Now a bit of the dust has settled I wanted to look at some deeper rookie sleepers for the upcoming Fantasy Football season; veterans will be in a separate article. These may be guys that emerge later in the year, get an opportunity due to injury or beat out some veterans in camp. As of now most are off the radar for any ten man redraft league but could become more known in short time. Most of this info will be pretty surface level but these are some players I’ll be keeping an eye on.
Jayden Reed – WR, Green Bay Packers
A good way to get on the field as a rookie is to get opportunities early in OTAs and perform and that’s exactly what Reed has done. He’s projected to immediately slot in as the Packers’ slot receiver; assuming he can fend off Samori Toure. With Jordan Love taking over the helm expect him to look to the middle of the field and for the short and intermediate targets; a perfect formula for Reed to succeed.
Sean Tucker – RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Here’s the UDFA special and possibly the biggest long shot on this list but I like where he landed and there’s a path to touches on this team. Expect Rachaad White to handle 60% of the carries in this offense with Edmonds getting early season work. After that it’s wide open with Ke’Shawn Vaughn and Patrick Laird rounding out the depth chart, I expect one if not both to not make the final roster which would put Tucker third on the opening season depth chart. Edmonds hasn’t played a full season since 2020 and he only had 97 carries that year. If Edmonds misses time this year I fully expect Tucker to slot in and make the most of it. He also improved as a receiver each year in college and should continue to build on that part of his game.
Roschon Johnson – RB. Chicago Bears
Absolutely great landing spot for Johnson in Chicago opportunity wise. Truly underrated and most likely due to playing behind Bijan Robinson at Texas, Johnson got limited opportunities to showcase his skill but every time he got the opportunity he performed. Sure Justin Fields will take rushes away but I expect Getsy to use his trio of WRs, Moore, Mooney and Claypool, to keep defenses from stacking the box. Depth charts for the Bears online seem to all be messed up, heck ESPN has Foreman listed as the RB1 currently. When this all shakes out I expect Herbert to take the lead and Foreman to get the early season work; with Johnson to emerge as the season goes on.
Tank Bigsby – RB, Jacksonville Jaguars
Incredible name aside, Bigsby ended up in an great situation in Jacksonville. He instantly slots in to the RB2 role behind Travis Etienne. This alone should see Bigsby get touches come Week 1. Etienne will be deployed as usual but I can see a path to 100+ rushes for Bigsby and potentially over 150 touches. Bigsby was a competent receiver. A bigger and often overlooked aspect for fantasy is that Tank is also a willing pass protector. It’s still an area he can approve in but I expect this to be a focus this summer and should translate into getting him on the field more.