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The fantasy football draft season is winding to a close, as managers tidy up their rosters in preparation for the upcoming season.  One thing any good manager knows is that your team is never 'complete.'  There are always those one or two moves made in the beginning of the season that can change a team for better or for worse.  Sometimes not making a move is the good choice, but other times that one crucial move can alter a team positively all year.  I like to call it "constant tinkering," and any manager who has played in my leagues knows that I am always looking to improve my roster.  I usually reach the max-moves limit, but I also know that I am usually up for debate at the end of the year for best free agent pick-ups throughout the season.  Point is this: you can never be too prudent with your team.  Make that move you are considering.  Worst case is you make another move down the road to make up for a bad call earlier in the year.  I am compiling a list of players available in either of my two leagues, and trying to make a case for you to pick one of them up if they are also available in your league(s). 

"Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new." - Albert Einstein


Evan Royster RB Was. - Royster is only owned in 33% of Y! leagues, and it should probably be more.  With Tim Hightower injured and off the team, this opens the door for either Royster or rookie Alfred Morris.  Both are first round picks, Royster being a big, bruiser out of Penn State with some NFL experience under his belt.  With Cooley and Hightower gone, and Helu unproven, the 'Skins need some playmakers to step up.  This is a Shannahan offense, so it could be any of these three backs who steps up to the plate, but Royster is certainly more than capable.

Alshon Jeffery WR Chi - Jeffery is a big, physical, up-the-field threat in a perfect city to start what should be a fine NFL career.  I don't necessarily trust rookie WR's, especially those not taken in the first round, but Jeffery is certainly an exception.  At 6'3" 210, and starting opposite Brandon Marshall on a Bears team that has no O-line to speak of, Alshon could be your guy.  He is owned in just over a third of Y! leagues, and should see plenty of starting time with single coverage and an above-average QB throwing to him.  This kid has all the talent in the world, and if he is given to time to play consistently, should be a top 50 WR that might just go undrafted in your leagues.

Jared Cook TE Ten - Some of us don't even take a TE in our drafts.  TE is like the catcher in fantasy baseball.  You either break the bank on a top guy (Gronk, Graham, Gates) or skip it entirely.  In fact, one of my leagues just started carrying a mandatory TE position for the first time this year.  If you are one of those who neglected the TE position and are scrambling for an option this week, take a peek and see if Cook is available.  He is owned in 2/3 of all Y! leagues, but should be almost universally owned.  At 6'5" 250 and a second year quarterback at the helm, Cook could see in excess of 60 catches and a handful of TD's.  Cook is big, physical, and quick, and Locker will look to him underneath often.  In week 15 last year, with Locker in at QB, Cook caught 9 of Lockers 11 completions and accounted for 103 of Lockers 108 passing yards.  This might be the start of something special.

James Starks RB GB - I'm not a huge fan of Starks, and he burned me bad last season as a sleeper pick on a great GB offense.  But the guy has little standing in his way of at least a part-time starting gig.  With a full season under his belt, and if the chips fall right in Wisconsin, I.E. an injury or Alex Green not working out (which are not too far fetched), Starks could step in and gain some points for your team.  Don't hold your breath, but keep him on your watch list.  Any starter in Green Bay is worth your consideration.

Ed Dickson TE Bal - Dickson is going to be a matchup problem for any LB in the league if he can learn how to hold onto passes.  He has plenty of speed (4.59 40yd.) and tons of size and strength (6'4" 260) to succeed in the league.  If you need a tight end, or backup tight end for your team, take a peek at the 14% Y! owned Dickson.

Alex Smith QB SF - If you are looking for a backup quarterback in a deeper league right now, then turn to Alex Smith.  He is more of a game manager in San Fran, but has plenty of weapons around him, and should outproduce some of the QB's I've seen go late in drafts as backups.  Smith is owned in less than 50% of leagues, and put up 3100 yards and a 17/5 TD/INT ratio last year.  Add to that the fact that the 49ers brought in Manningham, Moss, and Jacobs for him to play with, and you got yourself a deep league backup QB option on the waiver wire.

DEEP LEAGUE SLEEPERS:

David Nelson WR Buf - OK, I know this isn't a guy you would run right out and grab, hell, he's only owned in under 10% of all leagues.  But I am a fan of this Bills team.  Their revamped D will give the offense many more opportunities, and that means more action for Nelson.  Big Dave is a 6'5" 220 lb. physical freak, much in the mold of a poor mans Vincent Jackson.  Nelson has enough speed to get down field, the size to box out defensive backs, and good enough hands to catch most of the passes thrown his way.  Nelson is not primed for the starting gig, but with Fitzpatrick throwing to him and Stevie Johnson taking double teams, look for Nelson to AT LEAST match his performance from a year ago.  Look for a 65-750-5 line as your un-drafted #5 WR.

Mohamed Sanu WR Cin - I think that eventually the Jerome Simpson departure in Cincy will have cleared a path for the 6'2" 210lb Sanu.  The gifted receiver out of Rutgers was a third round pick in the past draft, and there is not much on the Bengals roster in his way.  Sanu had 115 receptions in college last season, and will compete with Brandon Tate for a starting gig across the field from A.J. Green on what seems to be shaping up as a potent Cincy offense.



 


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