In this article KFFL breaks down the fantasy football sleepers of the week. We will avoid marquee names because players of that caliber are rarely benched, regardless of their matchup. Instead, we will focus on the players that make your fantasy lineup decisions stressful each week. Read on to learn which midrange to low-end players you wouldn't necessarily consider that you need to get into your lineup.
Fantasy football sleepers: Running backs
Brandon Jacobs, New York Giants at Indianapolis Colts
Fantasy value: High-end No. 3
Last week Jacobs saw 12 carries (more than many thought he would), but he gained only 44 yards. He still looked tentative and lacked the power he used to run with. Ahmad Bradshaw is the top dog.
Better things coming for B-Jake?
- Will there still be enough to go around next week? The Colts were steamrolled by Arian Foster last week for 231 yards (7.0 yards per carry) and three touchdowns. Indy also gave up 119.3 ground yards (a top-10 matchup for yardage) and 0.56 rushing scores per game to backs last year.
- Jacobs is by no means the same runner or as effective a carrier as Foster proved to be, but the Giants might decide to take to a ground war, like the Houston Texans did, to keep Peyton Manning's offense off the field. Jacobs is strictly a flex play at this point.
- The Colts' soft run D could provide a decent opportunity to slot him into your lineup if your running back corps is thin. Though they're used to playing without injury-prone safety Bob Sanders (biceps), his latest injury will once again test them.
NEW - Cadillac Williams, Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Carolina Panthers
Fantasy value: Midrange No. 2
- Caddy ran the ball 22 times for a not-so-smooth 75 yards (3.4 yards per carry) while catching two passes for 23 yards in Week 1. Only one other back received a carry (Earnest Graham - six). Tampa Bay might rotate Kareem Huggins (groin), Kregg Lumpkin or Graham in for a few more carries this week in order to preserve Williams' health.
- Two of Williams' best games last year came against Carolina; he ran for 77 yards and one score on 16 carries against them in Week 6 and 92 yards on 17 carries in Week 13.
- Carolina is still without linebacker Thomas Davis (knee), and they looked susceptible to the run last week. New York Giants runners Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs totaled 120 rushing yards against them. Tampa has talked of using tight end John Gilmore more because of his blocking, a sign they could try to take advantage of Carolina's defensive weakness. Carolina's defensive line could be weakened, too, if Louis Leonard (elbow) and Tyler Brayton (ankle) are out.
About Tim Heaney
Tim's work has been featured by USA Today/Sports Weekly, among numerous outlets, and recognized as a finalist in the Fantasy Sports Writers Association awards. The Boston University alum, who competes in LABR and Tout Wars, has won numerous industry leagues in both baseball and football.
During baseball and football season, he appears on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio on Thursdays and Sundays, and every Wednesday on 1570 AM WNST in Baltimore.
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