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NFL Week 1 Sleepers: Big Points from Unexpected Players

I Should've Dodged the Draft.

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We sh&t the bed and had a horrible fantasy football draft. Yes, we were low in the order, but I should’ve avoided that last mimosa during Saturday brunch. We will be scouring the inter-webs for waiver wire moves and sleepers all-season long. It’s the only way my Open Up and Saquon squad has a chance in my non-PPR league. My QB and WR duo is solid, Drew Brees and DeAndre Hopkins, but my top RBs are Joe Mixon and Tevin Coleman. It’s going to be a long year. The good news is I am willing to share my research and past experiences. This week, we analyze USA Today’s For The Win fantasy football sleepers and add our own thoughts. Good luck and don’t forget to check our weekly Fantasy Football posts during the NFL season.

QB Jared Goff, Los Angeles Rams at Oakland Raiders

jaredgofffantasyfootballsleepersweek1
Harry How/Getty Images

The Rams have been very cautious with their Pro-Bowl signal caller in the pre-season. But fans and ownership are anxious to get the regular season underway and unveil a Rams team that’s been picked to go deep into the playoffs. Goff has a myriad of offensive weapons to choose from against Gruden’s Raiders, including RB Todd Gurley, and receivers Brandin Cooks and Cooper Kupp.

Plus, a big Jared Goff fantasy performance on Thursday night can give you a leg up on your competition going into Sunday. The Raiders picked the wrong week to trade their All-Pro linebacker, Khalil Mack.

RB Royce Freeman, Denver Broncos (Home) vs Seattle Seahawks

It’s another season of rebuilding for the Denver Broncos. Since their SuperBowl 50, the Broncos starting QB has been a revolving door of busts. There was Brock Osweiler, Trevor Simien, and then the just-released first-round draft pick Paxton Lynch. This season, the Broncos acquired former Minnesota Vikings QB Case Keenum to be under center and will start a rookie running back Royce Freeman.

Freeman outplayed incumbent RB Devontae Booker in the pre-season. He may be #1 on the depth chart, but I don’t expect big performances from him. Because the Seahawks defense is depleted and in transition, Freeman could be a double-digit fantasy pick, but he would be my RB3 in a season-long league.

WR Will Fuller, Houston Texans at New England Patriots

willfullerfantasyfootballsleepersweek1
SI.com

In any other week, I would be 100% on board with Will Fuller as a sleeper. With a healthy Deshaun Watson calling signals and defenses rolling coverage to contain DeAndre Hopkins, Fuller should see a lot of one-on-one coverage. But Fuller is nursing an injured hamstring since week 3 of the pre-season. He was a limited participant in Texans practice on Wednesday.

The Patriots defense may be susceptible to elite pass catchers look elsewhere for WR fantasy production and value. There you have it, our analysis of USA Today’s fantasy football sleepers for week 1. Good luck.

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