Eddie Brown’s 2017 fantasy football sleepers

By Eddie Brown - The San Diego Union-Tribune

Here’s a sleeper from each NFL team to help your fantasy football draft preparation:




De’Angelo Henderson, RB: The speedy Henderson is built like a fire hydrant (5-foot-7, 205 pounds) and is currently fourth on the depth chart, but everyone in front of him is either hurt or has a history of being hurt.


Kareem Hunt, RB: Hunt will be the next, great fantasy running back under Andy Reid — including Brian Westbrook, LeSean McCoy and Jamaal Charles — not Spencer Ware.


Hunter Henry, TE: Gates not starting his “Canton” clock already is the only thing keeping Henry from superstardom.


DeAndre Washington, RB: Marshawn Lynch’s likely backup who averaged 5.4 yards per carry during his rookie season and could take advantage of Oakland’s top-end offensive line if Lynch doesn’t return to form.


D’Onta Foreman, RB: He’s another rookie backup who would likely shine if presented with an opportunity.


Erik Swoope, TE: The matchup nightmare underwent arthroscopic knee surgery, but he’ll be ready for Week 1. The other Colts tight end, Jack Doyle, is a solid pick as well.


Blake Bortles, QB: It’s easy to forget he averaged more points per game than Dak Prescott, Jameis Winston, Derek Carr and Russell Wilson last season while throwing 12 fewer touchdowns. There’s a chance he goes undrafted in your league.


Rishard Matthews, WR: He scored nine touchdowns over the final 12 games last season and is more familiar with the system than Eric Decker.


Breshad Perriman, WR: Remember when I mentioned third-year wide receivers? Perriman continues to battle health issues, but he’s a former first-round pick who averaged 15.1 yards per catch last season in a pass-heavy offense.


Andy Dalton, QB: Dalton is being drafted as a QB2, but he has top-10 potential if most of his weapons stay healthy.


Kenny Britt, WR: If there is anyone who has proven he can produce despite horrendous quarterback play, it’s Britt.


James Conner, RB: The rookie will likely be one of the most sought after handcuffs in fantasy, given Le’Veon Bell’s injury history.


Jonathan Williams, RB: Mike Gillislee scored nine total touchdowns as LeSean McCoy’s primary backup last season.


Julius Thomas, TE: If he stays healthy, eight to 10 touchdowns is a possibility with Jay Cutler quarterbacking Adam Gase’s offense.


Dwayne Allen, TE: Martellus Bennett produced 701 receiving yards with seven TDs last season as New England’s TE2. Allen is a proven red zone threat.


Bilal Powell, RB: Powell could become a PPR superstar considering how much this team will have to pass, especially in garbage time.




J.J. Nelson, WR: Nelson’s targets could explode if John Brown can’t stay healthy. He had 30 targets over the final three games of 2016.


Joseph Williams, RB: Kyle Shanahan reportedly threatened to burn down Santa Clara if John Lynch didn’t draft the Utah prospect.


Paul Richardson, WR: Despite suffering an AC sprain (shoulder) in the first preseason game, I still believe he’s capable of breaking out this season. The hype-train is only delayed.


Cooper Kupp, WR: The rookie projects as reliable underneath target for Jared Goff, who will likely check down as much as he can.


Austin Hooper, TE: He only saw 27 targets last season, but his two catches for 40-plus yards tied for second in the NFL among all tight ends.


Devin Funchess, WR: Ted Ginn is gone and the third-year wideout has a ridiculous nine touchdowns on 54 career receptions.


Coby Fleener, TE: Fleener disappointed big time last season, but he’s more familiar with the playbook now and expecting an uptick in targets. There’s top-10 potential here for someone whose ADP is in the 13th round.


Chris Godwin, WR: Of all the offensive additions this offseason, Godwin has been overlooked.


Jordan Howard, RB: Definitely not a traditional sleeper, but I’m touting Howard, because I feel the comparisons to Todd Gurley last season are off base. He has a chance to lead the NFL in rushing.


Kenny Golladay, WR: At 6-foot-4, the rookie could become Matthew Stafford’s most reliable red zone threat since Calvin Johnson retired.


Jamaal Williams, RB: Williams is the clear RB2 in one of the NFL’s most precarious backfield situations. If he gets an opportunity, it’ll be for one of the best offenses in the league that desperately needs a solid running game.


Dalvin Cook, RB: He has top-5 potential and he’s being drafted at the earliest in the second round. In most cases, he’s being chosen in the third round. There’s serious value to be had.


Ryan Switzer, WR: A healthy Switzer has the talent to produce 80 percent of Tyreek Hill’s rookie production.


Evan Engram, TE: He’s the best weapon Eli Manning has had at the position since Jeremy Shockey.


Zach Ertz, TE: My gut tells me Ertz challenges Rob Gronkowski and Travis Kelce for the top spot at the position in fantasy.


Samaje Perine, RB: He’s the eventual starter here for a highly productive offense that features the running back in a significant way.


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By Eddie Brown

The San Diego Union-Tribune