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2022 Dynasty Fantasy Football Summer Sleeper: New York Giants

We pick out a potential cheap dynasty option in New York.

In our annual 32-part Summer Sleeper series, DLF scribes identify a lightly-touted player on each NFL roster who may be worthy of your consideration. Our subjects all have varying levels of “sleeperness,” but each merits a bit of in-depth discussion.

To help everybody along, we are going to be categorizing our sleepers under one of three headings:

Super Deep Sleepers – Players who aren’t roster-worthy in 12-team leagues, but are still worth keeping an eye on.

Deep Sleepers – An end-of-the-roster player who is more often than not on the waiver wire in 12-team leagues.

Sleeper – A likely rostered player who makes for a good trade target. Their startup ADP puts them out of the top 175 or so.

Because we aren’t going to give you the likes of mainstream sleepers, most of these players will undoubtedly fizzle. All we are asking is for you to keep an open mind and perhaps be willing to make room for one of these players on your bench. You never know when the next Adam Thielen or James Robinson is going to spring up. Feel free to add your own thoughts about our choice for the designated sleeper, or nominate one of your own in the comments below.

If there is ever a position for you to temper your expectations for as new players enter the league, it would be tight end. Very rarely – if ever – do we see rookies “explode” on the scene right out of the gate. Rob Gronkowski was the TE5 as a rookie, last season Kyle Pitts was TE6, and Travis Kelce played one snap his rookie year due to injuries, but in his first full-time season in the NFL, he was TE6 too. Do I think the player below is the next Gronkowski or Kelce? No, I do not, but this is a sleeper article folks!

Daniel Bellinger, TE

Category: Deep Sleeper

Through the early months of draft season, Bellinger was going undrafted. However, following the NFL Draft, Bellinger began to sneak into the end of rookie drafts. This ADP rise was a reaction to the Giants using the seventh pick of the fourth-round (112th overall) on the San Diego State Aztec.

According to DLF’s ADP data, Bellinger is currently the rookie TE4 in drafts, being selected 46.7 on average. He was chosen in only half of May’s rookie drafts. Switching over to MFL’s draft data, Bellinger has been taken in 55% of drafts, with an ADP of 55.53, where he is TE6. A slight difference between the two data sets, but close enough to get the point: people aren’t clamoring for his services.

Bellinger’s data on Mock Draftable shows a spider chart that starts to paint a prettier picture. With the exception of the length of his arms and his performance in the short shuttle, all other measurables were above average. Two of his better player comparisons were Pat Freiermuth and Hayden Hurst, both more than capable real-life and fantasy tight ends.

Looking at Bellinger’s workout metrics you’ll find he’s a plus athlete with a 75th-percentile SPARQ-X and 88th-percentile speed score. He has also been compared to Foster Moreau. Moreau is another player I loved coming into the league, so now I know why I’m a sucker for Bellinger too. Athletic tight ends can be a cheat code for NFL teams. Oftentimes, that translates into fantasy production, which is what we’re looking for here.

Back in March, fellow DLF writer Corey Spala examined the winners and losers from the Scouting Combine at the tight end position. One of his “winners” at that time was Bellinger. Spala compiled the below chart, comparing the incoming tight ends athletically. Bellinger was one of four to dip below 4.68 seconds in the 40-yard dash. He was one of four to have a vertical greater than 34 inches. He was one of three to put up more than 21 reps in the bench press. He had the best broad jump in the class. He was one of five to get to 7.05 in the three-cone drill, which falls right in line with the range teams want to see, according to NFL.com. His college receiving numbers might not be as eye-popping as one might like, but you can’t deny his athleticism.

So what could be standing in Bellinger’s path on the depth chart? Jordan Akins and Ricky Seals-Jones. Akins, a former baseball player, and Seals-Jones, a former wide receiver, were both brought in on matching one-year deals for $1,035,000. They’ve both lingered in the NFL for several seasons but have yet to make a splash for fantasy purposes thus far.

Pulling up their career stats via Pro Football Reference, you’ll find you would have to look at their career totals to amass something that resembles a fantasy-relevant campaign. Akins has a total of 258 fantasy points over four seasons. 64 points isn’t going to get it done.

Jordan Akins career stats:

Much like Akins, Seals-Jones has scored 254 points over his career. Unfortunately, managing to find the end zone ten times hasn’t been enough to save him, as he’s averaged a paltry 51 points per season. That’s a hair north of three points per game. No thank you, sir.

Ricky Seals-Jones career stats:

Looking over quarterback Daniel Jones‘ three-year career in the NFL, he hasn’t been a maker of high-end fantasy talent of the players around him, and that’s true of tight ends as well as any other position. Over three seasons, his top-two tight ends have totaled 352 targets and 228 receptions for 2,166 yards with 11 touchdowns. Breaking that down over a 17-game season, then extrapolating season totals from that, you’re looking at 124 targets, 80 receptions, 765 yards, and 3.91 scores. Looks good, until you remember that those numbers are for both of Jones’ top-two tight ends combined. Even an even split down the middle looks like 40-382-2.

Bellinger has the athleticism and pass-blocking chops to hopefully catch the coaches’ eyes early in camp and during the preseason. He needs to work on his route-running and pass-catching, but there’s nothing in his profile that says he isn’t talented enough to pick things up and pick them up quickly. With only two journeymen ahead of him in the pecking order and nothing world-altering in the wide receiver room, if everything falls into place for Bellinger as a rookie, a finish as a middle-of-the-pack TE2 is within the realm of possibilities and makes him a sleeper to keep your eye on.

2022 Dynasty Fantasy Football Summer Sleeper: New York Giants
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Michael Torriero
27 days ago

I got a good feeling about this kid…
He is staying on my bench…

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