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A fantasy draft is all about obtaining the most value with each selection. Value is available throughout a draft, and grabbing it is one of the most important keys to a successful fantasy team. This article specifically targets deep sleeper value (players that can be found very late in a fantasy draft). To point out this value, we asked our staff to look deeper than the Top 150 and identify players that should significantly outperform their late draft position. These players should be your targets after the 12th round of your draft.
Here is the player who received the most votes:
And here are all of the players mentioned and the reasons why.
Player Receiving 7 Votes
Jameis Winston, New Orleans
Chad Parsons: Winston had a banner year on a number of fronts in 2021 when limited to a handful of games. This is without Michael Thomas or any wide receivers or tight ends of note around him. Add a healthy Michael Thomas (fingers crossed), Jarvis Landry, and Chris Olave, and the supporting cast is significantly better than last year.
Christian Williams: Jameis Winston had an incredibly strange 2021 before his injury. He posted career-worsts in completion percentage, rating, and yards per game while posting career-bests in touchdown percentage, interception percentage, and rating. Winston looked like a completely different quarterback from the Buccaneers' Winston. The Saints asked Winston to keep it safe, and despite that, he still averaged 17.20 fantasy points per game, ranking QB14 in that metric. With the influx of weapons (Jarvis Landry, Michael Thomas, and Chris Olave) and the expectation that the Saints will let Winston open it up a little bit, it's within reason to believe that he could finish in the Top 10 when the season concludes.
Gary Davenport: In 2019, Winston led the NFL in passing yards and was a top-five fantasy option, despite throwing a staggering 30 picks. His per-game passing numbers were much more modest last year, but that huge year in Tampa serves to underscore that Winston has the arm talent to be fantasy-relevant, especially if he can avoid the turnovers that plagued his time with the Buccaneers. In veteran Michael Thomas, rookie Chris Olave and running back Alvin Kamara, Winston also has the weapons to do some statistical damage. It won't be all that surprising if he substantially outperforms ADP in 2022.
Will Grant: Winston finally returns to the starting lineup, two full seasons removed from the 30 Interception roller coaster that was 2019. In his limited action last season, Winston posted almost 1200 and 14 touchdowns in seven games against just three interceptions. He chipped in another 160 rushing yards and a touchdown there too. It's doubtful Winston will play a full season as he's only done it once in the previous five, but his PPG makes him a decent option for a QBBC. He's worth a roster spot in most redraft leagues.
Matt Waldman: Winston improved his footwork while maneuvering the pocket last year may not have shown up on the box score, but was a big deal for his decision-making. The box score results weren't there because few would mistake Marquez Callaway, Tre'Quan Smith, and Deonte Harris for Michael Thomas, Chris Olave, and Jarvis Landry. Expect these additions to help Winston deliver low-end QB1 production with even greater upside. And if Alvin Kamara misses significant time, expect the game scripts to be ideal for throwing the ball. If not, Kamara's presence creates more conundrums for the defense and leads to easier matchups in the passing game.
Jordan McNamara: Jameis Winston was sheltered in the New Orleans offense last year, but I think that says more about the offense than Winston. New Orleans went into the season without Michael Thomas and had a very limited set of offensive personnel. New Orleans made the reasonable decision to run the ball more frequently than any team in the league and rely on their defense. Their reaction was to make a massive trade-up for Chris Olave and sign Jarvis Landry. The team also benefits from the return of Michael Thomas, giving them significantly better offensive personnel in 2022. New Orleans should throw more, and Winston should benefit as a result.
Kevin Coleman: The Saints added Jarvis Landry and Chris Olave to their passing attack this off-season. With Michael Thomas returning from injury, they could have one of the most underrated passing offenses in the NFL. With those weapons, Winston will be a value heading into redraft season. Last season, with no weapons, he averaged just over 17 FPTS/G and was playing the most efficient football in his career. Until he got injured, he was a high-end QB2 and is a perfect late-round quarterback target for fantasy managers. The Saints still don’t know if Alvin Kamara will face a suspension this season, but if he misses time, that will help Winston’s ceiling.
Player Receiving 5 Votes
Jared Goff, Detroit
Chad Parsons: Goff has a productive career profile, and 1.01-drafted quarterbacks need a ton of patience through good times and not-so-good times in their career. Goff kept Detroit competitive in plenty of games last year despite D'Andre Swift and T.J. Hockenson notably missing time. Add their health to Amon-Ra St.Brown, D.J. Chark Jr, and (later in the year) Jameson Williams and Goff is one of the better values, especially in premium formats.
Ben Cummins: Jared Goff has been completely written off yet has proven he can get it done in the past. He was QB11 in fantasy points per game (20.4) in 2017 and QB10 in the same metric (23.1) in 2018. Last year, in his first season without Sean McVay, Goff was nothing special, yet there is room for optimism moving forward. Entering year two in Detroit, Goff will have Ben Johnson as his offensive coordinator and Amon-Ra St. Brown as his go-to receiver for the entire season after building chemistry with both of them down the stretch in 2021. D.J. Chark Jr was brought in, and Jameson Williams should play sometime in the second half of the year. Goff has the weapons to outproduce his ADP in 2022.
Jason Wood: I'm not betting on it, but there's a path for Jared Goff to outperform ADP significantly. The Lions' offensive line could be one of the league's best, and Goff is the kind of quarterback who desperately needs a premiere line to allow him to execute a robotic playbook; he's a disaster being forced off script. If the new offensive additions and offensive system all fall into place, we know Goff can be a top-10 fantasy quarterback -- he's done it before.
Jordan McNamara: Goff is not an elite talent, but his best seasons have come when he has a top 10 offensive line. Detroit has the chance to have a top 10 offensive line. The team also has a chance for a top 10 set of offensive playmakers, with Amon-Ra St. Brown, D.J. Chark Jr, T.J. Hockenson, and D'Andre Swift. Add in the potential return of Jameson Williams, and the offense has a lot of potential. There have been rave reviews of Goff in the preseason, and he has a really good opportunity in 2022.
Jonathan Morris: Jared Goff is someone I'm targeting in all of my drafts because of the high floor he should have. The offensive line will be great this year, and dynamic skill players will surround Goff. I love Goff's floor because of the usual game script the Lions will have. Playing from behind, he will be forced to throw a lot which should give him plenty of volume to be a solid backup quarterback option or streamer based on matchups.
Player Receiving 3 Votes
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