Fantasy Football

Fantasy Football: Start or Sit Alex Smith in Week 8?

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How can we forget the crazy Chiefs-Colts AFC playoff shootout from a couple of years ago? Wherein Alex Smith managed to throw for three touchdowns and no picks in the first seventeen minutes? Well, the Chiefs lost that game, but luckily for fantasy football owners, you don’t get extra credit if a team wins or any demerit if a team loses. You’re just after those juicy fantasy points. Last week I recommended Smith as a solid sleeper since he usually gets you in that perfectly acceptable 15-20-point range in matchups where he can take advantage of a soft pass defense.[embedit snippet=”jeff-ads”]

Against soft run defenses, however, the Chiefs turn to the ground.  Given the number of quarterbacks on bye this week, you’ll take that, since it’s highly likely to get you a QB1 week. This week is unlikely to be any different for Smith and is a good option to get into your lineups because of his reliable scoring ability.

In his 2016 campaign, Alex Smith has only thrown for seven scores in seven games, but his touchdowns come in bunches against bad pass defenses. He has six in three games and one across the other three. Much like the other quarterback highlighted this week, Derek Carr. He does his scoring in bunches against weak underbelly defenses. The only difference between him and Carr is that he lacks the upside to get over 25 fantasy points, especially given KC’s game plan to slow down the time between plays and “shorten” the game.

Still, Smith takes on one of the soft underbelly defenses that he “lights up” for 250 yards, two scores, and no picks. The Colts are quarterback sieves, allowing two touchdowns in each of the last four games, and doing so against mid-to-lower-level quarterback talent (Blake Bortles, Brian Hoyer, Brock Osweiler and Marcus Mariota). So far this season, only Trevor Siemian and Osweiler have thrown interceptions against the Colts’ D. They are allowing the eighth-most fantasy points to quarterbacks this year, and that’s right around where Alex Smith will end up this week. The Chiefs’ passing attack (spread the ball all around) will also keep the ball away from the area of Vontae Davis, the one halfway decent Colts defender in coverage.

Alex Smith doesn’t have huge upside this week, but is freely available and may be worth a look if the Bye took your quarterback. His high floor against bad options makes him a good play if you need to play it safe this week. If you need a massive upside, I will go with Jameis Winston or even Ryan Fitzpatrick, but you must understand those two also carry unimaginable floors (Fitzpatrick threw six interceptions in one game, after all). If you need some solid production, look towards Smith, otherwise look elsewhere for more boom-bust options if you need them.

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Robert D. Cobb
Founder, Publisher and CEO of INSCMagazine. Works have appeared and featured in places such as Forbes, Huffington Post, ESPN and NBC Sports to name a few. Follow me on Twitter at @RobCobb_INSC, email me at [email protected]