Week 16. Championship week. Whether you are trying to bring home the big trophy or fending off the embarrassment of a last place finish, this is the big week.
The bad news for Week 16 is that Week 15 was crazy and you may not have come out of it on top. The good news is that if you need help it’s all over the place.
If you look at the Top 15 QB’s this week it’s a veritable fantasy “who dat” of NFL QB’s. Eli Manning, Jimmy Garoppolo, and Mitchell Trubisky were all in the Top-4. To say there is some good players out there to choose from on the waiver wire is an understatement.
Of course, there are not as many options at running back, which is normal, but the receivers and tight ends have a few to choose from as well.
All in all, it is shaping up to be a very interesting Week 16. If you have needs I have some answers for you. So, let’s get started and as usual let’s start with Quarterbacks.
Jimmy Garoppolo has been on a 4-week uphill fantasy climb as of late. His monthly ascension culminated in him throwing for 381 yards and a touchdown in the 49ers 25-23 win over the Titans.
Garoppolo is available in 61% of leagues. He has put up better fantasy numbers every week since he started four weeks ago. We always like to ride a hot hand so it would seem that Garoppolo is an easy waiver wire target this week if you have a quarterback need, right?
On second thought, Garoppolo has been all those things I mentioned but he is still on a team that is struggling to find their identity. More important than that is the fact that they finish off the season with the Jaguars and the Rams in that order.
Those are the two most vicious defenses in the NFL. Garoppolo has been very good lately but Week 16 and 17 looks like they will be tough sledding for the 49er newcomer.
Blake Bortles is also available in 61% of leagues and is also part of that 49er, Jacksonville game next week. Fortunately for his owners, Bortles will be on the winning (both record and fantasy) side of that game.
Bortles has been on fire over the last four games. He threw for 326 yards and three touchdowns in Sundays win over Houston. The Jags are looking to make a playoff run so I don’t see his numbers declining at all over the next few weeks.
Speaking of the next few weeks, Bortles will be going up against San Francisco then Tennessee over the next two weeks. That is a very tasty last two games. I believe Bortles is just a perfect Quarterback for the end of the season.
Mitchell Trubisky is another good choice for Week 16. At 95% available in all leagues, Trubisky threw for 314 yards and a touchdown last weekend.
If you are looking at his numbers and notice that he did not score a lot of fantasy this last week you are correct. This was because of many interceptions he threw. However, it should be noted that he was playing the Detroit Lions who have a great defense.
It’s safe to say the outcome will not be like that usually. This next week is a perfect example. Trubisky will be going up against Cleveland. He is a player that has been putting up big numbers lately and he will be going against the Browns. I really sense a big week coming up out of this guy. If you need Week 16 QB help, he could give you great numbers.
As far as running backs are concerned, Jags RB Corey Grant rand for 69 yards on 10 carries and a touchdown this last weekend. He is also available to be picked up in 99% of leagues.
A running back, with those type numbers, on a winning team, that is playing the 49ers this week, is a no-brainer to pick up off waivers, correct?
Wrong. You must consider that Grant’s numbers all came at the end of the game after it was well under control. Granted, they are playing the 49ers so they should have this game under control too, but remember Leonard Fournette.
The number one rookie stud for the Jags was out and will be back this next week. That means that Grant will go back on the bench behind Ivory and Yeldon. There just won’t be enough touches for him to be productive so you should steer clear.
Javorius Allen on the other hand is still available in 68% of leagues. He had a very solid game on Sunday when he ran for 70 yards on 13 carries. He, much like the aforementioned Grant, got most of his numbers at the end of the game when the team was relying on him during “game management” time. The difference between him and Grant is that Allen is the clear number 2 on the team so he will get touches. Also, in Week 16 Allen and the Ravens will be going against the Colts which means there is a really good chance they will be in game management mode by the end of this game again.
This makes Allen a smart, sneaky pick for this week.
Another smart, sneaky pick for running back lately has been Giovani Bernard. Bernard is still available in about 50% of leagues.
This last week he had 30 yards rushing with a touchdown and three catches for 13 yards. He’s a good all-around back who has been great in this second half of the season due to different injuries to both Joe Mixon (concussion) and Jeremy Hill (IR).
Everyone seems to think that his quality fantasy time is up with Mixon coming out of concussion protocol. Well let me tell you about the Cincinnati Bengals. They are a lost team playing poorly right now. In Week 16 they go up against the Detroit Lions who have a nasty defense. The Bengals are going to be down fast and bad in this game and they are going to be throwing a lot. Enter Bernard. He will have a nice game and will pay dividends to those willing to put him in their line-up. Extra dividends to be paid to those in PPR leagues.