2013 Fantasy Football Deep Sleeper: WR Markus Wheaton
Many players from the Pittsburgh Steelers have become fixtures in fantasy football lineups over the last several seasons. The team normally has numerous players taken within the first five rounds every fantasy draft. However, this season the team doesn’t have the same flash.
Pittsburgh lost WR Mike Wallace to the Miami Dolphins this off-season and WR Plaxico Burress is now having season-ending (and possibly career-ending) surgery on his rotator cuff. Additionally, TE Heath Miller has still recovered from a torn ACL and may start the year on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list. Now more than ever Pittsburgh needs a young wideout to step up and establish himself among the laundry list of receivers.
Pittsburgh’s obvious starters on the outside will be Antonio Brown and Emmanuel Sanders, but the team’s third wideout spot is now wide open. Veteran WR Jerricho Cotchery is battling for the role, but one other guy to watch is rookie Markus Wheaton.
Wheaton was impossible to cover at times last season at Oregon State. Over his last two seasons at OSU, the wideout has hauled in 164 balls for 2,230 receiving yards. He also had 11 touchdown passes last year alone and showed that he can get open within the red-zone.
The rookie has made countless plays in camp and continues to make a name for himself. Head coach Mike Tomlin has bragged about his precise route running and has been glowing about him ever since the team snagged him in the third round of April’s draft. The team believes he has a very bright future and he could be a decent sleeper with consistent playing time.
Wheaton is obviously not a starter in any fantasy format, but in deeper dynasty leagues he is worth keeping an eye on towards the end of the draft.