This time of year, every fantasy general manager believes they are Nostradamus, especially when it comes to players that we think other general managers are sleeping on.
Aside from winning the championship, there’s perhaps no greater feeling than when we hit on those sleeper picks. It gives one a sense of validation that they know something no one else knew, and deep down, we’re thinking “I told you so!” Of course, we rarely focus on the sleepers we got wrong, but almost everyone can recount the story of how they knew a player was going to break out that no one saw coming.
Below are 10 players that fantasy general managers are sleeping on this season. Keep in mind that sleepers aren’t just players that are expected to not produce and then all of a sudden rack up 80 points (although predicting those are fun as well). A sleeper is anyone that can significantly outperform expectations.
10. Seth Jarvis
Jarvis is a popular sleeper pick, so maybe he shouldn’t technically be considered a sleeper. However, there are numerous fantasy GMs who need to be given a heads-up on how great Jarvis can be. Last year, he played frequently with Sebastian Aho and Andrei Svechnikov, but his ice time dropped throughout the season until the last quarter of the campaign. At that point, his ice time rose by more than two minutes per night compared to the third quarter, and Jarvis responded with 20 points in his last 22 games. That helped him finish with 40 points on the season, which is a decent rookie debut. He then followed that up with eight points in 14 postseason games. With new Hurricane Max Pacioretty injured for months, and last year Hurricanes Vincent Trocheck and Nino Niederreiter moved on to different teams, Jarvis has an opportunity to seize a regular top role and top power-play time.
9. Jakub Vrana
The 26-year-old Red Wing was limited to 26 games last season, which means he could be off the radar for many fantasy GMs. A classic case of out-of-sight, out-of-mind. However, he was excellent in those 26 games, finishing with 13 goals and 19 points. It was his third straight season of around a 60-point pace, but with injuries and Covid-shortened seasons, he’s only cracked the 50-point plateau once. Vrana should be a shoo-in for a top-six role, and if he can stay healthy, he should finally be able to reach at least the 60-point mark.
8. J.J. Peterka
Peterka is my pi