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Start/Bench – Week 16

It’s championship week in most fantasy leagues so let’s dispense with the small talk and get down to it.



Peyton Manning
Aaron Rodgers
*May not play week 16 *

Drew Brees
Matthew Stafford
Tom Brady
Cam Newton
Nick Foles
Philip Rivers
Russell Wilson

Welcome to the Club

Nick Foles: Foles has thrown seven touchdown passes and rushed for another over the past three weeks while averaging 310 total yards per game. The added rushing yards he’s producing (33 yards per game the last four weeks) boosts his value even more.


Ryan Tannehill, MIAMI at Buffalo: The only thing that could slow Tannehill down this week is the weather because it certainly won’t be the Bills’ pass defense. In their last two games, Buffalo has given up a combined four touchdown passes to quarterbacks Mike Glennon and Chad Henne. In his last two games, Tannehill has amassed 567 yards of total offense and thrown six touchdowns. Yeah, we like this matchup.

Ben Roethlisberger, PITTSBURGH at Green Bay: This game could be a cold weather shootout as both defenses struggle to stop the pass (and the run to a great extent). Big Ben is on a roll having completed 65% of his passes over his past five games and has put up 11 touchdowns and only one interception. For the season, Roethlisberger is averaging 21.9 fantasy points per week in standard scoring formats and faces a pass defense that is allowing quarterbacks to average 22.2 points per game.

Colin Kaepernick, SAN FRANCISCO vs. Atlanta: Don’t look now but Kaepernick is beginning to resemble the quarterback he was at the end of the 2012 season. He’s averaged 222 yards passing and another 27 yards per game rushing over his last four games while tossing seven touchdowns. The Falcons have allowed an average of 281 yards passing and seven touchdowns through the air in their last four games. Checkmate.

Kirk Cousins, WASHINGTON vs. Dallas: The Cowboys defense just gave up 299 yards passing and four touchdowns to Matt Flynn. Let that sink in. In the past two games they have allowed back-up quarterbacks Flynn and Josh McCown to put up nine touchdowns. Next up on the back-up parade is Cousins. Start him (FanDuel Bargain Alert).

Andy Dalton, CINCINNATI vs. Minnesota: Inconsistent or not, this matchup is too juicy for Dalton owners to pass up on. The Vikings are giving up 336 yards passing per game and have allowed quarterbacks to score 10 total touchdowns over the last four weeks. Get Dalton into the starting lineup and hoist that league trophy.

Jay Cutler, CHICAGO at Philadelphia: Cutler has the most prolific fantasy producing duo of wide receivers in the game at his disposal facing the anemic Eagles pass defense. Matt Cassel just hung 382 yards passing and three total touchdowns on Philly. Cutler is gold this week and has to be started.


Matt Ryan, ATLANTA at San Francisco: Ryan only mustered 210 yards and a single touchdown pass last week against a bad Washington defense. This week it’s the 49ers on the road. Ouch!

Carson Palmer, ARIZONA at Seattle: No, no, no. This one will be ugly for Palmer and the entire Cardinals offense.

Eli Manning, NEW YORK GIANTS at Detroit: You simply can’t be this desperate. No way.

Joe Flacco, BALTIMORE vs. New England: Flacco was only good for 222 yards and no touchdowns against a Lions secondary that was made up of primarily reserve players. Don’t roll the dice that he’s going to suddenly go off against the Patriots in a championship week game. Pass on him this week.

Matt Cassel, MINNESOTA at Cincinnati: Just in case you were thinking that his Week 15 performance (401 total yards and three scores) might be repeated against a depleted Bengals secondary. Nope. Not a consistent enough option in such an important week.

Andrew Luck, INDIANAPOLIS at Kansas City: The Chiefs defense isn’t getting to the quarterback like they were earlier in the season but they are still a force to be reckoned with. Luck is still hampered by his lack of quality wide receivers and a struggling running game. The Chiefs are a ball-hawking defense that has intercepted 20 passes this season and they may have their elite pass rushing outside linebacker Justin Houston back this week. There are better options for Week 16.

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