Many are searching for the gems of the draft already. With Fantasy Football right around the corner, intensive research is happening on who the big sleepers are this season in Fantasy Football. Who is going to have a breakout season this season, like Miles Austin of the Cowboys had last year? There are many candidates for top sleepers, but we’re just going to give you our top 10 list of them.
10.) TE John Carlson, Seattle Seahawks
Carlson was a bright spot in the Seahawks season last year. The TE racked up 574 yards and 7 TD’s, and his production will only go up with a healthy Matt Hassellbeck. He should see a lot more looks with Pete Carrol in the mix. Matt Hassellbeck even tweeted that Carlson was “this year’s fantasy sleeper.” If a professional QB on twitter said it…Carlson was a must-add to our list.
9.) RB Jerome Harrison, Cleveland Browns
Jerome Harrison may play for the Cleveland Browns, but he deserves a spot on our list. Harrison took over the Browns’ RB spot late in the season last year. In the last 3 games of the season, Harrison burst onto the scene with 561 yards and 5 touchdowns in the last 3 games of Clevelands’ season. Missing out on the playoffs hurt fans a little less when they saw Harrison’s potential breakthrough. Against Kansas City in one of these games, he rushed for 286 yards and 3 TD’s. This secured his spot at #3 behind Jamal Lewis (295) and Adrian Peterson (296) for most rushing yards in a single game. He will be available in the middle-to-late rounds as well.
8.) TE Jermichael Finley, Green Bay Packers
Finley caught the attention of many fans with his performance in Green Bays’ playoff game where he amassed 159 yards. With QB Aaron Rodgers improving each season that he is under center, big things should be in store for Finley. Finley has potential to put up huge numbers for fantasy owners. He will be heavily targeted but could have a very large payoff if you snag him in your draft. We don’t think he’ll be the 1st TE taken, so be alert as to when the TE’s start coming off the board.
7.) WR Arrelious Benn, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Benn has all the ability in the world to become a great fantasy WR. The only thing holding him back is QB Josh Freeman. Benn should serve as a great option for the young QB on the outside. Expect Benn to put up quality numbers and be a good contributor to this Tampa offense. Benn will be a go-to option on the Bucs, as they let WR Antonio Bryant walk in the off-season. We foresee many passes being thrown Benns’ way.
6.) QB Alex Smith, San Francisco 49ers
Alex Smith really turned his game on last season and solidified himself as the 49ers QB. After a couple abysmal seasons, it seems as if Alex Smith has found his game. The addition of Michael Crabtree and a rejuvenated Vernon Davis gave Smith the first real options he’s had in his career at WR. In just 9 games Smith threw for 18 TD’s, 12 INT’s, and 2,350 yards. If he stays healthy he will be a quality option at QB. Chances are he will be available in the later rounds.
5.) WR Mike Wallace, Pittsburgh Steelers
Mike Wallace is a great WR for your fantasy team. He had 39 catches for 756 yards and 6 TD’s. He put up those numbers as a rookie, so we can only expect him to get better. The only thing hindering his performance could be Ben Roethlisbergers’ 6-game suspension. Once Big Ben is back in the offense, expect Wallaces’ production to pick up heavily. He did lead the NFL last season in yards-per-catch with a 19.4 average.
4.) WR Julian Edelman, New England Patriots
White WR for the Patriots in the slot? No, we aren’t talking about Wes Welker. Get familiar with the name Julian Edelman. He burst onto the scene with 10 catches for 103 yards in the game Wes Welker was injured in. Taking over the slot WR for the Patriots last season was Edelman. In the game Welker got hurt, Edelman became Brady’s new favorite target as he picked up 10 catches for 103 yards. With Welker’s return questionable by the start of the season, Edelman will likely be Brady’s favorite target when the season starts.
3.) QB Kevin Kolb, Philadelphia Eagles
With Donovan McNabb in Washington, this gives way to 25 year old Kevin Kolb to take over the team. Kolb is slated by many as “This year’s ultimate fantasy sleeper” however he isn’t #1 because we don’t buy into the hype (that much at least.) Kolb is inheriting an offense with many playmakers in DeSean Jackson, Brent Celek, Jeremy Maclin, and LeSean McCoy. Kolb has a great deep threat in Jackson and Maclin and a very reliable TE in Brent Celek. Kolb is slated to join the 4,000+ yard passing yardage club that was heavily populated last season.
2.) RB Knowshon Moreno, Denver Broncos
Knowshon Moreno has tremendous potential to be a high scoring fantasy RB this season. After his rookie outing, he almost eclipsed the 1,000 yard mark, coming up short at 947 rushing yards. If healthy, Moreno could put up some nice numbers for fantasy owners. Moreno did lose 4 fumbles last season, but as a rookie we’ll give him a pass. Moreno should be in the Top 10, but why is he at #2? Moreno will face the Raiders, Chiefs, and Chargers twice this season. The AFC West has very little rushing defense to prevent Moreno from potentially going off. You may want to pick up Moreno and just play him these games.
- San Diego Chargers Rushing Defense – #20 in league giving up 117.6 yards per game (10 rushing TD’s on season)
- Oakland Raiders Rushing Defense – #29 in league giving up 155.5 yards per game (24 rushing TD’s on season)
- Kansas City Chiefs Rushing Defense – #31 in league giving up 156.5 yards per game (18 rushing TD’s on season)
1.) WR Devin Aromashodu, Chicago Bears
In an effort to look completely biased, we have put Devin Aromashodu at #1 on our list. DA made his presence known at the end of the season last year by putting up 282 yards on 22 receptions for 4 TD’s in his last 4 games. One of his TD’s was the game winner in overtime against the Minnesota Vikings on Monday Night Football. The Bears’ offense will include much more passing with the addition of Mike Martz as their offensive coordinator. We expect DA to see a lot more passes thrown his way this season and Cutler to be more efficient. Check his performance out from the Minnesota game.
Honorable Mentions: Shonn Greene, Steve Smith, CJ Spiller, Early Doucet, & Beanie Wells.