When you go into a fantasy football draft, for the most part you know who you like among the cream of the crop. You have a plan for who will be your RB1 and WR1 and likely your RB2 and WR2. Those positions are too important just to wing it on draft day.
The later rounds however offer a great opportunity to find players who many are overlooking, but have the potential to be big contributors to your fantasy team. Hell, often fantasy seasons are won because you made the right pick in the later rounds. I snagged D.J. Chark last year in a deep league and he was a delight to have on my team, let me tell you.
As fantasy drafts approach, here are eight players, all going in the 10th round or later, who offer serious upside and people in your league might be overlooking. (ADP via NFFC)
RB Matt Breida, Miami Dolphins — ADP: 10.01, RB45
Just sneaking under my Round 10 limit, Breida has a chance to be a starting running back in the NFL this year. That alone in the 10th round is a steal. With only Jordan Howard ahead of him, in a backfield that’s looking for someone to claim it, Breida has a terrific chance at being an RB2 if he can win the job and stay healthy. Winning the job shouldn’t be too hard for him given that anytime Breida has taken the field, he’s proven to be among the most explosive backs in the NFL, as evidenced by his career five yards per carry. The worry comes down to health as Breida has shown a propensity to missing snaps and entire games due to injuries. That being said, the talent is more than there and in the 10th round, he’s certainly worth taking a flier on.
WR Henry Ruggs III, Las Vegas Raiders — ADP: 10.02, WR47
I tried to avoid rookie wide receivers on this list just because it’s a weird offseason and rarely to rookie wide outs really break out in a meaningful way their first year. That being said, I can’t help but try to convince ya’ll to join the Divine Believers Of Henry Ruggs. We all know Ruggs has blazing speed, but he can make plays all over the field, not just down the boundary. The Raiders were severally lacking a true number one receiver last year and Ruggs has a wide open opportunity to step right into that role. There’s a lot of risk here, both with president and with playing with Derek Carr as your quarterback, but Ruggs to me has the best chance at being a top fantasy option among all the rookie wide receivers this year.
RB Nyheim Hines, Indianapolis Colts — ADP: 13.07, RB51
A lot of noise has been made about the Colts backfield this year, trying to figure out if Marlon Mack or Jonathan Taylor will be the primary ball carrier. If you want to stay away from that discussion in the third round, might I humbly suggest picking up Hines for basically free. While Hines will never challenge Mack or Taylor for starting back duties, he’s carved out a role for himself as the Colts go-to pass catching back, seeing 139 targets and 107 receptions across the two years he’s been in the league. We know Philip Rivers loves targeting his running backs (everyone remember Austin Ekeler last year?) and if Hines remains the Colts top pass catching back, he could be in for a really solid fantasy season, especially in PPR leagues.
WR Sammy Watkins, Kansas City Chiefs — ADP: 13.09, WR54
I don’t understand Sammy Watkins. I won’t pretend like I’ve been super high on him; In fact, up until recently, I’ve been avoiding him in all my drafts because I just don’t think he’ll be a huge part of the Chiefs offense. But you really can’t ignore him when he’s sitting there in the 13th round after finishing 2019 as the Chiefs’ most targeted wide receiver. Yes, that Chiefs offense we’re all in love with. Obviously Tyreek Hill missed time and he’ll likely take back that number one spot this year, but Watkins still seems like an important part of this offense and buying a large piece of one of the best passing attacks in the NFL in the 13th round is too good to pass up.
WR Allen Lazard, Green Bay Packers — ADP: 16.09, WR63
Shoutout to my colleague Jordan Smith for convincing me to join the Allen Lazard hypetrain. The Packers have long been searching for that elusive number two wide receiver to complement Davante Adams, and while it could be my old hypetrain Devin Funchess, Lazard seems a more likely candidate. He’s already proven to have a strong connection with Aaron Rodgers—something that is extremely important—and according to PFF, he received the 4th highest grade among wide receivers when being targeted against single coverage:
Allen Lazard is gonna breakout this season. https://t.co/kTKIumoPzz— Jordan Love Smith (@Jordan_Smith27) July 7, 2020
RB Adrian Peterson, Washington — ADP: 20.09, RB66
Here’s a guy for those of you in SUUUUUUPER deep drafts (or for those who just like spicing things up at the end of your 15 round draft). Peterson simply doesn’t seem to age and while maybe you’re worried about time eventually catching up with him, I’ll trust that the guy who rushed 211 times last year for 898 yards and 5 touchdowns still has a little something in the tank. With Derrius Guice proving time and time again that he can’t stay on the field, and Washington seriously lacking in pass catchers, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a ground-focus approach from Ron Rivera and Peterson working his way into the bulk of touches.