Another fantasy football season is almost upon us and there are players who are poised for breakout seasons to be had every year. Since this year is no exception, we give you our first six-pack of potential sleepers to peruse and consider grabbing on your league’s draft day. *These are in no particular order.
1. Kenny Stills-WR-Saints- Anytime you can put a wide receiver and Drew Brees in the same sentence, that player has potential. As a rookie, the fifth round pick in the 2013 draft had five touchdowns. As a WR3 (or higher) it’s important that your QB places you in high regard and that’s exactly what Brees has done. Stills is quick and can garner your team some hefty yards after receptions as Stills’ not only averaged 20 yards per catch last season but also had four receptions of 50 yards or more.
#84 WR Kenny Stills dives in for the score vs the Raiders last season. The Furnace believes he will be a favorite of Drew Brees. Photo: neworleanssaints.com
2. Knile Davis-RB-Chiefs- Davis is a long-shot but in a perfect season he could potentially bring you some nice fantasy points later in the campaign as opposed to say the first half. Stud back Jamaal Charles will naturally get the bulk of the carries for the majority of the season but now, entering his seventh season, he might just see his load lessened as the long season wears on. Davis’ carries increased towards the end of last season and as he can be quite effective at the goal line plus catch a pass or two out of the backfield. Admittedly a late round (10-12) pick, Davis just might pay your team dividends and makes for a viable handcuff to Charles.
3. Markus Wheaton-WR-Steelers- This young wideout, we believe, has an excellent chance to be the epitome of a sleeper this season given that with the losses of both Jerricho Cotchery and Emmanuel Sanders, Roethlisberger has to throw the ball to someone and the Steelers, aware of this, went out and shored up their offense in the off-season. Wheaton would have seen a bit more action last season if not for a broken finger. With Mike Tomlin already stating that he is expecting “Big things” out of the second year man from Oregon State, Wheaton could make a decent WR2 on most mixed leagues.
#11 WR Markus Wheaton, who will help fill the void for the losses of Emmanuel Sanders and Jerricho Cotchery, could emerge as a top 15- 20 WR in the league this year. Photo: AP
4. Aaron Dobson-WR-Patriots- As Clint Eastwood said, “Do you feel lucky?” Well if you do, Dobson should realize an uptick in his production in this his second year in the NFL. Although he only tallied four touchdowns last season, Bill Belichick will want to open the sophomore up more and hopefully soon become one of Brady’s primary targets. Dobson should go somewhere around the 6-8 rounds in most drafts. He has great hands and unlimited potential-if you’re feeling lucky…
5. Tim Wright-TE-Buccaneers-Along with maybe Tyler Eifert of the Bengals, we believe Wright is the best tight end sleeper candidate out there, just waiting for a true breakout year.. He has already shown how talented he is by virtue of his five touchdowns last season on just eight targets. Jeff Tedford, Tampa’s Offensive Coordinator has a long history of schemes involving his tight ends which will also bode well for Wright. If you look at his numbers at the tail end of the last season, you will see how Wright emerged as a featured option and should again this year only for the bulk of the season now.. Keep your eye on Wright who won’t do you wrong if you roster him.
6. David Wilson-RB-Giants- We touted Wilson last year in this very same sleeper category but his season unfortunately came to an end in Week 5 as he went under the knife for a severe neck injury. He still was a 2012 first round pick and has as much speed as any receiver playing today. Most of your comrades in the draft room might opt to let Wilson slide down to the later rounds where, if you are smart and patient, you will find him waiting. We wouldn’t be surprised if he ends up sharing the carries with potential sleeper Rashad Jennings after just a few games into the season. Wilson could, at last, have that real breakout season we know he’s capable of.
#22 RB David Wilson, fully recovered from last season’s neck surgery, should be back to doing flips as the Furnace selects him as their sleeper RB for a second season in a row. Photo: Robert Sabo/NYDAILYNEWS