Rookie draft picks can be the lifeblood of a dynasty fantasy football roster, and selecting sleepers in the early and middle rounds can make a significant impact on a team’s success. This is even more true for early rookie drafts that take place before or right after the NFL Draft. We asked our featured pundits to each pick a sleeper they’re targeting in early dynasty rookie drafts this offseason.
- Dynasty Trade Value Chart
- Derek Brown’s Dynasty Rookie Draft Sleepers
- Dynasty Rookie Draft Pick Trade Strategy & Advice
Early Dynasty Rookie Draft Sleepers
Who is one rookie sleeper you’re targeting in early dynasty rookie drafts?
Dalton Kincaid (TE) - Rookie Ranks: OVR 26 | TE3
“I think Dalton Kincaid is going to be a TE worth stashing this year as well as the future. He’s got great talent and I think he finds a home with a team needing TE help like the Bengals or Cowboys that could make his rookie season interesting. With the landscape of tight ends being so top heavy, it doesn’t take much to end up as the tight end 6 on the year, and Kincaid could be a dark horse to pull that off.”
– Andrew Hall (Dynasty Dorks)
Cedric Tillman (WR) - Rookie Ranks: OVR 32 | WR11
“Cedric Tillman operated as Tennessee’s No. 1 WR as a junior in 2021, posting a 32 percent dominator rating. The 21-year-old took over the WR1 chair formerly owned by future Chargers wide receiver Joshua Palmer and narrowly outproduced another future NFL player, Velus Jones Jr. Tillman totaled 1,081 receiving yards, caught 12 TDs and generated the nation’s highest passer rating when targeted (155.8) but elected to forego the NFL and return to school in 2022. He was limited to six games after suffering an ankle injury and was out-shined greatly by his teammate and 2023 draft prospect Jalin Hyatt who took home the Fred Biletnikoff Award. However, in the five games that Tillman played healthy, he outproduced Hyatt with more targets (56, 30% target share vs. 40, 21% target share), catches (35 vs. 30), and yards (401 vs. 367). Tillman’s lack of early-career production and age entering the league (23) definitely raise eyebrows about what kind of ceiling he can offer. But his size at 6-foot-3 and 213 pounds helps him literally stand out as a prototypical “X” receiver in a class that is severely lacking big-bodied receivers. ”
– Andrew Erickson (FantasyPros)
Jonathan Mingo (WR) - Rookie Ranks: OVR 44 | WR17
“Ole Miss WR Jonathan Mingo has been an afterthought in the rookie mocks I’ve done so far, typically going in the fourth round. I love Mingo’s game and think he could be a steal in 2023 rookie drafts. The 6-2, 225-pound Mingo is as physical a receiver as there is in this class, evoking memories of Sterling Sharpe and Anquan Boldin with his tackle-breaking and press-beating abilities. Mingo has 4.46 speed, which gives him a 96th percentile speed score, according to PlayerProfiler.com. He also had the second-biggest hands (10 3/8 inches) among the receivers at the NFL Scouting Combine. Mingo only had one season of noteworthy production in college, which seems to be throwing dynasty managers off the trail. But it’s telling that one of his predraft visits was with the Steelers — a team known for its shrewd evaluation of WR talent.”
– Pat Fitzmaurice (FantasyPros)
Evan Hull (RB) - Rookie Ranks: OVR 43 | RB17
“Evan Hull. Evan Hull. Evan Hull. Hull is one of my guys this year. We covet three-down skillsets in fantasy, and Hull has one. In 2021 Hull proved his worth on early downs ranking 23rd in missed tackles forced and 33rd in breakaway run rate (minimum 100 carries per PFF). Last year he put the cherry on top with his route-running prowess ranking seventh in yards per route run while leading all FBS running backs in receiving yards (minimum 20 targets per PFF). Hull is a diamond in the rough that I won’t leave rookie drafts without.”
– Derek Brown (FantasyPros)
Roschon Johnson (RB) - Rookie Ranks: OVR 31 | RB13
Much of the buzz heading into the NFL Draft and into dynasty rookie drafts is about a Texas Longhorns running back. And while Bijan Robinson looks like he could be a generational talent, the other RB coming out of Texas is pretty good, too. If he didn’t play behind Robinson, we’d probably be talking about him a lot more. He’s a physical runner with ideal size and enough speed to make him intriguing. At Senior Bowl, he displayed an ability and willingness to pass block and was solid in pass-catching drills before being forced to leave the event with a broken hand. An NFL team is going to get a STEAL in Johnson when he’s taken on Day 2 (or possibly even Day 3) of the NFL Draft, and dynasty managers will be able to do the same in the middle rounds of their rookie drafts, especially if Johnson comes with Day 2 capital and lands in the right situation.
– Mike Maher (FantasyPros)
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