The dust has settled on the NFL Draft, and now we can finally start to hone in on our rookie targets for the 2023 fantasy football season. Landing spots knocked some prospects down a few tiers, like Zach Charbonnet going to the Seattle Seahawks to share a backfield with Kenneth Walker, but for others, like Jordan Addison and Jalin Hyatt, it’s wheels up! But we don’t want to steer you to the same targets as everyone else with this article. We’re going deep diving for those late-round rookie sleepers that some casual fantasy players may not have on their radar. Let’s put on our scuba gear and jump in to look for some potential diamonds in the rough.

*ADPs are taken from our ADP tool and are current as of May 2, 2023. If it’s your first time signing up for Underdog, use promo code FANTASYALARM for a 100% first-time deposit match up to $100!*




Will Levis, Tennessee Titans, Underdog ADP 222.6

To be transparent, I debated writing a quarterback section at all. Outside of the top three, there just aren’t really any realistic rookie options for this season. While Bryce Young, C.J. Stroud, and Anthony Richardson are all likely to be the starters for their teams this year, everyone else is clearly in a backup situation. I decided to include Levis because of the outside chance he starts a few games if Ryan Tannehill gets injured or traded. Last season, Tannehill missed five games, with Malik Willis filling in for him, and although Willis is still listed as the second option on the depth chart, expect that to change as training camp opens. Levis doesn’t offer a ton of upside, but if you somehow forgot to draft a backup quarterback, he’s the only rookie quarterback that could realistically produce fantasy points for your best ball teams.


Running Backs

Devon Achane, Miami Dolphins, Underdog ADP 151.6

The Dolphins re-signed both Raheem Mostert and Jeff Wilson in free agency, but that didn’t stop them from drafting another young speedster in Devon Achane in the third round. For now, this is set up to be a pure committee backfield, but that doesn’t mean Achane doesn’t have the opportunity for touches. Both Mostert and Wilson have a fairly extensive injury history, and if this trend continues, Achane could see a near 50/50 carry split in their absence. Even if one of them doesn’t get injured, Achane could work his way up in the depth chart on his own merit. He ran an explosive 4.32 40-time at the NFL Combine, and in his final season at Texas A&M, he earned first-team All-SEC honors with over 1,100 rushing yards and eight touchdowns in ten starts. He’s exactly what head coach Mike McDaniel wants in a running back and is bound to have some spike weeks on your best ball rosters.

Kendre Miller, New Orleans Saints, Underdog ADP 187.6

Kendre Miller is one of my favorite rookie running backs outside of Bijan Robinson and Jahmyr Gibbs this season. Yes, the Saints brought in Jamaal Williams in free agency, but the potential suspension of Alvin Kamara could open the door wide open for Miller to immediately produce. During his final season at TCU, Miller’s 1,399 rushing yards were the most for a Horned Frog since LaDainian Tomlinson’s record setting performance in 2000, and he also tacked on 17 touchdowns in 14 games. He’s got all the traits of a bell-cow back in the NFL, so if Kamara is suspended, he could leap-frog Williams and provide immediate value.

Wide Receivers

Rashee Rice, Kansas City Chiefs, Underdog ADP 219.3

Looking at the Kansas City Chiefs’ current depth chart, you wouldn’t really guess that they were the defending Super Bowl champions. They currently have Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Kadarius Toney, and Skyy Moore as their starting three, and none of these guys have really proven they can thrive in a WR1 role. Rice is a perfect fit for Patrick Mahomes’ arm, leading the FBS with catches of more than 20 yards downfield in 2022. He’s got adequate speed at 4.51, and while he needs to clean up his drops and play with more physicality on a consistent basis, he has huge potential for blow up weeks in the Chiefs’ high-powered offense.

Nathaniel “Tank” Dell, Houston Texans, Underdog ADP 237.7

Nathaniel Dell may be quite undersized for an NFL receiver, but you don’t earn the nickname “Tank” for nothing. He’s got speed, elite route-running ability, and the versatility to line up anywhere on the field, making him an intriguing asset for the rebuilding Houston Texans. In his final year with the Houston Cougars, Dell led the team with nearly 1,400 yards and 17 touchdowns in 13 starts, becoming a nightmare for opposing defenses with his shiftiness and speed. The Texans got their franchise quarterback in C.J. Stroud, so they should pass more than they have in years past, and with only an aging Robert Woods, frequently banged up Nico Collins, and red-shirt rookie John Metchie in the starting lineup, Dell should be able to find a place to earn you fantasy points.

Jonathan Mingo, Carolina Panthers, Underdog ADP 239.5

While Jonathan Mingo has gained some steam in rookie dynasty drafts, he’s still relatively undervalued in best ball formats, and this is your time to strike. He may not have an overly impressive resume at Ole Miss, as he didn’t really break out until last season and still only finished with 861 yards, but he couldn’t have asked for a better landing spot. The Panthers did bring in Adam Thielen and D.J. Chark in free agency, but both have dealt with several injuries, potentially opening up some upward movement on the depth chart for Mingo. He’s a great route-runner, and while he does lack the ability to get much separation, he thrives on contact and his 40-inch vertical can help him win on 50/50 balls. In a weak NFC South, I like his chances to produce some big numbers later on in the season.

Tight Ends

Sam LaPorta, Detroit Lions, Underdog ADP 237.6

I’ll start off the tight end section of this piece by cautioning you about rookie tight ends. They historically take time to develop in their system and don’t return consistent value, but with best ball, you don’t need them to perform on a week-to-week basis. Sam LaPorta went to an excellent landing spot in Detroit; they currently have Brock Wright listed as their starting tight end, and with Jameson Williams suspended six games and a relatively thin receiving room, he could produce some big games early on. While at Iowa, he set the record for the most receptions by a tight end, finishing his career with 153. He has impressive speed for someone his size, so once he gets into space, he can be hard to bring down. The Lions are building an impressive team, and LaPorta figures to be a big part of that. 

Luke Musgrave, Green Bay Packers, Underdog ADP 240

Instead of addressing their wide receiver room with their second pick in the draft, the Green Bay Packers opted for the big tight end out of Oregon State in Luke Musgrave. His 2022 season was cut short due to injury, but what we saw on tape was impressive. He only played two games last year, but still compiled 164 yards and a touchdown with a yards per catch average of 15.4. Green Bay’s offense will look significantly different this year with Jordan Love at the helm, and it should come along with a much more reliance on the underneath game, giving Musgrave plenty of opportunity for targets. Unlike several other rookie tight ends, Musgrave is already listed as the starter on the depth chart, so he should be able to provide value from day one.

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