The 2016 NFL season is here. More importantly, the 2016 fantasy football season is here.
With Week 1 now underway, it means that it’s time to lock in not only your season-long fantasy football lineups but also your daily fantasy football lineups. There’s some great matchups on paper, but also quite a few players who are getting overlooked as great sleepers. Let’s jump into it and look at the top daily fantasy sleepers for the opening week.
Dak Prescott, quarterback, Dallas Cowboys
Listen, when you can get a quarterback who has the ability to take off and run, and also has one of the best wide receivers in the game and top offensive lines on his side, you can’t ignore him. Prescott looked superb during the preseason, and while the regular season is a different beast, there’s almost no way to argue using Prescott in daily fantasy this week. He’ll be pretty high owned more than likely, but he’s going to be worth it as he’ll more than surpass his value.
Spencer Ware, running back, Kansas City Chiefs
While it seems that Jamaal Charles isn’t ready to go for Week 1, the good news is that Ware is more than ready to roll. He’s going to have a huge role in Week 1, and a year after rushing for 403 yards and six touchdowns with a 5.6 yard-per-carry average, he should be on your radar. Even more importantly, Ware is going to cost you very, very little, allowing you to spend up in other places when filling out your lineup. He also has a great matchup against the San Diego Chargers, who allowed the fifth-most points to opposing running backs in ESPN’s scoring.
Theo Riddick, running back, Detroit Lions
While many will target Ameer Abdullah, we’re going to look in a different direction. Instead, we’ll target the elite pass-catching running back in Riddick. It’s obvious how high scoring the game between the Lions and Indianapolis Colts should be, and the Indianapolis defense isn’t very good. Riddick, who caught 80 passes for 697 yards and three touchdowns last season, should catch four or more passes and it wouldn’t be surprising at all to see him score a touchdown as well. He’s a great sleeper option this week.
Marvin Jones Jr., wide receiver, Detroit Lions
We’ll roll with the Lions once more here, and this one is largely due to the fact that Jones has such a low price tag across the daily fantasy sites. While many expect Golden Tate to be the go-to option in the passing game, Jones is going to get plenty of targets and is a big-play threat every time he touches the ball. You have to love his upside, and going back to what we said about the Colts, this is a defensive unit that allowed 257.1 yards per game through the air, ranking them No. 24 in the NFL.
Mohamed Sanu, wide receiver, Atlanta Falcons
There will be very, very few people on Sanu this weekend. That’s great news for those of you who decide to give him a chance. While he’s definitely a boom or bust play, we know that the Falcons love to throw the ball a pretty good amount. To go along with that, they may be in for a high-scoring game against a talented Tampa Bay Buccaneers offense. While much of the defensive attention for the Buccaneers will be on superstar Julio Jones, it’s going to open things up in a big way for Sanu. Expect Atlanta’s 2016 free agent acquisition to have a big Week 1 impact.
Julius Thomas, tight end, Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jaguars against the Green Bay Packers is going to be a high scoring game. If Jacksonville wants to keep pace with the Packers and quarterback Aaron Rodgers, it’s going to take them airing it out often. While Jacksonville’s defense is improved heading into this season, Rodgers and the Packers offense is on another level. As for Thomas’ role, we expect quarterback Blake Bortles to utilize his young and talented tight end, while the defense keys in on slowing down Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns.