Fantasy Football 2019: Most Exciting Sleepers to Target in Mock Drafts

Zach Buckley@@ZachBuckleyNBANational NBA Featured ColumnistAugust 1, 2019

Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr throws during NFL football training camp Saturday, July 27, 2019, in Napa, Calif. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
Eric Risberg/Associated Press

Mock draft season is upon us, and its value reaches every inch of the fantasy football realm.

Building a roster alongside other fantasy enthusiasts helps you practice strategies, visualize the top of the draft board and, maybe most importantly, identify which players are being undervalued.

Barring injuries, almost every team in your league should have a star or two. So, playoff berths or even championships can often hinge on which club extracts the best value from the latter rounds.

Below, we have three sleepers who belong on your radar for the 2019 fantasy football season.


Derek Carr, QB, Oakland Raiders

Once a darling of the fantasy world, Derek Carr has since become a mostly forgotten man. He's not even a guaranteed selection in 12-team standard leagues at this point, as the 23rd quarterback off the board with an average draft position of 161.9, per FantasyFootballCalculator.com.

Those numbers should be shocking for a couple of reasons.

For starters, his 2018 campaign wasn't exactly the disaster it seemed. In fact, he set personal bests in both passing yards (4,049) and completion percentage (68.9). Plus, he hit those marks despite playing behind a shoddy offensive line (52 sacks allowed, tied for fifth-most) and being surrounded by underwhelming weapons (only two wide receivers topped 25 catches).

All signs are pointing up heading into 2019. He's now had a full season in coach Jon Gruden's system, so the offense should be much easier to navigate. The roster also received several massive upgrades, including wide receivers Antonio Brown and Tyrell Williams, offensive tackle Trent Brown and rookie running back Josh Jacobs.

Since entering the league in 2014, Carr ranks 11th in both passing yards and passing touchdowns. He's been a better quarterback than fantasy drafters are treating him as, and he could be approaching the most prolific season of his career.


David Montgomery, RB, Chicago Bears

It's never easy to tell when a rookie can qualify as a sleeper because fantasy owners are often attracted to shiny, new objects. But David Montgomery should be one of the exceptions, since his situation looks more favorable than his 41.2 ADP (21st among running backs) would suggest.

Chicago wants to run as much as possible. Last season, the Bears tied for sixth in rushing attempts despite ranking 27th in yards per attempt. A lot of those numbers⁠—both the volume and the inefficiency⁠—left with Jordan Howard, who was traded away in March.

That relatively cleared the deck for Montgomery, Chicago's first selection in April's draft. He has some competition in Tarik Cohen and Mike Davis, but Montgomery is best-equipped to handle a three-down role. His dazzling three-year career at Iowa State featured 624 carries, 71 receptions, 26 touchdowns and 5.0 yards per touch.

"[Montgomery] is just a well-rounded back," Bears general manager Ryan Pace told reporters. "It's everything you look for in a running back, starting with his instincts, his vision, his ability to make people miss. Good hands. He fits the offense very well."


Geronimo Allison, WR, Green Bay Packers

The fantasy sports world doesn't always have the best memory. It's often a what-have-you-done-for-me-lately kind of place, and injuries prevented Geronimo Allison from doing much of anything beyond the first four weeks of the 2018 season.

He only played once from that point forward, which apparently pushed him off fantasy radars. How else can we explain one of Aaron Rodgers' preferred targets being drafted after 36 other receivers and 94 players?

In case you'd forgotten, Allison appeared en route to a breakout 2018 season before injuries sent it off the rails. Through four weeks, he had compiled 19 receptions for 289 yards and two touchdowns on 29 targets. For the sake of comparison, Davante Adams, the second wide receiver by ADP, had 285 receiving yards and three scores over the same stretch.

The opportunity is open for Allison to claim the No. 2 role alongside Adams, and this entire offense could take a step forward under new head coach Matt LaFleur. If Allison is getting regular snaps and targets, he'll yield major dividends to all the fantasy owners sharp enough to invest in him.