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Three Sleepers to Grab Late in your Fantasy Football Draft
It’s no secret that nailing your first few picks in a fantasy football draft goes a long way towards overall team success. However, the difference between being good versus being a championship contender can be drafting the right players in the later rounds.
Here are three sleepers who could make a big impact on your fantasy football team this fall.
1. QB Joe Burrow - Cincinnati Bengals
Lamar Jackson, Josh Allen, and Justin Herbert are just a few of the quarterbacks who were drafted late if at all, heading into their eventual breakout season. Can Burrow be one of those quarterbacks who ends up becoming an elite fantasy option at such a young age?
For starters, we know that Burrow is going to throw the ball a lot, as his 404 attempts in 2020 would’ve led the league over the course of a full season. Additionally, the weapons surrounding him, like wide receivers Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins, should be able to help put up points for both the Bengals and Burrow.
While his value is low at the moment, it’s important to remember that Burrow was the top overall pick in the NFL draft just over a year ago, so there is no limit to his potential. Health provided, a late-round flier on Burrow could lead to him being a stud QB1 by season’s end.
2. RB Trey Sermon - San Francisco 49ers
The 49ers love to run, which means whoever is in their backfield is in a great position to succeed. However, it can be difficult to peg which running back to go with on draft day since San Francisco incorporates several of them throughout the year.
Of all of their options, Sermon is one who presents a ton of upside as a late-round pick. Drafted in the third round this spring out of Ohio State, Sermon can enter the year as the second running back on the depth chart behind Raheem Mostert. However, Mostert made just eight starts last year, his first as a starter, so the opportunity for Sermon to get more carries as the season goes on is there.
With a solid frame and playing for an ideal team that matches with his skillset, Sermon is a guy to take as a backup running back late and to stash on your bench. However, by the middle of the season, he could be one of your top options.
3. TE Irv Smith Jr. - Minnesota Vikings
Tight end is once again a top-heavy position, with guys like Travis Kelce and Darren Waller expected to go early in drafts. But if you miss out on either of those two guys, it might be worth it to wait a while and select Smith, the third-year tight end for the Vikings.
At 23 years old, Smith will definitely share touches with stars like running back Dalvin Cook as well as receivers Adam Thielen and Justin Jefferson. But his usage, particularly in the red zone, exploded last year in the second half of the season. All five of Smith’s TDs came in the last two months of the regular season, with his top performance coming on Christmas day against the Saints in which he had six catches and a pair of touchdowns.
Unlike the last couple of years where Smith has been underneath veteran Kyle Rudolph on the depth chart, the Alabama product will get nearly all the looks at tight end following Rudolph’s departure. In an offense that spreads the ball around and with ample opportunities, Smith is a steal to find late and a good bet to be your top tight end as the season goes on.
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