Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) -
Everyone knows the big names, the Arian Fosters, Tom Bradys and Calvin Johnsons of the world, so it's time to look at some of the guys who aren't getting much attention, but could be a boon to your fantasy roster.
Today we'll peruse the list of players with an ADP (average draft position) of 100 or more to see if we can find a few "diamonds in the rough." It's these late-round selections who turn a middle-of-the-pack team into a title contender.
We will use the latest fantasyfootballcalculator.com results as our guide.
Below you will find 10 players who can be procured cheaply and be an asset to your fantasy lineup:
Rashad Jennings, RB, Jacksonville (ADP 101.2) - The Maurice Jones-Drew holdout isn't getting resolved anytime soon. In fact, it appears both sides are firmly entrenched and not going to budge on their stances. Given that background, Jennings may begin the season as the Jaguars' starting tailback. Through two preseason games, against the New Orleans Saints and New York Giants first-team defense, Jennings has carried the ball 23 times for 118 yards. In limited regular-season action, he's averaged 5.4 yards per carry. The Jaguars offense will be improved in 2012, so he's worth a shot in the second half of the draft and certainly a must-have if you gambled on MJD earlier in the draft.
Nate Washington, WR, Tennessee (ADP 107.1) - Despite a subpar performance from quarterback Blaine Gabbert, Washington still managed to post 74 receptions for 1,023 yards and seven touchdowns last season. Kenny Britt has multiple hurdles to cross before he returns and the only other options are rookie Kendall Wright or Jared Cook. Gabbert has looked much improved in training camp and the preseason, and Washington could post even better numbers in 2012.
Andrew Luck, QB, Indianapolis (ADP 111.2) - I've been very impressed with Luck over his first two exhibition games. Not just the numbers, but the poise in the pocket. We haven't seen indecision or "happy feet" while sitting in the pocket. Add in that the Colts defense yielded 430 points last season (26.9 ppg) and have a mediocre-at-best running game, and Luck will likely be throwing early and often. He'll certainly hit some bumps along the way, but Luck could finish the season playing top-10 ball.
Brandon LaFell, WR, Carolina (ADP 120.2) - Last season, LaFell was targeted just 56 times, sixth-best on the team behind Steve Smith, Greg Olsen, Legedu Naanee, Jeremy Shockey and Jonathan Stewart. Yet he still produced 36 receptions for 613 yards (17.0 ypc) and three touchdowns. Naanee and Shockey are gone and LaFell has all but locked down the No. 2 spot opposite Smith. Quarterback Cam Newton should look his way much more frequently in 2012 and 900 yards and seven touchdowns is attainable.
Evan Royster, RB, Washington (ADP 120.3) - I know I've told you many, many times to steer clear of any Washington Redskins running backs, but if you must choose one, make it Royster. Tim Hightower isn't healthy enough to play and Roy Helu is both injured (Achilles) and a concern in pass protection.
Carson Palmer, QB, Oakland (ADP 126) - Oakland should produce its best pair of receivers in many years with Denarius Moore and Darrius Heyward-Bey catching balls from Palmer. Given that Palmer averaged 275.3 ypg through the air last season without a training camp and just a bye week to learn the offense, 4,000 yards is possible from this double-digit-round selection. That's a "steal" in any league.
Laurent Robinson, WR, Jacksonville (ADP 151.3) - Robinson produced 858 yards and 11 touchdowns as the third option in Dallas. In Jacksonville, he should see as many or more targets than rookie wideout Justin Blackmon. We believe Gabbert and the Jaguars will be an improved offense, so don't bypass him this deep in the draft.
Dustin Keller, TE, New York Jets (ADP 155.7) - As a tight end, Keller led the Jets in targets last season (115) while catching 65 balls for 815 yards and five touchdowns. In the offseason, the Jets receiving corps got worse, not better, with red zone specialist Plaxico Burress jettisoned and only rookie Stephen Hill as a replacement. Keller may see more passes headed his way in 2012.
Steve Smith, WR, St. Louis (ADP 156.1) - It was just 2009 that Smith caught 107 balls for 1,220 yards with the Giants. He's had to deal with microfracture surgery over the past two seasons, but appears to be healthy at last and ready to return to fantasy-worthy status. Smith, Danny Amendola and Brian Quick appear to be the Rams' three best receivers. That much talent at such a low cost should be too much for you to pass up at this point in your draft.
Nick Foles, QB, Philadelphia (not listed) - Eagles starting quarterback Michael Vick has played less than two quarters this exhibition season and already been injured twice (finger, ribs). Given his inability to stay on the field and the mediocre play of veteran backups Mike Kafka and Trent Edwards, if the Eagles have to turn to a replacement, the choice should be the rookie Foles. With all the skill position talent surrounding him in LeSean McCoy, DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin, he could produce solidly in a Vick injury handcuffs you.