Wait, you mean there is a week of fantasy football after Championship Sunday? Yes, some leagues do play in Week 17, and they need some love too. So here is a tribute to those who forget to set their lineups in Week 17 when they've drank too much champagne beforehand.
Who to Start:
QB Matthew Stafford (DET) vs. CHI: He's been very goo of late, especially after the change at offensive coordinator. Too bad the Lions have been practically irrelevant since then, but for fantasy owners he is quite relevant. His matchup against the Bears weak secondary is also pretty good Sunday as well (other starts: Ben Roethlisberger, Eli Manning, Matt Ryan)
RB Todd Gurley (STL) vs. SEA: In a terrible matchup, Gurley performed admirably, and far better than expected. His season has been up and down for St. Louis, but that should change against the 49ers who are nothing more than a folding lawn chair at this point (other starts: Tim Hightower, DeAngelo Williams, Frank Gore)
WR A.J Green (CIN) vs. BAL: This is still fairly obvious despite the presence of A.J McCarron, but Green has always torched the Baltimore Ravens whenever they play each other. He had 227 yards and two TD's against the Ravens in Week 3, and the Ravens had their moment in the sun last week against Pittsburgh.
WR Martavis Bryant (PIT) vs. CLE: Yes, he had a massive dud last week which probably killed some hopes and dreams last Sunday, but the matchup against Cleveland is still pretty favorable, especially since the Steelers are going to be fairly desperate for a win here (other sits: Eric Decker, Jordan Matthews, Ted Ginn)
TE Zach Ertz (PHI) vs. NYG: He has been one of the best TE's in fantasy football recently, and you could do worse starting him against the fairly pathetic Giants defense, who are even worse against TE's than you might imagine (other starts: Gary Barnidge, Delanie Walker, Travis Kelce)
DEF Denver vs. SD: The Broncos need a win, and the Chargers don't have many players left on offense. The Broncos held San Diego to three points in Week 13, and there's no reason to think that they can't put up a similar performance this week (other starts: Rams, Bengals, Texans)
Who to Sit:
QB Kirk Cousins (WSH) vs. DAL: Your NFC East Champion Washington Potatoes! They are the only team in the playoffs who are locked into their seed, and even though Jay Gruden has said that he will play his starters, Cousins was flummoxed by Dallas in Week 13 so the combination is worrying when everything is on the line (other sits: Philip Rivers, Ryan Tannehill, Tyrod Taylor)
RB Jeremy Hill (CIN) vs. BAL: Touchdowns are obviously very good in fantasy football, but yardage also definitely helps too, and Hill doesn't get those. The Ravens basically held him in check in Week 3, and there's no reason to think they won't do that again (other sits: Latavius Murray, Darren McFadden, Lamar Miller)
WR Sammy Watkins (BUF) vs. NYJ: He was shut down by Dallas last week, and the Jets secondary and Revis Island is still pretty good, and he only had 14 yards when the two teams met in Week 10.
WR Mike Evans (TB) vs. CAR: This is the last time I'm going to get a chance to mention his name in this column this season, but I'm excited to do it again: JOSH. NORMAN. Even if he didn't have a good game against the Falcons last week (other sits: Randall Cobb, DeSean Jackson, T.Y Hilton)
TE Jordan Cameron (MIA) vs. NE: This matchup is nice on paper, but Cameron has been tough to trust this season for fantasy owners and since Week 17 means everything is on the line, it's certainly tough to trust him here (other sits: Jason Witten, Jordan Reed, Heath Miller)
DEF Philadelphia vs. NYG: They have a Top 10 fantasy defense, but would you trust them without a coach, without motivation, and on the road in Week 17? (other sits: Bills, Cardinals, Vikings)
Three Super Sleepers:
QB Brian Hoyer (HOU) vs. JAX: Hoyer is returning this Sunday and even though Houston practically has the division wrapped up, he needs to get some form heading into the playoffs. The Jaguars secondary is the perfect way to round into shape, as last week's evidence against Drew Brees shows.
WR Reuben Randle (NYG) vs. PHI: There could and probably should be a ton of points scored in the matchup to avoid playing the Rams in London next season, and Randle should benefit from that, even though he did next to nothing last Sunday in Minnesota.
TE Zach Miller (CHI) vs. DET: Former Jaguars legend Zach Miller has become a bonafide fantasy Tight End as the season has evolved, and the matchup against the poor Lions defense is a nice one to imprint some memories for drafts next August.
QB Carson Palmer (ARZ) vs. SEA: He has been the architect of a fantastic offense this season, and he did have a great game against Seattle in Week 10, but consider this before Week 17: Arizona's motivation is there but won't be nearly as present because of their thumping of Green Bay last week, and preserving Palmer for the playoffs is of the utmost precedence.
Good Luck in Week 17, and happy new year! This is the seventh consecutive season I've written this fantasy football column, and I hope you've been given a little smidgen of advice that has helped you this season. This may or may not be the last season I write this column, so if it is the last one hopefully the many of these posts on this blog over the last six years have been helpful to you and has done something to enrich your Wednesdays/Thursdays. Have a great and healthy 2016!
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