Players to Stash in Fantasy Football for 2022


As the offseason winds down, it’s time to start looking ahead to the fantasy football regular season. Many of you may be finished drafting, while others still have a few more to go before kickoff. Certain players come at a discount due to their status to begin the season and may even be available on the waiver wire.


In this article, I am going to highlight a few players worth stashing who can help contribute to your roster later in the season. Get signed up for an FTN subscription to help dominate your leagues and get full access to all of our in-season content. 

DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Arizona Cardinals

In his first season with the Cardinals, DeAndre Hopkins finished as the WR4, catching a career-high 115 passes on 160 targets for 1,407 yards and six touchdowns. Unfortunately, he had trouble staying on the field last season, missing eight games (including the postseason) due to hamstring and knee injuries. Although Hopkins appeared in just 10 games in 2021, he led the team in red-zone targets (14) and receiving touchdowns (8). Even in an injury-riddled season, Hopkins was a top-20 receiver in points per game (WR18). The Cardinals made a blockbuster trade on draft day to acquire Marquise Brown from the Ravens. That came days before the league announced Hopkins would serve a six-game suspension for violating the PED policy. While Brown may have the shower narrative in his favor, Hopkins will still be the No. 1 option for Kyler Murray once he returns in Week 7. Before last season, Hopkins only missed two games in his entire career, eclipsing 1,100 receiving yards and 150 targets in six of his past seven seasons.

Kenneth Walker, RB, Seattle Seahawks

After a decade of dominance, the Russell Wilson era finally came to an end in Seattle. The Seahawks traded the All-Pro Bowl quarterback to the Denver Broncos for a big haul. Rather than using their newly acquired draft capital to address the quarterback position, they decided to bolster the run game. With the 41st pick, the Seahawks drafted Kenneth Walker out of Michigan State. Last season, Walker rushed for 1,636 yards and 18 touchdowns, leading all of college football in forced missed tackles (89). Walker was arguably the best pure rusher in the class, with elite speed, clocking in at a 4.38-second 40 at the NFL combine. He was the second running back off the board, just five picks after Breece Hall.

Walker’s ADP has steadily declined after reports suggested that Rashaad Penny is the early favorite to lead the Seahawks backfield and could see upward of 20 carries a game. Penny closed last season strong, leading all running backs in touches (92) and yards (692) in the season’s final five games. His 6.3 yards per carry and 4.5 yards after contact per carry ranked first among all backs with at least 50 carries. Like most of his career, Penny had trouble staying on the field, missing seven games while dealing with multiple leg injuries. Since entering the league in 2018, Penny has appeared in only 37 out of a possible 67 games. The Seahawks allowed Penny to test the free agency market before re-signing him to a one-year deal. Although Penny may be the Week 1 starter, his history tells us it is unlikely he will remain healthy for the entire season. Walker is going more than a full round after Penny and could take over the backfield by the middle of the season. Even in a low-scoring offense, volume is king in fantasy football, and Walker should see plenty of it. There is no denying Pete Carroll wants to run the ball, and he may not have a choice with a combination of Geno Smith and Drew Lock under center. 


Jameson Williams, WR, Detroit Lions

After selecting Aidan Hutchinson with the second overall pick in this year’s draft, the Lions traded back into the first round and drafted Jameson Williams at pick No. 12. The team’s aggressiveness to move up and make a divisional trade with the Minnesota Vikings speaks volumes to how the franchise feels about their new receiver. Williams spent the first two seasons of his college career buried on the Ohio State depth chart before breaking out last year as a junior at Alabama. In his one and only season with the Crimson Tide, Williams notched 79 receptions for 1,572 yards and 15 touchdowns. He had a real case to be the No. 1 wide receiver in the class before tearing his ACL in the national championship game in January. As a result, Williams was placed on the non-football injury list and will miss at least the first four games of the season. When asked about his status, head coach Dan Campbell said, “We’re going to do this thing the right way, and when he’s ready, he’ll be ready.” Once Williams gets on the field, he’ll bring a much-needed deep threat element desperately lacking in the Detroit offense. He was top-five in the country in yards on deep throws (20-plus yards downfield), while the Lions completed only 16 deep passes in 2021. His game-breaking speed and 19.9 yards per catch should help elevate Jared Goff, who finished bottom of the league in average depth of target (6.35 yards) last season.

Brian Robinson, RB, Washington Commanders

The Commanders re-signed J.D. McKissic in free agency and continued to stockpile running back depth on the draft, selecting Brian Robinson in the third round. Robinson spent the first four seasons buried behind NFL-caliber backs at Alabama but came on strong in his fifth year. In 2021, Robinson rushed for 1,343 yards on 271 carries and 14 TDs while adding 35 receptions for 296 yards and two touchdowns through the air. He ranked top five among all running backs in forced missed tackles and eighth in runs of at least 10 yards. Head coach Ron Rivera said, “He’s going to add very nicely to what we have with Antonio Gibson in terms of a one-two punch.” Robinson started training camp behind Gibson on the depth chart but leapfrogged him after Gibson fumbled in the first game of the preseason. Gibson has had trouble holding onto the ball, leading the league in fumbles last season (6). Unfortunately, on the same day Robinson was announced as the starter, he fell victim to a robbery and was shot twice. He’s currently on the NFI list but has a chance to return as soon as Week 5. Over the past two seasons, the lead back in Washington has finished as an RB1 twice. It’s clear that the Commanders have lost trust in Gibson and will look to hand over the reins to Robinson once he’s fully recovered.

Gus Edwards, RB, Baltimore Ravens

Gus Edwards 2022 Fantasy Football Stashes

Gus Edwards was poised for a breakout year in 2021 after J.K. Dobbins went down with an ACL tear in the preseason. Unfortunately, Edwards’s season ended before it could begin after he, too, tore his ACL in practice. Since signing with the Ravens as an undrafted free agent in 2018, Edwards rushed for over between 711 and 723 yards in three straight seasons before 2021 despite operating in a running back by committee. He signed a two-year contract extension last offseason after a career year in 2020. In his last healthy season, Edwards finished as the RB35, posting a career-high in rushing yards (723), touchdowns (six) and receiving yards (129). Although he landed on the PUP list, ruled out for the first four games, his contract suggests he will still have a role in the offense. When healthy, Edwards provides standalone value and is an elite handcuff if Dobbins were to go down again.

Kenny Pickett, QB, Pittsburgh Steelers

The Ben Roethlisberger era is over in Pittsburgh after the two-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback retired this offseason. The Steelers signed Mitch Trubisky in free agency before drafting hometown quarterback Kenny Pickett with the 20th overall pick. Pickett was the only rookie quarterback to be drafted in the first two rounds and has the best chance to see the field sooner rather than later. The Steelers have yet to announce a starter, meaning Pickett could start as early as Week 1. Over the last 15 years, 40 out of 49 quarterbacks with first-round pedigree have played in at least five games as a rookie, often overtaking the starting job by the end of the season. Pickett has a strong supporting cast in Pittsburgh featuring two prowlers (Najee Harris and Diontae Johnson) and three second-round pass catchers (Pat Freiermuth, Chase Claypool, George Pickens). He should have no problem getting his weapons the ball after setting all-time school records in passing yards (12,303), passing completions (1,045), and passing touchdowns (81). Pickett threw for over 300-yard passing yards in 16 games and over 400 in five, the most in Pitt history. He also has sneaky rushing upside, rushing 416 times for 809 rushing yards and 20 rushing touchdowns throughout his collegiate career. Pickett holds more value in a 2-QB or superflex leagues with minimal depth at quarterback.

Deshaun Watson, QB, Cleveland Browns

New Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson was initially suspended for six games but will now miss the first 11 games following the NFL’s appeal. In his last season with the Texans, Watson led the league in passing yards throwing for 4,823 and 33 touchdowns. Since taking over the starting job, Watson has finished as a top-five quarterback in three consecutive seasons. The upside for Watson is undeniable, and he is one of the few late-round/undrafted options with league-winning potential. Watson becomes an intriguing stash for teams struggling to find production at quarterback and may pay dividends in the final six weeks of the season. His career 22 fantasy points per games are the third highest in NFL history behind only Patrick Mahomes (23) and Justin Herbert (22.3).

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