Fantasy Sports Fix: Week 1 sleepers

Chris Gingrich/For the Craig Daily Press
Chris Gingrich

Week 1 of the NFL season brings a ton of excitement among the fantasy sports community. It’s like Christmas, but with football instead of presents. There are also tons of sneaky picks you can add to your lineup just in time to make a difference in your match-up.

Just a reminder to always start the studs that you drafted in favor of these so-called sleepers. Sleepers are just players who can have value despite being often overlooked. If you need help in the running back, quarterback or wide receiver positions, here are some players that will have some upside in Week 1.

Alex Smith, quarterback, Kansas City — Often overlooked at the quarterback position, but quietly efficient, Alex Smith leads the sleeper list this week. He has some weapons to use there in Kansas City, such as Jamaal Charles and Travis Kelce. I think he could be a sneaky start this week in most leagues.

Ben Tate, running back, Houston — A lot of you drafted Tate because you wanted to ensure your Arian Foster pick, which is nice, but Tate will no doubt have some value this week as Arian Foster is out until who knows when. The backfield is questionable at best, and Tate is a sure fire bet to get some run this week.

Tyrod Taylor, quarterback, Buffalo — NFL quarterbacks who can run are kind of like a cheat code in fantasy football. The yards they average on the ground can greatly increase their value in the game. Taylor is no different. Taylor offers a safe week-to-week floor thanks to his running ability, making him a very serviceable starting or backup quarterback.

Jonas Gray, running back, New England — Solving the Patriots’ backfield questions is like solving a really hard equation with little or no information. Gray could have some value early in the season as Lagarrette Blount is out the first game and Gray should receive the early down, bell cow carries in Blounts stead.

Eddie Royal, wide receiver, Chicago — Royal is reunited with Jay Cutler this season in Chicago. That’s good because he had his best season several years ago when he played with Cutler in Denver. Brandon Marshall is gone now, leaving his 106 targets up for grabs, and Royal could be made a slot receiver star in Adam Gase’s offense.

Brian Quick, wide receiver, St. Louis — Quick started off last season averaging 12.55 fantasy points per game in his first four games before being sidelined by a shoulder injury. He’s back this year, though, and he’s healthy and set to become the Ram’s No. 1 wide receiver. He has huge upside this year and is a safe bet to produce a nice amount for your fantasy team.

Richard Rodgers, tight end, Green Bay — With the injury to Jordy Nelson, there are some targets up for grabs there in Green Bay, and Rodgers has a year under his belt and understands the playbook better. He barely made an impact as a rookie, but has been outstanding in practices and a frequent target of Aaron Rodgers in the end zone.

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