Colin Kaepernick Is Safe Fantasy Football Start During Week 3

Maxwell Ogden@MaxwellOgdenCorrespondent IIISeptember 21, 2013

SEATTLE - SEPTEMBER 15:  Colin Kaepernick #7 of the San Francisco 49ers escapes the tackle of D'Anthony Smith #94 and Michael Bennett #72 of the Seattle Seahawks on September 15, 2013 at Century Link Field in Seattle, Washington.  (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images

Arguably the most high-risk, high-reward player of the early 2013 fantasy football season has been San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Just two games into the season, Kaepernick has already put forth a performance for the ages and one of the worst outings you'll ever witness.

During Week 3, don't hesitate to place Kaepernick in your starting lineup.

In Week 1, Kaepernick torched the Green Bay Packers for 412 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions on 27-of-39 passing. In Week 2, Kaepernick struggled against the Seattle Seahawks, going 13-of-28 for 127 yards, no touchdowns, three interceptions and a fumble.

According to the numbers, we're more likely to see the former than the latter transpire again.

This is a high-stakes game for Kaepernick's fantasy football value, but don't bet against the numbers.

Even at his worst against the Seahawks, Kaepernick still managed to run the ball for 87 yards on nine attempts. With three career interceptions through his first 17 regular season games, there's no reason to believe his three during Week 2 are a sign of things to come.

Kaepernick is still an elite fantasy football option.

Indianapolis Defense

Vontae Davis is a high-quality cornerback, but Indianapolis' defense isn't anything like Seattle's.
Vontae Davis is a high-quality cornerback, but Indianapolis' defense isn't anything like Seattle's.Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

As it has been written time and time before, the 49ers will not reach their full potential until Michael Crabtree and Mario Manningham return from injury. San Francisco's receiving corps is dangerously thin, with Anquan Boldin and Vernon Davis serving as the only proven commodities.

That was exposed against the Seahawks, when Seattle's world class defensive backfield shut Boldin and Davis down, and Kaepernick had nowhere else to look.

Against the Colts, Kaepernick shouldn't have that issue, as Indianapolis' improved defense is still far from smothering. Boldin should be effective against Vontae Davis and Greg Toler, and Kaepernick projects to break Indianapolis down in a duel-threat manner.

Consider him a combination of what Terrelle Pryor and Ryan Tannehill have sent Indianapolis' way.

During Week 1, Pryor ran the ball 13 times for 112 yards, exploiting Indianapolis' 3-4 defense by running the read option and attacking the absence of explosive athletes coming off the edge. In Week 2, Tannehill was 23-of-34 for 319 yards, one touchdown and no interceptions.

Plain and simple, the Colts struggle to defend the quarterback.

San Francisco has a superior offensive line and running game to both the Miami Dolphins and Oakland Raiders. Furthermore, Kaepernick has displayed superior ability to Pryor and Tannehill, which all adds up to just one thing: you need to start the former Nevada Wolf Pack star.

Keep in mind, this is a home game for Kaepernick.

Shining at Home

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 08:  Quarterback Colin Kaepernick #7 of the San Francisco 49ers drops back to pass against the Green Bay Packers in the fourth quarter at Candlestick Park on September 8, 2013 in San Francisco, California. The 49ers defeated
Jeff Gross/Getty Images

When it comes to bouncing back from a lackluster performance, there is no feeling as comforting for a quarterback than a return to their home stadium. That's the situation Kaepernick is in, as he returns from Seattle to play in San Francisco.

Against the Colts, Kaepernick will look to remain undefeated as a starter at Candlestick Park.

Something tells us a monster performance is on the way.

For those who continue to be concerned with last week's result, note that San Francisco lost 42-13 the previous time it traveled to play the Seahawks. During that game, Kaepernick was 19-of-36 with an interception.

One week later, Kaepernick threw for 272 yards and two touchdowns with zero interceptions during a Week 17 victory. From there, he proceeded to lead the Niners to the Super Bowl.

Kaepernick will be just fine.

While it may be tempting to write Kaepernick off after Week 2, this is still the same player who topped 400 yards passing during Week 1. With a favorable matchup in Week 3 and a return to the 49ers' home stadium, where he's never lost, that means Kaepernick is back in his comfort zone.

Doubt is inevitable, but Kaepernick should be a weekly start in your fantasy football leagues.


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