Fantasy Football 2012: 5 Wide Receiver Sleepers to Get in the Later Rounds
Fantasy football leagues aren't won in the first few rounds. Anyone with a rankings list can make a pretty good first three or four picks. Once you get into the later rounds, however, that's where championships are won.
Personally, I think that wide receiver is the deepest position by far. There are a lot of question marks at running back, and the NFL is more of a passing league every season.
Teams integrate more and more players into their offenses, relying less on one individual receiver. There are a few true number one's left, like Calvin Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald, but most teams have at least three viable options.
Here are a few receivers that should be available after the tenth round and could provide a big boost to your roster.
All Average Draft Position (ADP) stats taken from Fantasy Football Calculator. ADP accurate as of Tuesday, August 14th.
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Currently, Washington is the 40th receiver being drafted in 10-team leagues. I think he could easily end up being in the top 30, and possibly top 25, by the end of the season.
Owners have to be wary about his quarterback situation, because if Jake Locker ends up starting, he'll have a lot to prove. But he has a good arm and could end up surprising people.
Plus, Kenny Britt's bad knees have him on the PUP list, and he is still awaiting Roger Goodell's suspension decision. Washington could very well end up leading the Titans in targets because of Britt's unenviable situation.
With Britt's bad knees and looming suspension, look out for rookie Kendall Wright as well as Washington.
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It makes no sense to me that Rice is the 46th receiver off the boards right now. While the Seahawks' signing of Terrell Owens means that they may not have a ton of faith in Rice, I seriously doubt that TO will threaten Rice's spot as the No. 1 receiver.
Matt Flynn will most likely start, and even though he hasn't looked great so far, there is plenty of time for him to continue learning the offense and settle in.
Rice still has blazing speed and is very worth taking a shot at in the 12th or 13th round.
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Young might be my favorite player on this list. As a rookie last year, Young caught 48 passes for 607 yards and six touchdowns.
The crafty wideout benefits greatly from Calvin Johnson and Brandon Pettigrew. Those two take a lot of the attention from defenses, so Young has more space to work with than most teams' second wide receivers.
With Matthew Stafford leading a high-powered air attack in Detroit, Young could put up 65/850/8 type numbers this season. Not bad for a guy you can probably get in the 12th round.
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For someone who will probably be around in the 14th or 15th round, Amendola has a lot of potential value. After bouncing around practice squads for a couple seasons, the Rams picked up Amendola in 2009 and he has shown a lot of promise.
In 2010, Amendola led the entire NFL in all-purpose yards with 2,364. Granted, a lot of those yards came from kick and punt returns, but it still shows that Amendola has talent.
With Brian Schottenheimer running the offense now in St. Louis and Sam Bradford finally seeming ready to break out, Amendola could have a big season.
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Brown is probably the biggest sleeper on this list. The wideout could be available in the last round, which would be unbelievable value.
Brown is quietly making a case for a starting spot out in San Diego. In last Thursday's preseason opener, Brown led the team with four catches. Malcolm Floyd and Robert Meachem are tough competition, but the 23-year-old will definitely push the two veterans.
He stands only 5'11" but has a ton of speed and big-play potential. If he can be the guy that is consistently on the other end of Phil Rivers' bombs, his fantasy owners will be ecstatic.