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.
The 2022 Houston Texans – now that is a fantasy goldmine! This is not a sentence anyone has uttered this off-season. However, while we’re not expecting a high-scoring offense, it is still likely to have some source of fantasy-relevant players. Brandin Cooks will likely be a solid WR2 again this year, as he seems to be every year. Davis Mills will have some relevance in superflex leagues. Outside of that, you’re potentially interested in rookies Dameon Pierce and John Metchie. However, while it won’t be a fantasy goldmine as a poor offense, the lack of established weapons potentially opens the door for somebody to step in.
Brevin Jordan, TE
Before the draft, I was very interested in Jordan as a prospect. He was the nation’s number one tight end prospect coming out of high school. He flashed elite receiving potential during his three years at Miami, including an age-18 breakout, despite battling injuries each season. Before the draft, Lance Zuerlein gave him an impressive review and a third-round grade. However, he fell to the fifth round in the draft, where the Texans grabbed him.
Jordan had a slow start to his NFL career, being inactive for his first seven games. However, the second he stepped onto the field, he showed that he could belong. His year-one stat line doesn’t look overly impressive when viewed as a whole. However, if you consider, that he made an impact despite being fourth on the team in snaps at the tight end position and only saw a snap count above 50% twice all season, it shows that Jordan made an impact despite his small role.
When you break the season down into week-to-week production, it paints an even more impressive picture. Jordan produced a top 12 fantasy week in 44% of his games – the same percentage as Pat Freiermuth and better than Kyle Pitts’ 41%. Now I appreciate a lot more goes into fantasy production than just the number of weeks finishing as a top 12 TE. However, it just shows Jordan’s potential compared to his rookie peers. Freiermuth and Pitts are some of the hottest tight-end commodities in dynasty circles, and Jordan was similar to them in his usefulness.
Jordan was fourth in Houston for snaps on the field at the tight end position. Pharoah Brown will again lead the position in snaps as the blocking tight end. However, with Jordan Akins out of town, I expect Jordan to approach around 60% of snaps as a minimum. He should be the true number one receiving tight end and potentially the number two receiving option on the entire offense behind Brandin Cooks. If he can see the field this much, it’s within the realm of outcomes that Jordan could see the 18-20% target share that the majority of second-tier tight ends see. That volume would put him on par with what Dallas Goedert, Mike Gesicki, Zach Ertz, and Kyle Pitts saw in 2021.
Jordan is a sophomore player in the second year of his rookie contract. This means that unless something drastic happens, Jordan will be on the Texans’ roster until at least the 2024 season concludes. That three years of security is more than you can say for most players on your dynasty roster.
There are two significant challenges I see between Jordan and fantasy success. The first is his quarterback and offense. I won’t be shocking anyone when I say I do not project the Texans to be a high-scoring offense. Led by Davis Mills at quarterback with holes throughout the entire roster, they will likely be one of the lowest-scoring offenses in 2022. That will cap the fantasy ceiling of the team. Fewer touchdowns and prolonged drives mean fewer scoring opportunities for Jordan
The second challenge is that there is a decent amount of projection in looking at young tight ends. Since 2016, there have been 36 tight ends aged under 24 ranked TE8-24 in June ADP. Of those 36, 50% raised in value a year later, and 50% dropped. The young tight ends we hype up every year are literally a coinflip in whether they will take a step forward in value.
Jordan showed some great flashes in his rookie year. Tight end is usually one of those positions that matures more slowly as players enter the league. It is always a risk picking any sleeper because it is a literal coinflip whether Jordan is fantasy-relevant in his second season. However, with very limited established target competition and a path to playing time, he is the type of player who could emerge as a nice complementary piece who rises in value over the year.
Currently going 189th overall and TE23 in DLF June ADP, there is a chance you could even grab Jordan of some waiver wires in shallower leagues. Realistically you may be able to tempt him away from the GM who rosters him for as little as a third-round pick or some bench fodder in most leagues.
- 2022 Dynasty Fantasy Football Summer Sleeper: Chicago Bears - July 28, 2022
- 2022 Dynasty Fantasy Football Summer Sleeper: Houston Texans - July 21, 2022
- 2022 Dynasty Fantasy Football Summer Sleeper: Atlanta Falcons - July 4, 2022