2011 Fantasy Football Sleepers
Value picks, sleepers, and guys you want on your team for the 2011 season. Last year in the site’s infancy I posted weekly Fantasy Football Sleepers with great success. Here’s the latest update for under-rated NFL fantasy football players, composed primarily of past recommendations and benchwarmers who I’ve been targeting.
Sam Bradford: Sam Bradford was the NFL’s Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2010 and deservedly so. He led a previously 1-15 to the brink of the playoffs in only one season. He started out very impressively showing off his accuracy and football intelligence. Although he seemed to hit a rookie wall at the end of the season. This year with Josh McDaniels and a better group of receivers I think he takes a big step.
He thrived last season despite losing his top two WRs and TE during the year, forcing the offense to focus on the short passing game and not utilize Sam’s accuracy on the deep ball (an under-rated quality of his). The Rams have already made one upgrade, bringing in Josh McDaniels to coordinate the offense. He has worked wonders with QBs and should only help Sam’s development.
They upgraded their WRs during the NFL Draft by selecting Lance Kendricks (vertical TE with speed), Austin Pettis (possession WR), and last but not least Greg Salas who can play inside and has potential on the outside. Mike Sims-Walker was just signed in free agency and gives them a potential big player WR. Things are looking up for the Rams as they found their future LT in Roger Saffold, Jackson remains strong, Spags is a solid coach, and Laurinatis anchors a strong front 7. Sam is a great dynasty QB and should prove to be a valuable player in Fantasy Football for the 2011 season.
Others to consider:
- Matt Ryan: not a sleeper but a chance to join the elite this year, going a little too high for me at the moment in the sixth. Has great receivers with Jones and Douglas joining Roddy and Gonzo in 2010.
- Jay Cutler: last 10 games very productive, could be in for big season in second season under Martz. Looks quicker
- Ryan Fitzpatrick is a solid QB2 at his current ADP. Should throw the ball a ton since they figure to be down quite often. Really no comp for the job either.
- Rex Grossman: Rex has a chance to me a solid Fantasy Football QB. In three starts last year he threw for nearly 900 yards with 7 TDs to 4 INTs. The OL is improved and he has a connection with Moss & Armstrong. Gaffney is an upgrade and Davis looks in peak shape.
LaGarrette Blount: The big rookie made the most of his opportunity in 2010 supplanting Cadilliac Williams as the Buccaneers #1 RB. He ran with tons of power and looked at times impossible to take down, but one area of concern is his fumbling. Not a sleeper as he was one of this site’s first big in-season recommendations (before he carried the ball).
He is being slightly under-valued. You should be looking to take a top WR in the beginning of the draft and Blount can be had in the 3rd or 4th round. Tampa Bay exceeded everyone’s expectations except coach Raheem Morris and they did not while starting a bunch of different offensive line combinations. They did well to re-sign key guys and they have the depth to be better. With little competition, Blount could be a top 10 RB.
Others to consider:
- Shonn Greene: Viewed as a finisher for most of his career. He used to carry Iowa in the 4th quarter and has displayed some of the same ability for the Jets, down the stretch and in the playoffs. NYJ’s foundation is the run game, attempting around 600 rushes a year which means Greene has an opportunity to put up huge numbers if he can assume the role. LT could vulture some TDs and time, but there is a lot to share.
- James Starks: All over him last year as I liked him coming out of Buffalo. Wiffed on one in-season recommendation but broke out during the playoffs. Integral part of the Packers championship, showed potential to be starter when shouldering a heavy load and maintaining a decent YPC. Grant will probably start splitting with him but I think will get hurt or lose the job to him. Green is also someone to watch out for, but probably is behind like Starks was last year. Nice value with high upside.
- Tim Hightower: Getting great value with his ADP which is sure to rise. Has control of the job in DC and should be targeted as a RB3.
- Stevan Ridley: This banger will get on the field, whether it only for goal-line or eventually as the clock killer. I think he scores a bunch of TDs and earns 8-12 touches a game.
- Tashard Choice: He has been productive every time given the opportunity to start. Has been hurt and just getting back, but should Jones go down Choice will produce his role. Definitely worth the cuff if you pull the trigger with Felix.
- Delone Carter: Read the article HERE. Even with Addai back, he has the potential to take over that job eventually and earn goalline carries.
- Deeper: Lex Hilliard-preseason star from a few seasons ago is the only Dolphins RB who knows the playbook and could be best inside runner.
Kenny Britt: I’ve long been a fan of Britt since his time at Rutgers but injuries together with poor QB play halted his breakout season. He taught me something about Fantasy Football, although I loved Britt’s skills late in the draft I refused to draft him because Fisher loved his vets so much and they were a run first team. I realize now that the strategy is flawed as talent at that time of the draft should outweigh most other considerations aside for a handcuff or so. Britt is so talented and CJ forces teams to play him honestly. Hasselbeck is competent enough to allow Britt to continue to blossom IF he keeps his head on straight.
Others to Consider:
- Lance Moore isn’t necessarily a sleeper but he has a chance to pick up more targets with Reggie Bush going to the Dolphins. Hasn’t hit 80 receptions or 10 TD yet has a chance to be involved week to week, not just at home. Also, Mike Thomas is going to be the #1 WR in Jacksonville by all accounts and he should be valuable in PPR and non leagues.
- Andre Roberts: Showed great speed and hands during Senior Bowl practice last year. Has a chance to take over for Breaston and step over Doucet. Could also be returner, if you’re into that sort of thing.
- Antonio Brown: Getting his chance to start opposite Mike Wallace and not messing around. Did well at the end of the season and has assumed control with Saunders going down. Building nice rapport with Big Ben.
- Greg Little: Could be the next Mike Williams as I wrote in May, but without camp it’s more likely he works his way into a steady option by the end of the season.
- Denarius Moore: Preseason star and NFL Draft sleeper. Role reduced with Ford back, but most complete receiver on team.
- David Nelson: Another WR from that Florida class joining Harvin, Murphy, and Cooper. Although he’s 6-5, he spent over 94% of his snaps from the slot, making him a mismatch against small corners. Scored TDs in 3 straight games at one point, used like Colston. He could amass a ton of points while Buffalo is trailing, and if so would be a steal
- Deeper – Adrian Arrington: After falling all the way to the seventh round the large, rangy target from Michigan should finally assume a role in the offense with Henderson let go. If Colston were to get hurt, he’s the man you would want, did well last year when out and in the preseason.
Jimmy Graham: The former Bball player who was a double-double machine showed new observers why a guy who played football for less than two years was a third round pick of the defending Super Bowl champs. He really came on at the end of last season and I mentioned him early last year as his size on the outside was something the Saints would look to exploit. Jeremy Shockey has been released, opening the door for Graham to entrench himself as the starting TE in one of the league’s best offenses.
Others to consider:
- Owen Daniels: Played at less than 100% last season but finally got healthy at the end of the season and showed he is back. He just signed a big contract and shouldn’t be undervalued, top 5 potential.
- Jared Cook Jr.: This is the year Cook finally get to play and show the world what he can do. After being very productive at South Carolina, he’s been stuck behind Crumpler and VY’s college teammate Bo Sciafe. Cook was finally able to show fans what he can do, producing big numbers at the end of last season
- Lance Kendricks: Has a chance to put up an all-time rookie season.
Entry filed under: Fantasy Football, NFL. Tags: 2011, 2011 sleepers, Detroit Lions, Fantasy Football, fantasy football sleepers, fantasy sleepers, ffb, Football, Games, Jimmy Graham, Kenny Britt, LaGarrette Blount, Life, lockout, new england patriots, News, NFL, nfl sleepers, Saints, Sam Bradford, Sports, Super Bowl.