ASK THE EXPERTS appears weekly from training camp through the Super Bowl with answers to a new question being posted Thursday morning. How the guest experts responded when we asked them: Who is your favorite late-round sleeper?
Mike Williams was the second overall pick (1.07) for wide receivers in 2017 and he went to a team with a great passer – Philip Rivers. His final season with Deshaun Watson produced 98 catches for 1,361 yards and 11 TDs at Clemson. He suffered a herniated disk in his lower back after signing and missed the entire training camp. He would only catch 11 passes as a rookie and even twisted his knee that caused him to miss two other games. He's back this year and healthy and the 6-4, 220-pound wideout will be the No. 3 at worst this year. The Chargers no longer have a tight end with Hunter Henry gone for the year and the tall Williams figures in as a red-zone target at the very least. And Keenan Allen has remained healthy in just one of the last four years.
Dorey is the co-founder and lead NFL analyst for The Huddle and author of Fantasy Football: The Next Level. He has projected and predicted every NFL game and player performance since 1997 and has appeared in numerous magazines, newspapers, radio and television.
One of my favorites is Packers wide receiver Geronimo Allison. He's nailed down the No. 3 wide receiver job and with Randall Cobb's ankle issues, I wouldn't be surprised if he's the No. 2 by the end of the season, if not sooner.
Nazarek is the CEO of Fantasy Football Mastermind Inc. His company offers a preseason draft guide, customizable cheat sheets, a multi-use fantasy drafting program including auction values, weekly in-season fantasy newsletters, injury reports and free NFL news (updated daily) at its newly re-designed web site. He has been playing fantasy football since 1988 and is a four-peat champion of the SI.com Experts Fantasy League, a nationally published writer in several fantasy magazines and a former columnist for SI.com. He's also won in excess of $20K in recent seasons of the FFPC High Stakes Main Event. www.ffmastermind.com. Nazarek can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are plenty of late-round guys to like, but Cordarrelle Patterson is one you can snag in the very last round. We’ve all been chasing down-the-roster Patriots wideouts since Brandin Cooks left. We know Patterson will stick on the roster because of his return skills. (Dion Lewis and Danny Amendola led return duties last year.) We probably won’t know the offensive plan for Patterson until the season gets going, but we know Bill Belichick told him, “We’re gonna make you the player you should be.” And we’ve seen Patterson score 18 total TDs on receptions, rushes and returns through 5 seasons. I’ll bet on that talent-situation combo at the end of my draft.
Schauf is a senior analyst with DraftSharks.com. He has been covering fantasy football since 2002, producing content for outlets such as Sporting News, Rotoworld, Athlon and Football Diehards before landing with DS. Draft Sharks has been online since 1999 and is a 4-time winner in the FSTA’s annual fantasy football projections accuracy contests.
For quarterback, Sam Darnold, Andy Dalton, Blake Bortles, or Eli Manning are probably available. I recently took Manning with a 20th-round pick. He could easily be valuable trade bait as other quarterbacks are injured. For running backs, look at players like Darren Sproles or Theo Riddick. At wide receiver, there are many players likely to be available with a chance for significant targets. Quincy Enunwa and John Brown, both returning from injuries, head my list. At tight end, Nick Vannett is the current starter in Seattle and is worthy of a late gamble.
Mike Nease is a member of the FSWA and has been playing the game since 1985, while also writing about it since 2001. He is a writer for Big Guy Fantasy Sports. Over the years he has sampled about all the playing scenarios that fantasy football offers, including re-drafter, keeper, dynasty, auction, IDP and salary cap leagues. You can contact Mike at email@example.com anytime and during the football season follow him @mikeinsights.
I keep coming back to 49ers wide receiver Marquise Goodwin -- his upside just continues to scream out at me. He was the 18th-ranked wide receiver in the second half of last season, and he's had an entire offseason to continue to develop an even better rapport with Jimmy Garoppolo. If you're following training camp reports, more and more people are observing that he's clearly the favorite target. It isn't exactly a secret that Kyle Shanahan loves to throw the football, so Goodwin could become a target monster on a team that will likely be playing from behind more often than not. He's an absolute steal in the mid to late rounds.
Bland is a senior contributor for fantasy platform YouRulz.com, which offers in-game substitutions, and has appeared as an expert in numerous fantasy podcasts and magazines. He has been playing fantasy football since he first plucked Fantasy Football Index off the shelf as a teenager in 1992.
Embattled rookie Antonio Callaway of the Browns isn't much of a sleeper these days due to his featured role on Hard Knocks, but it looks like he will also have a featured role in the Browns receiving corps. Even if Josh Gordon plays, the Browns sign a free agent, and/or if he is briefly suspended, Callaway is going to get an opportunity to play and contribute this season--provided he doesn't have any more youthful transgressions. He has a ton of talent and is definitely worth a late-round gamble.
With two perfect seasons and multiple league championships to his credit, Scott Sachs runs Perfect Season Fantasy Football, featuring live talk and text advice. Scott won the 2011 and 2016 Fantasy Index Experts Auction league, plus he was the winner of the 2012 Fantasy Index Experts Poll.
Mohamed Sanu is getting absolutely no love due to the fact that the Falcons drafted Calvin Ridley as their first rounder in 2018. Sanu’s ADP in PPR leagues is mid-17th round. Love it! Between Julio Jones little injuries and game-day rest time and the possibility of the rookie needing some time to get used to the NFL, I see Sanu with 60 catches, 700 yards and 6 TDs (because everyone knows Julio Jones does not score TDs). That value late in the draft is worth chasing. To be honest he is a better best-ball pick due to his fluctuations from week to week, but I have drafted him this year in both formats and love him late!
Hendricks is the author of Fantasy Football Guidebook, Fantasy Football Tips and Fantasy Football Basics, all available at ExtraPointPress.com, at all major bookstores, and at Amazon and BN.com. He is a 25-year fantasy football veteran who participates in the National Fantasy Football Championship (NFFC) and finished 7th and 16th overall in the 2008 and 2009 Fantasy Football Players Championship (FFPC). He won the Fantasy Index Open in 2013. Follow him at his web site, www.ffguidebook.com.
More than one player, I think it’s about snagging wide receivers late. There are so many receivers out there (certainly on my list) that could really deliver and who won’t cost you much. Six weeks ago, guys like Chris Godwin, John Ross and John Brown were all sitting on the board toward the final rounds. They all are shooting up now, but there will be others. Rolling the dice on Cordarrelle Patterson could pay big dividends and he’s my answer for this question, as might James Washington and TreQuan Smith. Bill Belichick can turn veteran talent into big fantasy contributors while Patterson has great raw talent and experience to draw upon, plus catching passes from Tom Brady is always a good thing and New England needs wide receiver help.
Satterlee is the Fantasy Football Insider for the Charlotte Observer and is syndicated in a few other newspapers in the southeast. Satterlee first started playing fantasy football in 1990.
Dede Westbrook can be had for a song, and of course he’s fighting three other receivers for looks from one of fantasy’s especially-not-a-genius guys, Blake Bortles. But he has real flash — the sub-4.40 speed shows up in games — and Bortles is already in the habit of using him heavily. Westbrook very quietly led the Jags in targets per game in 2017 despite losing half of his rookie season to core-muscle surgery, and most of the targets he saw were deep balls or deep-ish red zone looks. Now camp observers are buzzing that he’s a much more finished product than he was a year ago, and sure enough he led the team in targets again in Week 1 of the preseason. Not that anyone seems to have noticed, but dude is all upside.
Eleff hosts the Fantasy Index Podcast, available in the iTunes Store now. He has worked for Fantasy Index off and on all century.
There are a bunch that intrigue me -- more than I can even roster. In Green Bay, Geronimo Allison is the No. 3, BUT he could be the No. 2 if Randall Cobb doesn't hold up. But I'm looking even deeper than Allison, at one of their rookies; J'Mon Moore or Marquez Valdes-Scantling. One of those guys might very well be the No. 3 early on. I have no faith in Marlon Mack staying healthy (he's hurt now) so I like the chances of Nyheim Hines or Jordan Wilkins winding up with a significant role. The problem with all of these guys, which one?, will be sorted out in the next two exhibition games, and I think I'll still be able to grab one with a last-round pick.
Richardson has been a contributing writer and editor to the Fantasy Football Index magazine and www.fantasyindex.com since 2002. His responsibilities include team defense and IDP projections and various site features, and he has run the magazine's annual experts draft and auction leagues since their inception. He previews all the NFL games on Saturdays and writes a wrap-up column on Mondays during the NFL season.