Justin Blackmon

held out this summer and missed a good chunk of training camp in a contract dispute with the Jaguars — seemingly never a good thing for a rookie. But since signing, he has been impressive.

In two games, Blackmon has eight catches for 120 yards and a touchdown. His quarterback is a concern, with Blaine Gabbert

looking lost last season, but even Gabbert has shown signs of life this preseason. Of course, you still need to take preseason stats with a grain of salt — for both players — but there is certainly room for optimism. Especially considering that Blackmon is currently being drafted on average in the 11th round with an average draft position of 104.7 in Yahoo! leagues.

Blackmon won the Biletnikoff Award (given to the country’s top collegiate wide receiver) two years in a row, had back-to-back seasons of 110-plus receptions and 15-plus touchdowns. Even with all his off-the-field drama, he should be picked earlier than the 11th round. Keep an eye out for him and be careful to see how quickly receivers are flying off the board in your league. Blackmon could be a major sleeper.


Titans wide receiver Kenny Britt is an interesting case.

He is recovering from ACL surgery last year. He was arrested (again) during the offseason, this time charged with driving under the influence. No word has come down from the NFL about a possible suspension, but no doubt that has to be a concern.

Yet, I feel people are still underestimating him a little — on the field at least.

No doubt, Britt appears to be a knucklehead off the field. But on the field, he has the potential to be a top-flight fantasy wide receiver. Part of that will depend on the development of rookie Jake Locker, but still Britt should be going sooner than pick No. 55, which is his average draft position in Yahoo! leagues.

There certainly is some risk, but I wouldn’t be adverse to rolling the dice on Britt.


One wide receiver I do not like this season is Miles Austin.

On average, Austin is going in the fourth round with an average draft position of 38.9. He is nursing yet another hamstring injury, which is concerning since hamstring issues cost him six games last season. Just as disturbing is the fact that Austin has seen his production drop for two straight seasons following a breakout 81-catch, 1,320-yard campaign in 2009.

The Cowboys offense in general is a question mark, with injuries affecting not only Austin but also

Dez Bryant and tight end Jason Witten. But to me, Austin is being widely overrated, and I would not be drafting Austin ahead of wide receivers such as Dwyane Bowe, Britt, DeSean Jackson or even popular sleeper Torrey Smith.

One thing is for sure — Austin likely won’t be on any of my teams.


Andy Silva writes the Fantasy Forecast for The Salem News. You can follow him on Twitter @sn_fantasysport.

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