NFL Fantasy Sleeper Picks 2017
5 Sleeper Picks to Boost Your NFL Fantasy Team
QB – Carson Wentz – Philadelphia Eagles
It’s Carson Wentz’s time to shine. Last year, Wentz showed flashes of his potential, including three 100+ passer rating games during the final four regular season games. He definitely underwent growing pains, but he was also shackled by receivers who didn’t provide the support a QB needs. Wentz dealt with 31 dropped balls, which was the second most of any pivot in the NFL.
He’ll continue to learn how to use his size to his advantage, enabling passes over monstrous defensive squads more often. Perhaps more importantly, he’ll enjoy a superior supporting cast in 2017. Torrey Smith and Alshon Jeffrey join the Eagles, both of whom will serve as steady, experienced wide receivers. Blount will help Philly gain more first downs on short situations, giving Carson more opportunities to pass to his new group of targets. Expect Carson to learn his rookie lessons and break out, rather than experience a sophomore slump.
WR – Josh Doctson – Washington Redskins
Washington QB Kirk Cousins credited God for his decision to sign one-year contracts with the franchise, which serves as motivation for him to continue to throw the ball at an elite rate. Kirk attempted 543 passes in 2015 and 606 in 2016, a number which will probably rise again in 2017.
Josh Doctson will be one of the targets who benefit from Cousins’ continued rise as an elite NFL quarterback. He didn’t play much last year, but he showed promise as a potential big-time playmaker in his limited time with Washington, and his career in college with TCU.
Josh will be given a chance to play a significant role as a starter now that Pierre Garcon and DeSean Jackson no longer serve the team. There’s a good chance that he’ll remain undrafted in your fantasy NFL league, so make sure you scoop him as a depth pick with serious upside.
RB – Joe Mixon – Cincinnati Bengals
Cincinnati was somewhat fortunate that Joe Mixon fell to the second round of the draft because of serious behavioral issues with this prized prospect. If the Bengals successfully steer Mixon away from negativity, there’s a good chance he’ll end up as an absolute steal for the striped kittens. Some may be worried about Joe sharing possessions with Giovani Bernard and Jeremy Hill, but Mixon’s athleticism will soon outshine his peers.
Mixon could end up playing far more than expected because of his versatility. Joe will mostly fit in as an eventual top rushing option, but he’s adept at receiving as well, including grinding out yards after receptions. Joe’s quick and shifty enough to also serve as a returner, although Cincy might want to limit Mixon’s return game to ensure his longevity. If you can snag Mixon later than the seventh or eighth round of a ten-team pool, go for it.
RB – Christian McCaffrey – Carolina Panthers
What happened to the dabtastic Carolina Panthers who nearly ran the table during the 2015 regular season? The franchise which appeared nearly invincible suffered a serious setback in 2016, earning nine fewer wins and failing to make the playoffs. Injuries to Cam Newton played a role, as did shifts in the roster. Carolina might’ve been the least lucky team in the NFL, losing six games by a field goal or less. Win half of those games, and Carolina has a shot at the playoffs.
One of the best consolations for the lost 2016 season was the fact that the talented Panthers received a chance to draft high, choosing running back Christian McCaffrey with the seventh overall pick. McCaffrey’s primed make the most of his elite athletic talents, which were on display in college and at the combine. At the same time, the Panthers look forward to bouncing back and enjoying a big season. Newton will run a bit less, so Christian will get a chance to receive more handoffs and passes, boosting his potential value.
TE – Jack Doyle – Indianapolis Colts
A massive mountain of a man, Jack’s six-foot-six, 262-pound frame served the Colts well during his career-best 2016 season. He finished with career highs in all statistics after a tenuous 2015 season in which his production dipped to near-invisible levels.
His 2017 regular season should be even better, because Dwayne Allen will no longer clog the field, making Doyle the unquestioned, number one TE option. Doyle’s breakout year ended up placing him in the top fifteen of all fantasy tight ends, and the additional targets he’ll enjoy should easily push him into the top ten. If Andrew Luck’s injury situation subsides a couple of weeks earlier than expected, Doyle could be one of the better steals in fantasy NFL drafts.
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