Fantasy Football: Undervalued Players

Hot Stove New YorkSenior Writer ISeptember 8, 2009

TAMPA, FL - FEBRUARY 01:  Willie Parker #39 of the Pittsburgh Steelers runs the ball against the Arizona Cardinals during Super Bowl XLIII on February 1, 2009 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. Steelers won 27-23. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Willie Parker (Steelers)-  Accoring to Parker’s average draft position (ADP) he is the 29th running back being selected. From 05-07 he missed two regular season games and averaged 1,337 rushing yards and six TDs on the ground. Last year he missed five games and averaged a career low 3.8 yards per carry. However, he was healthy for the playoffs as he received 70 carries in three games and gained 146 yards vs. the Chargers  in the Divisional round. The Steelers plan on using Parker at the goal-line and would make a formiadble RB in the sixth round.

Eddie Royal (Broncos)- Royal has been creeping up the draft boards with the absence of WR Brandon Marshall. As a rookie last season he caught 91 passes for 980 yards and five scores. Even though he has a new coach (Josh McDaniels-OC with the Pats) and QB (Kyle Orton), the system fits him perfectly. The Broncos plan to run a lot of short timing routes which is  the role West Welker has with the Patriots. In points per reception (PPR) leagues Welker is going in the third or fourth round. Owners should select Royal two or three rounds later and expect close to 100 catches.

Kevin Smith (Lions)- If you select WR-WR in the first two rounds, Kevin Smith would be the ideal running back you can take in the third round. In his rookie season he totaled 1,262 yards and eight touchdowns. From Weeks 10-18 he carried the ball at least 20 times except in two games. He also caught 39 passes and look for his carries to increase this year for an improved Lions team.

Chris Henry (Bengals)- Henry had a strong preseason catching a TD in every game. He has always had the potential to succeed but has missed games due to his off the field troubles. However, he caught nine TD’s in his second season and if he stays out of trouble the 6′4″ WR is poised for a big year. His value also depends on the health of QB Carson Palmer who has good rapport Henry. Henry is entering his prime and is being drafted in the eigth round, he would be a steal in round 10.

Jon Carlson (Seahawks)- Instead of jumping on a tight end in Round 4 owners should wait till rounds 8-10 to select one. Carlson caught 55 balls for 627 yards and five scores in his rookie season. Carlson should be the second option on his team and will have QB Matt Hasselbeck throwing to him. Hasselbeck missed nine games last season due to a back injury. However, he will be asked to block more with the injury to LT Walter Jones but he will still be targeted often especially in the red zone.