It’s week one of the 2020 NFL season, which hopefully means that you drafted a bunch of wide receivers to choose from this week. If you didn’t, don’t worry, we have you covered with our weekly wide receiver sleepers piece. A player must have availability in at least 50% of Yahoo! leagues to qualify for this article. For those in deeper leagues, we include one player available in at least 90% of leagues. Again, you shouldn’t need this article, but if you do, go ahead and snag one of these wide receiver sleepers.
Wide Receiver Sleepers Option #1: N’Keal Harry versus Miami (33% owned)
You might have a vague memory of the name, as the Patriots took him in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft. His career took a… less than dignified turn after that. Several injuries landed him on the IR after barely getting any preseason run. He came back in December last season and looked understandably outmatched. Now, he gets a clean slate as the #2 wide receiver for a guy who led Kelvin Benjamin and Devin Funchess (who both stink) to top-24 wide receiver seasons. Harry is built in that same “throw it up and go get it” mold that Cam Newton loves to bomb it out to.
If there’s a time for me to finally be right about N’Keal Harry, hopefully, it’s week one against the Miami Dolphins’ WR defense. Last season, the Dolphins allowed the second-most fantasy points to wide receivers, including twenty double-digit fantasy days (half-PPR) for wide receivers last season. Miami added a first-round CB in the draft, but at 5’11” 196, Noah Igbinoghene will likely end up covering Julian Edelman and not the 6’4” 225-pound N’Keal Harry. Wide receiver is so deep that you likely did something exceptionally wrong to end up starting Harry, but he’s a good stash player.
Wide Receiver Sleepers Option #2: Bryan Edwards at Carolina (21% owned)
If there is one rookie wide receiver getting a consistent drumbeat of buzz out of camp, it’s Bryan Edwards. The third-round rookie wide receiver was an afterthought for everyone but people who are plugged into college football or the pre-draft process. He broke a bone in his foot in the runup to the NFL Combine. The Raiders then took him two rounds after one of the top-three receivers in the draft (Henry Ruggs III), and as such, Edwards never got the buzz he deserved. Bryan Edwards is really good and is going to be a star sooner or later.
It might come sooner, rather than later. The Panthers seem to be bottoming out as a franchise prior to a rebuild, and their defense allowed the tenth-most fantasy points to wide receivers in 2019. 2020 is not 2019, but the Panthers no longer have James Bradberry, Eric Reid, Ross Cockrell, and Gerald McCoy. They spent their entire 2020 Draft on defenders, so they should be decent in the second half of 2020, but I’m betting against this team becoming a stout unit from the first snap.
Wide Receiver Sleepers Option #3: Steven Sims Jr versus Philadelphia (6% owned)
I didn’t make this Kendrick Bourne solely because I didn’t want people accusing me of homerism (since that would make for 49ers in three of these four articles). So, let’s go with a guy who finished 2019 hot (including a game where he torched these very Philadelphia Eagles in week sixteen). In the last four games of 2019, Steven Sims played on an 80 catch, 920 yard pace. That isn’t going to blow the doors off the hinges, but he scored four touchdowns in those four games, as Washington started to look like a halfway respectable offense. This week, they get the Eagles squad that let them look somewhat respectable last year.
This Football Team is a mess and Steven Sims is one of the few spots where there’s some continuity. I’ll take Steven Sims torching the Eagles for the second time in four games.
Honorable Mentions: Laviska Shenault versus Indianapolis (11% owned) & Kendrick Bourne versus Arizona (5% owned)
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