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Welcome FanCave faithful as we are bringing you yet another sleeper column for your NFL season-long fantasy leagues. This article will focus on a deep sleeper at QB, RB, WR, and TE for your upcoming 2018 fantasy football leagues. The purpose for a deep sleeper play will be for those who have large leagues, with say 12-16 people. As I dig in deep to rookies and veterans in new situations, I will aim to find you some players you can target at the very end of your drafts. Let’s get right to it!
*Average draft positions via FantasyPros
QB – Derek Carr – Oakland Raiders – ADP: 135 (QB-21)
It seems that there are quite a few quarterbacks ranked ahead of Carr this year. I get it. 2017 was a down year for Carr and the Raiders. Amari Cooper had his struggles, and a running game was pretty much non-existent at times. Carr’s numbers across the board all declined from the previous season. He threw less passes for fewer completions, and he only had 22 touchdowns. Look it was a bad season, but the Raiders have some new faces in town. Carr’s longtime favorite red-zone target Michael Crabtree is now with the Ravens. However, the Raiders brought in Martavis Bryant from Pittsburgh, and longtime Green Bay Packer Jordy Nelson to fill the void.
Carr has already been quoted as saying that after working with Nelson a little bit, he cannot believe the Packers let him walk. It will be interesting to see if the two can pick each others careers up a bit, and build a nice rapport. Lets also not forget the Raiders have a top five ranked offensive line, anchored by the fierce Donald Penn. I prefer Carr over a handful of guys ranked ahead of him. I think he is a steal for his ADP, and he will be backing up a lot of my teams.
RB – Chris Ivory – Buffalo Bills – ADP: 166 (RB-60)
Ivory landed in Buffalo, and with his track record of being a solid back-up in Jacksonville and New York over the last few seasons, he is a big target of mine in my drafts. Bills starting running back LeSean McCoy seems to be facing a suspension, depending on whatever happens with the insane story that came up a few weeks ago. If McCoy does miss any time, Ivory seems to be in line to pick up the bulk of the work.
He has been a good pass catcher throughout his career, and this will be a bad team, likely going through QB changes throughout the season. This could lead to more opportunities to protect a learning QB as well. For where he is being drafted, he is certainly worth the flyer, especially if for some reason you end up with McCoy. My advice this year would be to not draft McCoy, in case you weren’t following there…
WR – Albert Wilson – Miami Dolphins – ADP: 196.1
I always liked throwing a DFS dart at Wilson a little bit last year, as there were times early in the season where the Chiefs looked to be the best offense in football. While he didn’t get much run there, Wilson has found himself in probably the best possible position he could be in for his career. He has been getting hyped up a bit in early preseason workouts working with the first team, and appears to be solidifying the #2 receiver role.
The competition will be tough however, Danny Amendola is also with the Dolphins now, and he figures to slide in the slot receiver role. Kenny Stills and Davante Parker would also seem safe, but I think Wilson comes out ahead of one of them. It is a long shot, but this is a deep sleeper article after all. He could make a great last round pick if he comes out of the gate as a starter. Last year as a part-time starter in Kansas City, he put up decent numbers with 42 catches for 554 yards and 3 touchdowns.
TE – Tyler Kroft – Cincinnati Bengals – ADP: 315 (TE-29)
Well I liked Kroft a bit more before the news that fellow tight end Tyler Eifert was nearing full strength, and likely good to go for the regular season. However, in a deep league where I need a second tight end, I may still consider Kroft. He should be even more under the radar now with the return of Eifert, and he could still end up in the starting role. Eifert has missed a lot of football due to injury the past couple years, and I am not even sure he can be considered the favorite to win the starting job.
The Bengals will be a struggling offense again it seems, as they have been in years past. They haven’t done much to upgrade anywhere, so this looks like a .500 team at best. They will likely be down a lot in their games and playing catch-up, and when most of the defensive attention goes to A.J. Green, the middle opens up for Andy Dalton to find his tight ends. Kroft is just 25-years-old, a monster at 6′-6″ 240, and in a contract year. He is coming off of a fantastic season considering this offense, as he grabbed 42 passes for 404 yards and 7 TD’s. He could make for a late round steal in your larger drafts!
Thank you for checking out my NFL season-long fantasy football deep sleeper article from FanCave. Stay tuned to fancavedfs.com from now through the pre-season, as our team will be firing out non-stop football material for all of your season-long needs.