Archive for sleepers

Bounce-Back Players for 2016

Below are a list of just a few bounce-back fantasy football candidates heading into the 2016 NFL fantasy football season. Have a few names you want to toss out? Comment below!

Eddie Lacy

Eddie Lacy has reportedly lost 15-18 pounds since the end of last year. Some are even suggesting that he will enter 2016 in the best shape of his life. There are plenty of reasons to doubt him, but if he can be had at RB2 value entering 2016, and currently that’s the case, he has bounce-back written all over him.

Jordy Nelson

Another Packer with bounce-back written all over him. Aaron Rodgers struggled a bit last year, as did the Packers, and one reason is that Rodgers lost Jordy. Jordy is always underrated, but coming off injury, he is more likely to get overlooked than ever. Buy-low, at least until his ADP climbs back into stud range, and it may. Once it does, then he is a tad risky and the appeal is somewhat lost.

Andrew Luck

Most expect a bounce-back, but given that he and Aaron Rodgers both struggled last year, and now with Brady again looking at a 4-game suspension, QBs might fall further than they should in 2016. Take advantage, as Luck (and Rodgers) both have top 10 overall value, it’s just that QBs are waited on in almost every veteran fantasy football draft. At 3rd- and 4th-round value, we say don’t wait, be the one to snag either QB.

Jamaal Charles

He should bounce-back from injury nicely, for at least one season. Don’t spend a top 5RB pick on him, but if you can get him near 2nd-round value, or particularly at 2nd-round value, strike!

DeMarco Murray

Risky, sure, especially with a new team (TEN); however, he is still top 5-10RB skilled, and TEN wanted him, which is a change from his situation in PHI last year. His ADP is in the 3rd/4th, so the risk is very low, whereas the reward is 1st-round possible.

Ranking the top 15 Dynasty TEs

Below are our Top 20 Dynasty Tight Ends for 2016. Feel a player is too high or too low? Comment below!

TEs 1-10

1. Rob Gronkowski – There just isn’t any debate at the top TE spot. As usual, he has first-round value.
2. Greg Olsen – Until he slows down, he has to be respected in the 2-3 range for TEs.
3. Jordan Reed – Always an injury risk, he must be considered a top 2-5 TE this year, and he will get drafted like one, so expect to pay that price and hold the risk that comes with Reed.
4. Travis Kelce – To 2/3 TE upside.
5. Tyler Eifert – Top 2/3 TE upside.
6. Delanie Walker – Always capable of getting hurt or disappointing, but huge upside, so this is a safe place to rank him. He definitely has top 2-4 upside.
7. Coby Fleener – This is boom or bust, so be careful where you take him this year. That said, on the boom side, if he gets fed the rock in New Orleans, and stays healthy, watch out!
8. Zach Ertz – Chip Kelly really held him back. He could have a nice little top 4-6TE season this year.
9. Gary Barnidge – Lots of talent, but offensive changes make him safer in this 8-10 range. Good upside here, though.
10. Eric Ebron – Should be counted on more with Calvin retired. Can he take that next step forward?

The Rest

Julius Thomas
Austin Seferian-jenkins
Jimmy Graham
Ladarius Green
Jason Witten
Antonio Gates
Charles Clay
Jordan Cameron
Martellus Bennett
Ben Watson
Crockett Gillmore
Kyle Rudolph
Zach Miller
Richard Rodgers
Maxx Williams (R)
Clive Walford (R)
Vernon Davis
Dwayne Allen
Owen Daniels
Will Tye
Jacob Tamme
Larry Donnell
Jesse James
Jared Cook

Ranking the top 20 Dynasty WRs

Below are our Top 20 Dynasty Wide Receivers for 2016. Feel a player is too high or too low? Comment below!

WRs 1-10

1. Antonio Brown – It’s hard to argue against him being the 1.01 overall.
2. Julio Jones – Like with Antonio Brown, a strong case can be made for Julio being the 1.01, especially in PPR.
3. Deandre Hopkins – He is as capable of both Julio and Antonio.
4. Odell Beckham Jr. – He has a big more risk than the three receivers above, but he has as much upside. He is a top 2-4 fantasy WR in any format.
5. Dez Bryant – Capable of being the top WR during any season, but also capable of getting hurt or disappointing. The risk has him falling somewhere between 4-6 for 2016 WRs, which is safe.
6. AJ Green – Good value for a guy fully capable of being a top 1-5 WR. Great value.
7. Allen Robinson – Sometimes WRs explode and then vanish, so there is some logic to playing it safe with ranking Allen too high. I think this is a very safe range to rank him.
8. Demaryius Thomas – Will he see enough targets in DEN in 2016?
9. Amari Cooper – Of all the WRs in this lower half of the top 10, this guy has the most ceiling.
10. Mike Evans – Both he and Cooper have high, high ceilings at 8-10WR rankings/values.

WRs 11-20

11. Sammy Watkins
12. Josh Gordon
13. Alshon Jeffery
14. Keenan Allen
15. Jarvis Landry
16. Jordan Matthews
17. Brandin Cooks
18. Emmanual Sanders
19. Randall Cobb
20. Brandon Marshall/Doug Balwin/Julian Edelman/TY Hilton/Jordy Nelson

Ranking the Top 20 Dynasty QBs

Who are the Top 25 Dynasty Quarterbacks right now?

Top Dogs by Tier

Tier One

1. Aaron Rodgers – Only the guy below him holds near the same value, especially in leagues that award 6 points per TD.
2. Andrew Luck – He had a bad 2015, but he is just as elite and long-term valuable as A-Rod. No QBs below these two hold first-round value. Note, neither should be grabbed in even the second-round, though, as the ADPs of both Luck and Rodgers are in the 3rd-round (at the earliest), which is awesome news.

Tier Two

3. Blake Bortles – Big upside, but some risk in this 3-5 range, which is where you’ll need to grab him moving forward.
4. Russell Wilson – Not a ton of risk given he is proven and has an ADP a round or two below the two top dogs above.
5. Cam Newton – Again, not a ton of risk here, and he too, like Wilson, is going a round or two below A-Rod and Luck.

Tier Three

6. Tom Brady – In dynasty, there is great value in grabbing one of Brady or Brees, as they can be elite for 1-2 more years. Even if just 1 year, it’s great value, as these guys are falling so far. Not every draft selection in dynasty has to be for the future. Veteran picks like Brady or Brees can win leagues if acquired at ADP values.
7. Drew Brees – Everything said about Brees above applies here.
8. Marcus Mariota – Great upside. If you can get him in the 6-8 range, the risk isn’t too bad.
9. Ben Roethlisberger – Injury risk, sure, but in the 8-10 range, the risk is still low given the potential.
10. Kirk Cousins – Here is the question mark of this top 10… is he going to be elite, or will he disappoint? It’s tough to say, but in the 8ish range, the risk is low enough to invest. If his value climbs into the 4-6 range, we’d have some concerns.
10. Derek Carr – He has top 4-6 appeal, so this is great value, and most rankings have him right here and no higher. By default, given the depth of the QB pool right now, the risk is minimized for sure.
12. Jameis Winston – Good value.

The Next Group

Tier Four

13. Tony Romo
14. Sam Bradford
15. Matt Ryan
16. Eli Manning
17. Brock Osweiler
18. Teddy Bridgewater
19. Ryan Tannehill
20. Tyrod Taylor

The Rest

Carson Palmer
Philip Rivers
Matthew Stafford
Andy Dalton
Joe Flacco
Colin Kaepernick
Robert Griffin III
Ryan Fitzpatrick
Jay Cutler
Blaine Gabbert
Alex Smith
Johnny Manziel
Nick Foles

Two Players to Buy-Low For 2016?

Jay Ajayi | RB Dolphins

With Lamar Miller likely playing elsewhere in 2016, the Dolphins could turn to Jay Ajayi. Now, it’s important to call him a sleeper, not a sure bet, so don’t treat him as such, meaning do not buy-high or draft him, or trade for him, at stud levels. He is a sleeper! The Dolphins believe in him and he looks like an every-down back. His YPG weren’t impressive on the year last year, but if you watched him run, he has the ability to grind it out between the tackles and he has a smoothness to his game. We truly believe he will thrive if the Dolphins both do not retain Miller and do not draft a big name rusher (or acquire one through free agency), both possible. Stay tuned on this one, but scooping this runner up on the cheap in dynasty/keeper leagues is advised.

Andrew Luck | QB Colts

It’s easy to want to avoid Luck in 2016, as he frustrated so many all year long in 2015. Not only did he play below mediocre for much of the year, he got hurt around mid-season and did not return. He failed many. That said, it’s important to remember that he threw for 4761 yards and 40TDs the year prior (adding 3TDs rushing), and he is easily capable of 4500/38+TDs during any given season. He is 2nd-round worthy, but luckily his ADP (in redraft) is in the 3rd- to 4th-round range, which is STEAL territory. In redraft, if he continues to go in the late 3rd- or 4th-round, he will arguably be one of the biggest steals of 2016 drafts. The same can be said of Aaron Rodgers. Even if his value rises back in the 3rd and locks in, that’s still great value, yes, even if you can grab guys like Bortles rounds later. A 40TD QB in the 3rd or 4th is crazy good value. In dynasty, see if you can get close to this value… if so, strike a trade!

Top 10 Fantasy Football TEs for 2016!

Who are the Top 10 Fantasy Football Tight Ends for 2016? This list will change fast, and there are a number of players that ‘just missed the cut’, so know that those players are below (and many are worthy).

Top 10 TEs for 2016

1. Rob Gronkowski – There isn’t anything to argue here, as Gronk stands as the only fantasy football tight end even close to worthy of a first-round pick. If healthy, there is no reason to think Gronk won’t post at least 70-80 receptions fro 1,150-1,200 yards and 10-14TDs.

2. Greg Olsen – He is turning 31 here in March, but he just posted back-to-back 1,000-yard, 6TD seasons. He has never pulled in double-digit touchdowns during his nine seasons, so he doesn’t sniff Gronk’s No. 1 overall TE ranking, but he easily rivals anyone for the second spot. Others command consideration, like Jordan Reed, sure, but Olsen is a high-end TE1 in 2016 and maybe 2017… then we need to consider a slight decline.

3. Jordan Reed – Injuries are always a concern with Reed, as he has never played more than 14 games in his three NFL seasons (9, 11, 14 and in that order). Still, his 87 receptions for 952 and 11TDs last year is proof this kid is top 2-5 worthy for the long-term (especially if Kirk Cousins gets locked up by Washington).

4. Travis Kelce – Easily top 2-5TE upside. To be honest, he disappointed a bit in 2015, as I expected a bigger jump from his rookie season, but his first two years are pretty solid: 64/862/5TDs and 72/875/5TDs… I think that he can make that leap this year and could drop something along the lines of 70+ receptions for 900-950 yards and something close to 8-10TDs.

5. Gary Barnidge – What a breakout season last year, as the TE pulled in 79 receptions for 1,043 yards and 9TDs. He did that with a mess at the QB position, so that gives hope for consistency. However, keep in mind that he turns 31 in September, so his dynasty value has a touch of concern. Sell high in dynasty, draft as a top 3-6TE in redraft!

6. Tyler Eifert – Like Kelce, this guy could take a big step forward this year. He enters his fourth season and just dropped 52/615/13TDs in 2015. I think 8-10TDs is what one should count on, or hope for, in 2016, but any dip in TDs will be made up by receptions and yards, and I think 65 receptions for 750-800 yards sounds about right. Breakout!

7. Delanie Walker – The guy turns 32 this year, which is a bummer, because he never got things going (or had a passer that targeted him enough) until now. He dropped 94 receptions for 1,088 yards and 6TDs in 2016. In dynasty, I sell high, but in redraft, I think he drops 75-80 receptions for 900 or so yards and 5-6TDs.

8. Zach Ertz – Chip Kelly really slowed his growth. He was a breakout of Smitty’s two years ago, but Chip Kelly refused to use him (and use him down field). He showed signs of life near the end of last season with Kelly out the door… If any TE past the top 5-6 have top 3-5 upside, it’s Ertz.

9. Austin Seferian-jenkins – Big upside, but he has to stay healthy.

10. Julius Thomas – Tough to count on, but big talent.

Just missed the cut: Martellus Bennett, Jimmy Graham, Eric Ebron, Jason Witten, Antonio Gates, Charles Clay, Jordan Cameron, Ben Watson, Heath Miller

2016 Fantasy Football Mock Draft

Below is a 2016 fantasy football mock draft based on a ppr format; it’s based on redraft. Things will change quickly as the off-season moves along, but this is as of early January 2016, so enjoy.

Round One

1.01 – todd gurley
1.02 – antonio brown
1.03 – julio jones
1.04 – deandre hopkins
1.05 – le’veon bell
1.06 – adrian peterson
1.07 – odell beckham jr.
1.08 – rob gronkowski
1.09 – devonta freeman
1.10 – dez bryant
1.11 – aj green
1.12 – demaryius thomas

Analysis: Todd Gurley, Antonio Brown, Julio Jones, LeVeon Bell and DeAndre Hopkins all deserve considerations for the 1.01 heading into 2016. You almost can’t go wrong with any of those names at the top spot, but even the next 3-4 names after that can be argued. This is a deep top 10 overall this upcoming season. The elite every-down rushers are not deep, however, as you are looking at Todd Gurley, Adrian Peterson, Devonta Freeman and LeVeon Bell (in no particular order) as the elite of the elite. Then, past those four, you have very capable rushers in Matt Forte and LeSean McCoy, and even Doug Martin, David Johnson, DeMarco Murray and Jamaal Charles, but that second group I just listed off is a tier below that top crew. So, the question is, is RB more valuable than ever because of this, or less? That will debated all off-season long!

Round Two

2.01 – matt forte
2.02 – lesean mccoy
2.03 – doug martin
2.04 – demarco murray
2.05 – jamaal charles
2.06 – david johnson
2.07 – aaron rodgers
2.08 – tom brady
2.09 – andrew luck
2.10 – drew brees
2.11 – amari cooper
2.12 – allen robinson

Analysis: This entire round is loaded with high-upside, but also lots of risk. This round is nowhere near as secure-looking as the first-round.

Round Three

3.01 – alshon jeffery
3.02 – mike evans
3.03 – russell wilson
3.04 – blake bortles
3.05 – cam newton
3.06 – keenan allen
3.07 – brandon marshall
3.08 – doug baldwin
3.09 – jeremy langford
3.10 – brandin cooks
3.11 – marshawn lynch
3.12 – eddie lacy

Analysis: If QBs like Luck, Brady, Brees or Rodgers fall into this round, they have great value, as they still have top 10 overall upside in fantasy (despite some of those passers struggling/getting hurt in 2015).

Round Four

4.01 – mark ingram
4.02 – jordan matthews
4.03 – randall cobb
4.04 – calvin johnson
4.05 – jarvis landry
4.06 – sammy watkins
4.07 – martavis bryant
4.08 – josh gordon
4.09 – jordy nelson
4.10 – thomas rawls
4.11 – emmanual sanders
4.12 – greg olsen

Analysis: Players like Thomas Rawls, Josh Gordon and Sammy Watkins all have big-time upside at this value, as they can all be top 10 at their position, yet you can buy them low-risk right here.

More Players Worth Considering: carlos hyde, lamar miller, allen hurns, latavius murray, jeremy hill, chris ivory, jordan reed, gary barnidge, carson palmer, ben roethlisberger, kirk cousins, derek carr, travis kelce, tyler eifert, delanie walker, arian foster, stefon diggs
michael floyd, ty hilton, tony romo, julius thomas, marcus mariota, jameis winston, larry fitzgerald, julian edelman, darren mcfadden, tj yeldon

Radio: 2016 Running Backs!!! Russ and Smitty Talk Dynasty.

smitty staff

Take a listen to Russ Bliss and Smitty talk 2016 Fantasy Football Running Backs. Looking for 2016 dynasty fantasy football talk? This is the radio show you’re looking for!

Listen To Show

Sunday Morning Breaking News (Week 16)

Below is our Breaking News Wire for Week 16. Check back all morning long, and stay tuned to our Smart Alerts as well, as news can often break last-minute!


NEWS: According to Rotoworld, ESPN’s Adam Schefter has confirmed that Saints QB Drew Brees (foot) will play today (Sunday/Week 16) against the Jaguars.

FANTASY: He is playing with a torn plantar fascia, know that, but he would be tough to sit in most any situation given his upside. Colston is out, but Ben Watson is expected to play (as of now). Anything can change last minute, so stay on the news and smart alerts all morning!


NEWS: Dez Bryant (foot, ankle) is inactive for Week 16 against Buffalo.


NEWS: Titans declared Marcus Mariota inactive for Week 16 against the Texans.

FANTASY: Zach Mettenberger will start.


NEWS: According to reports, Ravens QB Ryan Mallett will start Sunday against the Steelers.

FANTASY: Jimmy Clausen could be sent in if Mallett struggles early.


NEWS: Vincent Jackson (knee) has been ruled out for Week 16.

FANTASY: Austin Seferian-Jenkins could be a real sneaky Week 16 play, and of course, get ready for a ton of Mike Evans in this one.


NEWS: Jarvis Landry (knee), Lamar Miller (quad) and DeVante Parker (ankle) are all three expected to play Week 16.

FANTASY: Setbacks happen last-minute, so stay on the news if you plan to play any of these guys.


NEWS: Matt Hasselbeck (jaw, back, neck, ribs) is probable for Week 16 against the Dolphins.

FANTASY: This is a risky play. He should start, but anything can happen in warmups, and it’s just not a safe play. Charlie Whitehurst would start if for any reason Hasselbeck couldn’t go last-minute.


NEWS: Alshon Jeffery is looking to be out for Week 16.

FANTASY: Check back last minute but get him out of lineups.


Sunday Morning Breaking News (Week 14)

Below is our Breaking News Wire for Week 14. Check back all morning long, and stay tuned to our Smart Alerts as well, as news can often break last-minute!


NEWS: According to reports, Browns TE Travis Benjamin (shoulder) and TE Gary Barnidge (ankle) are both expected to start Week 14 on Sunday.

FANTASY: Johnny Manziel loves Travis Benjamin, so as long as he remains a go, he is a strong WR this week.


NEWS: According to reports, Chargers QB Philip Rivers (flu) is expected to start Week 13 against KC.

FANTASY: “Expected” is the keyword here, so play this with caution, especially given the QB has lost so many weapons this year. Check back, but for now, he is ‘expected’ to play.


NEWS: NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport has reported that NE TE Rob Gronkowski (knee) will be ready “if needed” for Sunday’s Week 14 game against the Texans.

FANTASY: This went from him not looking likely to play, to looking very likely given that he made the flight with the team… now, he could be ready on an emergency basis, or decoy. This will be a game-time call, so keep checking back on this one!


NEWS: According to reports, Packers RB Eddie Lacy will be the Packers’ top runner on Sunday against the Cowboys.

FANTASY: Last week was a disaster, after Lacy missed curfew and killed fantasy owners in unexpected fashion. This week, he should be considered a RB2 with high upside, but also a touch of risk.


NEWS: According to Rotoworld, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport is reporting that the Eagles have “weighed all options” in regards to RB DeMarco Murray including benching him, and the team has already announced that Darren Sproles will be the feature back in Week 14.

FANTASY: Murray owners have had enough, and hopefully most of you own Sproles. Sproles is a very solid flex play this week (with upside for more), while Murray, right now, is looking like a “hopefully something changes in his favor next season” type of player.


NEWS: According to reports, Ravens QB Matt Schaub (questionable, chest) is not expected to play Week 14 on Sunday.

FANTASY: Jimmy Clausen will likely start against Seattle in Week 14.


NEWS: Ravens TE Crockett Gillmore (back) is doubtful for Week 14 against the Seahawks.

FANTASY: If we hear more, we will let you know!