Fantasy Football 2012: 5 Hyped-Up Sleepers You Shouldn't Trust
In every fantasy football draft, every participant has a list of fantasy football sleepers, players who they think will have a huge breakout season that no one else knows about. There are not many better feelings in fantasy football than having your sleepers give you big-time production. It's a great feeling to know that your analysis and hard work paid off.
You may be asking, who are the fantasy sleepers that I should ignore this season because they're too hyped up and will fail to live up to it? This is a very important thing to consider as the rounds begin to tick away in your draft next month.
So, here are five NFL fantasy football sleepers that you shouldn't pick on draft day, because they will fail to live up to the hype.
1. Denarius Moore, WR
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images
Last season, Denarius Moore had a few really terrific games for his fantasy owners. But outside of those few games, Moore wasn't really all that spectacular. He's a good player, but he isn't going to live up to the offseason hype surrounding him. I like Moore, but I don't think consistent production is really something that fantasy owners can expect from him in 2012.
A lot of Moore's production last year was due to the fact that Darren McFadden was out due to injury, meaning Oakland had to go through the air a lot more than they usually would. I've heard people say that he could have a huge breakout season this year, but I highly doubt that will happen. He's the No. 3 receiver on a team that really isn't all that good.
Not to mention Carson Palmer is his QB. Don't even get me started on Palmer, but I'll say that his best days are certainly behind him and the Raiders massively over-invested in the former Heisman winner. If you're going to draft Denarius Moore, take him with extreme caution and only if it's late in the draft.
2. Randall Cobb, WR
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Randall Cobb showed flashes of brilliance last season. In his first ever NFL game, he took a kickoff back 108 yards for a TD. Cobb was immediately picked up by a large amount of fantasy owners off the waiver wire, and proceeded to have a decent season. He wasn't amazing, but he showed a lot of promise for and he's a sleeper that you can be sure will be picked on draft day, probably higher than he should.
Why shouldn't you pick Cobb? Well, this season he'll likely be the No. 5 option in the Green Bay offense. Any player who is the fifth offensive weapon on a team likely won't put up spectacular stats. If you have Greg Jennings or Jordy Nelson, than perhaps you can draft Cobb as an insurance option, but don't expect him to put up big numbers.
There's a good chance Cobb has another big play early in the season, which may tempt you to start him. Don't. He'll have some big plays but he's nothing more than a guy with speed right now, he won't produce big numbers at this stage of his career. But at only 21, there's plenty of time for him to become a better fantasy option.
3. Jacob Tamme, TE
Andy Lyons/Getty Images
According to fftoolbox.com, Jacob Tamme is currently sitting at the No. 11 spot when it comes to TEs. When I saw this I couldn't believe it. Yes, Tamme is reuniting with his former QB Peyton Manning in Denver, but should he really be ranked this high? Tamme is a sleeper, despite his high ranking, due to the fact that he isn't really a well known option at the TE position.
Here's why Tamme won't live up to the hype in 2012; first, his fantasy success hinges entirely on Peyton Manning staying healthy. I don't trust Peyton Manning at all this season, and I don't think anyone should. A 36-year-old QB who's had three neck surgeries? I'll pass on anything remotely near Peyton Manning. It's just too much of a risk.
Second, he's going to have to share time with another TE in Denver, Joel Dreesen. Dreesen is more of a blocker, but he'll definitely be a part of the offense and will take catches away from Tamme. The bottom line is that Tamme could have a good year, but can you trust him this season? Absolutely not. Look elsewhere when looking for a guy to fill your W/T slot if your league has flex options.
4. Jake Locker, QB
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images
Jake Locker is a player that a lot of fantasy owners will be chomping at the bit to draft in the later rounds. Locker had a surprisingly solid rookie season, posting a 99.4 passer rating, which is impressive even if he was a veteran (per ESPN). If he could pull the starting job away from Matt Hasselbeck this year, he could have a fine 2012 season.
Why should you not trust Locker? It's a very simply answer, which already has been discussed. He isn't a starting QB. If he doesn't start this year, then it will be a totally wasted pick that you could've used on someone else. I'm not saying that Locker isn't worthy of being selected with maybe your last pick in the draft, or for $1 in an auction format, but don't pick him expecting huge production, or immediate production for that matter.
Much like Tamme, Locker could have a good year, but at this point he's just too much of a risk to really trust.
5. LeGarrette Blount, RB
Grant Halverson/Getty Images
LeGarette Blount is a very entertaining player to watch. After his rookie year, it's kind of strange to consider him a sleeper, but that's what he is coming into this season. Blount wasn't nearly as effective last year as he was in his rookie campaign, which came as a surprise to many. And this season, he'll be even less effective for the Bucs.
Blount is going to have to, at the very least, split carries with rookie RB Doug Martin. who is an excellent player and a guy who many expect to carry the load for Tampa Bay this year. There's no guarantee that Blount will be the featured back in the Tampa Bay offense. That alone makes him not worth the risk and untrustworthy.
Also, Blount ended the season about as poorly as possible last year. In his last five games, he rushed for over 21 yards only once, only scoring one touchdown (per ESPN). Coupled with the fact that he's basically irrelevant in the passing game, and you have a recipe for a fantasy letdown in 2012 for Blount. If you're going to take him, do so at your own risk.
Follow me on Twitter: @rlongo924