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Best-Ball Sleepers - Who to Target Late in MFL10s


The popularity of Best-Ball leagues has skyrocketed in recent seasons. There are several reasons why this format provides appeal to a growing number of fantasy owners. This includes the ability to conclude all roster management for the season once your draft has been completed.

But the elimination of all decision-making during the regular season also increases the importance of maximizing every selection throughout your draft. Even though you will expend time and energy in determining which players to select during the early and middle rounds. the decisions that you make after reaching Round 10 will also determine your prospects of capturing a league championship. Particularly since you will not have the benefit of a waiver wire during the season.

That is why the team at RotoBaller remains dedicated to providing you with resources that locate the most viable options to target after the early and middle rounds. That includes this article, which will present 10 enticing candidates that should be available in Round 10 and beyond. You could be rewarded substantially for having them on your rosters if your early-round selections experience lingering injuries or deliver substandard performances.

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Quarterbacks

Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys (QB18/ADP 139)

Prescott finished at QB10 in scoring last season, which continued his streak of placing within the top 10 during each of his three professional seasons. However, his current ADP leaves him available after 17 other quarterbacks have been selected during the draft process.

That lack of enthusiasm from owners is a byproduct of Prescott’s unexceptional three-year averages in passing yardage (3,625) and touchdowns (22.3). Those consistent but undistinguished numbers have relegated him to middling rankings in yardage (15th/16th/19th) and touchdowns (16th/14th/16th).

But Prescott has also delivered favorable fantasy points totals by averaging 315 rushing yards on 63 carries during that span. He has also run for six touchdowns in three straight seasons and finished second to Josh Allen among all quarterbacks in that category during 2018.

His ability to maintain a rushing element in his weekly scoring totals will be beneficial for owners again this season. But it is the projected increase in his passing numbers that should fuel a surge in his overall production. Prescott will have Amari Cooper running routes as his WR1 for 16 games, which will allow the tandem to sustain the momentum that they established once Cooper arrived in November (80.6 yards-per-game/6 touchdowns).

At a minimum, Prescott will retain his steady statistical presence. But he is in a position to deliver the most prolific numbers of his career. That provides the incentive to avoid expending draft capital on quarterbacks that require early or mid-round investments while making Prescott an exceptional target after Round 10.

Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills (QB20/ADP147)

Ongoing concerns about Allen’s deficiencies as a passer have lingered in the aftermath of last season’s 52.8 completion percentage. However, any apprehension about drafting the second-year signal-caller should be overshadowed by his scoring potential as a dual-threat performer. This provides the prospects of significant production during any given week.

After unquestioned struggles in Weeks 1-6 Allen returned from an elbow issue to become a highly productive fantasy asset in Weeks 12-17, He accumulated 1,242 of his 2,074 passing yards for the season during that six-game sequence (207 per game), while also accruing eight of his 10 touchdowns. Allen also generated 476 yards on the ground (79 per game) and produced five of his eight rushing touchdowns during that span.

The Bills altered their offensive approach to capitalize on Allen’s strengths following his injury, which helped Allen lead all quarterbacks in longest completed air distance (LCAD) 63.9 and average intended air yards (IAY) (11) according to Next Gen Stats.

He should benefit from talent enhancements along a rebuilt offensive line, while the Bills have also fortified Allen’s receiving arsenal by adding John Brown and Cole Beasley. Allen's ability to launch deep throws should result in downfield connections with Brown and Robert Foster while Beasley’s reliability on shorter routes can boost Allen’s efficiency.

Combining these factors with his ability to operate as a tangible rushing threat should elevate his fantasy scoring above a large percentage of signal-callers who are being selected before him. That provides further rationale to seize Allen in the Best-Ball format, where you elude the precarious scenario of determining when to start him.

 

Running Backs

Justice Hill, Baltimore Ravens (RB54/ADP 154)

Hill bolted for 3,539 yards and 30 touchdowns during three collegiate seasons, although he was impacted by a lingering rib injury in 2018. That did not deter the Ravens from selecting him with the 213th overall pick, and he can excel within a Baltimore offense that remains steadfast in its commitment to the run.

The Ravens averaged 34 rushing attempts per game in 2018, while also finishing third in run play percentage (47.7%). Alex Collins and Gus Edwards combined for 251 carries, and Hill supplies a degree of explosiveness that did not exist in last year's backfield.  His potential to burst for sizable chunks of yardage was displayed at the NFL Combine when he delivered a sizzling 4.40 in the 40-yard dash.

Mark Ingram appears destined to perform lead back duties for the Ravens. But Hill's big-play potential should compel the Ravens to entrust him with a significant workload. His speed and athleticism will complement Ingram and should help him emerge as an immediate contributor in Week 1. Hill should also provide a scoring boost for owners throughout the season, and his ceiling surpasses the current ADP by a considerable margin. This creates an incentive for you to capitalize on his appealing combination of big-play talent and opportunity by commandeering him before Round 13.

Duke Johnson, Cleveland Browns, (RB56/ADP 158)

A whopping 55 backs are being selected before Johnson. But that is understandable considering his unwanted location below Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt on Cleveland’s depth chart. He will maintain a role within the Browns’ offense until Hunt becomes available. But the premise for pursuing Johnson remains tethered to the belief that he can function as a highly productive weapon if he is traded into a more favorable environment.

Johnson’s ability to thrive with a significant touch total from 2015-2017 confirms his ability to perform effectively if he attains an expanded with a new team. Johnson registered the 16th highest snap count among backs in 2017 (565/53%), when he was entrusted with Cleveland's pass-catching responsibilities.

Johnson was extremely productive in that role while finishing fourth among backs in targets (93) and receptions (74). He also generated the third-most receiving yard (693), which propelled him to an RB 11 finish. That culminated an impressive three-year sequence in which he accrued 241 targets, 188 receptions and 1,741 yards.

Johnson’s favorable track record separates him from many other backs that will be available when your draft reaches Round 14. While Johnson will only supply desirable production if another team secures his services. But his value will soar if that transpires.

Dexter Williams, Green Bay Packers, (RB73 /ADP 254)

Once your draft is approaching its conclusion, the vast majority of players that you had originally planned to target will no longer be available. However, that should not persuade you to become apathetic about your final selections. Because the final rounds still contain players who provide the potential of outperforming their anemic ADPs by considerable margins.

Williams is a prime example of a player whose combination of skills could translate into significant production if the pathway to an extensive workload suddenly develops during this season. Aaron Jones should emerge as the Packers’ RB1, and he possesses the explosiveness to flourish as the team’s feature back. But he has also missed eight games during his first two seasons. If Jones would become unavailable for any reason, Williams might be the recipient of a massive workload.

That would involve ascending beyond the unexceptional Jamaal Williams on Green Bay’s depth chart. However, the veteran Williams has consistently delivered a restricted statistical ceiling (3.7 yard-per-carry average). Matt LaFleur might prefer the favorable blend of size, decisiveness, and acceleration that Dexter Williams can deliver, rather than settling for the limitations that exist with Jamaal Williams.

That decision would have added significance since LaFleur should increase Green Bay's rushing play percentage beyond last years' 32.5%. Selecting Dexter Williams allows you to make exceptional use of a late-round pick while other owners mentally disengage during the closing moments of your draft.

 

Wide Receivers

N’Keal Harry, New England Patriots (WR 52/ADP 127)

When the Boston Globe’s Ben Volin reported that Harry “struggled to get open” during New England’s mini-camp, the overreaction that ensued was borderline nonsensical. The word “bust” quickly emerged on Twitter, and Harry’s ADP shifted downward. But any challenges that Harry encountered during his initial mini-camp should have been expected.

His ability to track passes and capture congested throws remain prominent among his attributes when reviewing Harry’s tape. He is also a physical receiver, who has already demonstrated his willingness to work diligently during the offseason. His blend of dependable hands, size, and competitiveness become even more appealing when you consider his pedigree as the first wide receiver to be selected in Round 1 by the Patriots’ since 1996.

Harry should immediately procure a sizable role due to the underwhelming level of competition that he will encounter for targets. Beyond Julian Edelman, the Patriots’ collection of wide receivers includes Phillip Dorsett, Braxton Berrios, Maurice Harris, Dontrelle Inman, and a rapidly declining Demaryius Thomas - who is currently on the active PUP list.

An enticing number of vacated targets await Harry through the departures of Rob Gronkowski (72), Chris Hogan (55), Cordarrelle Patterson (28), and the nebulous status of Josh Gordon (68). Despite the assortment of reasons to be enthusiastic about Harry, D.K. Metcalf, and James Washington are among the receivers currently being selected him before him. That presents an excellent opportunity to seize this talented rookie, who will be an immediate point producer.

Daesean Hamilton, Denver Broncos (WR57/ADP 152)

Hamilton entered Week 14 with anemic season-long numbers (8 targets/5 receptions/ 61 yards). But the torn Achilles that ended Emmanuel Sanders’ season in early December propelled Hamilton into a significant role. He performed on 95.5% of the Broncos’ snaps from Weeks 14-17 and led all rookies with 38 targets. He also capitalized on that expanded usage by collecting 25 receptions and assembling 182 yards.

Hamilton established his reliability as a possession receiver, which ignited his relevance as a viable starter during the fantasy postseason. But Hamilton's ADP indicates that his momentum has not been sustained during the offseason. This is largely due to the possibility that Sanders can reemerge as the Broncos’ primary receiver. Sanders was 14th in targets (92) and 16th in target-per-game average (8.4) entering Week 13, and ultimately led Denver in receptions (71) and yardage (868).

While a healthy Sanders would theoretically impact Hamilton’s snaps, routes, and targets, he would only function as the Broncos' WR1 if he can achieve full recovery. The 32-year-old still must overcome significant obstacles for that to occur. This includes age, a devastating injury and the fact that it transpired late in 2018.

The degree to which Sanders is infused into the equation also affects Courtland Sutton, as the trio operates within a changeable environment. But Hamilton will provide pocket-passer Joe Flacco with a dependable option, and will receive extensive targeting regardless of the roles that Sutton and Sanders assume. His hamstring issue should be monitored, but he remains worthy of a Round 13 selection.

Robert Foster, Buffalo Bills (WR58/ADP 155)

There was no indication during the first nine weeks of his 2018 rookie season that an enormous surge in productivity was imminent for Foster. He manufactured just 30 on two receptions from Weeks 1-6, then was unceremoniously cut before Week 7. But after being called up from Buffalo's practice squad in Week 10, Foster erupted for 100+ yards in three of Buffalo's next five contests. This gave him the distinction of becoming the only rookie to eclipse 100 receiving yards in three different games.

Foster also averaged 82 yards-per-game from Weeks 10-16 and led first-year receivers in yardage during his final seven contests. (511). He enters his second season with a desirable mix of big-play capabilities and a potential pathway to unleash it. But his late-season production has been undervalued by some potential owners after Buffalo signed John Brown and Cole Beasley in free agency. However, Beasley will maintain a presence in the slot without negatively impacting Foster’s downfield targets.

Brown is a candidate to pilfer opportunities that would otherwise be distributed to Foster. This makes it conceivable that both receivers will intersperse weeks of high-quality production with modest output during other matchups.  However, Foster's late-season usage and output should not be underestimated. He can generate sizable yardage in any given week, which sustains his appeal in the Best Ball format.

 

Tight Ends

Mark Andrews, Baltimore Ravens (TE17/ADP 138)

17 tight ends captured more targets and 15 generated more fantasy points than Andrews during his 2018 rookie season. But  Andrews should out-produce a sizable percentage of those players by attaining an unquestioned role as Baltimore's TE1. I recently examined the reasons why Andrews should receive a significant increase in target share. This should provide owners with a beacon of hope at the position that often delivers unrelenting discomfort throughout the year.

Even though Greg Roman has repeatedly demonstrated his preference for a ground-oriented approach during his previous tenures as offensive coordinator, Baltimore should sustain the frequent usage of tight ends that occurred in 2018 under Marty Mornhinweg. The Ravens launched 127 throws to the position last season, which was the league's seventh-highest total. They also averaged 14.6 yards-per-attempt when utilizing the position.

This helped Andrews finish second in yards-per-reception among tight ends that collected at least eight catches (16.2) and his eight receptions of 20+ yards placed him eighth. Andrews also paced all rookie tight ends with 552 yards and accumulated 289 of them through connections with Jackson from Weeks 12-17. He should ultimately finish as a TE1 in scoring this season and is undervalued at his current ADP.

Darren Waller, Oakland Raiders TE25/ADP 198

After consideration was given to discussing Dallas Goedert in this section, the focus will shift to a less prominent option who remains available in Round 17. Waller's delivers an unusual assortment of size, speed, and agility, although the converted wide receiver's four NFL seasons have been extremely unproductive.

Since entering the league in 2015, he has accumulated a paltry 18 receptions, 178 yards, and 2 touchdowns, while also being affixed to the sidelines during two suspensions. However, his nondescript career is progressing toward a distinct upturn that could launch him into unprecedented relevance. After Waller was signed from Baltimore's practice squad in late November, he accrued 75 yards on six receptions in Weeks 14-17. This provided a glimpse of what can be achieved when his physical advantages intersect with opportunity.

Oakland's offensive transformation during the offseason has created an uncluttered passageway for Waller to seize TE1 responsibilities. He should prevail in competition with the Raiders' an uninspiring cluster of Luke Wilson, Erik Swoope, Derek Carrierand rookie Foster Moreau). This will allow Waller to line up in Week 1 as an integral component in Jon Gruden’s attack. That will enable him to supply a 6’6 245-pound presence that could become considerably more productive than other options who are available as your draft nears its conclusion.

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