Alfonso Smith: Updated Fantasy Football Analysis & Outlook

Jesse ReedCorrespondent IOctober 8, 2012

KANSAS CITY, MO - AUGUST 10:  Running back Alfonso Smith #46 of the Arizona Cardinals rushes with the ball against the Kansas City Chiefs during the first half on August 10, 2012 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images)
Peter Aiken/Getty Images

The Arizona Cardinals have lost Ryan Williams for the season, according to team reporter Darren Urban, but what does this mean for running back Alfonso Smith and your fantasy football team?

RB Ryan Williams needs surgery on his shoulder and is out for the season, Whiz said.

— Darren Urban (@Cardschatter) October 8, 2012

With Beanie Wells out on IR at least until Week 12 (h/t Rotoworld.com) and Williams gone for the season, Smith is one of three running backs the Cardinals currently have on their active roster. 

At this time, though, Smith is the team's lowest-ranked running back on the depth chart (h/t OurLads.com). 

Let's take a look at what Smith brings to the table.

 

Profile

Smith is a little-known, undrafted running back out of Kentucky who has not made much noise at either the college level or as a pro.

In his four years at Kentucky, Smith only rushed for 957 yards with eight touchdowns and caught 30 passes for 322 yards and two touchdowns. 

ESPN.com's Insider scouting report on Smith reads:

He shows adequate initial quickness and agility with average burst when hitting the hole, and good vision once he gets past the first level. He is a patient runner that lets the hole develop, but lacks the explosive burst to cause defenders to take bad angles once he gets through the hole. He tends to run a bit upright and does not break a lot of tackles or gain a lot of yards after initial contact.

Since entering the NFL as an undrafted rookie in 2010, Smith has rushed for 102 yards on 30 carries (3.4 yards per carry) and one touchdown.

 

Fantasy Outlook

Smith currently resides on the outside looking in on the Cardinals depth chart. He currently is listed behind LaRod Stevens-Howling and William Powell, and given his lack of experience as a pro, it's not likely that he's going to suddenly emerge atop the depth chart any time soon.

That said, if Stevens-Howling and Powell can't get anything done on the ground, head coach Ken Whisenhunt may have no other choice but to give the untested journeyman a crack at getting the team's anemic running game going.

Through five games, the Cardinals are near the bottom of the rankings in terms of rushing the football, averaging a mere 63.4 yards per game. Only the Oakland Raiders have been worse this season.

Perhaps Week 6 will improve their shoddy rushing totals, as the Cardinals host the Buffalo Bills—the same team that allowed 311 rushing yards to the San Francisco 49ers.

After that, it doesn't look good for Smith or any other Cardinals running back, with contests against the Minnesota Vikings in Week 7 (No. 6 in NFL in yards per game) and the 49ers in Week 8 (No. 7 in NFL in yards per game). 

 

Analysis

Don't expect Smith to become a fantasy hero any time soon. 

The Cardinals offensive line is a mess, and it would be tough for Barry Sanders in his prime to put up respectable numbers behind this group.

Smith is still the low man on the totem pole for the Cards, too. If he's pressed into duty, it's not necessarily a good thing for the team. 

Stay away from any inkling of an idea to claim Smith off waivers. He isn't the answer to your fantasy problems. 

 

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