(Image credit: Mark Lane/USA Today Sports)
By: Jett Rosenstein
It is week 16 of the NFL season and for many fantasy owners, each game is more and more important as we approach championship weekend. It has been a wild and entertaining season, but your job isn’t done just yet. The next step is to bring home a fantasy championship. In this article, I get you all of the information you need to know to pick up a win in your fantasy playoffs matchup for week 16.
RB James Robinson (JAX)
For most of the season, James Robinson has not lived up to his sensational rookie season, but he is about to make up for it here in the fantasy playoffs. Coming off a week where he finished as the RB6 in PPR formats, Robinson gets a date with the NY Jets in Week 16. The Jets just let Duke Johnson run wild and are allowing the most points to opposing RBs on the season. Urban Meyer is gone and the Jaguars are going to let Robinson eat. He was already in your lineups, but he is about to have himself a day.
WR Amon-Ra St. Brown (DET)
He was hyped as an early-season sleeper, but never came to fruition…until now! St. Brown is coming off of his best game of the year along with 3 straight games of 11 targets or more. With no TJ Hockenson or D’Andre Swift, St. Brown has become the #1 option on this Lions offense. While he may not have his QB in action this week, St. Brown still has a nice matchup against the Falcons and should be started in all leagues. A potential late-season waiver wire gem that has the ability to carry fantasy teams to the end.
TE Zach Ertz (ARI)
Zach Ertz has been a nice addition to the Arizona Cardinals offense and his success should continue on Saturday night. He is facing off against a Colts defense, while very stingy has given up the 3rd most points to opposing TEs. With no DeAndre Hopkins, Ertz should see more targets go his way, especially in the red zone or goal-line situations. The TE position is ugly, so if you have Ertz, he should be in your lineup.
RB Jeff Wilson Jr. (SF)
Jeff Wilson is coming off a very nice outing where he racked up over 100 total yards and scored his first TD of the year. However, that was against the Atlanta Falcons. This week, Wilson and company will face off against a Titans team that just shut down Najee Harris and is allowing the fewest points to opposing RBs. Yes, there will be no Elijah Mitchell once again in this one, but Deebo Samuel is still a threat to steal some work from Wilson. Wilson will definitely have the bulk of the volume, but I don’t expect him to be rather efficient with it and he will need a TD to have a productive outing.
WR Terry McLaurin (WFT)
When he is good, he is really good but when he is bad, he is really bad. This sums up the rollercoaster rider that Terry McLaurin has been on all year. Unfortunately, that’s what happens when you have inconsistent QB play. In Week 16, McLaurin will face off against a stout Cowboys defense that is allowing the 12th fewest points to opposing WRs. You may not have a better option, but McLaurin could falter once again in this one.
QB Dak Prescott (DAL)
It has been great to see Dak Prescott get back on the field after the gruesome injury he suffered a year ago. He started the season off extremely well, but down the stretch has looked a little discombobulated. In the past 3 weeks, he has been held under 13 fantasy points. He faces off against a Washington team that is allowing the most points to opposing QBs, but the last time these two teams met, Dak threw 2 picks en route to 12 fantasy points. Dak brought you to this point so I understand rolling him out once again, but check for another potential option as well as I am very concerned about Dak’s outlook for this game.
Top Defensive Streams (owned in less than 70% of Yahoo leagues)
1. Miami Dolphins vs. New Orleans Saints
The Saints have gotten hit by COVID as their top 2 QBs, Taysom Hill and Trevor Siemian will not be available for this game. That means Ian Book will get the first start of his career. This is now an extremely enticing play for a Dolphins defense that has gotten hot down the stretch. They have only finished outside the top 10 once since week 8. This Dolphins team is also fighting to keep their playoff hopes alive so look for them to bring it on MNF and have a huge defensive showing.
2. Philadelphia Eagles vs. New York Giants
The Eagles are another team that is fighting to get into the playoffs and their matchup against the New York Giants presents a nice chance to have a productive outing. Whether it’s Mike Glennon or Jake Fromm who gets the start, this Eagles defense will be ready. The Giants are allowing the 11th most points to opposing defenses so they tend to be very generous to the opposition. Get them in your lineups!
3. Seattle Seahawks vs. Chicago Bears
This is more of a deeper option as by no means at all do the Seahawks have a good defense on paper. They are the 21st ranked fantasy defense to date. However, this is an attractive play due to who they are playing. The Chicago Bears look all out of sorts on offense and Justin Fields has not been able to hold onto the ball. This game is in Seattle so I expect the defense and the 12th man to wreak havoc on this Bears offense. It won’t hurt you to get them in your lineup, but it could pay off big time.
ONE MORE THING BEFORE I GO…
Unfortunately, players are dropping left and right due to the new variant of the coronavirus. While it is unfortunate that this will be the deciding factor in many fantasy leagues this year, it is important to always stay ready and have a contingency plan. If you are deciding between two players. One who plays on Thursday night and one who plays on Sunday. If it is a toss-up, go with the player playing the earlier game cause we don’t know who else could be impacted by COVID. Guys like Tyreek Hill, Travis Kelce, and Austin Ekeler are all on the COVID list and while they could return before they play, having a replacement option ready is important even though some of these names are irreplaceable. But, in the end, we will have to let the players play and hope for the best. It is out of our control. Enjoy week 16 of the NFL season and let’s win some fantasy championships.