Fantasy Football Sleepers: Week 12
Thanksgiving already offered up three big games for us to enjoy, which means there’s only 13 match-ups left on the slate. Incredibly, those three games featured all six starting quarterbacks surpass the 300 yard mark, including Matt Stafford and Tony Romo north of 400. While we can’t expect every signal-caller to top 300 yards, there’s plenty of good sleeper candidates for the remainder of Week 12.
Colin Kaepernick (QB)- This second-year quarterback has been a hugely popular waiver-wire pick and a very popular topic on twitter– and why not? Not only did he look good last week while facing the Bears elite defense, for Week 12 Kaepernick gets to face fantasy football’s friendliest passing defense- the New Orleans Saints. There’s still some speculations that Alex Smith could start this game, but several San Francisco teammates have revealed that head coach Jim Harbaugh intends to start the “hot hand” in Kaepernick. If you had an iffy fantasy signal-caller in your lineup and were wise enough to nab Kaepernick on your waiver-wire, this is a great week to use him.
Jalen Parmele (RB)- Perhaps one of the most surprising performances of the season was last week’s game from this fifth-year journeyman. Parmele came out of nowhere to get 27 touches versus the legue’s top-ranked rush defense. It’s clear that Rashad Jennings has been kicked to the curb, so the featured running back gig will belong to Parmele until Maurice Jones-Drew returns- if he does at all. Last week, Parmele caught all three of his pass targets while churning out 80 yards on 24 carries. He’ll find the going much easier this week, facing Tennessee’s third-worst fantasy run defense, and backed by a more credible passing attack led by Chad Henne. If Parmele can receive the bulk of carries again, he has an excellent shot at surpassing 100 yards from scrimmage and a touchdown.
BenJarvus Green-Ellis (RB)- The vast majority of fantasy football owners have been disappointed at the pedestrian numbers that “The Law Firm” has generated in his first year as the featured back in Cincinnati. Still, if you’ve stubbornly held onto him on your bench all season, this is the week to get the pay-off. The Oakland Raiders have been the worst fantasy run defense over the past three weeks, surrendering an incredible 32.1 fantasy points-per-game to opposing runners. Averaged out, in their three November games, Oakland is allowing 149 yards rushing and two touchdown per game.
Anquan Boldin (WR)- It’s a copy-cat league, and if the San Diego Chargers were paying attention, they’ll double-team Torrey Smith just like Pittsburgh did last week. In that contest, Smith was limited to one reception on seven targets, while Boldin was left in single coverage and racked up eight catches for 79 yards. Should the Chargers try this same tactic, Boldin will again be an under-the-radar start against a secondary that has surrendered an NFL-high 15 touchdowns to opposing wide-outs.
Brandon Stokely (WR)- Led by a rejuvenated Peyton Manning, the Denver Broncos offense continues to be red-hot and there’s no reason that shouldn’t continue in Week 12 against a 1-10 Kansas City squad. Stokely has very quietly put up five touchdowns on the year, and his stat lines for the last two games are oddly similar: four grabs on five targets for 54-55 yards and a touchdown. Manning looks for Stokely out of the slot in and around the goal-line, looking to capitalize on a mis-match versus a linebacker of slower safety. There’s a good chance Stokely’s scoring streak will continue this week, as the Chiefs have allowed 14 touchdowns to wide receivers and don’t have the personel to contain Denver’s excellent wide receiving corps.
Dallas Clark (TE)- It’s been a quiet year for Clark, who hasn’t been featured much in Tampa Bay’s new offensive system. Clark finally received some recognition last week, logging a season-high seven catches for 58 yards and that game-winning touchdown in overtime. That was actually the second game in a row that Clark has been in the end-zone, and he has a good chance of making a fantasy impact again this week as the Bucs host an Atlanta Falcons squad that has allowed a league-worst 15.9 fantasy points-per-game to tight ends over the last three weeks.
Jody Smith continues to be the number one ranked fantasy football analyst at fantasypros.com. He also hosts the GridironExperts weekly live chat at 11 a.m. Eastern, every Sunday. Be sure to follow him on twitter @JodySmith_ and @Gridironexperts.