In this article KFFL breaks down the fantasy football sleepers of the week. We will avoid marquee names because players of that caliber are rarely benched, regardless of their matchup. Instead, we will focus on the players that make your fantasy lineup decisions stressful each week. Read on to learn which midrange to low-end players that you wouldn't necessarily consider that you need to get into your lineup.
Note: All statistics are from Week 4 to Week 7, unless otherwise noted.
Fantasy football sleepers: Quarterbacks
Kyle Orton, Denver Broncos at Baltimore Ravens
Fantasy value: High-end No. 1
Don't ignore Orton after his bye week
- Orton has registered at least 229 passing yards and two aerial scores in each of his last three games, along with throwing just one pick the entire season.
- The Ravens come in as a top-10 fantasy matchup in passing yards yielded per contest (269.0) in their last three games.
- Baltimore cornerbacks have had trouble with tall wideouts, which should mean a big day for 6-foot-4 Broncos wideout Brandon Marshall. The Ravens' run D has been a bit more vulnerable lately, but we should presume Denver would open up the passing playbook more often, meaning more inclusions of wideout Jabar Gaffney, tight end Tony Scheffler and running back Knowshon Moreno. Baltimore's pass D has also been among the most generous to wideouts over the last month.
David Garrard, Jacksonville Jaguars at Tennessee Titans
Fantasy value: Midrange No. 1
- Despite finding the end zone just five times via the air this season, Garrard has thrown for 323-plus yards in two of his last three games, one of which came against Tennessee. He has capitalized on numerous favorable matchups this season.
- Tennessee is the pick of the litter in terms of fantasy matchups against passing. In Tennessee's three contests in the last month, quarterbacks have torched them for 354.7 passing yards and 4.00 touchdowns per game.
- Sure, these numbers were skewed a bit by the destructive swords of the New England Patriots' Tom Brady and the Indianapolis Colts' Peyton Manning, but in Week 4, they also let Garrard rattle off 323 aerial yards and three touchdown throws. Tennessee also wasn't too formidable against the position before that, either.
- This incarnation of Tennessee's secondary has dealt with injuries virtually all season. Cornerback Nick Harper (forearm) is expected to miss Week 8. D-backs Cortland Finnegan (hamstring) and Vincent Fuller (forearm) will probably try to play but both are battered.
NEW - Marc Bulger, St. Louis Rams at Detroit Lions
Fantasy value: No. 1 or bench
- Bulger hasn't blown up the world in his last two full games, averaging 176.5 yards, 0.5 touchdown throws and 1.5 interceptions tossed per game. He has also been sacked four times since Week 5.
- The Lions have been medicine for quarterback woes in the last four weeks, in which they have allowed 258.7 passing yards and 2.33 aerial scores per game to enemy slingers.
- Detroit will look to blitz more this week, which may rattle the often statuesque thrower. However, this could turn out to be an ugly defensive affair for both teams given their general incompetence on that side of the ball, and the Lions' secondary is by no means a threat by itself if Detroit can't reach the passer.
About Tim Heaney
Tim's work has been featured by USA Today/Sports Weekly, among numerous outlets, and recognized as a finalist in the Fantasy Sports Writers Association awards. The Boston University alum competes in Tout Wars and LABR and has won several industry leagues in both baseball and football.
During baseball and football season, hear him every Wednesday on 1570 AM WNST in Baltimore. On Thursdays, he visits 106.1 FM WMTI in New Orleans and Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio, where he often crashes other shows, as well.
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