Fantasy Football: Week 16 starts, sits

December 25, 2015 - 7:03 am
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Merry Christmas to all who are celebrating. If you're reading this then you are hoping for a gift on Sunday and perhaps Monday as well. I've isolated some solid options for Week 16 and they are listed below. As always, I strongly suggest that you cross-reference these recommendations against the full lineup rankings that I post at Rotobahn. Those rankings will be updating Saturday afternoon in advance of the Eagles game. For those of you looking for help on Sunday, stop by our regularly scheduled chat at 11 a.m. and bring your lineup questions with you. Most teams have been eliminated at this point, so you can expect quick answers as it should be a lightly populated chat. Speaking of Sunday morning, there will be a fresh episode of the Fantasy Football Hour at 8 a.m., and we'll have it up on the site for you to enjoy if you sleep in. Jim Hackett and I will be discussing all of the big Week 16 topics and taking some of your texts. Join us! QUARTERBACKS Start Blake Bortles, Jaguars at Saints He's been an outstanding source of fantasy points for most of the season, and he's been scorching hot the last four weeks. Now he gets the Saints, and that's simply too good to pass up. Play him with confidence. Kirk Cousins, Washington at Eagles Cousins is almost as hot as Bortles, and he has a nice matchup for the pass this week as the Eagles' strength is their front seven -- particularly against the run. He's not as safe as some other options, but his ceiling is as high as any other quarterback you will find in Week 16. Tyrod Taylor, Bills vs. Cowboys His team might be struggling, but Taylor is a pretty safe play as long as Sammy Watkins is healthy, and he is this week. Use Taylor as a solid QB1 option in all leagues. His ability to add points with his feet gives him a sturdy floor. Teddy Bridgewater, Vikings vs. Giants I'd prefer you have a better option, but Bridgewater could help you if you are in need as he has been playing very well the last few weeks and the Vikings probably are going to lean less heavily on Adrian Peterson this week as he's a little banged up. Sit Matt Ryan, Falcons vs. Panthers The Panthers are just too good and Ryan is struggling too badly. He's also reliant on a single weapon to do most of his damage and that weapon, Julio Jones, will have his hands full lining up against Josh Norman. RUNNING BACKS Start Denard Robinson, Jaguars at Saints Robinson had a strong Week 15 for those in PPR leagues but a mediocre one for those in standard scoring leagues. This week should be better as the matchup is simply outstanding. All signs point to T.J. Yeldon missing another week, so Mr. Robinson has RB1 appeal in all leagues. James White, Patriots at Jets He's tough to count on because he gets almost no carries at all. That said, he has been used consistently in the passing game, and that includes high-quality red zone looks. He'll be a key component this week against the Jets, so you can use him in 12-team standard leagues and smaller leagues that use PPR scoring. Cameron Artis-Payne, Panthers at Falcons Jonathan Stewart will sit another week with a sore knee, and that means Artis-Payne will get another big workload. The reason I am liking his chances so much is that the projected game flow really works for him. Unless you think Atlanta steps up and plays a great game, it's hard to bet against the rookie runner. He's a good option in any league this Sunday. Christine Michael, Seahawks vs. Rams The matchup is better than it looks, as the Rams have been run on for a month or so, and Michael looked better last week than we've seen him look in some time. The Seahawks are a good bet to play with a lead in this game, so Michael has a flex floor but an RB1 ceiling. He's worth a play if you need him. Sit Javorius Allen, Ravens vs. Steelers Allen is a flex if you really need him, but I have a tough time trusting him right now because the Ravens coaches have become impatient with his fumbling. They may be trailing a lot this week and that could mean more of Allen, but he's still tough to bank on in a championship game. Look elsewhere if you can. He's more viable if your league uses PPR scoring. I'm definitely not using him in standard leagues. WIDE RECEIVERS Start Tyler Lockett, Seahawks vs. Rams He's been very good since he broke in in Week 11. In that same time frame, the Seahawks have started throwing the ball with regularity, and that seems unlikely to change with the way Russell Wilson is playing. Lockett's getting a steady seven targets per game and he's catching most of them. His role could increase this week with Doug Baldwin nursing a hammy. Baldwin is a game-time decision. Still, even with Baldwin active, Lockett probably should be in your lineup. Golden Tate, Lions vs. 49ers With Calvin Johnson playing at less than 100 percent, we should see another very active game for Tate, who has come on strong over the second half of the season. He's had 45 targets over the last five games and I see that volume continuing against the 49ers. Rueben Randle, Giants at Vikings It's a volume play, as the Giants will be without Odell Beckham due to his untimely suspension. That should put Randle in the No. 1 role, which might not be all good, but you can count on him being a big part of the Giants' attack. He has to be. Dorial Beckham-Green, Titans vs. Texans He makes a nice upside WR3 this week in 12-team leagues and a nice flex in smaller ones. He may see a fair amount of Jonathan Joseph, but he also will see the ball plenty as the Titans have been making a concerted effort to get the big rookie involved. His targets have increased each week since Week 12, when he received just four targets. He was up to nine last week against the Patriots, and I expect a similar number this Sunday against the Texans. Sit Marvin Jones, Bengals at Broncos I'm a fan of Jones' game, but he's best used when a team has a dominant corner who can take away A.J. Green. The Broncos have a pair a stud corners, so Jones will have his own issues getting open for much of the day and, to me, he's a guy to avoid this week if you can. TIGHT ENDS Start Will Tye, Giants at Vikings It's all about the projected volume. Tye has been the best option in the Giants passing game after Odell Beckham, and Beckham is out this week due to a suspension. Tye will draw more defensive attention most likely, but he also will draw more of Eli Manning's attention, and I think that makes him as solid TE1 play for the championship round. Zach Miller, Bears at Buccaneers Just like with Tye, Miller probably is going to be heavily targeted this week with so many injured receivers in Chicago, and that includes Martellus Bennett. The Bears won't find much running room this week, so expect Miller to see a good amount of passes coming his way. He's got TE1 appeal and a very solid floor. Eric Ebron, Lions vs. 49ers Ebron is another talented option who will be seeing the ball more consistently than he did earlier in the season. If you are in need, you may find him on the waiver wire, and he absolutely has TE1 upside this week with a TE2 floor. Sit Jason Witten, Cowboys at Bills He has some limited appeal in PPR formats, but the cold reality is that Witten is on the downside and he's playing at less than 100 percent with a chest issue. Witten also has been held out of the end zone for 14 consecutive weeks. I'm not looking to bet against that streak with my season on the line. DraftKings DraftKings has your shot to play for FREE in the $1 Million Fantasy Football Contest THIS SUNDAY! First place takes home $100,000! FOR FREE ENTRY, CLICK HERE.