Sunday, August 22, 2010

8/22 Sleeper of the Day: Aaron Hernandez


One of Tim Tebow's favorite targets in college, Hernandez now has the chance to be Tom Brady's boy in New England. The 2010 fourth-rounder won the Mackey Award as the nation's top tight end in his junior season for the Gators and offers the Pats a much-needed offensive threat at the position.

Now, anyone who's had a New England player not named Brady or Randy Moss on their fantasy squad in the past few seasons can tell you the team's offensive philosophy can be maddening. They alter their gameplans so much from week to week and utilize such a variety of players in many different ways that it's hard to see any kind of consistency. Consider this year's stable of TEs: Hernandez, fellow rookie Rob Gronkowski and former fantasy star Alge Crumpler have lined up all over the field this preseason for the Pats (split out wide or in the slot as receivers; as wing backs and fullbacks; plus at the traditional TE spot) and will all be vying for catches this year.

For those reasons, none of those guys is going to be a weekly fantasy contributor you can count on in 2010, but I'd be willing to bet they all have their moments. And I bet Hernandez, the most physically gifted receiver of the three, will have the most moments that are fantasy relevant. He already has seven catches for 72 yards and a TD through two preseason games and has started both contests. I predict a few big games out of the rookie when the matchups dictate, and he could be a sneaky No. 2 TE pick at the end of 12-team drafts. At the very least he'll be someone to watch on the waiver wire.

Photo by The Associated Press

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