been sleeping on these guys!
Too intense?? Sorry. It’s just upsetting seeing these awesome football players going so late in drafts! It’s time to wake up and smell the coffee. Here’s a list of “sleepers” - guys that are drafted in the middle-to-late rounds and unexpectedly become prominent fantasy options.
Tyrod Taylor (QB18) ADP: 130
Guess who finished the season as the QB8 last year and is now being drafted as the QB18?
Guess who finished the season as the QB17 last year and is now being drafted as the QB8?
I have no idea. Taylor is seriously as consistent as they come. Last year, he was a top 15 QB in 12 of the 15 games he played. He also has rushed for almost 600 yards each of the last two seasons. This guy can do it all!
Oh and let's talk about Sammy Watkins for a second. He is good...like really good. Watkins was hobbled with an injury most of last year, but is coming into this season allegedly fully healthy. If Watkins can stay healthy, Taylor should really take his game to the next level.
I just don't understand why someone would draft Cam Newton when you can get Taylor 53 picks later. By drafting Taylor, you essentially have a weekly QB1 with immense upside, plus you're getting him for pocket change.
Brian Hoyer (QB26) ADP: 223
In most redraft leagues, I would not draft Hoyer. There are so many good quarterbacks, and I usually don’t want more than one of them on my team, but Hoyer should at least be drafted inside the top 20 quarterbacks.
His injury history is his biggest problem. Hoyer broke his arm after just five starts last year and has never finished a season. But hey, check out what this guy does when he plays! Last year, after taking over for the Bears, he had four games in a row with 300 passings yards and threw six touchdowns with zero interceptions. Even though he has always played for bad teams, he just knows how to put up numbers.
I see the cons…he is on the 49ers, he is still injury prone, and he does not have a ton of weapons. Regardless, I believe the pros outweigh the cons. He is reuniting with Head Coach Kyle Shanahan (look what he did for Matt Ryan), on a pass happy offense that is going to be playing from behind in most games. That means a lot of garbage time yards and touchdowns - every fantasy owner's favorite. If Hoyer can find a way to stay healthy all year, then he could very well slip into QB1 territory here and there.
Bilal Powell (RB24) ADP: 63
Powell is a very talented running back and an excellent pass catcher. The Jets relied heavily on Powell at the end of last season, and he ended up averaging over 25 touches over the last four games. Matt Forte’s 31 year old body obviously wore down throughout last season, and I expect more of the same this year because he's still, ya know, old. Powell was actually on the field more than Forte last year and averaged 5.5 yards per carry compared to Forte’s meager 3.7 yards per carry. With the Jets looking towards the future, they seemingly have no reason to feature Forte anymore. Powell could easily be a mid-range RB2 this season and has a ton of upside, especially in PPR leagues.
Terrance West (RB42) ADP: 115
With the news of Kenneth Dixon missing the rest of the season, West should be on everyone’s mind. He was playing extremely well last year until Dixon joined the backfield and started to take away some work. The Ravens did add the often-injured Danny Woodhead to their backfield, but he should be more of a pass catcher and third down back. West should be handling 1st and 2nd down as well as the goal line carries this year.
The Ravens have also made it known that they want to run the ball more frequently. They have gotten bigger on the offensive line, they are more focused on power running, and they have a better defense. Overall, West is going far too late in fantasy drafts right now. He is the starting running back for the Ravens and unless they add someone else to the back field, that isn't changing.
Jamaal Williams (RB52) ADP: 148
The Packers drafted Williams out of BYU in the fourth round in this year's draft. While at BYU, Williams was a workhorse back and showed that he has the potential to handle a large workload in the NFL. The Packers running game was very weak last year, and even though Ty Montgomery was their most effective runner, he only received double-digit carries in one game. One! The Packers like Montgomery as a third down back and maybe he is the starter at the beginning of the year, but I expect Williams to take over as the early down back. If Williams does become the starter, the sky is the limit for him being on Green Bay’s high powered offense. Keep your eye out for him late in drafts.
Randall Cobb (WR39) ADP: 93
Cobb is going way too late this year guys! I understand that he just had a “down” season, but honestly his stats were not that bad.
In the 13 games he played, Cobb had 60 catches, 610 yards and 4 touchdowns. Okay, fine, not the best stats in the world, but Davante Adams had 75 catches, 997 yards and 12 touchdowns. Adams played in 3 more games than Cobb. If Cobb played those games, he could have easily had very similar stats.
Clearly, the difference comes downs to touchdowns. Cobb had 12 touchdowns in 2014, so it's not like he's a ghost in the redzone. Look at Tyreek Hill (ADP: 50). He had a very similar receiving stat line as Cobb - Hill posted 61 catches for 593 yards and 6 touchdowns. Hill did have some rushing touchdowns but only had one more catch and less receiving yards while playing 16 games.
Oh, let’s not forget who throws to Cobb. If I’m betting on anyone to have a comeback season, I’m taking the guy who has Aaron Rodgers as his quarterback. Jordy Nelson is another year older and Adams has only had one good year. Cobb could win a lot of people fantasy leagues this year.
Corey Coleman (WR43) ADP: 104
I know I know, the Browns are about as exciting as waiting at the dentist’s office, but did you hear? They aren’t supposed to be as bad this year! Vegas has them winning 4.5 games so thats 3.5 more than last season.
Seriously though, their offensive line will be better which should give Coleman more time to get open. Coleman was drafted 15th overall last year to be a future star for their offense, and he is a home run hitter with big play potential. We saw some of those big plays at the beginning of last year but then he got injured for six weeks and never really settled in.
Kenny Britt is a new addition who quietly had a 1,000 yard season last year for the Rams, but the Browns needed someone after losing Terrelle Pryor’s 140 targets. Both Britt and Coleman are going late in drafts but I will take Coleman’s tremendous potential over the consistency that you might see from Britt. Coleman is an excellent value/upside pick where he is currently being drafted.
John Brown (WR47) ADP: 111
Brown looked poised to breakout last year, after a season with 65 catches, 1,003 receiving yards and 7 touchdowns. Then boom, strange injuries at the beginning of last season then it is discovered that he has sickle-cell trait. I’m not a doctor, but I do know that sickle-cell trait can be managed. There are other players in the NFL that have overcome this condition.
Apparently John Brown has it under control and is coming into this season much healthier. Fitzgerald is another year older and the cardinals are looking for a #2 receiver (other than David Johnson). Floyd is gone and while they do have other receivers on the depth chart, I believe that John Brown has the most talent. If he is able to stay on the field, Brown could easily be a flex option with top 20 receiver potential.
David Njoku (TE21) ADP: 181
Really??? Another Brown???
Yeah, I don’t feel great about it. But this team is going to have people who score fantasy points...believe it or not. While it’s uncommon for a rookie tight end to contribute their first year, Njoku is an athletic freak. Immediately after the Browns drafted Njoku they cut their very reliable tight end, Gary Barnidge.
This rookie should receive plenty of playing time and could be a very reliable option if he can learn quickly. Right now he is undrafted in most leagues. Monitor his progress throughout the preseason; he could be a solid dart throw at the end of drafts when you are waiting on a tight end.
Be sure to check out the rest of the FantasyFusion draft kit here.