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2014 Fantasy Football: Top 10 Breakout Candidates

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10 Fantasy Football Breakout Candidates

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Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

In fantasy football, there are only so many breakout candidates per season that actually pan out. Some fall victim to injury, while others simply can't crack the starting lineup on a reliable basis. To help you identify some of these unknown stars, here are the top-10 fantasy football breakout candidates for the 2014 season.

10. WR Markus Wheaton, Pittsburgh Steelers

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10. WR Markus Wheaton, Pittsburgh Steelers

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Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

Wheaton will now occupy the starting spot on the outside with Emmanuel Sanders out of town. Wheaton will be a valuable vertical threat for QB Ben Roethilisberger to look for downfield and the wideout will see plenty of targets in 2014. Wheaton will develop into a WR3 by the end of the season and will be an underrated breakout candidate to look for on draft day.

9. TE Jordan Reed, Washington Redskins

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9. TE Jordan Reed, Washington Redskins

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Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Reed was plagued by concussion symptoms throughout the year and ended up missing seven games as a result. The tight end still showed glimpses of superstardom in 2013 by averaging 5.5 catches per game through his first eight games. He will receive even more space down field with the addition of WR DeSean Jackson and many are pegging this to be Reed's breakout fantasy campaign.

8. WR DeAndre Hopkins, Houston Texans

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8. WR DeAndre Hopkins, Houston Texans

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Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

With all the concern about the health of Arian Foster and the holdout of Andre Johnson, Hopkins is being somewhat undervalued this season. However, the wideout still finished with 801 receiving yards in his rookie season and displayed some serious potential. He won't be a top-25 WR just yet, but he has proven that he can be a serviceable WR3 in the near future.

7. WR Emmanuel Sanders, Denver Broncos

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7. WR Emmanuel Sanders, Denver Broncos

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Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Sanders moved to Denver this off-season and his value will skyrocket now that he will be catching passes from Peyton Manning. Sanders caught six touchdowns last year in Pittsburgh, but he will be a threat to finish with between 8-10 scores with the Broncos. View Sanders as a WR4 with tons of upside this season.

6. TE Jordan Cameron, Cleveland Browns

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Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

6. TE Jordan Cameron, Cleveland Browns

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Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Cameron had an amazing run in 2013 and it is hard to consider him a breakout candidate again. However, I expect the tight end to take another step forward in 2014 and vault himself into the category of elite tight ends. Look for Cameron to come close to a 10-touchdwon season this fall.

5. WR Michael Floyd, Arizona Cardinals

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5. WR Michael Floyd, Arizona Cardinals

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Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Floyd finished the 2013 season with a respectable 1,041 yards and five touchdowns. However, the wideout turned it on towards the end of the year by racking up 82.4 yards over the final seven games. The former first round pick has finally put everything together and seems ready to take the next forward in 2014. Floyd will flirt with a 1,200-yard, eight-TD season in 2014.

4. RB Le’Veon Bell, Pittsburgh Steelers

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Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

4. RB Le’Veon Bell, Pittsburgh Steelers

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Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Bell averaged an impressive 80.3 rushing yards and 26.8 receiving yards over the final six games, including four touchdowns. The youngster is the Bell-cow of the future for the Steelers and the back will see plenty of action this fall. Don’t expect LeGarrette Blount to take away too many carries, because Bell is primed for a breakout fantasy campaign in 2014.

3. WR Cordarrelle Patterson, Minnesota Vikings

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Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

3. WR Cordarrelle Patterson, Minnesota Vikings

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Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota used Patterson in dozens of different ways last year. He posted four receiving touchdowns, two rushing touchdowns, and two return kickoff touchdowns. He may see less return chances now that he is the number one wideout, but he should see a drastic uptick in his receiving numbers across the board.

2. RB Montee Ball, Denver Broncos

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2. RB Montee Ball, Denver Broncos

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new - Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Now that Knowshon Moreno is out of town, Ball now has sole possession of the starting gig in Denver. He will consistently face light boxes with Peyton Manning stretching the defense and the former Wisconsin standout could easily mirror Moreno’s numbers (1,038 rushing yards/10 TDs) from last season.

1. RB Giovani Bernard, Cincinnati Bengals

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Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

1. RB Giovani Bernard, Cincinnati Bengals

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In his rookie season, Bernard racked up 1,209 all-purpose yards (695 RUSH/514 RECEIVING) and scored eight total touchdowns. He proved to be the ultimate dual-threat running back and has a very bight future in the league. Bernard will be a top-10 back this season and will be the number one breakout candidate to look for on draft day.