The 2022 fantasy football season is just around the corner. The FantasyPros mock draft simulator is the best to prepare for your fantasy drafts. Each year you want to construct your team with a proper mix of good value players and upside sleepers while avoiding players with high bust potential.
In the fifth part of an eight-part series, I will identify two ADP values, two likely to bust candidates, and two potential sleepers in the NFC East.
- ADP Values, Busts & Sleepers: AFC East
- ADP Values, Busts & Sleepers: AFC North
- ADP Values, Busts & Sleepers: AFC South
- ADP Values, Busts & Sleepers: AFC West
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Saquon Barkley (RB – NYG): ADP 22.7 | RB13
The former No. 2 overall pick had a historic rookie season, averaging 22 touches and 24.1 fantasy points per game. Unfortunately, Barkley has struggled to stay healthy since his rookie season, missing 42.9 percent of the games the past three years. Furthermore, his yards per rushing attempt dropped to a career-low 3.7 last season. However, the Giants have done everything possible to help Barkley out this offseason.
They added several new offensive linemen, including top-10 pick Evan Neal. The Giants also brought in no competition for touches, giving Barkley an easy path to a featured workload. More importantly, the Giants’ receiving core has been disappointing during training camp so far. If they continue to struggle to start the year, Barkley could see a massive uptick in targets. Health is the key for Barkley. Before suffering a torn ACL in 2020, he scored 14 or more fantasy points in 24 of 30 games. If he stays healthy, Barkley could end the year as the overall RB1.
Jalen Hurts (QB – PHI): ADP 66.7 | QB7
Despite being one of the most talked about quarterbacks this offseason, Hurts remains a steal as the seventh quarterback off the board and a sixth-round pick. In his first year as the full-time starter, Hurts was the QB9 and averaged 20.8 fantasy points per game. Furthermore, he tied for the QB6 finish on a points per game basis with Aaron Rodgers. More importantly, many expect Hurts to make a Josh Allen-like third-year leap.
The reason why Hurts will make a big leap in 2022 is the addition of A.J. Brown. Philadelphia traded a first and third-round pick in the NFL Draft for the former Ole Miss star. Similarly, the Buffalo Bills traded multiple draft picks for Stefon Diggs during the 2020 offseason. Allen went on to have a career year that season. Furthermore, Hurts has plenty of upside even if his passing numbers don’t improve. Last year, Hurts and Allen were the only two quarterbacks to throw for over 3,000 yards and rush for over 750 yards. If he takes that leap forward, Hurts becomes a league winner at his current ADP.
Antonio Gibson (RB – WAS): ADP 41.7 | RB19
Gibson had arguably the worst offseason of any player this year. After averaging 17.4 fantasy points per game over his final six games last season, Gibson was close to a likely top 10 ranking in 2022. J.D. McKissic reportedly agreed to a deal with the Bills in free agency. However, the Commanders made a last-minute attempt to keep him, and the veteran re-signed with the team. Then, Washington used a third-round pick on Brian Robinson. In a few weeks, Gibson went from a likely RB1 to a full-blown running back by committee situation.
To make matters worse, Gibson will likely see very few valuable touches. McKissic will continue his role as the pass-catching and third-down back, while Robinson will reportedly handle most of the short-yardage and goal-line work. Thus, this leaves Gibson with the rushing attempts between the 20s. Furthermore, he has missed practice time during camp because of an injury and fumbled during the Commanders’ Week 1 preseason game. Filling in, Robinson scored Washington’s first touchdown of the game, while Gibson returned to the field with the second-string offense. Gibson’s ADP will start to slide, as it should. Until it slides into the seventh round, I want nothing to do with Gibson.
Kenny Golladay (WR – NYG): ADP 166.5 | WR60
Golladay was labeled an up-and-coming star wide receiver after averaging 15.5 PPR fantasy points and scoring 11 touchdowns in 2019. He then played only five games in 2020 with an injury. Rumor was Golladay used the injury as a way to hold out as contract talks with the Detroit Lions were going nowhere. After signing a massive free-agent deal with the Giants, Golladay was expected to have a breakout 2021 season. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen.
Instead, he struggled with injuries and posted career lows in several areas, including zero touchdowns on 76 targets. More importantly, the Giants have made two substantive additions to their receiver room since signing Golladay. They used their first-round pick in the 2021 NFL Draft on Kadarius Toney. Then the new regime used a second-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft on Wan’Dale Robinson. Furthermore, Golladay has struggled with injuries the past two years and appears to have mentally checked out. Instead of using a 14th-round pick on Golladay, target players with a later ADP like George Pickens and Romeo Doubs instead.
No release just vibes pic.twitter.com/NElGcaWDRP
— Theo Ash (@TheoAshNFL) August 11, 2022
Sleepers to Target
Tony Pollard (RB – DAL): ADP 82.2 | RB32
Ever since he entered the NFL, Pollard has been a favorite of the fantasy football community, and the hype around him has grown during the offseason. He has averaged 7.5 yards per touch in his career. Pollard also averaged a career-high 5.5 yards per rushing attempt last season. Furthermore, he had a career-high 719 rushing yards last year. The 719 yards were only 171 fewer than his career total entering the season. More importantly, Pollard looked like the best running back on the roster as Ezekiel Elliott struggled at times last year.
Despite Elliott playing all 17 games and averaging 16.7 touches per contest, Pollard was the RB28 last season. He averaged 10.4 fantasy points per game despite averaging only 11.3 touches per contest. The Cowboys traded away Amari Cooper this offseason and won’t have Michael Gallup to begin the year. There have been reports about the Cowboys playing Pollard in the slot in certain situations. If Elliott struggles to start the year, Pollard could take over as the lead guy and turn into a top-12 running back. Even if Zeke remains the lead guy, Pollard should see enough volume to end the season as a low-end RB2.
Curtis Samuel (WR – WAS): ADP 206.5 | WR89
Last year Samuel was a popular sleeper wide receiver. He was coming off a career year in 2020 with the Carolina Panthers, averaging 14.1 fantasy points per game. Unfortunately, Samuel struggled to stay healthy last year and played in five games, totaling only 84 offensive snaps. The Commanders recently signed Terry McLaurin to a massive extension and used their first-round draft pick on Jahan Dotson. While his fantasy outlook has drastically changed from a year ago, Samuel has the potential to become a steal at his current ADP.
The last time Samuel was healthy was in 2020. That year he had a career-high 77 receptions on 97 targets for 851 receiving yards and three touchdowns. However, his work in the running game made him an appealing option to fantasy teams. Samuel had 41 rushing attempts for 200 yards and two touchdowns that year. By comparison, he totaled 35 rushing attempts for 289 yards and three touchdowns in the other four years of his career. Hopefully, Samuel will earn some rushing attempts this year. In standard-size leagues, he should go undrafted. However, Samuel is worth a late-round pick as a high upside dart throw selection in deeper leagues.