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Fantasy Football Start/Sit: Week 16 Championship Week

Fantasy football will play a sick joke on a handful of us in Week 16. The schedule makers have made Week 16 coincide with some of the holiest of days with Christmas, Hannukkah, and Kwanzaa all starting either Sunday or Monday. I’m not sure what sick individual wanted the fantasy football championships to be decided on days of peace, love, and family, but a lot of people are going to be miserable while “celebrating” these holidays.  Don’t be one of these poor people, make the right lineup decisions of who to start and who to sit and be the happiest and merriest man/woman in your family! Good luck everyone!

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Fantasy Football Start/Sit Week 16

Quarterbacks

Start: Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers vs. Atlanta Falcons. Cam’s shoulder isn’t in good shape, but he is doing what he can to finish the season strong. He has back to back multi-touchdown games, and has a stellar matchup against one of the worst pass defenses in football. Despite an awful season it appears that the Panthers are motivated to finish strong, and I expect another 275+ yards and two or three total touchdowns for Cam to give you a very nice Christmas/Chanukah gift.

Sit: Carson Palmer, Arizona Cardinals vs. Seattle Seahawks. Palmer hasn’t looked like the turnover machine we know him to be lately, as two of the last three games he was turnover free. Of course those games were against some of the softer defenses in the league, so take them for what they are worth. Palmer threw for 342 yards against the Seahawks the first time out, but didn’t have a touchdown pass. This one is in Seattle where the crowd is raucous and it isn’t easy to be a quarterback. If you are still considering Palmer, I would go another direction.

Running Backs

Start:  Frank Gore, Indianapolis Colts vs. Oakland Raiders. I have made no secret that I am not a Frank Gore fan for fantasy football, but he has had a very solid season. He hasn’t scored since before the bye week, but Gore was able to rack up 101 yards against a very tough Vikings defense. Gore should find the sledding much easier this week against an Oakland Raiders team who has allowed 16 rushing touchdowns in 14 games. I don’t like Gore, but I can see the chance to have a solid game is right in front of him.

Start: Todd Gurley, Los Angeles Rams vs. San Francisco 49ers. I know, I know he has perhaps been the biggest disappointment in fantasy football this season. He has only topped 75 rushing yards twice this season. However, this is the 49ers he is facing this week. With the three touchdowns allowed to Devonta Freeman last week, their season total of rushing touchdowns allowed has ballooned to 22! I know it is tough to trust him after so much crap this season, but Gurley has to go off against San Francisco.

Sit: Ty Montgomery, Green Bay Packers vs. Minnesota Vikings. This could just be sour grapes because he single handedly eliminated me from a league last week, but this is a whole other animal this week. Montgomery was the focal point of the offense as he torched the Chicago Bears last week, but he won’t find it easy against those Vikings. They have given up just eight rushing touchdowns in 14 games this season, and I don’t see Montgomery adding to that total.

Sit: Bilal Powell, New York Jets vs. New England Patriots. Regardless of the health of Matt Forte, Powell is the Jets’ running back to own down the stretch. However, with Bryce Petty at the helm, there isn’t a lot going on, and the team has seriously packed it in for the year. The Patriots are playing for home field throughout the AFC playoffs and would love to pound the Jets into submission. The Pats allow under 88 yards per game on the ground and have only surrendered six rushing touchdowns this season. Powell has been great the last two weeks, but he is in for a rude awakening this week against an actual team that plays defense.

Wide Receivers

Start: Taylor Gabriel, Atlanta Falcons vs. Carolina Panthers. Whether Julio Jones plays this week or not, I stand by Gabriel in this one. He has six touchdowns in his last seven games, and while he hasn’t been getting a ton of receptions, Gabriel makes the most of his targets. Despite a solid game on Monday Night, the Panthers haven’t been a good pass defense. They will also have a short week playing on Monday and then again on Saturday, which also can’t help. The Falcons offense has been explosive, and I expect that to continue on Christmas Eve.

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After a big disappointment last week, look for Malcolm MItchell to bounce back in a big way

Start: Malcolm Mitchell, New England Patriots vs. New York Jets. After a month of great production, Mitchell was held to just one catch against the Broncos, but that makes sense seeing that Denver is the among the best pass defenses in football. The Jets, on the other hand, have completely packed it in for the season, and their secondary has been absolutely crushed the past few weeks.  Look for Tom Brady to rip them a new asshole and for Mitchell to have seven catches for 115 yards and a score in Week 16.

Sit: Tyler Lockett, Seattle Seahawks vs. Arizona Cardinals. Lockett was a popular player last week with his seven catches for 130 yards and a score against the Rams, but I don’t expect him to have similar success this week. He had only two catches in the first game against the Cardinals, and the Seahawks offense has struggled more in recent weeks. Seattle has the division wrapped up, and although playoff seeding is still in the air, they certainly haven’t seemed to be playing their hardest. I wouldn’t expect Lockett to excel again this week.

Sit: Rishard Matthews, Tennessee Titans vs. Jacksonville Jaguars. It has been a very solid, although at times inconsistent season for Matthews in his first year with the Titans. He had four catches for 105 yards last week against the Chiefs, and although you wouldn’t believe it, he has a tough matchup this week against the Jags. They may have only won two games, but the Jacksonville pass defense has only allowed 16 passing touchdowns in 14 games. Mariota has had a good year but I bet he has only one touchdown pass this week and I’ll bet it goes to Delanie Walker.

Tight Ends

Start: Charles Clay, Buffalo Bills vs. Miami Dolphins. He has touchdowns in back to back games and gets a easy matchup against a Jets defense who hasn’t been good all season. Not only that, but if you have watched the Jets the past couple of weeks you will see they have given up for this year. Look for a touchdown for the third week in a row and for Clay to help you win your fantasy football championship.

Sit: Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos. He hasn’t been scoring touchdowns, but before Week 14  Kelce had four straight 100 yard games. He came back down to Earth last week against the Titans, and this week the Chiefs will not only face the best pass defense in the league, but they will be facing a desperate Bronco team clinging to a slight playoff hope. It might be tough to sit Kelce when he’s been carrying your tight end position for the last month, but I am not expecting a big game from him this week.

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