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Michael Gallup - 2019 Fantasy Football Sleeper

Heading into your 2019 fantasy football draft, there are a number of sleepers to consider at various positions, but as we all know, finding the correct wide receiver sleeper can be a tall task based on the sheer number of players available at the position.

This year, Michael Gallup of the Dallas Cowboys is a prime breakout candidate. Gallup’s current average position rank is 69, and he has an average draft position of 152, both of which put him firmly in the sleeper category. The biggest reasons to believe Gallup will exceed expectations this season are his advanced metrics, his rapport with Dak Prescott, and his success to finish out the 2018 campaign.

During the preseason, RotoBaller will identify the top fantasy football sleepers and undervalued draft targets. Check out the preseason version of our famous Waiver Wire Pickups list and bookmark it to come back throughout the season. We are your secret weapon to dominating draft day!

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Forgotten Man in Big D

While Amari Cooper, Ezekiel Elliott, and Dak Prescott get all the attention, Gallup could emerge in his second NFL season. In his 2018 rookie campaign, Gallup averaged 5.4 yards after the catch, which placed him in the top 23 percent of the league. He also had an aDoT (Average Depth of Target) of 13.2 yards, which was good for top 18 percent in the league. The fact that Gallup is a major deep threat based on these numbers should come as no surprise; he also averaged nearly 60 air yards per game a season ago.

Last season, Gallup received 13.2 percent of the offensive targets in Dallas. This number should only climb with the departures of Cole Beasley and Allen Hurns. Gallup will firmly be entrenched as the number two wide receiver option behind Amari Cooper. One other stat worth noting is the fact that Gallup has a very respectable drop rate of 1.5 percent. This makes it highly unlikely he loses any playing time due to self-induced mistakes, which can often happen to young wide receivers.

Another reason to get on the Michael Gallup bandwagon for the 2019 season is his rapport with quarterback Dak Prescott. Gallup recently told Nick Eatman of, "If you’ve been watching us out there in OTAs and minicamp, we’ve gotten much better. I think we’ve got a better feel for each other and where I’m going to be and everything. I’m pretty excited about that part.” This is excellent news that Prescott and Gallup are starting to gain more of a rapport because at times last year they did not appear to be on the same page. This is the most logical reason for him only securing 33 receptions in his first full season.

Rookie wide receivers often come into the league and struggle to make adjustments, because they don’t have refined route-running skills and/or chemistry with their new quarterback. The fact that Prescott and Gallup are really starting to develop that chemistry this early in OTAs is a great sign for his upcoming campaign.

Much of the optimism surrounding a potential breakout for Gallup is the success he had at the end of 2018. In his last seven weeks (including the playoffs), Gallup caught a total of 23 passes for 340 yards. The 23 passes accounted for approximately 56 percent of his season’s total production. Pairing this production level with the newly found chemistry between he and Prescott could ultimately lead to a major breakout season enabling him to return excellent value on his current average draft position.

With the Zeke holdout drama taking center stage in Dallas, it's unknown whether the Cowboys offense will be affected during the regular season. If the team is forced to rely more on the passing game, this could help Gallup even more, although some might argue it would hurt the overall offensive production. Either way, Gallup is worth the risk as a talented young receiver with a generous ADP outside the 10th round.

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