Fantasy Football: Week 16

Matt Lichtenstadter ('12)/ Eastside Opinions Editor

Did you have a good Week 15? If you did, you’re probably in the fantasy finals this weekend, or in the semis. This is it, and everything you have prepared for has come down to this one game, and knowing your match-ups and who will be playing will be big and knowing who won’t be playing is obviously key.

NOTE: Unless indicated, all games on Saturday.

Who to Start:

QB Rex Grossman (WSH) vs. MIN: He may not be the greatest option available, but he sure has plenty of people singing his fantasy praises, mainly because he’s facing the absolutely dreadful Vikings secondary. He had a good game against a bad Giants secondary last week, and he may have an even better game this Sunday.

RB Rashard Mendenhall (PIT) vs. STL: If Big Ben doesn’t play, his stock goes up even higher, but regardless, he’ll have a huge game against the simply awful St. Louis defense, which seems to get torched every other week.

WR Dwayne Bowe (KC) vs. OAK: Without a decent QB under center, he was left for dead as a decent fantasy starter. But with Orton starting and with Kansas City playing the Raiders secondary that gets torched every week, he should have a huge game this Sunday.

WR Santonio Holmes (NYJ) vs. NYG: The Jets have to win this Sunday, and it may be the most important game in Mark Sanchez’s career. He’s facing a terrible Giants secondary, so Sanchez could have a big game, and his favorite target Santonio Holmes should too.

TE Brent Celek (PHI) vs. DAL: He’s had a renaissance as a fantasy option this season, and he should continue to have huge success, especially playing the listless Dallas defense. He also had a huge game against Dallas back in Week 8 which started his turn upward.

DEF Tennessee vs. JAX: The Jaguars offense has been offensive this season, and the Titans have to win this game in order to stay in the playoff hunt. The Titans are also ticked off after losing to Indy last week, so they may play with increased fervor against a bad Jaguars team.

Who to Sit:

QB Eli Manning (NYG) vs. NYJ: I know he’s the 3rd best passer in the NFL in terms of yards this season, but he will have trouble against the Jets secondary, even though they got torched by the Eagles last week. The interceptions are probably going to be killer for Eli.

RB Peyton Hillis (CLE) vs. BAL: He’s been a mainstay in the “sit” column for weeks now, and that won’t change against the Ravens, who are mad after their bad loss in San Diego and haven’t lost at home all season.

WR Brandon Lloyd (STL) vs. PIT: It really doesn’t matter who starts under center for the Rams, it’s not going to be pretty for them on Saturday against the Steelers, who don’t give up much of anything on defense. Lloyd might as well be on the waiver wire.

WR Pierre Garcon (IND) vs. HOU: The Texans secondary has been awesome this season, and it will be tough for Dan Orlovsky to throw the ball down the field against this very good Texans secondary. The Colts will have trouble on a short week against the AFC South champs (I know, right? Houston winning anything…)

TE Greg Olsen (CAR) vs. TB: Sometimes he has big games, other times he’s totally invisible, and he probably will be invisible this Saturday. It looks like Jeremy Shockey has become the number one target for Cam Newton at the TE position, so Olsen looks like one to bench.

DEF Chicago vs. GB SUN: I know it’s hard to bench the Bears defense right now, but going up against the angry Packers team right now, it doesn’t bode well for them. The Bears are essentially sacrificial lambs this week against Green Bay.

3 Super Sleepers:

QB Matt Moore (MIA) vs. NE: It’s no secret that the Patriots secondary is terrible, and Matt Moore may be able to feast on it on Saturday. The Dolphins have won 5 of 7, and they are playing well, and with Matt Moore looking good, he could be a decent sleeper option if you don’t have a better one.

WR Demariyus Thomas (DEN) vs. BUF: The Bills secondary has been ravaged by injuries, and with Tebow Time coming into town, Thomas could have a big game against the Bills who have lost 7 in a row since their 5-2 start.

TE Jared Cook (TEN) vs. JAX: The Jags have been torched all season by Tight Ends, and that probably will continue with Jared Cook on Saturday. He should see plenty of targets this weekend, and should have a big game.

Buyer Beware:

RB Marshawn “Skittles” Lynch (SEA) vs. SF: Obviously, he has had huge games in the past couple of weeks, but remember this when playing him: San Francisco has not allowed a rushing TD all season. Lynch may go into beast mode, but not do anything against the stout SF defense.

Good Luck in Week 16 and Happy Holidays!