Fantasy Focus: Sleepers To Grab Now!

In a panic because you still have some holes in your fantasy lineup? There are a few valuable Colts still left on the waiver wire that are worth considering for your fantasy league. Brad Keller weighs in on them and suggests a few other alternatives around the league.

This is a guide of how available potential sleeper players on the Colts are currently and whether or not to pick them up.  Obviously, stars such as Joseph Addai and Peyton Manning are not there for the free agent plucking, but some Indianapolis reserves — and other quality players from around the NFL — are waiting to be claimed.

Running Backs:

For the most part, fantasy owners believe that Addai has a firm grasp on the starting job and must not believe that he will get injured, judging by the fact that Mike Hart and Dominic Rhodes are very available at this juncture in the season.

If Addai does miss considerable time, Rhodes and Hart would likely be part of a timeshare in the backfield and would both have value.


Andre Hall should get some touches in Denver's offense
AP Photo/Jack Dempsey

But, it's usually best to stay ahead of the competition, so if you drafted Chris Brown, or don't have a lot of faith in your current group, Hart and Rhodes are owned by only about 10 percent of players in most leagues.  They're probably less available in leagues surrounding the Indianapolis area, but one or both are probably out there on the waiver wire.

Other Possibilities:

Ray Rice: Now is the time to pick him up.  ESPN lists him as being 60 percent owned, so there's at least a decent chance that he's out there.

Willis McGahee has a lingering knee injury, has had knee issues in the past, and kind of needs his knees to be healthy to play his position effectively.  Rice would start of McGahee can't go.

Andre Hall: Only 10 percent owned and has the inside track on the starting job in Denver if anything should happen to Selvin Young.  And, with Mike Shannahan involved, he'll see a decent number of carries and might see more if he proves capable.

Chris Taylor: He's only owned in 2 percent of ESPN leagues, so he's definitely out there.  Ahman Green cannot be trusted to stay healthy and the Texans coaching staff, though they seem to trust Steve Slaton, still don't consider him to be ready.

Taylor is a super-sleeper, but should be easy for Colts fans to track, since he's in the same division.

Quarterbacks:

Don't risk jinxing the season by picking up Jim Sorgi.  Just don't do it.

Other Possibilities:

Chad Pennington: He'll keep turnovers to a minimum and Miami should be playing from behind a good deal this season, which means he'll pick up a lot of points in garbage time.  Only owned in 14 percent of leagues.

Matt Leinart: If you don't trust your current backup and your starter has a bye late in the season, Leinart is a good idea.  He's imminently available since Kurt Warner was named the starter, but Warner cannot be counted on to stay healthy or consistent.

Arizona will need to throw the ball to be effective, so it's worth taking a shot at Leinart.

J.T. O'Sullivan: Once again, he'll limit mistakes and need to throw a good deal.  Quarterbacks always see a spike in productivity in a Mike Martz offense.  10 percent owned.


Pierre Garcon won't get many targets early in the season, but could as the year goes on
Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images

Wide Receivers:

Pierre Garcon has the most potential to be productive if someone gets injured and is very, very available.

Since the Colts three starters are gone in almost all leagues, it might be best to wait and see what happens, since he'll only get on the field in the event of a blowout or injury.

Josh Morgan: Only owned in 16.3 percent of ESPN leagues and seems to be this year's Mike Furrey — the player who runs sharp routes and inexplicably excels in the Martz offense.

Nate Washington: Practically unowned and is the third receiver in the Steelers offense.  They face a tough schedule this year and, if they get behind and are forced to pass frequently, Washington could get a lot of looks.

Bobby Engram, Kevin Curtis: You're looking for reserves at this point and these two gentlemen are owned in 34 and 48 percent of leagues, respectively.

Their injuries have scared owners off, but it's worth noting that both of these men will see a lot of action when they do return and they should be back on the field shortly after the bye weeks start.  If you have an injured reserve slot, pick one of these players up and stash him there.

The Rookie That Has the Biggest Week 1: There's one every year.

Are you seriously going to hold onto Roydell Williams to pass on the possibility of having the next Anquan Boldin or Marques Colston? Put in a claim for the best unowned rookie as soon as his game ends today.

Tight Ends:

Jacob Tamme is a good pickup after the bye.  He will be the man inserted into the starting lineup should anything happen to Dallas Clark and, while he's not on the same level as Clark, the two are mostly interchangeable and Tamme will experience similar production.

Other Possibilities:

Ben Utecht: Owned in merely 30 percent of ESPN leagues and you know what to expect from him.  Capable back-up.

Desmond Clark: Will take looks away from second-year man Greg Olsen and is the more consistent player.  He will serve as a safety blanket for Kyle Orton and is only 3 percent owned.

Kickers:

Adam Vinatieri is most likely not getting hurt and the Colts don't have a contingency plan that we know of.

Other Possibilities:

John Kasay: Panthers will move the ball, but can they score?  Kasay is dependable and 40 percent owned.

Robbie Gould: The Bears will have their fair share of favorable field position situations thanks to their excellent return team and a defense that will cause turnovers.  Gould will benefit from that and is 61 percent owned.

Defense/Special Teams:

If the Colts defense is available, take it.

It probably isn't available, but as a free agent, it has considerable value and, if you're nervous about your current defense, the Colts can fill in a week here or there based on matchups.  Hint: Good matchup this week for the Colts defense.

Panthers: They will get to the quarterback and should cause their fair share of turnovers.  They also play two games each against the Falcons and Buccaneers.  They're another good matchup defense.  Hint: Bad matchup for the Panthers defense this week.

Bills: They have an active front seven and a deep secondary.  They also play well on special teams.  They also play the Dolphins twice, the 49ers, the Chiefs, and the Raiders.  Another good matchup team with a decent matchup against the injury depleted Seahawks this week.


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