9 Young Players to Stash on Your Fantasy Football Dynasty Team

Rob Tong@colickyboyContributor IIIJune 26, 2012

9 Young Players to Stash on Your Fantasy Football Dynasty Team

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    When you talk about young players for fantasy football dynasty leagues, everyone knows about Robert Griffin, Andrew Luck and Trent Richardson.

    But beyond the obvious, are there other young players who could make a difference in your dynasty league? Of course there are.

    The million dollar question is who?

    I'll give you some players to target for your dynasty league who may not necessarily be getting all the attention of RG3, Luck and Richardson but who could pay dividends down the road.


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    The talent level for rookie quarterbacks falls off steeply after Luck and Griffin, but there could be a couple surprises here.


    Brock Osweiler, DEN

    Even with a healthy neck, Peyton Manning has played 14 seasons already. For comparison purposes, Joe Montana retired after 16 seasons. So Manning likely won't be playing more than a couple seasons.

    As a second-round draft pick, the Broncos appear to have invested themselves somewhat heavily on Osweiler for the future.

    Osweiler can be Manning's protege and grow into the starting role, much like Aaron Rodgers did under Brett Favre. And by then, Demaryius Thomas should be a stud veteran receiver for Osweiler to utilize.

    Osweiler won't be a benefit this season but could provide a solid return in a couple years.


    Blaine Gabbert, JAX

    Depending on the size of your dynasty league, Gabbert may or may not be available at this point. But if he is, you may want to consider adding him.

    Yes, Gabbert stunk last year. But what's difficult to assess is whether he stunk because he has no talent or whether he stunk because he had no supporting cast.

    The 2011 Jaguars receiving corps could quite possibly have been the worst group in fantasy history. And having no one to throw to would compound the errors Gabbert made in his decision-making process.

    This year, Gabbert has the very talented Laurent Robinson and talented rookie Justin Blackmon. While I wouldn't expect Gabbert to light up the scoreboard, he won't be the butt of jokes anymore. Don't forget Gabbert was the No. 10 overall pick of the 2011 NFL draft.

    Given time to grow with young wideouts Robinson and Blackmon, Gabbert could grow over time to be a viable mid-range QB1.

    Honorable Mention

    Ryan Tannehill has a lot of upside, but unfortunately, the receiving corps is a mess, so don't expect anything other than an occasional big game followed by plenty of duds.

    Tannehill is a strong long-term prospect if he ever gets a supporting cast that he can take advantage of.

    It's a big if, though, so you're rolling the dice on what the Fish do in the future because there's nothing to see right now.

Running Backs

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    Trent Richardson is an obvious pick. but there are choices beyond Richardson for your consideration.


    Doug Martin, TB

    I've said since before the NFL draft that Martin could be as productive as Richardson—but at a lower draft cost.

    Behind a solid offensive line and surrounded by a good supporting cast, Martin is in a better situation than Richardson.

    Isaiah Pead, STL

    Steven Jackson, based on touches, has about another year or possibly two left in the tank.

    Meanwhile, Pead, the Senior Bowl MVP, is an elusive runner who also displays the toughness to hit it up inside.

    The Rams' second-round pick can contribute now as a change-of-pace back and eventually grow into the lead role once Jackson retires.

    Ronnie Hillman, DEN

    Willis McGahee is the starter, but head coach John Fox did use a two-back system in Carolina with DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart. So it's possible Hillman, the Broncos' third-round pick, will see some decent action this season.

    It looks like Knowshon Moreno's days are numbered, and Hillman could eventually be an every-down back, considering he ran 311 times for San Diego State's pro-style offense.

    Honorable Mentions 

    The Giants' David Wilson is an intriguing running back in that he has some skills but is also quite raw. He needs to improve his vision, his route-running and his blocking, but it appears the Giants trust him to eventually pick that all up.

    Ahmad Bradshaw has been injury-prone, but he's also fairly low in mileage, so if Bradshaw stays healthy, Wilson's impact will be less than the guys mentioned above—which is why I ranked Wilson lower for dynasty leagues.

    Also, depending on your dynasty league's IR settings, second-year players like Mikel Leshoure or Ryan Williams may still be available.

    Leshoure is a must-acquire if the value is right, as I predict he will take over the lead role from Jahvid Best before season's end.

    Williams must share touches with Beanie Wells for now, but Wells' contract ends after the 2013 season, so Williams would be a longer-view acquisition. 

Wide Receivers

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    The rookie receivers all have some question marks—even safe talents like Michael Floyd due to his quarterback issues that may not be resolved for a couple years—but here are a few that I think have high potential for dynasty leagues.


    Mohamed Sanu, CIN

    Sanu has been the darling of Bengals' OTAs and minicamp, drawing raves from offensive coordinator Jay Gruden. He could be the team's No. 2 receiver this season.

    He may not become a fantasy stud since he only averaged 10.4 YPC at Rutgers last year, but it's certainly reasonable to think Sanu will be PPR gold even as early as this year.

    Kendall Wright, TEN

    More than just a speedster, Wright is a playmaker with serious pass-catching skills.

    Barring a setback to Kenny Britt's ACL recovery, Wright likely will have a modest Torrey Smith-like rookie season—especially with a possible merry-go-round at quarterback between incumbent starter Matt Hasselbeck and heir Jake Locker.

    However, Wright and Locker could collaboratively put up big numbers starting as early as 2013.

    Honorable Mentions

    Alshon Jeffery may wind up being mostly a red-zone target his rookie season with the Bears, as Jay Cutler relies mostly on Brandon Marshall.

    But over time, Jeffery could end up commanding the ball more if he puts in the effort. And it is unlikely that Detroit's Titus Young is still available, considering he wasn't on IR last year.

    In the event he is, Young is a must-acquire who will likely produce as early as this season.

Tight Ends

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    Not a single tight end is a stud in his rookie season.

    Even Rob Gronkowski managed only 546 yards as a rookie (though he did get 10 touchdowns).

    But below are two tight ends who not only will be future stars, but also worthwhile players for your team this season too.

    Coby Fleener, IND

    Fleener has one advantage no other rookie tight end has ever had—a built-in rapport with the quarterback.

    As a rookie quarterback, Andrew Luck may find comfort in calling the number of his favorite collegiate target.

    That tremendous relationship should only explode in the years to come, especially considering that Fleener is such a natural pass-catcher with Gronkowski-like measurables—on a team in serious need of pass-catchers.

    Ladarius Green, SD

    While Orson Charles must compete for targets in Cincinnati with the likes of A.J. Green, Mohamed Sanu and Marvin Jones, Green's only serious competition for the rock in San Diego is sophomore receiver Vincent Brown.

    Fellow tight end Antonio Gates is 32 years old and still trying to keep his plantar fasciitis from flaring up again, which means the talented—but raw—Green can hone his skills from one of the best at the position.

    If Gates' foot problems do resume this season, Green—who plays more like a wide receiver—could even contribute this year.