Sports Illustrated’s Jim Trotter reported on Wednesday night that San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick will get the start against the New Orleans Saints in the Superdome on Sunday. If his Week 11 start against the Chicago Bears—an awfully productive and intimidating defense—is any indication, Kaepernick is about to go off in Week 12.
BREAKING: Jim Harbaugh has informed Alex Smith that Colin Kaepernick will start Sunday, per source. Said decision not based on health.
— Jim Trotter (@SI_JimTrotter) November 22, 2012
Kaepernick turned in the best fantasy performance of any quarterback this season to face Chicago. That’s due in large part to the fact that he was the first QB facing the Bears in 2012 who didn’t turn the ball over.
Kaepernick was 16-of-23 passing for 243 yards and two touchdowns.
The biggest reason for his expected fantasy success—his running ability—wasn’t on display against Chicago, as he rushed just four times for 10 yards. While relieving Alex Smith in Week 10, he ran eight times for 66 yards and a touchdown against the St. Louis Rams.
Chicago is just a mean run defense: eighth in rushing yards allowed this season.
Conversely, Kaepernick’s Week 12 opponent is No. 32 in that category. New Orleans is No. 31 in passing yards allowed on top of that. The San Francisco QB will go from the toughest matchup for fantasy quarterbacks (ESPN standard scoring) to the easiest in a mere matter of six days.
Even at home against quarterbacks not named Matt Cassel, New Orleans has been generous to opposing fantasy QBs. Robert Griffin III, Philip Rivers, Michael Vick and Matt Ryan have combined to average 339.3 passing yards, two passing touchdowns, one total turnover and 24.3 rushing yards per game.
The fantasy quarterbacks with value tied to their legs (RGIII and Vick) combined for 95 yards on the ground. Cam Newton also ran for 71 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries against the Saints in Carolina.
Expecting 50 rushing yards from Kaepernick wouldn’t be a stretch, which elevates his fantasy floor. San Francisco’s new signal-caller is a safe and dynamic fantasy starter in Week 12.
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