Every week I'll dive into some sleepers beyond what we write in Start 'Em and Sit 'Em to help some of you in deeper leagues. Some weeks will have more guys than others, but this should be helpful for those owners in 14- and 16-team leagues.
Matthew Stafford (vs. WAS): Stafford hasn’t played since Week 1 with his injured shoulder, but Shaun Hill lit up the scoreboard in his absence with three games with at least 24 Fantasy points in his first four starts. The hope is Stafford can post similar stats, and he has a great matchup at home against the Redskins coming off a bye week. Five quarterbacks have passed for at least 280 yards against Washington this year, with Matt Schaub and Peyton Manning throwing for multiple touchdown passes. My one concern with Stafford is there could be plenty of rust based on all the missed time.
Josh Freeman (at ARI): Freeman continues to be an underrated Fantasy quarterback this year, but he’s playing well. In six games, he has just two with less than 17 Fantasy points. He’s making plays throwing and running the ball heading into his matchup at Arizona, and the Cardinals have allowed three quarterbacks to pass for multiple touchdown passes in six games.
Jonathan Stewart (at STL): DeAngelo Williams (foot) could miss the game, which would make Stewart the starting option. We all remember how that went last year when Stewart had four games with double digits in Fantasy points in his final five outings. The Rams are dealing with injuries at defensive tackle and linebacker, which could allow Stewart to finally have a breakout performance after struggling most of the season. The key, however, is Williams being out.
Darren Sproles (vs. TEN): Sproles got back to doing what he does best last week against New England with nine catches for 70 yards. That’s something that should continue in Week 8 against Tennessee, and it also helps that Ryan Mathews continues to struggle. In leagues where receptions count, Sproles is a must-start running back. The Titans have been great at stopping the run, but Darren McFadden and LeSean McCoy have each had 50 yards receiving against Tennessee this year. And four running backs have caught at least five passes against the Titans.
Marion Barber (vs. JAC): The Jaguars are second in the NFL in rushing touchdowns allowed with 10 behind Denver (12), which should allow Barber the chance to score his second touchdown of the season. Felix Jones has more upside than Barber based on their recent play, but Barber could be on the field to close out the game if Dallas builds an early lead as expected.
Nate Burleson (vs. WAS): The Redskins lead the NFL in catches (120) and yards (1,454) allowed to opposing wide receivers, and they have also given up seven touchdowns. Burleson is playing well with 10 catches for 106 yards and two touchdowns in his past two games, and he should benefit with Stafford back under center. Calvin Johnson should have a tremendous game against the Redskins, but Burleson also has plenty of upside in this matchup.
Anthony Gonzalez (vs. HOU): With Austin Collie (thumb) and Dallas Clark (wrist) out, Gonzalez should see a huge boost in value. Be careful with his status heading into Monday night against the Texans because of his ankle injury, but it’s a favorable matchup for him if he’s able to play as expected. The Texans have allowed nine touchdowns to opposing wide receivers, and Collie had a big day in Week 1 with 11 catches for 163 yards and a touchdown. In leagues where receptions count, Gonzalez is worth starting as a No. 3 Fantasy option.
James Jones (at NYJ): With Donald Driver (quad) at less than 100 percent, Jones has the chance to be a significant contributor for the Packers. He had four catches for 107 yards last week against Minnesota, and he should see a hefty amount of targets again this week with Driver limited. It’s a tougher matchup for him against the Jets, but Aaron Rodgers could need Jones based on Driver trying to play hurt. He’s worth using as a No. 3 Fantasy wide receiver in deeper leagues.