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Hitting the SLEEPER lottery

Everyone that has been playing fantasy for more than a few years realizes that you don’t win your league with the picks in the first few rounds of your draft. Let’s face it, barring injury, holdout, or suspension, they all should put up numbers near their respective draft positions. It’s the guys like Miles Austin, Jamaal Charles and Sidney Rice, guys that wildly outperform their average draft position, that win you titles. The following list is my candidates to be the next group of guys that could put your squad over the top.

Malcom Floyd, Chargers, ADP – 10.03

Floyd has the size (6-foot-5, 225) and speed to be a big-play receiver, but the best thing he has going for him is Vincent Jackson. Jackson, already a candidate for a 2-4 game suspension, plans on sitting out the first 10 games with a contract dispute. He is willing to give up one of the best situations in football. The Chargers have an excellent quarterback and love to throw the ball. Floyd’s 6-foot-5 frame makes him a great option near the goal line, too.

My projection: 70 receptions, 1,000 yards, 9 TD.

Mike Wallace, Steelers, ADP – 8.09

With the departure of Santonio Holmes, Wallace’s numbers should soar. He only caught 39 balls last year but scored six times, with 19.4 yards per catch. That says volumes about his playmaking abilities. He possesses a good size and speed combination. Sure, he must play his first few games without suspended quarterback Roethlisberger, but Byron Leftwich has had proven success in Pittsburgh’s offense.

My projection: 68 receptions, 850 yards, 8 TD. 

Michael Bush, Raiders, ADP – 9.01

Justin Fargas is gone (cut) and Darren McFadden looks like Betty White when rushing between the tackles. The hard-nose running style of Bush will provide him the opportunity to lead the team in yardage and touchdowns. He will get all of the goal line work and with his 4.6 yards per carry, he will see early down work as well.

My projection: rushing – 900 yards, 8 TD; receiving – 21 receptions, 195 yards, 1 TD.

Justin Forsett, Seahawks, ADP – 9.08

After Forsett got his opportunity in Week 10, he outperformed Julius Jones convincingly. Now with LenDale White gone too, a 200-touch season should be easily within reach. The only thing that could derail his season would be a pre-training camp trade for disgruntled Buffalo Bill, Marshawn Lynch.

My projection: rushing – 800 yards, 7 TD; receiving – 35 receptions, 290 yards, 2 TD.

Wes Welker, Patriots, ADP – 9.10

Welker presents a unique problem. He is coming off ACL and MCL surgery and is expected to be placed on the Physically Unable to Perform list. He will miss the first six games of the season and then be worked back into the lineup. There have been several encouraging reports out of New England, but realistically don’t count on him until Week 7 at best. When he is available he is a points-per-reception monster. You can count on him for 6-12 catches every week. He is hands down Tom Brady’s favorite target. If all goes well he will be scoring for you down the stretch and into the playoffs.

My projection: 70 receptions, 700 yards, 5 TD (last 10 games only).

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