The NFL season is almost upon us, and with it comes another season of fantasy football. Whether you play with friends or with strangers, fantasy football is a fun way to stay involved with players around the NFL while trying to build the greatest team possible. I’ve been grinding fantasy seasons out for the past 12 years, and have honed the art of drafting a team into somewhat of a skill. In order to put my experience to good use, I’ve put together a comprehensive list of a few sleeper picks I think could really help you out in the upcoming fantasy football season.
1. Raheem Mostert, RB, 49’ers.
If you paid any attention to the 2019-2020 postseason, you’ll know that Mostert shattered expectations and had a phenomenal three game streak, including a four touchdown game in the NFC Championship round. With RB Matt Breida out of the picture, Mostert will see more action and may beat out Tevin Coleman for the starting position.
Mostert has proved he can blow up at any moment, and would be a great bench running back to have on the bye weeks.
2. Matt Stafford, QB, Lions.
I know what you’re thinking. In the words of my father, who is a 20 year fantasy football vet, “Yuck, Stafford?” But hear me out.
Stafford was having a great 2019 campaign until his season ending back injury. Stafford recorded 19 touchdowns and only five interceptions through eight games, while also notching 2,500 yards passing. Sure, Stafford is on the back end of his career and can be spotty at times, but I think he’s always been overlooked. If Stafford comes back from this injury with his passing intact, I see no reason not to draft him as a sleeper pick.
3. N’Keal Harry, WR, Patriots.
While I’m confident in my first two sleeper picks, Harry is a bit on the riskier side. Coming off of an injury riddled rookie season, Harry was never able to become one of Tom Brady’s main options. However, with the new signing of Cam Newton, Harry gets a chance for a fresh start.
Bill Belichick has always had a great eye for talent, and since the Patriots used a first round selection on him I think Harry could have a breakout year with Newton at the QB spot. However, Harry could be an injury prone player that always seems to have that little red Q next to their name (stands for questionable to play). I’d only take Harry deep in the draft.
4. T.J. Hockenson, TE, Lions.
Like my earlier selection of Matt Stafford, some of you might be shaking your heads at this pick. I’m a Lions fan, sue me.
Hockenson might be known for his lackluster catching ability, but was having a strong rookie season before suffering an ankle injury on Thanksgiving. With Stafford and Hock back to full health, they are both due for a great year. Hockenson will likely be Staffords second or third passing option, and although his catching ability scares me, he’s an amazing athlete that I think could surprise a lot of people this season. If you find yourself losing out on your main options for tight end, don’t be afraid to pick up Hockenson.
5. Breshad Perriman, WR, Jets.
Perriman has always been a player I’ve always found myself intrigued by. Although a naturally gifted receiver, Perriman had some struggles before his impressive breakout campaign with the Bucs last season. Perriman recorded six touchdowns and 36 receptions as a third option last year. Now with the Jets, Perriman will most likely be one of Sam Darnold’s favorite targets, should they build a good relationship.
If you see Perriman on the board in the later rounds, pick him up. He’s an absolute steal.
6. Kareem Hunt, RB, Browns.
My final sleeper pick for this year is going to be Kareem Hunt. Nick Chubb will almost certainly be the Browns starting running back, but Chubb has seen a few injuries that make me think he might go down again this year. Before his suspension, Hunt emerged as one of the best backs in the league and I think will get a good amount of touches no matter if Chubb is injured or not.
However, should Hunt impose himself enough when he has the chance, he could blow up again. If you’re looking for a running back in the mid to late rounds, take a chance on Kareem Hunt. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.
That’ll wrap it up for this year’s Echo sleeper picks. This year’s fantasy football season will be a wild one, should COVID throw curveballs at your team. My one piece of advice would be to draft outside of the box, and go for players that could fill in for starters out with injuries or COVID-19. Best of luck to all of you guys and gals on your fantasy football season.