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Fantasy Football Start/Sit: Championship Edition

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Championship week is finally here in fantasy football and it’s win or go home and tough decisions have to be made. It gets tougher for teams who lost players like Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and Dalvin Cook and need to make a drastic move. We all know if you have players like Russell Wilson, CMC and Michael Thomas you’re starting them, but what if you don’t? Or you play in a 2 QB League? Or lacking in your FLEX position? Well we’re here to help.

Quarterback

START: Philip Rivers (vs Oakland): 2019 has been a season to forget for Rivers, who is on pace for his lowest TD rate since 2007. This week however, the Chargers have a very favorable matchup at home against a Raiders team that has lost their last 4 games, including a complete meltdown last week against Jacksonville. In those 4 games the Raiders have allowed 19 or more fantasy points to QB’s and are giving up the 2nd most fantasy points to QB’s on the season. Austin Ekeler and Hunter Henry are no-brain plug and plays this week in PPR as well.

SIT: Drew Brees (at Tennessee): Brees is coming off a historic week in which he broke the All-Time NFL TD record and was even given a 99ovr rating in Madden this week because of it. But that was the past and the NFL comes at you quick. Brees now has to travel to Tennessee, on a short week, against a Titans team that is fighting for their playoff lives. As we all know, Brees tends to struggle in outdoor road games, averaging roughly 100 less yards and and one less TD in those games than at home. I still expect him to put up roughly 15 points, but if you have a higher upside play I would go elsewhere.

START: Kirk Cousins (vs Green Bay): Cousins struggled on the road against Green Bay back in week 2, throwing for only 230 yards with 1 TD and 2 INT in a loss, but that was a VERY different Kirk Cousins back then. Since week 5 Cousins has been QB7, averaging 19.7 PPG. With Dalvin Cook likely out this week with a shoulder injury, the Vikings will rely heavily on Kirk Cousin arm. It should also help that Adam Thielen wasn’t on this weeks injury report and looks to be 100%. Since their last visit, Green Bay’s defense hasn’t played as well either. In that time, GB has played 7 teams that rank in the top 15 in YPG. In all 7 of those games the Packers allowed 22 or points.

SIT: Dak Prescott (at Philadelphia): It’s no secret that Dak has been a fantasy savior for people who took him late, coming in as QB3 on the year. He is, however, very hard to trust this week currently dealing with a sprained AC Joint and isn’t expected to throw until Saturday. With the risk of further injury I expect this week to be a very run-heavy gameplan, with roughly 35 touches coming between Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard. In their last matchup Elliott had 111 yards and a TD on 22 carries while Pollard had 8 carries of his own. I expect more of the same this time around.

Other START Candidates: Matt Ryan, Jameis Winston, Ryan Tannehill, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Drew Lock (Sleeper)

Other SIT Candidates: Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Jimmy Garoppolo, Josh Allen, Jared Goff

Running Back

START: Joe Mixon (at Miami): The first 7 weeks were an unmitigated disaster for Mixon owners, who ranked RB34 coming into week 8. But since then, Mixon has turned it around, ranking RB5 his last 7 games and tore up the New England defense last week. Now he comes in with a juicy matchup against Miami, who averages the sixth most points in the league to RB’s. I expect the Mixon train to keep rolling and finish as a top 3 RB this week, barring any new development with his calf injury. Pick up and stash Giovanni Bernard now though just in case.

SIT: Melvin Gordon (vs Oakland): Last week was not kind to Melvin Gordon, rushing 7 times for only 28 yards and putting the ball on the ground twice (giving him four fumbles in ten games) and was benched for the rest of the game. After last weeks performance I fully expect Austin Ekeler to see the majority of the snaps in a game against the Raiders, who are far more susceptible to the pass than the run.

START: Raheem Mostert (vs Los Angeles): Last week Breida had a very similar game to Melvin Gordon, fumbling twice on limited carries and getting benched in the second half. Meanwhile, Mostert has taken over the backfield, scoring 5 total TD in his last 4 games. San Francisco’s offense is predicated on the run and the Rams have shown a weakness in that department this year, allowing the 10th most rushing yards per game this season

SIT: Carlos Hyde (at Tampa): Carlos Hyde has had a career year, rushing for 1,000 yards for the first time in his six year career, but in week 16 he is facing his toughest competition of the season. The Buccaneers have the best rush defense in the NFL, allowing only 73 YPG which is 15 yards better than the next best team. Hyde also doesn’t give much in the way of PPR points as he only has 8 catches on the entire season. Both teams have a QB that like to sling it and a defense that is susceptible to the pass so I fully expect this game to be a shootout. Carlos Hyde is my clear-cut “sit of the week”.

Other Start Candidates: Marlon Mack, Chris Carson, Austin Ekeler, Devonta Freeman, Kenyan Drake, Aaron Jones, James Conner, Miles Sanders, Patrick Laird, Ronald Jones, Mike Boone

Other SIT  Candidates: Todd Gurley, David Johnson, Phillip Lindsay, Sony Michel, Devin Singletary, LeSean McCoy, Matt Breida, Deandre Washington

Wide Receiver

Start: Breshad Perriman (vs Houston): Perriman has at least 70 yards in his past 3 games and absolutely exploded last week, reeling in 5 catches for 113 yards and 3 TD. Now Mike Evans and Chris Godwin are out for their week 16 matchup against the Texans, who give up the 10th most TD’s to WR’s in the league. Expect a shootout.

SIT: Cooper Kupp (at San Francisco): After being a top 3 WR in PPR leagues the first half of the year, Cooper Kupp has had an extremely disappointing second half. His last 3 games have been salvaged by a TD but it is clear Goff has a new man-crush in Los Angeles. Kupp has now had 65 yards or less yards in 8 of his last 9 games, meanwhile Tyler Higbee, has over 100 yards in three straight games and has a combined 39 targets in his last four. Defenses have start to hone in on Kupp over the middle which has led to Higbee stealing his target share. Now they face a SF defense that has allowed the 2nd least amount of yards to WR in the league.

START: DK Metcalf (vs Arizona): DK Metcalf has had a great rookie campaign, trailing only AJ Brown in rookie receiving yards, but I expect this game to be DK’s breakout game of the season. Josh Gordon was just suspended for PED’s and Tyler Lockett will be shadowed by Patrick Peterson. Arizona has allowed 2,700 yards to WR’s this season, which is second behind only Tampa Bay, and 17 TD’s, which ranks T-5th in the league. I project a top 10 WR finish.

SIT: Kenny Golladay (at Denver): Life hasn’t been too kind for Golladay since Stafford went down, ranking outside the top 20 WR’s since week 10 and squandered a great matchup last week against TB. Now he heads to Denver who allows the 6th fewest deep completions in the league where he will be shadowed by Chris Harris. 

Other START Candidates: Stefon Diggs, Will Fuller, Terry McLaurin, Courtland Sutton, DJ Moore, Devante Parker, Anthony Miller, AJ Brown, Greg Ward

Other SIT Candidates: Julian Edelman, Robert Woods, Christian Kirk, DJ Chark, Jamison Crowder, John Brown, Tyrell Williams

Tight End

START: Jacob Hollister (vs Arizona): Arizona’s defense is dead last in points allowed and TD’s allowed to TE’s. Need I say more?

SIT: Jack Doyle (vs Carolina): Doyle has been a disappointment since Ebron’s injury and play a Panthers team that allows the second least amount of points to TE’s. With Kuechly covering the middle I don’t see too many easy targets for Doyle this weekend. Expect this to be a Marlon Mack game with a possible blowup from TY Hilton.

Other START Candidates: Tyler Higbee, Hunter Henry, Noah Fant, Kyle Rudolph

Other SIT Candidates: Austin Hooper, Greg Olsen, Jason Witten, Mike Gesicki

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