- Category: Smitty: Monday Morning Quarterback
Shine that spotlight, Matt! Rueben Randle looks like an excellent sleeper
In this week’s dynasty spotlight we take a look at a second year wide receiver for the New York Giants - Rueben Randle. The Giants drafted Randle in the 2nd round of the 2012 NFL draft out of LSU. During his junior season for the Tigers in 2011 Randle had 53 receptions fo 917 yards and 8 touchdowns. His size - speed combination intrigued NFL scouts but he was considered raw by most, especially needing work on his route running skills. The Giants thought enough of him to take him with a high pick to fill the role vacated by Mario Manningham and be able to fill in for an oft injured Hakeem Nicks.
In 2012 as a rookie Rueben Randle finished with just 19 catches for 298 yards and 3 touchdowns, but had a couple of nice games when he saw more snaps. In week 5 against the Browns Randle had 6 catches for 82 yards and in week 17 had 4 catches for 58 yards and 2 touchdowns against the Eagles. Many rookie wide receivers struggle their first year especially if the offensive scheme is completely new to them but Randle flashed ability that portends good things in the future.
Currently all the Giants need from him is to be a solid third wide receiver and contribute on punt returns. That can and probably will change quickly though. As fantasy owners of Hakeem Nicks are well aware, Nicks has not been the most durable receiver throughout his career. In fact, he still isn’t working out in training camp due to a strained groin. While not nearly as explosive as Hakeem Nicks has shown he can be when healthy, Rueben Randle is an inch taller and has shown the ability to do a lot of the same things Nicks does. Whenever Nicks misses time, Randle will be called upon to do a lot more than just be a third receiver. With Nicks’ injury history Randle could in the blink of an eye go from part time player to Eli Manning’s most important target in the red zone passing game. Positive reports from Giants camp of Randle absolutely dominating the entire secondary further proves this to be the case.
The combination of Rueben Randle’s physical talent and the opportunity he will get when (not if) Hakeem Nicks misses time makes him exciting player to watch for fantasy purposes. I have been trying my best to acquire him in all dynasty leagues. If you wait much longer you may not be able to get him at all because he may have incredible value as early as this season. If Nicks who is in a contract year has another wasted season due to injuries and Randle shows he can play the part then Nicks may not even be back next season. This leaves Rueben Randle as a permanent starter for the Giants across from Victor Cruz. Currently he is going off the board as the 53rd wide receiver in the 12th round in redraft leagues. He is definitely worth a flyer anywhere after the 10th round. Rueben Randle has instant fantasy WR2 with WR1 upside in any week that Hakeem Nicks isn’t in the lineup, which as history tells us, could be a significant number of weeks.
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