Fantasy Football Sleepers: Smith set for strong performance Sunday

By Sam Lane

Sports Blogger


Each week of the NFL season, you can find a list of sleepers here at the O’Zone. The fantasy point projections come from ESPN’s non-PPR weekly projections, the scoring format used is ESPN’s standard fantasy football format

Quarterback: Alex Smith, Kansas City Chiefs

Projected points: 18.3

(Dave Kopp, Flickr)

Following the Chiefs Week 11 bye, Alex Smith and the Kansas City Chiefs’ offense struggled. In the first two weeks following the bye, Smith had one touchdown, three interceptions and a 21.4 points. In Week 13, it seemed as if it was an entirely different offense. Smith finished with 37.6 points along with four touchdowns. In Week 14, the Chiefs face the Oakland Raiders, who are the league’s worst defense overall. Against quarterbacks, the Raiders are allowing 17.8 points. The Chiefs rejuvenated offense should have plenty of success against the Oakland Raiders.

Running Back: Mike Davis, Seattle Seahawks

Projected points: 7.9

In Week 13, Mike Davis was given the lead back role and he flourished under it. Davis had 16 of the team’s 18 rushing attempts going for 64 yards against the Philadelphia Eagles, who are the league’s second-best run defense. Not only was Davis the dominant runner in the Seattle backfield, he also looked comfortable receiving, finishing with four catches for 37 yards. In Week 14, Davis faces a much easier defense to run against. The Jacksonville Jaguars started the season as a dominant run defense but have struggled recently against opposing running backs, allowing 23.2 points to opposing running backs.

Wide Receiver: Marquise Goodwin, San Francisco 49ers

Projected points : 7.2

Since Week 11, Goodwin has posted three of his five best performances including his season high with eight catches for 99 yards. In Week 14, Goodwin will look to continue his hot streak against the depleted Texans’ defense. The Texans are allowing the ninth-most points to opposing receivers. The season high in points for Goodwin surely has something to do with Week 13 being Jimmy Garoppolo’s first start. They should be able to improve on their instant connection in Week 14.

Tight End: Cameron Brate, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Projected points: 6

In the three weeks that quarterback Jameis Winston was sidelined with injury, Brate scored a 5.8 points over that span. In Winston’s first week back from injury, Brate had 39 yards and a season high in touchdown catches with two. In Week 14, Brate faces the Detroit Lions who are allowing 12.5 points to opposing tight ends. If Winston continues to be healthy, Cameron Brate should have success similar to his hot start to the season.

Defense/Special Teams: Green Bay Packers

Projected points: 8.5

In their Week 13 matchup with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Packers put up a season high in points with 14, along with only their second defensive touchdown of the season. In Week 14, the Packers are facing the Cleveland Browns. The Browns have been the second-best team to stream defenses against this season, allowing 12.7 points per game.

Kicker: Robbie Gould, San Francisco 49ers

Projected points: 8.3

Marquise Goodwin was not the only 49er to have increased success following Jimmy Garoppolo’s promotion to starter. In Week 13, Gould had his second-best scoring week this season with 15 points. This was his first double-digit week since Week 5. In Week 14, Gould should be able to build off of his rejuvenated season against the Texans, who are allowing the fifth-most points to opposing kickers.

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