NFL Fantasy Football Sleeper Spotlight: Jermaine Gresham

Ryan Lester@LestersLegendsSenior Writer IJuly 31, 2010

MIAMI - JANUARY 08:  Sam Bradford #14 of the Oklahoma Sooners celebrates with teammates Jermaine Gresham #18 after scoring a touchdown againist the Florida Gators during the FedEx BCS National Championship Game at Dolphin Stadium on January 8, 2009 in Miami, Florida.  (Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images)
Donald Miralle/Getty Images

A typical fantasy football league consists of 12 teams with nine starters (QB, two RBs, three WRs, TE, K, D) and anywhere from five to seven bench players. If you go with the latter bench allotment, you’re looking at 16 roster spots or 192 draft picks. By that definition, any sleeper should have an average draft position about 180 or lower .

Rookie Cincinnati Bengal tight end Jermaine Gresham has an ADP of 206, according to Mock Draft Central. That makes him the second pick of the 18th round or the 20th tight end to come off the board. That is right about where I have Gresham ranked among tight ends (click to see my 2010 fantasy TE rankings). While his ranking puts him in the TE2 category, he has the potential to bust out in a big way.

He has great size (6’5″, 260lbs), soft hands, and the ability to pick up yards after the catch with both his toughness and his elusiveness. He gives Carson Palmer a safety valve over the middle when Chad Ochocinco, Terrell Owens, and Antonio Bryant (assuming he’s healthy) stretch the field. He should also get plenty of targets in the red zone given his skill set.

He missed the 2009 college season with a knee injury, but was a real threat in 2007 (37 catches, 518 yards, 11 TDs) and 2009 (66 catches, 950 yards, 14 TDs). My modest prediction for Gresham in 2010 is 45 catches for 450 yards and five TDs, but I could easily see those numbers jump to 60-650-7.

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In non-keeper leagues, he’s worth taking a shot on with a late round pick. In deep keeper leagues though, he should be going much sooner as he has the potential to become one of the top tight ends in the league in the next couple of seasons.

What are your thoughts on Jermaine Gresham?


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