Will RB Toby Gerhart be the biggest fantasy football sleeper in 2014?

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Updated: May 3, 2014

Toby GerhartWill RB Toby Gerhart be the biggest fantasy football sleeper in 2014?

During the last couple of months, after the Seattle Seahawks dominated against the Denver Broncos in the Super Bowl XLVIII, fantasy owners started cooking up their plans for the next season. There are bunch of significant players to watch, lots of rookies with great potential who will enter the league through the 2014 NFL draft and also a lot of movement around the league. Fantasy owners are trying to create a powerful team for the 2014 NFL season, one that can really dominate. One of the ways fantasy owners can secure a successful course in their team is through finding the so called fantasy sleepers for the next season. Amongst the bunch of players who might exceed the expectations is running back Toby Gerhart. In fact, Gerhart is believed to have so much potential for the upcoming season that some people consider him as the biggest fantasy sleeper for the 2014 season in the NFL.

Gerhart, who is currently a member of the Jacksonville Jaguars, has already shown that he has tons of talent and that he can reach a true superstar level. The General Manager of the Jaguars, Dave Caldwell envisions Gerhart to become a three-down back and he might become just that during the upcoming season.

Of course, there are several other players around the league who are considered to have lots of potential and they can be great finds for fantasy owners. Some of them contain a dose of risk but could greatly benefit the owners that will select them. In Gerhart’s case, there doesn’t seem to be much of a risk.

The Jaguars saw Maurice Jones–Drew departing from Jacksonville and that cleared up the space for Gerhart. Although the Jaguars will have some other options to use at the starting running back role, Toby Gerhart is considered a lock for the position. Jordan Todman could be an option and Denart Robinson could be another player who could get a shot at the position. Nonetheless, Robinson won’t be preferred by the coaching staff, as last year we saw that there were some issues with him finding the role into the Jaguars’ rotation. Jacksonville might draft a running back in the upcoming 2014 NFL Draft but it’s highly unlikely that the team would trust its starting job to a rookie, especially after the three – year deal they signed Gerhart to. Toby Gerhart will be a starter and as he stated, he feels confident that he will do well at the role.

Last year, Toby Gerhart was playing behind Adrian Peterson, as a member of the Minnesota Vikings. As a result, he didn’t have the chance see much playing time and he didn’t have the chance to showcase his value. He stands at 6’0” and weighs 230 pounds and his body frame allows him to be really dominant when on the field.

The truth is that Gerhard has recorded a season with over 100 rushing attempts, he seems capable of doing much better. During his four year tenure with the Minnesota Vikings, he totaled 1,305 rushing yards. In his first three seasons in Minnesota, the emerging running back averaged 21.3 receptions and also 170.6 receiving yards. Now that he will be a starter with the Seahawks, we can expect him to record much higher numbers, as he will see much more playing time than during his Vikings days. In fact, Toby Gerhart is widely considered to be a much more productive player than Maurice Jones – Drew and this upcoming season will be a unique chance for him to prove exactly that.

Some analysts expect Gerhart to record around 250 – 300 carries next season. If he does so, he will rank amongst the best running backs in the league. In fact, Knowshon Moreno recorded 241 carries last season and Marshawn Lynch finished the season with 301 rushing attempts. Although this might seem too good to be true for some Vikings fans, many analysts believe that he can reach those numbers, as he is widely considered to have that much potential. So, Minnesota fans should get excited about their new acquisition and fantasy owners should stay highly alerted by the case of the 27 – year old running back.

However, you should also consider the limitation, the ceiling Toby Gerhart has in his game. For example, some of you might want to find the best replacement for Adrian Peterson. So if you are fantasy owner and you expect to draft Toby Gerhart and find as much value as you would do in Adrian Peterson, you should think about it twice. And I am not saying that Peterson is that much better than Gerhart. In fact, Gerhart could end up emerging as a truly great running back, an elite one. Nonetheless, you should also consider the fact that he will be a part of a team which has a weak offensive line. In fact, during some games, Gerhart might not be able to produce as much as most people around the league anticipate, because his offensive line might not support him as needed. So, you might want elsewhere if you are searching for the main running back for your fantasy team. Because if you solely rely on Gerhart, you might end up losing in some weeks and you will start wonder why.

The truth is that Toby Gerhart can be the ideal running back for your fantasy team but will most probably a perfect solution for the backup running back role instead of the No.1. The one very positive thing about him is that he will most probably be available during some later rounds, as other players at the position will draw the biggest chunk of the interest. But that also speaks about his potential.

Toby Gerhart can be the biggest fantasy sleeper next season, but keep in mind that he will still be a sleeper, not a superstar.

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