Fantasy Football Gems & Sleepers Championship Edition Week 16
By Edwin Camacho
Dec 15, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (12) throws a pass to wide receiver Pierre Garcon (88)
Quarterback Fantasy Gem- Jay Cutler vs. Philadephia Eagles. In his first play after coming back off an injury last week, Jay Cutler threw a pick. We could consider that him shaking the rust off because after that he was money. There are a lot of good gems at QB this week e.g. Phillip Rivers @ Oakland, but I believe with this being his second week back and he ia s bit more in synch with his receivers, Cutler should put up some very nice numbers for your Superbowl week.
Fantasy Sleeper-Kirk Cousins vs. Dallas Cowboys. We all saw the collapse of the Dallas Cowboys last week. That defense isn’t one that has been striking fear in the eyes of offensive coordinators all season. It looks like Jerry Jones made a fatal mistake letting Rob Ryan go and bringing in legend Monty Kiffin. I believe Kirk Cousins will come in and shine against a weak Dallas defense. If you are an Aaron Rodgers owner and need a nice fill in for your championship game, Cousins could be a good fit.
Running Back Fantasy Gem-Ryan Matthews vs. Oakland Raiders. Last week Ryan Matthews went nuts against the Denver Broncos. He didn’t put up All World numbers, but without a doubt he changed the game for the Chargers as they were able to effectively run the ball and keep it away from Peyton and the gang. I believe the Chargers will be up a lot early and will use Matthews in garbage time allowing him to accumulate yards and td’s simply on the amount of carries he will receive.
Fantasy Sleeper- Jodan Todman vs Tennessee Titans. Despite the Titans having one of the better defenses in the league, they haven’t faired that ell against the run. With MoJo out last week, Todman rushed for 109 yards and caught 44 yards out of the backfield. With Cecil Shorts out, Justin Blackmon out, and Maurice Jones Drew (MoJo), Todman will have more than ample opportunities to show and prove. If you are in RB trouble or don’t like your match up, Todman is someone to consider.
Wide Receiver Fantasy Gem- Josh Gordon vs. New York Jets As it saddens me immensely to put someone matched up against our beloved Jets,
Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
this is an awesome matchup for Josh Gordon owners in their Championship/Toilet Bowl . The Jets have a weakened secondary with Cromartie not 100% and the Milliner/Walls tandem at corner. Josh Gordon will have a field day and you should definitely start him as he is this weeks gem at WR.
Fantasy Sleeper- Kendall Wright @ Jacksonville Jaguars. Kendall Wright has been terribly inconsistent in the past few weeks. On the bright side though, he is essentially the Titans number 1 receiver and should stretch the field against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Fitzpatrick has done a nice job this year in place of Locker. If you need a good flex or #3 wide receiver, Kendall Wright has very nice sleeper potential.
Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Tight End Fantasy Gem- Dennis Pita vs. New England Patriots Dennis Pitta has played exceptional since coming back a few weeks ago. While the defense has been a weak link in the past few years, the New England Patriots have improved, but injuries plagued that defense to play in their usual form. You have to figure Aqib Talib will be defending Torrey Smith, so Dennis Pitta should have his share of red zone opportunities. Since he is also Flacco’s security blanket, he should have little added value in PPR leagues.
Fantasy Sleeper- Zach Miller vs Arizona Cardinals. The last time Zach Miller played against the Arizona Cardinals he scored a touchdown to accompany 40 receiving yards. The Arizona Cardinals have played terribly against good pass catching tight ends this year in terms of fantasy points allowed. Yes Arizona has a very stout defense which had to put points up on, but they cannot cover the tight end well. If you are in need of a TE to fill in for Jordan Cameron or Jordan Reed, Miller provides some nice sleep potential.
Kicker Fantasy Gem- Phil Dawson @ Atlanta Falcons. To put it plainly, Phil Dawson has been slinging leg the past few weeks. The 49ers’ offense has been playing very well of late and providing with not only extra points, but FG’s well. They are playing in Atlanta this week so the dome will definitely work in Dawson’s favor. Look for Dawson to be the fantasy Gem at kicker this week. I’m thinking he has to potential to change the game and even decide some fantasy games this week.
Fantasy Sleeper- Nick Folk vs. Cleveland Brown. The Folk hero has been one of the most consistent kickers on an NFL roster this year. I would even go as far as saying he is probably one of the only kickers in the league who is an offenses biggest playmaker. The Jets
Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
have played their best at home this year and this is in large part due to Nick Folk. If you need a solid kicker who has sleeper value, Folk is your guy. He also seems to be showing some more distance this year FG wise so him hitting some long FG’s isnt out of the question
Defense/Special Teams Fantasy Gem- Detroit Lions vs New York Giants. The New York Giants are so bad right now offensively, I would start the Little Giants if they were playing this week. Last week was the second time the Giants were shut out this year. In addition, Eli Manning threw 5 picks. The Detroit Lion have to basically show up and the defensive front should dominate a weak NYG offensive line. Undoubtedly the Lions will shine this game.
Fantasy Sleeper- St. Louis Rams vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Even though their record doesn’t refect what I am about to say, the St Louis Rams play extremely hard for Jeff Fisher. They have Chris Long and Robert Quinn on the defensive wreaking havoc this year on opposing offensive linemen. Their secondary isn’t one to underestimate as well with Janoris Jenkins and Cortland Finnegan at corner. Pair that with a terrible TB Buccaneer offense, and James Laurinitis and the value of this defense skyrockets this week.
Good luck to anyone playing in a championship game this week.