NFL Offseason

Top Three Fantasy Football Sleepers: Quarterback

3) Sam Bradford

Bradford is a bust so far. He was chosen first overall in the 2010 NFL Draft and has yet to rank inside the top 16 fantasy quarterbacks

for a season. Now on his fourth team, Bradford has a chance to prove he is a worthy starter while rookie first-round pick Josh Rosen is primed for action. Bradford knows his starting job is in serious jeopardy. He will play his best this season to prove to other teams that

he is still starter material, and hopefully he will get a high-paying contract from another quarterback needy team after the season ends. Bradford played exceptionally well while on the Vikings. In 2016, he threw for a career high 3,877 yards while tossing 20 touchdowns with just 5 interceptions. He had an outstanding first game of the 2017 season, posting more than 300 yards with 3 touchdowns and zero interceptions. The breakout potential still exists if he can stay healthy while playing for the Arizona Cardinals. He has shown that he is still very accurate with his passes, and this shows in his 71.4% completion percentage in 2016. Mike McCoy, the Cardinals Offensive Coordinator, runs a West Coast style offense, a style that Bradford is very comfortable with. The style includes a lot of plays out of the shotgun, which is how Bradford ran plays in college, when he won the Heisman Trophy. Additionally, Bradford has powerful weapons on offense. Future Hall of Famer Larry Fitzgerald and new first-round pick Christian Kirk headline their receiving corps, which also features the speedy JJ Nelson. With Fitzgerald’s consistency, Kirk’s ability to extend plays after the catch, and Nelson’s game-breaking speed, Bradford should have plenty of options. Including running back David Johnson into the picture could make a nightmare for defenses and give Bradford an easy dump-off option that will always create yardage after the catch. The signing of Justin Pugh should give Bradford some more security in the pocket. Bradford could be poised for a good season if he stays healthy and maintains the starting job. Bradford may not even be chosen in many fantasy drafts for fear of him losing the starting job. He could be a solid post-draft pickup or late round pick that might deliver quite well.

2) Joe Flacco

The years of Joe Flacco being called an elite NFL quarterback have passed. He is long removed from the 2012-2013 season in which he led his team to a Super Bowl victory. However, Flacco still has some fantasy football upside. Like Bradford, Flacco has a younger quarterback behind him on the depth chart that will push him to play better. Flacco will need to make sure he is playing his best if he wants to keep his job. The Ravens added several players at the wide receiver position to help Flacco’s offense. Willie Snead, while on the Saints, showed that he can be effective as both a slot and outside receiver. Michael Crabtree is a huge threat on the outside because of his size and speed. He could become a superstar for the Raven’s offense. John Brown, previously on the Cardinals, provides another weapon in the slot. Additionally, Javorious “Buck” Allen can help Flacco with his pass-catching ability. Another reason I believe Flacco to be a sleeper is because he won’t be taken until the very end of fantasy drafts. One could get a decent starting quarterback without giving up a pick inside the first 12 rounds. Overall, while Flacco has slowed down in previous years, these additions to the Ravens’ offense can spark a decent fantasy outing for Flacco.

1) Jared Goff

Goff is young, motivated, and surrounded by weapons, plus he is coming off a hot season at quarterback. He posted a quarterback rating of 100.5 in his second year with the Rams. Most fantasy football rankings don’t even have Goff inside the top 15 quarterbacks for the year; I believe that Goff will finish at least top 10 in points scored with potential to be even higher. One reason for this prediction is because of the surrounding cast that Goff has. They brought in a superstar wide receiver in Brandin Cooks to further strengthen their receiving squad. Second year receiver Cooper Kupp will continue to improve, and Robert Woods will look to build off his explosive 2017 campaign. Goff also has speedster Pharoh Cooper at his disposal. Most of all, Goff has a player who was considered an MVP candidate last season. Todd Gurley has been the most explosive running back since he entered the league. He is the epitome of the dual-threat running back. He should aid Goff on screens and other plays designed to get Gurley the ball. Another reason I believe Goff will have a breakout fantasy football season is because he is approaching the prime of his career. He already has two years under his belt and is going to turn 24 during the season. My third and final reason that Goff will have an outstanding year in fantasy football is because of the confidence he can have on the other side of the ball. The Ram’s defense is loaded with great players heading into next season. They bolstered their secondary with the additions of Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib, and have one of the best defensive linemen in the league in Aaron Donald. This defense will give Goff the ball very often so that Goff has a chance to score more and more points. Goff will most likely be about the fifteenth quarterback taken in fantasy drafts, so one could wait until the later rounds to scoop up Goff. For these reasons, I believe Goff is primed to have a top ten, possibly even a top five year in fantasy football.

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