The Fantasy Football championships are here!
Most leagues end in week 16, with just a handful of overzealous commissioners braving it out until the final week of the NFL season (17). The reason for this if you are new is because a lot of teams will play their starters for a quarter or a half, then go to back-ups in the 2nd half to either prevent injury for playoff teams or see what they have for next year for those eliminated from the post-season.
With this being the championship week, the chances of you needing or wanting anything on the waiver wire is slim. But, I will give you a few streaming ideas for those weaker positions which people are usually looking for help in. Remember, sometimes the best move is the one that isn’t made. Meaning, don’t try and find value where there is none.
Jordan Todman was given 25 carries in his first career start last week and racked up 109 yards on the ground. He then added 4 catches for 44 more yards. To put that in perspective, Maurice Jones-Drew hasn’t put up 153 yards of total offense since week 3, of 2012! The Titans give up an average of 23.6 fantasy PPG to RBs this season, 2nd most in the NFL. There is no real reason for the Jaguars to play MJD anymore as he is a free agent next season and Todman has already shown he can be productive. If you are looking for a flex option, you could do worse than Todman in all reality.
With Victor Cruz in real danger of being shut down for the rest of the season (sprained knee, concussion, eliminated from playoffs), Rueben Randle is the person most likely to see added fantasy value for the Giants. Randle is more of a WR4 or flex option for championship teams, but could end up being a real option for those in the consolation bracket of the playoffs.
Another WR that you can look at if you don’t trust Eli Manning is Raiders WR Rod Streater. Yes, the Raiders QB situation isn’t any better than that of the Giants, but the good news for Streater is that he is averaging 5.0 catches for 84.6 yards with two touchdowns since week 5 of this season. Randle is going to be more of a boom-or-bust play this week, whereas Streater may offer a little more stability in terms of numbers.
Delanie Walker came back in week 15 and put up 8 catches for 53 yards and a touchdown against the Cardinals. Walker is owned in just 20.3 percent of NFL.com leagues and 43 percent of Yahoo leagues, meaning the chances are he is available right now. I’d put Walker as high as a top 5-7 play this week against a Jaguars defense that is 2nd worst at defending against TEs this season (10.7 PPG allowed).
There isn’t much out there right now for those who have been playing different defenses weekly. As I see it right now your best possible options are the Lions, Titans, Jets, and Chargers, in that order. The Giants without Cruz, plus Manning melting down as the season winds down, makes for a good match-up if you want to play the Lions defense; the Jaguars offense is hit or miss and the Titans defense is better than you think; the Jets still have one of the best run defenses in the NFL (3rd with 86.1 YPG allowed), and the Browns offense is pretty one-dimensional (pass); Matt McGloin has to be in the discussion when talking about the worst starting QBs in the NFL, so the Chargers defense makes sense. Their issue comes in at CB where Derek Cox and Shareece Wright have been easy targets for opposing QBs, and Rashad Jennings at RB for the Raiders. The Chargers are only an option if all the defenses before are taken.
If your team is all set for players, then you just have to remember what I’ve been saying all year long: don’t get cute. Play the players who got you here, not some waiver wire guy like Kirk Cousins. Todman is only an option for those who may have Shane Vereen, Steven Jackson, or the Bills duo of C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson.
And for those needing a little sneak preview because your adrenaline is just too high, Bobby Rainey and Brian Hartline will be start ‘em players, while Tom Brady and Larry Fitzgerald will be sit ‘em players in Friday’s article.
Good luck to you all because 2nd place is just the first loser!
The opinions, analysis and/or speculation expressed by The Finsiders Blog represent those of individual writers, and unless quoted or clearly labeled as such, do not represent the opinions, policies or desires of the Miami Dolphins organization, front office, coaches and executives. Writers' views are formulated independently from any inside information and/or conversation with Dolphins officials, including the coaches and scouts, unless otherwise noted.
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