Five deeeep sleeper fantasy receivers 

July, 26, 2010

Today's winners in Stats & Analytics:

Arrelious Benn, Thomas Muller, Mike Wallace

Today's losers:

Oakland Raiders

Last time around, I promised a look at deeeeep value fantasy football receivers, the kind of picks that make sense, and really only make sense, if you're in an intense keeper league with stashable roster spots. Now it's time to deliver. These receivers aren't pushing Andre Johnson or Michael Crabtree out of jobs anytime soon. Heck, they're probably not pushing Kevin Walter or Josh Morgan anytime soon. But they are players you'll want to know about ahead of your competition.

Intriguingly, when it comes to wideouts and tight ends, the farthest-looking stats are probably the most basic measures of athletic prowess: height, weight and speed. In ESPN The Magazine's Fantasy Preview, Christopher Harris notes that "if there's an area where the market hasn't yet become efficient, it's wide receiver," since "at no other position do teams sign so many huge, fast athletes who aren't particularly skilled yet, then use patience to mold them into stars." Which means that while the original crop of Moneyball baseball players were guys who didn't seem athletic at all, like Jason Giambi or Scott Hatteberg, Moneyball receivers in football are often the best athletes on the field. Interesting, eh?

Peter Keating | email

ESPN Senior Writer
Peter Keating is a senior writer at ESPN The Magazine, where he covers investigative and statistical subjects. He started writing "The Biz," a column looking at sports business from the fan's point of view, in 1999. He also coordinates the Magazine's annual "Ultimate Standings" project, which ranks all pro franchises according to how much they give back to fans. His work on concussions in football has earned awards from the Deadline Club, the New York Press Club and the Center for the Study of Sport in Society.