The 2022 NFL season is fast approaching and that means draft season for fantasy football has arrived. Everyone will seek out hidden gems in their respective drafts, that sleeper that will greatly outplay their ADP. While we can’t predict the future, we can look at a player’s average draft position (ADP) and see who has the best chance to be a value where they are being selected.
Mining for wide receiver depth in your drafts is a proposition that can potentially make or break your season right out the gate. Hitting on a sleeper is great, but hitting on a hidden gem wideout could set you up nicely. Here are our deep sleeper wide receiver picks that can bring value to your fantasy football lineups this season.
Note: I am using half-PPR scoring formats and 12-team leagues for this article.
Julio Jones, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
“Fantasy Sleeper Julio Jones” is a phrase that sounds weird to say, but here we are. The Buccaneers took a flyer on the veteran wideout at the start of training camp and he will join an already loaded offense led by Tom Brady.
No one is expecting the Jones of, say, 10 years ago to be stepping foot into One Buc Place, but he’ll have great value within his role in the offense. He’s lost a step in recent years due to age and injuries but the team will most likely mask that by lining him up on the inside. He’ll have extra value early in the season considering that Chris Godwin is still working his way back to full health after his ACL tear last season. Jones is currently WR57 in ADP but he’ll be in good hands with Brady throwing to him.
D.J. Chark, Detroit Lions
Chark’s season with the Jaguars ended abruptly with an ankle injury last year and he will get a fresh start with the Lions this season. Judging by his performance in training camp so far, the fifth-year veteran out of LSU could far exceed his current status as WR65 in ADP.
With first-round wide receiver Jameson Williams on the shelf with an injury of his own, Chark will only have Amon-Ra St. Brown to compete with as WR1 in Detroit. And judging by the quick rapport he’s establishing with Jared Goff in training, he could very much be that guy. We’ve seen the wideout reach 1,000 yards receiving once before in his young career and we could see him reach those heights again as he performs on a one-year “prove it” deal with the Lions.
Robbie Anderson, Carolina Panthers
Whether it’s Baker Mayfield or Sam Darnold that wins the starting job in Carolina, they’ll have two reliable options to throw to this season. One is D.J. Moore, who has posted three straight 1,100-yard receiving seasons. The other is Robbie Anderson, who is gunning for his second 1,000-yard season in three years.
Anderson’s production dipped a bit last season, hauling in just 53 passes for 519 yards and five touchdowns. Those numbers could be attributed to the overall instability of the Panthers’ offense as he was still a heavy presence with 85% of snaps played throughout the year. A more stable QB situation could mean a bounce back year for the veteran and would definitely be worth picking up in deeper leagues.
Wan’Dale Robinson, New York Giants
If healthy, the Giants will have a sneaky deep wide receiver room with the likes of Kenny Golladay, Sterling Shepard, and Kadarius Toney catching passes. The potential X-factor of the group could be rookie Wan’Dale Robinson, who is WR91 in ADP.
Giants coaching staff and reporters alike have been bullish on the second-rounder and early training camp videos have indicated the possibility of him being used in motion within the offense. He had a ridiculous 39.3% target share at Kentucky last season and that helped him set school records in receiving at the program. Keep your eye out on the rook in New York.
Romeo Doubs, Green Bay Packers
The Romeo Doubs hype has gone into overdrive through the early days of training camp and even Aaron Rodgers has had high praise for the rookie. With second-round pick Christian Watson missing the first days of training camp with a knee injury, the fourth-rounder Doubs has taken advantage and may have played himself into a starting job.
The Nevada product posted back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons at Nevada and could very well emerge as a hidden receiver gem in this class with a four-time MVP throwing to him. He is currently WR106 in ADP and could make fantasy managers regret skipping over him real fast.