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Game-By-Game Projections: Miles Sanders (2020 Fantasy Football)

by Raju Byfield | @FantasyContext | Featured Writer
Jun 29, 2020

Miles Sanders is expected to take a huge step forward in 2020.

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Miles Sanders is set to take a major step forward as the lead back for the Philadelphia Eagles. He will likely still be involved in some sort of committee, but should still see 60-70 percent of the snaps at a minimum. He ran for 818 rushing yards and three touchdowns on 4.6 yards per carry in 2019 while adding 50 receptions for 509 receiving yards and another three touchdowns. Sanders should be able to take leaps in both categories due to more touches, but expectations have been tempered following the injury to All-Pro level guard Brandon Brooks. Let’s take a look at the projections.

You can find our entire 2020 Player Game-By-Game Projection series here.

Week 1: Philadelphia Eagles @ Washington
Miles Sanders could have his struggles to open the season. Washington has a ferocious front four capable of both creating pressures at will and creating defensive stops in the backfield. For a success rate issue running back like Miles Sanders, that spells trouble. He is projected for a healthy 18 touches but is expected to be held under 90 yards from scrimmage for the afternoon.

Predicted stat line: 15 rushing attempts, 47 rushing yards, three receptions, 38 receiving yards (10 fantasy points)


Week 2: Philadelphia Eagles vs. Los Angeles Rams
Miles Sanders is projected to have a strong fantasy outing in Week 2 against the Los Angeles Rams. He may see his rushing attempts limited due to game flow, but should be able to add some explosiveness on his receptions. DeSean Jackson and Jalen Reagor will have the Rams full attention, leaving Sanders to rip off a chunk play or two in both the passing and running games. 

Predicted stat line: 14 rushing attempts, 62 rushing yards, four receptions, 52 receiving yards, one receiving touchdown (19.4 fantasy points)


Week 3: Philadelphia Eagles vs. Cincinnati Bengals
Week 3 against the Cincinnati Bengals should provide some offensive fireworks for fantasy managers of players from both teams. Philadelphia should be favored by more than a touchdown in this contest, a game script that should allow for Sanders to be heavily involved in the running game. He is projected to see 25 touches for over 200 yards from scrimmage thanks to more than 80 yards of his output coming off three of his touches. 

Predicted stat line: 21 rushing attempts, 153 rushing yards, two rushing touchdowns, four receptions, 72 receiving yards (36.5 fantasy points)


Week 4: Philadelphia Eagles @ San Francisco 49ers
Facing the San Francisco 49ers should prove to be tough sledding for Miles Sanders and the Philadelphia Eagles offense. Missing Brandon Brooks will rear its head once again in this contest, as the San Francisco 49ers pass rush and run defense will be near impossible to contend with without the All-Pro. Sanders should see some game script fueled extra involvement in the passing game, but with the 49ers keen on stopping him, he may not have a big day at the office.

Predicted stat line: 12 rushing attempts, 32 rushing yards, six receptions, 42 receiving yards (10.4 fantasy points)


Week 5: Philadelphia Eagles @ Pittsburgh Steelers
Miles Sanders may struggle with the majority of his carries in this contest. He is projected to provide some big plays, including a touchdown, in the passing game, something that will help salvage his fantasy day (14.8 points from passing work vs. 5.5 points from the run game). This projects to be the second of three straight games against teams that have plus run defenses. Sanders is projected to see over 100 yards from scrimmage but will need to come match or exceed his projected passing game production to avoid disappointment.

Predicted stat line: 14 rushing attempts, 55 rushing yards, four receptions, 68 receiving yards, one receiving touchdown (20.3 fantasy points)


Week 6: Philadelphia Eagles vs. Baltimore Ravens
Miles Sanders should be held in check by the Baltimore Ravens run defense in Week 6. He should find more success through the air, as the Ravens defense will be occupied worrying about Jalen Reagor, DeSean Jackson, and Zach Ertz. Sanders should be able to rip off a chunk play or two in the passing game but is projected to be less efficient than usual in terms of corralling his targets (eight projected targets with just four receptions). Despite the extremely difficult matchup, Sanders is projected for close to 100 yards from scrimmage thanks to his receiving production. 

Predicted stat line: 13 rushing attempts, 31 rushing yards, four receptions, 62 receiving yards (11.3 fantasy points)


Week 7: Philadelphia Eagles vs. New York Giants
Miles Sanders should be in for a big day in Week 7. He is expected to bounce back in a big way after three consecutive down weeks and should produce enough fantasy points to finish as an RB1 for the week. He is projected to score twice on 23 touches against the Giants en route to one of his best fantasy performances of the season. Sanders’ fantasy managers will be delighted to know that New York is back on the schedule following the Eagles Week 9 bye.

Predicted stat line: 18 rushing attempts, 112 rushing yards, one rushing touchdown, five receptions, 66 receiving yards, one receiving touchdown (32.3 fantasy points)


Week 8: Philadelphia Eagles vs. Dallas Cowboys
This Week 8 contest against the Dallas Cowboys should turn into a shootout. The two most explosive offenses in the NFC East are set to square off, and we should see well over 850 yards of combined offense. Miles Sanders should be good for close to 20 touches and over 100 yards from scrimmage in this home contest.

Predicted stat line: 15 rushing attempts, 88 rushing yards, one rushing touchdown, five receptions, 39 receiving yards (21.2 fantasy points)


Week 10: Philadelphia Eagles @ New York Giants
Miles Sanders should be in for another big performance against former teammate Saquon Barkley and the New York Giants. This contest should be more competitive than the Week 8 battle in Philadelphia, which should help lead to Sanders getting more work in the passing game. His seven projected receptions represent what we have pegged as his season high watermark. Projected for just under 200 yards from scrimmage with a score, Sanders should finish as an RB1 in Week 10. 

Predicted stat line: 19 rushing attempts, 102 rushing yards, one rushing touchdown, seven receptions, 97 receiving yards (29.4 fantasy points)


Week 11: Philadelphia Eagles @ Cleveland Browns
Which version of the Cleveland Browns shows up in Week 11 is going to affect how involved in the passing game Sanders is in this contest. If they can create quick pressures, Jalen Reagor, Boston Scott, and Miles Sanders should all be heavily involved in short passes. If the Eagles offensive line can manage to hold up, we could see a ball control, play action-heavy gameplan. However, the projected game script calls for an offensive battle that forces the Eagles to focus on the wide receivers and tight ends in the passing game. Sanders should still have a solid day from a yards from scrimmage standpoint, but the lack of a protected score hurts his overall fantasy production. 

Predicted stat line: 16 rushing attempts, 80 rushing yards, three receptions, 29 receiving yards, (12.4 fantasy points)


Week 12: Philadelphia Eagles vs. Seattle Seahawks
The Philadelphia Eagles should be in for a dogfight against the Seattle Seahawks. A matchup with potential playoff implications, both teams should be at their best for this Week 12 battle. Gameflow may not be conducive to Sanders getting more than 15 carries, and Seattle’s corners behind Shaquill Griffin are questionable enough to be heavily targeted by Carson Wentz. Sanders is only projected to have modest production on the ground, so the lack of a score or explosive plays in the passing game hurts. 

Predicted stat line: 14 rushing attempts, 69 rushing yards, three receptions, 17 receiving yards (10.1 fantasy points)


Week 13: Philadelphia Eagles @ Green Bay Packers
Philadelphia will have another tough battle on their hands when they face off against the Green Bay Packers in Week 13. He is projected to have a big game thanks to two big runs, one of them being a touchdown, but may be ‘limited’ to 15 attempts. He should see more work than usual in the passing game due to the Packers pass rush, and at a projected six receptions for 69 receiving yards that is an extra 9.9 fantasy points.

Predicted stat line: 15 rushing attempts, 75 rushing yards, one rushing touchdown, six receptions, 69 receiving yards (23.4 fantasy points)


Week 14: Philadelphia Eagles vs. New Orleans Saints
Miles Sanders is going to have a tough day at the office in Week 14 against the New Orleans Saints. He is projected to get stuffed on half of his attempts but should be able to spring a 10+ yard run or two. His projected receiving production will once again help to bail him out a bit fantasy points-wise, as he would muster just 4.2 points based on rushing production alone. 

Predicted stat line: 11 rushing attempts, 42 rushing yards, five receptions, 52 receiving yards (11.9 fantasy points)


Week 15: Philadelphia Eagles @ Arizona Cardinals
Philadelphia would be a five-point plus favorite if they played this contest at home but should be within the three-point band on either side due to this game being played in the desert. The competitive nature of this contest should lead to a balanced attack from the Eagles, with Sanders seeing extra snaps as Philadelphia attempts to sidestep Arizona’s deadly pass rush. He should have a strong fantasy day for those who were able to survive his Week 14 stinker.

Predicted stat line: 16 rushing attempts, 101 rushing yards, one rushing touchdown, five receptions, 42 receiving yards (22.8 fantasy points)


Week 16: Philadelphia Eagles @ Dallas Cowboys
Miles Sanders could have his best fantasy day of the season during fantasy football finals week. He is projected to have a monster outing in what should be a back and forth shootout between two teams who figure to be fighting for first place in the NFC East. Projected for 25 touches, just under 200 yards from scrimmage, and three total touchdowns, Sanders’ 43 projected points could very well make him the number one overall fantasy player for Week 16.

Predicted stat line: 18 rushing attempts, 133 rushing yards, two rushing touchdowns; seven receptions, 82 receiving yards, one receiving touchdown (43 fantasy points)


Week 17: Philadelphia Eagles vs. Washington
Philadelphia projects as still having something to play for in Week 17. It may be to jockey for NFC playoff seeding, it could be for a wild card berth, or they could still be battling for the NFC East crown. Regardless of which one it ends up being, the Eagles project to be in the playoff picture. This should result in Sanders playing at least the first three quarters. He should have a more efficient afternoon on the ground thanks to a 25 plus yard run but should be mostly held in check during the rest of the game. With just minimal receiving projected receiving production, Sanders may finish the week as an RB3.

Predicted stat line: 15 rushing attempts, 75 rushing yards, four receptions, 36 receiving yards (13.1 fantasy points)


2020 Season Totals

Final Projections: 246 rushing attempts, 1,133 rushing yards, nine rushing touchdowns, 75 receptions, 863 receiving yards, four receiving touchdowns (321.1 fantasy points)

Miles Sanders is expected to take a huge step forward in 2020. He spent much of 2019 playing behind lead back Jordan Howard, but with little to no true competition on the roster, he should see workhorse like numbers this season. Only injury should be able to hold him back from having an RB1 level finish. 

Miles Sanders ran for 818 rushing yards and three touchdowns on 4.6 yards per carry in 2019. He was expected to take a leap not only in rushing yards and rushing touchdowns, but also in efficiency this season, but may now be hard-pressed to do so with Pro Bowl guard Brandon Brooks being lost for the season. Losing Brooks is a major loss for the offensive line, and as a result, Miles Sanders. The Eagles do have some in house talent who can make starts for them, but no one who comes close to the talent level of Brooks. Sanders is projected to reach 1,133 rushing yards and nine rushing touchdowns on 246 carries, which would mean Sanders sits right at 4.6 yards per carry for the second straight season. 

Sanders was heavily involved as a receiver as a rookie but is projected to be even more involved in his sophomore season. He hauled in 50 of his 63 targets for 509 receiving yards and four touchdowns. He averaged an impressive 10 yards per reception but managed just 31.8 receiving yards per game. With an increase of 2.5 targets per game, Miles Sanders should be able to reach his projected receiving line of 75 receptions, 863 receiving yards, and four receiving touchdowns. The loss of Brandon Brooks will force the Eagles to rely more on Sanders’ receiving ability than his rushing ability in some contests. 

As a rookie, Sanders was able to post 193.7 fantasy points or 12.1 fantasy points per game on 229 touches. This resulted in an RB15 finish in total fantasy points and an RB20 finish in fantasy points per contest. With an expanded role, Sanders is projected to see 321 touches. He will cede some touches to Boston Scott and either Michael Warren, Elijah Holyfield, and/or Corey Clement, but an increase of six touches per game is not out of the question. His total projected stat line of 1,133 rushing yards, nine rushing touchdowns, 75 receptions, 863 receiving yards, and four receiving touchdowns would result in 321.1 fantasy points or 20.06 fantasy points per game. This would have led to the RB2 finish in 2019 and should be good for a finish in the RB1 range in 2020. 

Currently being drafted as the RB13, and the 21st player off the board in single QB redraft leagues, Sanders should have the opportunity needed to outperform his draft position. His rushing production is bound to increase due to more carry opportunities, but it is his expected step forward as a receiver that will truly make him enter the top tier RB1 conversation. 

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Raju Byfield is a featured writer for FantasyPros. For more from Raju, check out his archive and follow him @FantasyContext.

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