8 Deep Sleepers at Quarterback

The Footballguys staff digs deep for sleepers at quarterback

A fantasy draft is all about obtaining the most value with each selection. There is value available throughout a draft, and grabbing it is one of the most important keys to a successful fantasy team. This article specifically targets deep sleeper value (players that can be found very late in a fantasy draft). In an attempt to point out this value, we asked our staff to look deeper than the Top 150 and identify players that should significantly outperform their late draft position. These players should be your targets after the 12th round of your draft.

They gave us 8 names.

If you want all of the players, keep on reading. If you just want the top guys, here are the three who received the most votes:

NOTE: We know all these different opinions can be a lot. And certainly, not everyone agrees on everything.

If you want to cut straight to the chase and get our "Bottom Line" for where we project every player right down to the last yard, you can see that here. That's our Bottom Line and where we plant the Footballguys Flag for all these players.

If you'd like to see more detail about how the staff sees different players, here is every wide receiver who was mentioned and the reasons why.

Player Receiving 8 Votes

Teddy Bridgewater, Carolina

Phil Alexander: If Carolina's season comes together on the field the way it looks like it will on paper, a path to an elite fantasy season exists for Bridgewater. The Panthers defense ranked 32nd against the run last year and lost their franchise linebacker, Luke Keuchly, to retirement. Opponents should be able to impose their will on Carolina's depleted defense, forcing Bridgewater and co. to keep their foot on the pedal in the passing game for all four quarters most weeks. Considering his top weapons -- Christian McCaffrey, D.J. Moore, Curtis Samuel, and Ian Thomas -- thrive in the short-to-intermediate areas of the field, Bridgewater's accuracy on short-area throws should prove valuable.

Sigmund Bloom: This answer is too easy. Bridgewater doesn't have a track record of producing like a QB1, but he'll never be set up better for that level of scoring. The Panthers have three talented wide receivers plus Christian McCaffrey, they have a completely overhauled defense that will likely be overmatched, and Bridgewater's offensive coordinator, Joe Brady, knows him from their time together in New Orleans and helped create one of the best college football offenses of all time last year. If Kyle Allen can flirt with fantasy relevance in this situation, but with less ability, a less inventive offensive coordinator, and one fewer legit deep threat (Robby Anderson), then Bridgewater can follow through on the flirtations and be a fantasy-relevant quarterback this year.

Andrew Davenport: It is easy to disparage Bridgewater for his failure to throw the ball downfield with New Orleans last year. But according to NFL's Next Gen Stats both Bridgewater and Brees ranked in the bottom four quarterbacks in the league in Intended Air Yards. This suggests that maybe it wasn't all Bridgewater's fault for the lack of depth on his passes, rather it was part of what the Saints wanted from their quarterbacks. Now he gets the chance to play for several bright offensive coaches and has a plethora of weapons at his disposal. The NFC South, plus a poor defense, should put Bridgewater in a lot of positive game scripts to pile up points.

Jeff Haseley: The issue for Bridgewater isn't moving the ball, it's scoring once he gets close. Enter Joe Brady, who was the conductor of the majestic orchestra that was Joe Burrow and the LSU Tigers last year. In 2018, Joe Burrow and the Tigers had the 38th ranked offense in FBS. In 2019 Joe Brady joined the staff and was given the role of passing game coordinator. He excelled particularly when LSU was in the red zone. Virtually the same team finished 1st in offense in FBS and Joe Burrow set collegiate records with 60 touchdown passes and 5,761 passing yards while the team scored 48.4 points per game and 401 passing yards per game. The difference-maker who can elevate Bridgewater into fantasy respectability is Joe Brady. If Bridgewater executes the plan to exploit defenses and if Brady is as good as advertised, he could finish in the top 15 or possibly top 12.

Ryan Hester: A porous defense and a bold offensive coaching staff could put Bridgewater in fantasy-friendly spots. Combine that with the fact that his preference for short-to-intermediate passes aligns with his two best skill players (Christian McCaffrey and D.J. Moore), and that's a recipe for surprising success.

Jeff Pasquino: Teddy Bridgewater takes over in Carolina as the starting quarterback after signing a two-year deal with the Panthers. Bridgewater suffered a gruesome injury several years back in Minnesota, and then he had to prove himself as the backup in New Orleans. When Drew Brees was injured, Bridgewater stepped in and showed that he can not only manage a game but also lead his team towards victory. Now he takes over in Carolina with a star tailback, a solid tight end and three very capable wide receivers at his disposal. Bridgewater is a cheap selection for a fantasy backup quarterback option, but his upside could elevate him towards a Top 12 level if everything falls into place in Carolina.

Matt Waldman: Offensive coordinator Joe Brady brings his scheme to Carolina from LSU. The Tigers had a quarterback who lacks top-end arm velocity but has the skill to move around the pocket and find the open man when the design of the play breaks down. Sounds a lot like the quarterback slated to start for him in Carolina, doesn't it? Bridgewater reads the middle of the field well and should mesh with the strengths of his receivers D.J. Moore, Curtis Samuel, and Christian McCaffrey. Look for Bridgewater to get within 100-200 yards of 4,000 as a passer and flirt with 25 scores.

Jason Wood: Whether Teddy Bridgewater has fantasy relevance comes down to whether you think he's the quarterback we saw in his first 30+ NFL starts, of the one we saw in his final few starts in New Orleans last year. Bridgewater was a glorified game manager in his early years in Minnesota and then battled back from a career-threatening injury before landing with the Saints as Drew Brees' backup. He started five games last year, winning all of them, and earned his new role as the Panthers starter in the process. Bridgewater's first few starts in New Orleans showed the same propensity for short, high-percentage throws even when downfield options were there. But he settled into the role and embraced the vertical routes in the last few starts. If offensive coordinator Joe Brady can entice Bridgewater to stay aggressive, he has top-10 upside. If not, his ADP probably isn't unfair where it stands.

Player Receiving 6 Votes

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