Is it too early to look at sleepers for 2013? That's a rhetorical question because the editors who assign the work around here already answered it. And apparently the answer is no.
It is easy to get into a weird, limbo-like state with fantasy. For instance, I lost in my league of record with my long-time chums from Corona, Calif. And to be honest, I can't wait to get back in the saddle in that league. At the same time, I captured the NFL.com experts league for the second time in three years and I have a new championship belt coming to me as we speak (look for the photos).
I guess that's a longwinded way to get into some sleepers for next year. This list will be republished since there is a lot of turnover in the coaching ranks. So this will need to be fluid. But here is the initial Rank's 11.
A quick note: I removed all New York Jets from consideration until we see who the offensive coordinator is. Don't be so quick to assume it will be Norv Turner. Remember, Rex Ryan insulted Turner back in 2011 when he said the Chargers would have won multiple rings under his guidance instead of Norv. I'm sure that will be a consideration.
And without further ado.
Cole Beasley, WR, Dallas Cowboys: We all know Dez Bryant crushed opposing defenses down the stretch, but that should open the door for another receiver to emerge down in Big D. One of the guys I will keep an eye on is Beasley, who has drawn comparisons to Wes Welker for one obvious reason nobody likes to talk about -- they both played college football in the state of Texas. Beasley had 13 targets against the Redskins in Week 12. Dwayne Harris is another guy to watch, too.
Sam Bradford, QB, St. Louis FC: Bradford ranked 11th among quarterbacks over the final month of the fantasy season. The one thing that will keep me from making him a full No. 1 is the division he plays in. Yes, imagine that. Playing in the NFC West hurts you. The Birds, 49ers and defending Super Bowl champion Seahawks (just to get you prepared) all have top defenses. So Bradford won't be a QB1.
Vincent Brown, WR, San Diego Chargers: The Chargers will have a new coach, and hopefully he can reach Philip Rivers. IF he does, Danario Alexander and Brown should be on your sleeper list. Brown was poised to be a sleeper candidate this season but he broke his ankle during an August 18 preseason game. So he never had a chance to show his stuff, but he should be in the lineup in 2013.
Ryan Broyles, WR, Detroit Lions: Somebody needs to step up opposite Calvin Johnson. Looked like it was going to be Broyles for a while, but he tore his ACL in Week 13. Broyles tore his other ACL at Oklahoma. Wait, Oklahoma ... torn ACL ... Broyles is going to get 2,000 receiving yards next year! Adrian Peterson is clouding my judgment. But Broyles is going to be a guy you can stash on your bench next season and he should pay off for you at the end of the year.
DuJuan Harris, RB, Green Bay Packers: We will get a sneak peek at how the Packers intend to use Harris in 2013. Harris got a healthy workload against the Vikings in Week 17, and he responded with 70 yards on 14 attempts. The Packers are going to the dreaded "hot hand" in the playoffs, but coach Mike McCarthy raved about Harris' skill set. Here's the thing, we have longed for a reliable Packers running back. If you have a spot late in your fantasy drafts, why not take a chance?
LaMichael James, RB, San Francisco 49ers: The 49ers can't continue to run the ball with Frank Gore forever. James had just 30 touches this season, but he could eventually be a Darren Sproles type in this offense and look for him to be more heavily involved next year when training camp starts.
Alshon Jeffrey, WR, Chicago Bears: QB Jay Cutler had tunnel vision for Brandon Marshall, and while that should continue, Jeffrey started to emerge in the second half of the season after some injuries limited him to just 10 games. Jeffrey is a big-bodied guy who will be a big-time red zone target for the Bears in 2013. He can be a WR3 for you next year.
Colin Kaepernick, QB, San Francisco 49ers: This one is sort of obvious considering how much news Kaepernick generated this season. But Kaepernick can be a top-five fantasy quarterback in 2013. Remember, as well as he played down the stretch for San Francisco, he did it without the benefit of being the starter and first-team reps until midway through the season. Now he's going to get full minicamps and training camp to work with Jim Harbaugh. So the ceiling should be extended. He's one of those guys I would wait to draft if Drew Brees, Tom Brady and some of the other top QBs go in the first round. Or even if you do get an elite quarterback, I learned the lesson to make sure you have a capable backup.
Joe Morgan, WR, New Orleans Saints: On more than one occasion, I professed my admiration for Morgan as the season went on. The Saints don't have receivers you can count on. This is both surprising and disturbing when you consider the amount of points Drew Brees puts up every year. But I'm going to take a chance on Morgan later in drafts because the dude averaged close to 40-yards per reception this season.
Daryl Richardson, RB, St. Louis FC: The team could part ways with Steven Jackson during the offseason, so Richardson could step up to be the No. 1 back. Richardson looked good in spots, as he averaged close to five yards per carry. The only problem, he doesn't get into the end zone enough. But that is overridden by the fact he wears No. 26, the number worn by Wendell Tyler. Sorry, that doesn't override the fact. But still, there aren't many No. 1 running backs out there.
Mike Williams, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers: He benefitted greatly with Vincent Jackson on the other side of the ball. Williams scored four touchdowns in his last five games and had at least 11 fantasy points eight times in 2012. He was heavily targeted in the last five games, so he's going to get his chances.
Kendall Wright, WR, Tennessee Titans: Quietly had a productive season for the Titans, as he led the team in receptions (64) and targets (104). He had only one touchdown in his last seven games, but that's all right. A full offseason with Jake Locker should benefit him.
So this should get you started for right now. Be sure to check back during the offseason as we continue to update this list.For the record, you can submit your fantasy questions to NFL Fantasy Live, Michael Fabiano or me on Twitter. But realize, NFL Fantasy Live has 90,000 followers, and Fabiano has nearly 100k. Me? Just four. See, the odds are better I will answer your question, so hit me up both via Twitter or via Facebook (oh wait, I told you to stop going to Facebook). Go instead to Google+. Seriously, if you ever wanted a fantasy question answered, now is the time to do it. Also be sure to catch the latest "Dave Dameshek Football Program."