By Des Boodam
I don’t believe in sleepers anymore, and haven’t for about a decade. Sleepers used to be players you thought would be great that no one else was thinking about. You could draft these players late in drafts after all the better players were gone, and then a few weeks into the season, they would perform like a 2nd or 3rd round pick or better. Everyone recognizes your pick as lucky, even though your pick was planned and clearly thought out. This never happens any more. There is too much exposure now to teams and players with social media, and so now everyone sees every fringe player as a potential “SLEEPER”. Because everyone knows about a sleeper, they cease to become a sleeper and are now simply a value pick.
The challenge is getting them as late as possible so as to extract as much value as possible. The main question fantasy owners’s need to ask themselves is “how do the other managers in your league value the same players you value”? This will determine whether or not you can get your player when you want them. Let’s take a look at the QB position… these are going to be QBs outside the top 10 that I think have the best shot at moving into the top 10… I like this upside of these 2nd tier players.
Jared Goff – Los Angeles Rams
Goff looks great in camp, and looks like he’s put in some great work with his WRs in the off-season. Plays are crisp and explosive, and the offense is stacked. Goff’s three receivers, Brandin Cooks, Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp are proven and each have a unique roll in the offense. Tyler Higbee is dependable, and the biggest X-factor, Todd Gurley is as capable as any back in the league out of the backfield. There are bunches of pass catching options, and Goff could easily go 4000 yards with 30 plus TDs in this offense… top 10 numbers are a possibility.
Alex Smith – Washington Redskins
Smith is a winner and has excelled in every offense he has played in. There was a point last season where he was the number one QB in fantasy, and even though I don’t think he hits that point this year, it would not be a huge surprise if he cracks the top 10. He’s certainly a daily fantasy dream with the right matchup of course. If Derrius Guice is above average, Smith’s options and versatility will increase drastically. He has decent pass catching options as in Jordan Reed and Jaimison Crowder, as well as some experience built in with Vernon Davis and three other running backs who were on the roster last season.
Case Keenum – Denver Broncos
It’s so easy to forget about Keenum, but determined to make sure he is not the forgotten man. Maybe last year was a fluke, maybe it wasn’t but John Elway loves this guys, and went out and snatched him up. Keenum was sublime with Adam Thielen last season and has Emmanual Sanders. Damaryius Thomas is as versatile as Stephan Diggs, and there are a few other question marks on the Broncos roster. I believe the RB depth is comparable, and Jake Butts is not Eric Rudolph yet, but if he’s serviceable, Keenum could be a great fantasy QB this year. Top 10 will be hard, but let’s not pretend he doesn’t have so great pieces around him.
All three QBs should be available late!!