Most fantasy analysis is devoted to sorting the order of players likely to have an immediate impact, but every year there are a handful of overlooked deep sleepers who emerge to fill a starting role in redraft.
Last year, it was guys like Phillip Lindsay and James Conner at running back. Deep sleepers at WR are a little harder to find, but we did tell you to watch out for Curtis Samuel, and he flirted with WR4 numbers.
Most of these guys in this deep sleeper series will be misses, but the goal is to look for the silver lining and find a handful of players that will emerge from their sleeper slumber in 2019.
Here’s a look at the rest of our deep sleeper series so far:
Tony Pollard, RB
I was a little worried the cat may be out of the bag on the Memphis product, but news that Ezekiel Elliot is considering a summer holdout doesn’t seem to have affected Pollard’s ADP much.
Pollard didn’t get much run in the ground game in his three seasons sharing the Memphis backfield with Darrell Henderson, but he was a force in the passing game. Listed as both a WR and RB, he racked up 104 career catches while maintaining a 12.4 YPC average.
|Year||Pos||G||Att||Yds||Avg||TD||Rec||Rec Yds||Rec Avg||Rec TD|
Pollard can immediately slide in as the Cowboy’s third-down back.
But could he have an even bigger role? Ryan Collinsworth recently floated the idea that Dallas may have drafted Pollard in the fourth round with a thought towards helping to replace Cole Beasley’s slot snaps, along with free-agent addition Randall Cobb.
Even if that’s not the case, the Cowboys may wish to lighten Elliot’s role on third down, which more than doubled in year three.
It’s not out of the question — Pollard is a proven pass catcher who had more receiving yards than Nyheim Hines in college. Hines was used in a hybrid role last year, leading to 63 receptions — sixth-most among all rookie RBs since 2000.
Hines popped up as one of Pollard’s closest comps in the Box Score Scout app, along with a few other encouraging names.
Even without an Elliott holdout/injury, Pollard has the profile to carve out a role in what should be a higher-tempo Cowboys offense under a new coordinator this season.
He makes a very worthy final-round stash in most formats.
Cedric Wilson, WR
Last year’s 208th pick in the draft, Wilson is another candidate to soak up some vacated snaps and benefit from a potential uptick in tempo.
The 6-foot-2, 188-pounder red-shirted as an NFL rookie with a shoulder injury.
Wilson was a beast from the slot in his two years at Boise State. Not only were the counting numbers excellent, but Wilson’s market shares jump off the page — in particular, his dominant 41% cut of Boise State’s receiving yards in his final year.
|Year||Pos||G||Rec||MS Rec||Yds||MD Yds||Avg||TD||MS TD|
Wilson accounted for 36% of his team’s receiving yards in his career. His comps are generally weak, but his college career does look strikingly similar to that of Stefon Diggs.
But, Wilson’s numbers were manufactured in Boise State’s tricky offensive schemes, you say. Fair point. Although new offensive coordinator Kellen Moore is a former Boise State QB and is said to be bringing some of those same concepts to Dallas.
On a crowded WR depth chart, it’s probably premature to expect much from Wilson this year. But his productive profile shouldn’t be ignored in dynasty leagues.
Image Credit: Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire. Pictured: Nyheim Hines.
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