Rank's 11 Sleepers: Ameer Abdullah redemption time


There are some picks you are very proud of. I took Antonio Brown in the first round of the majority of my leagues. That has worked out very well. I loved Allen Robinson and joined Matt Harmon as the second-in-command on that hype train. Maybe third because Gelhar and Grant loved him, too. I also really loved Odell Beckham Jr. this year and even said he was going to be this generation's Randy Moss. I was derided a bit for the "hot take" but it looks very good right now. Right?

So all of that is great. Fantasy analysts love to crow about the (expletive) they got right. Hell, we all do. That's just basic human nature. But I need to turn my attention to something I absolutely whiffed on this year.

Ameer Abdullah.

I loved this guy. I grabbed him the fifth round of seemingly every draft I was in this summer. I mean, without fail, I drafted him in every league that still had drafts (I had an auction draft for rookies in the League of Leagues). I felt like a genius in Week 1 when he had a great game against the San Diego Chargers. I told all of your fools!

But it's been straight-up dookie stinks since that point. Like, I never thought I could look like a bigger (expletive) than when I advocated Cordarrelle Patterson last year. Some how I've found a way to top that pick. Yikes.

I was never able to drop him, either. He's like a TV show you hate watch (talking about you, "Homeland") that just clogs up your DVR. I've held on to Abdullah. I mean, he's obviously ruined my life. There was no way I was going to let him go out there and make somebody else happy with a solid fantasy performance. Not on my watch.

Fantasy Perfect Challenge

However, Abdullah now has a chance to rectify himself. He's got a great matchup against the Saints this week. New Orleans looked much better defensively against the Bucs on Sunday, but by no means is this team cured. In fact, I could see this being one of those games where Matthew Stafford gets into "all-good" mode and really gets after it. Though he's been really good in recent weeks with nine touchdowns and only one pick in his last three. The Saints have allowed the most fantasy points to quarterbacks this season. So Stafford is a reasonable play.

Abdullah? Why not. I've seen a lot of people look at Theo Riddick and Joique Bell. But if Jim Bob Cooter really wants to impress the next coach of the Detroit Lions (that change looms), he will want to show him some tape of how he got the best out of Ameer Abdullah.

This is almost a Danger Zone play for Abdullah, but if you're the kind of person who loves the matchup, I say you go for it. I wouldn't start him over reasonable starters like Jeremy Hill or someone like that. But if you've made it this far with Danny Woodhead, or you lost Tommy Rawls last week, I think you can make a reasonable start with Abdullah and get double-digit points.

Listen, I'm probably just doubling-down on my own bad advice to start the year.

Let's roll through some of the other sleepers.

Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB, New York Jets

I'd actually take him over Stafford this week if I had a choice. He's scored at least 24 fantasy points in NFL.com leagues in three consecutive games. He's the best value in daily leagues, too.

Tyrod Taylor, QB, Buffalo Bills

That final interception at the end of the game kind of nuked his value last week. But he's a bit of a cheaper option in daily leagues if you can't squeeze in Fitzmagic.

Derek Carr, QB, Oakland Raiders

He'd be my top contrarian play this week. The Packers are a tougher matchup than you would want. But playing at home makes Carr a nice option.

Tim Hightower, RB, New Orleans Saints

I picked up Hightower in my League of Record last week. And lost. Why did the fantasy gods forsake me? I should have been rewarded. This matchup against the Lions is pretty good, too. The Lions had a nice FPA running backs headed into last week. And then Todd Gurley busted it! (Hey, another dude I got right! Woot!)

Pepsi Rookie of the Week nominees:
Denard Robinson, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars

Let's keep an eye out on the injury reports out of Jacksonville. But Shoelace is the next guy up. The Falcons have allowed the second-most fantasy points to running backs this year, which includes 15 rushing touchdowns this season. The highest total in the NFL on the year.

Tyler Lockett, WR, Seattle Seahawks

Doug Baldwin has been amazing. But Lockett has been great over the last month with four touchdowns. He's had at least 90 receiving yards in two consecutive games. The Browns have allowed the seventh-most fantasy points to receivers this year.

Ted Ginn, Jr., WR, Carolina Panthers

You never want to chase the fantasy points, but you can't ignore back-to-back 20 point games. The Giants have allowed the seventh-most points to receivers over the past two weeks.

Eric Ebron, TE, Detroit Lions

The Lions have nine receiving touchdowns in the last three games. The Saints have allowed the most fantasy points to tight ends this season.

Richard Rodgers, TE, Green Bay Packers

He's had five touchdowns in the last six weeks. The Raiders have allowed 11 receiving touchdowns to tight ends this year. The Raiders have allowed the second-most fantasy points to tight ends this year.

Zach Miller, TE, Chicago Bears

He's scored five receptions in the last six weeks, the second-highest total among tight ends. The Vikings have allowed at least two receiving touchdowns in four of the last five games.

Cairo Santos, K, Kansas City Chiefs

Well, since I'll never trust Josh Brown ever again in my life, I have to find a new kicker. Santos has scored the fourth-most fantasy points to kickers this year. The Ravens have allowed a ton of points to kickers. Fine, it's a kicker.

In the latest episode of the NFL Fantasy LIVE podcast the gang talks fantasy playoffs in advance of Week 15. Who's on the waiver wire and which matchups do we like this week? Don't forget to subscribe and listen in HERE!

-- You can hit Rank up for more advice or let him know how lousy his picks are on Twitter @adamrank. Don't be thrown off by his # wars, though.