Rank's 11 Week 1 sleepers: Rex Burkhead or bust Published: Sep 06, 2017 at 05:46 AM NFL.com Writer I got a panicked text from one of my friends this week. "RANK! I need sleepers!" Sleepers? In Week 1? It's like When Rusty (Brad Pitt) is teaching a bunch of "Teen Beat" cover models how to play poker. The dude from "Seventh Heaven," Barry Watson, asked for six cards in a game of five-card stud. But he is told that he wants none. If you need five cards in this game, you really need to just cut your lo ses and move on. So if you're really looking for sleepers in Week 1, then maybe it's time to sign up for another team on NFL.com and try this again. Of course, I jest. There is no reason to fold. And I know, every league, team and circumstance is different. So I'm going to run through some different simulations, crunch some numbers and try to anticipate where you could use some help. Of course, if you can't find what you specifically need, . Let's get started. The "Oh no, I picked and I need another QB" sleeper: , QB, Minnesota Vikings: I feel those of you who draft early. I mean, getting my childhood chums together in a room for a draft is akin to herding kittens. Somebody's kid has a lacro se tournament. Another has a family vacation planned. Then there's Kirk Gibson Jersey the Angels home schedule. Next thing you know, you're Yasmani Grandal Jersey doing a draft the weekend after the Fourth of July in the desert because you wanted to go see Rancid with the Dropkick Murphys and most were able to go (and by most, I mean half with the others drafting from a phone in the parking lot at Troy High School because they are stuck at a soccer tournament). Which is all great. But it also means there is that one dude who drafted Luck and you need to start a quarterback. Well, go with Bradford because he was great last year with an NFL-record 71.6 completion percentage and a 99.3 pa ser rating. The have been vulnerable to pa sing attacks in recent years. Bradford could also benefit those who drafted , too. The and Week 1 game has been postponed. Dang, you guys talked up Bradford too much, give me another QB: , QB, Arizona Cardinals: He's available in 27 percent of NFL.com leagues. I even went and checked my competitive leagues and again, he's available in most. I like the matchup against the who have struggled against the pa s in recent years. This is crazy because he's got a receiver and one of the best running backs in the game helping him out. And if he's gone, go grab . Who was the guy who caught all of those pa ses from Bradford? , WR, Minnesota Vikings: Bradford certainly looked Thielen's way a lot down the stretch, the outlier game being against the in Week 15 when he was targeted 15 times and went for 202 yards and two touchdowns. The good news? He gets four games against the and combined. And I won't throw the into that mix because Chicago's D is going to be lit Chris Taylor Jersey . And before you're all, "Who is this Rank guy? He's probably from Downers Grove or something." Well, gue s what smart guy, the joke is on you. Because I'm from Schaumburg. But again, there is a need at wide receiver with big names like , , and off in Week 1, so be on the lookout. Want some action in the game? Yeah, you do! But who is the running back to start? , RB, New England Patriots: Burkhead was pretty good over the last six games of 2016 for the as he averaged more than 71 rushing yards per game. The also like those running backs who can catch the ball out of the backfield. Pats running backs have scored 14 receiving touchdowns over the last two years, which is the most in the NFL. We'll never be able to fully understand the mind of Bill Belichick, which is cool. But the early indication is he will lean towards the guys who are the most well-rounded in the backfield. And this guy might still be on your waiver wire, too. Who looks like the best running back in Seattle? , RB, Seattle Seahawks: coach Pete Carroll likes competition, which is something I witne sed firsthand at USC practices during the glory days. Pete didn't care where you were recruited or what your credentials were -- the best players made it to the field. You see it in Seattle, too. Just look at starting over Matt Flynn. So it's not crazy to think Carson could win this job after he rushed for 166 scrimmage yards and scored two touchdowns during the preseason. And you want to go up against the who allowed nine rushing touchdowns in the last nine games. And still, take those numbers with a grain of salt because teams change from year to year. But the still seem to have deficiencies. Which running back will people scramble for in Week 2? , RB, New Orleans Saints: had a career year for the in 2016. His reward? The team brought in and drafted Kamara. Thanks for playing! But I'd Kenta Maeda Jersey start putting in claims for Kamara right now. Some of the broadcast team made comparisons to LaDainian Tomlinson during the preseason, which seemed like a bit much but was worth noting. But the dude had 118 scrimmage yards and a touchdown on 10 touches during the preseason. 10! At the very least, he's going to have a marketable role on this team as a receiving back (not that Ingram can't catch, but AD hasn't shown a propensity for it during his time in the league). And with in New England and suspended, Kamara could have an early role with the . Hold up. Steve Smith is on NFL Network? So who will catch all of the pa ses that went to him last year? , RB, Ravens Oh, you mean the WR? In that case: , WR, Baltimore Ravens: Smith had 101 targets working primarily out of the slot for the in 2016. Maclin will line up in the slot and should be able to inherit those targets, if not uild on them. Smith's line of 70 receptions 799 yards and five touchdowns seems like a safe floor for Maclin. But I would expect production closer to 1,000 yards and eight touchdowns this season. Who will catch the most pa ses for Chicago? , WR, Chicago Bears: Wright had a breakout season for the in 2013 with 94 receptions for 1,079 yards. The offensive coordinator that season is current OC Dowell Loggains. And I hate to be the guy who says, "Somebody has to catch the pa ses in Chicago," but it's true. What about that other receiver in Chicago? , WR, Chicago Bears: I hate to be the guy who says one of the K-Dubs has to step up for the , but. Yeah, that was lame. I'm a homer, so I have hope in White. I'm not going to start White this week against the . But I'm going to wait and see how this all plays out. Defensive streamer: D/ST vs Colts: It seems impo sible for Wade Phillips not to have a dominant defense. And I don't care if is there or not. And real talk, the have a great matchup against and the this week. You think we need one more? Fine. D/ST vs Broncos: The defense looks great this year. And this also seems like a pretty good matchup for the with who some might say is the fifth-best quarterback in the AFC West. This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be mi sing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Joc Pederson Jersey Us link in our site footer to report an i sue.
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