RB Darren Sproles, Philadelphia Eagles

HT: 5-7, WT: 180, Born: 6-20-1983, College: Kansas State, Drafted: Round 4

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2014 Projections

GRSHYDY/RTDRECYDY/RTDFPT
David Dodds15.065.03064.72.053.04518.53.0106
Bob Henry16.076.03404.52.050.04659.33.0111
Jason Wood16.060.02754.61.040.03609.02.082
Maurile Tremblay16.082.03404.12.050.04458.91.097

Return Projections (see all)

KRYDKRTDPRYDPRTD
230 0.1 153 0.2

Average draft position

Current as of August 25th. [Full ADP list]

Overall: R Wilson (94), B Cooks (95), Darren Sproles (96), D Woodhead (97), W Welker (98)
Position: M Jones-Drew (84-RB33), F Jackson (93-RB34), Darren Sproles (96 - RB35), D Woodhead (97-RB36), B Pierce (100-RB37)
Click here for a comparison of these players.

PPR Average draft position

Current as of August 25th. [Full PPR ADP list]

Overall: F Jackson (95), Darren Sproles (96), S Jackson (97), K Benjamin (98)
Position: D Woodhead (92-RB33), F Jackson (95-RB34), Darren Sproles (96 - RB35), S Jackson (97-RB36), B Pierce (102-RB37)
Click here for a comparison of these players.


Outlook

Darren Sproles may be one of the most overrated fantasy players of his generation. Never a productive runner, Sproles makes his money as a receiving mismatch out of the backfield. In truth, Sproles had one magic season (2011) that saw him finish as the 10th best running back. He finished 22nd in 2012 (but was drafted higher in PPR leagues) and fell to 35th last year. At 30 years old, the Saints had had enough and traded Sproles to the Philadelphia Eagles. Sproles' role with the Eagles is unclear, mainly because LeSean McCoy is a 3-down back. McCoy has been as skilled a receiver as Sproles, yet also happens to be a dominant runner. At his best, Sproles can be the Eagles main slot option and catch 60-70 passes and a handful of touchdowns. But realistically his role could be much less particularly with the selection of Jordan Matthews in the first round of the NFL draft.


2014 Schedule

WeekOpponent
1 Jacksonville Jaguars
2at Indianapolis Colts
3 Washington Redskins
4at San Francisco 49ers
5 St. Louis Rams
6 New York Giants
Bye week
8at Arizona Cardinals
9at Houston Texans
10 Carolina Panthers
11at Green Bay Packers
12 Tennessee Titans
13at Dallas Cowboys
14 Seattle Seahawks
15 Dallas Cowboys
16at Washington Redskins
17at New York Giants


2013 Game Summaries

Week 1 - Darren Sproles was the most effective Saints running back as he once again made excellent runs after the catch. Surprisingly, Sproles ran the ball eight times and gained 22 yards rushing. It was interesting that he had two of his carries running out the clock to close the first half. He was targeted six time, catching each for a team leading 88 yards. He displayed quickness and elusiveness on several of his receptions making defenders miss to gain extra yards.

Week 2 - Darren Sproles was his usual efficient self, but couldn’t break out any explosive plays against a tenacious Bucs defense. Sproles was again active in the passing game, catching six passes, but he failed to accumulate many YAC in the first half, as the Bucs D closed quickly whenever he was open underneath. He showed great burst on some inside runs and finished the game with just one fewer carry than Mark Ingram, who led the team in that category. Sproles again served as the Saints primary return man, but he had few opportunities to show off his talent.

Week 3 - Darren Sproles made an exceptional catch on a quick release out of the backfield as the pass was on him exactly when he turned around, but he managed to make the catch for a nine yard gain. On Sproles first rush of the game, early in the third quarter they finally gained yardage as Sproles rambled for 15 yards. Following a rare Brees scramble for four yards, Sproles converted a third and short opportunity with a hard earned three yard gain. Sproles exhibited some great hands as he absorbed a huge hit by J. Bell and hung for the reception to convert a third down and nine opportunity. He totaled four receptions on six targets for 39 yards.

Week 4 - Sproles showed outstanding burst by blasting by Rashad Jones on a swing route. He continued his sprint running down the sideline after the catch for a 48-yard gain on the second play from scrimmage. He caught another short swing route on the next play. He later got his first rush on a draw delay which went for an easy 5-yard TD right up the gut of the Dolphins’ defense. In what seems to be an effective pattern against the Dolphins, Sproles caught two quick patterns, one to the left and the next to the right for a combined 16 yards. He continued his first half domination by catching two more passes for 33 yards, the first an amazing play where Sproles again displayed his burst for a 21-yard gain converting the 3rd down and 20 to go. Sproles closed his awesome first half by escaping coverage again and catching his eighth pass for his second TD. Sproles did make one mistake on the night, losing a fumble after an 18-yard rush took the ball to the Dolphins three-yard line.

Week 5 - Darren Sproles had a carry up the middle on the first drive, but slipped after a gain of only three yards. He also caught a pass over the middle for a gain of nine yards setting up the field goal. Sproles got a red-zone rush, but gained only a yard. He was much less involved in the game plan today, but caught all three passes that came his way for 31 yards.

Week 6 - Darren Sproles was very active in the first half, but had minimal production. He started the game and rushed for a one-yard gain on the first play. In the first quarter, he carried the ball four times, with three of the rushes into the interior of the line. His longest gain was for six yards and he totaled 11 yards rushing that quarter and did not have another rush in the first half. Sproles was targeted often in the first half and made three catches for 27 yards. He had a nice run after the catch on the nine yard gainer and displayed his quickness on the 14-yard gain the last drive of the first half. Sproles gained 19 yards on a reception where he had an awesome stutter step to extend the play. He only had one carry in the second half for 4 yards. He added three catches in the second half for 31 yards.

Week 8 - Darren Sproles caught his first target, but was swamped in the backfield and lost 6 yards. He was targeted four times on the game and caught all four, but with minimal gains, he totaled 0 yards receiving. Sproles did not have a carry in the running game.

Week 9 - Darren Sproles started the game and gained two yards on his first reception, which was the Saints third offensive play. Shortly after making the catch, he was met hard, head-on by the Jets defender. Shortly thereafter, he left the field. It was reported that he may have suffered a concussion and he did not return to the game.

Week 10 - Sproles had a reception on a swing pass on the first possession, but only gained 2 yards. He had one carry on the Saints second possession and gained 6 yards on a quick hitter. Sproles had a run up the middle for a gain of 2 yards on the Saints second scoring possession and also had two catches for 18 yards and a double reverse that gained 5 yards. Sproles caught a swing pass for 3 yards and scored the Saints 3rd TD with a 3 yard run up the middle. He had a starring role as the Saints again drove 75 yards for their 4th TD of the first half as the clock wound down. He caught three passes on the drive, all short tosses that with his quickness were turned into long gainers of 11, 11, and 28 yards. The final reception that went for 28 yards and a TD was a swing pass that he caught and weaved through defenders and displayed excellent speed to get into the end zone. He was not used much in the second half, possibly bothered some by a horse collar tackle that bent his knees back beneath him.

Week 11 - Darren Sproles caught a pass in the backfield on the first possession and despite running 5 yards after the catch lost a yard on the play. Sproles caught a pass on the scoring drive for a gain of 8 yards and was injured on the play. He was able to return to action on the next series. Sproles had another reception early in the 3rd quarter for a gain of 8 yards. Sproles made an excellent catch in traffic in the 3rd quarter, but only gained 4 yards. Sproles had another carry in the early 4th quarter gaining 7 yards and showing excellent burst. He began the game winning drive with a 6 yard run.

Week 13 - Darren Sproles was active in the passing game and caught an underneath throw by Brees and made an awesome jump step to avoid the defender to gain 10 yards to allow the Saints punt team a little more comfort, moving the ball out to the 14-yard line. Sproles finally got the call in the running game with three consecutive carries for 11 yards and a first down. He, like Thomas and Ingram ran hard, but had to fight for every yard he made. Sproles was targeted more often late in the game and totaled 7 receptions, but for only 32 yards.

Week 14 - Darren Sproles made the team's first huge play on a sweep that he cut back and dodged a couple of tacklers taking the ball for 38 yards all the way to the Panther 20-yard line. That one carry was more than half of the Saints rushing yardage on the game. Sproles looked very quick avoiding a couple of tackle attempts. He later gave the Saints a first and goal to go as he drew a pass interference call inside the 5-yard line. Sproles caught a screen pass on the Saints third TD drive and again showed his speed with a gain of 20 yards, taking the team into the red zone. He worked the middle twice more on the Saints third scoring drive, with each giving them a first down. Sproles was by far the most successful running back on the night, but he totaled only 61 yards on three catches and the one huge run that got it all started.

Week 15 - Darren Sproles ran wide on a sweep on his first carry and made a nice cut back to escape the pursuit and gained 11 yards and a first down. Sproles was featured often in the first half catching 4 passes for 18 yards. On one reception, he used his quickness to avoid several tacklers to gain 9 yards. He displayed quickness on each reception, but was mostly stifled when running the ball, gaining only 16 yards on four carries and 11 came on that nice sweep on his first carry. Sproles dropped a short pass to end the Saints second drive of the second half, but the play likely would have gained minimal yardage anyway. Sproles caught two passes in the final TD drive and had two carries, but the gains were mostly for short yardage. He made one catch that was pushed forward by Brees and Sproles used his quickness to pick up 13 yards and a first down. He displayed explosiveness often, but the Rams tackled well in the open field and even with 8 catches and 7 carries, he could muster only 62 total yards. He was the Saints leading rusher on the day, but with only 24 yards.

Week 16 - Sproles caught a quick in on the Saints first drive for a gain of 8 yards and later caught a screen pass for a gain of 6 yards, but the play fell short of a first down and forced a punt. Sproles had a couple of rushes in the first half, but had little room and only gained 6 yards. He saw little playing time in the 2nd half, possibly because of the weather. There was heavy rain for most of the 3rd quarter and the field remained wet for the rest of the game.

Week 17 - Sproles didn't play a ton of snaps for the Saints on Sunday. Instead, they opted for multiple WR sets instead of multiple RB sets. Sproles only saw four targets, hauling in a nice 24 yard reception. But he was not used as much as one would have hoped in this game. His three carries netted negative yards. Sproles usually sees more of a role when the Saints are trailing and passing on every down. The early blowout kept Sproles off the field and limited his effectiveness.

Week 18 - Darren Sproles was used for all kick-off returns, but his role in the offensive game plan was minimal. The game announcers stated early that the Eagles might regret the fact that Thomas was missing the game as it might force them to deal with Darren Sproles more than they would want, but that was not the case. Sproles did play quite a bit, but he only had 60 total yards. The Eagles defense never allowed Sproles to remain uncovered and in fact three passes thrown Sproles direction fell incomplete. One of the passes was tipped and one was more or less a throw away as Brees realized the coverage was there. Sproles did get open deep on the Saints initial drive for what could have been a long TD completion, but the pass was underthrown and fell incomplete. Sproles made good yardage with every touch and showed some of his strength, which is often overlooked early in the 2nd half as he ran through tacklers for 9 yards, putting the Saints inside the ten yard line.

Week 19 - Sproles had very little room to run, whether rushing the ball or after making the catch. He ran a sweep on the second play of the game, but gained nothing. On the Saints next possession he had two targets and made two catches, but only gained 6 yards. His last touch in the first half was a delayed hand-off, but again gained no yards. When the Saints got the ball with only 2:40 remaining in the game, Sproles had a total of only 14 yards from scrimmage. He caught two more passes on that drive and added 20 yards to his production. The Seahawks played excellent defense on the Saints' screen game all day long.