Blog Entry

Week 16 extended sleepers

Posted on: December 23, 2010 2:13 pm
 

Every week I'll dive into some sleepers beyond what we write in Start 'Em and Sit 'Em to help some of you in deeper leagues. Some weeks will have more guys than others, but this should be helpful for those owners in 14- and 16-team leagues.

QUARTERBACK

Rex Grossman (at JAC): Grossman had one of the best Fantasy performances of the season last week at Dallas with 322 passing yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions for 34 Fantasy points. He has the chance for another quality outing this week against the Jaguars, who have allowed 26 passing touchdowns on the season, including seven in the past five weeks. There have been nine quarterbacks to throw multiple touchdowns against Jacksonville, and Grossman should make it 10. He has a firm grasp of this offense with his time with Kyle Shanahan last year in Houston, and he’s worth using as a starter in deeper leagues for this week.

Joe Webb (at PHI): Webb isn’t worth starting as a quarterback. He’s worth using in leagues where you can put him in as a flex option as a wide receiver, which is something that’s not possible on CBSSports.com. His combination of passing and rushing should make him a viable Fantasy starter in deeper leagues. From a passing perspective, the Eagles have allowed 30 passing touchdowns with 11 quarterbacks throwing multiple touchdowns, including six in a row. Webb got 10 Fantasy points in a standard league last week against the Bears with a rushing touchdown, and he can easily reach 15 points. He’s worth the risk, but it depends who you are comparing him against. Don’t just force him in your lineup based on potential.

RUNNING BACK

Tim Hightower (vs. DAL): Hightower let a lot of Fantasy owners down last week with his performance at Carolina. He had six carries for 16 yards and three catches for 12 yards in what should have been a great matchup. But this week he should rebound against the Cowboys, who have struggled in run defense recently. Dallas has allowed five touchdowns to opposing running backs in the past five games with four reaching double digits in Fantasy points. And Hightower has been great at home with at least eight Fantasy points in three of his past four games. Don’t worry about Beanie Wells, who has been a non-factor all season. Hightower is still worth using as a flex option in this matchup.

Donald Brown (at OAK): The return of Joseph Addai (neck) could hurt Brown’s production, but he played well enough last week to still warrant use based on the matchup. The Raiders have allowed 15 touchdowns to opposing running backs, including six in the past five games. And Brown is coming off a career performance against the Jaguars with 14 carries for 129 yards and a touchdown. Addai, if he’s able to play, won’t get a full workload, so Brown has the chance to be involved in all facets of the game and is worth using as a flex option.

Brian Westbrook (at STL): The Rams were just gashed by the Chiefs with Jamaal Charles and Thomas Jones combining for 33 carries, 188 yards and two touchdowns. St. Louis has allowed four rushing touchdowns in its past five games, and Westbrook has scored in consecutive games against Seattle and San Diego. Anthony Dixon (ankle) is also banged up, and if he’s out that will mean more carries for Westbrook. Like Hightower and Brown, he remains a good flex option for this matchup, which could decide the NFC West title.

Pierre Thomas (at ATL): The Falcons run defense, which had been stout most of the season, has fallen apart recently. In their past three games they have allowed LeGarrette Blount, Jonathan Stewart and Marshawn Lynch to score and reach double digits in Fantasy points. Thomas played well in the first meeting with the Falcons in Week 3 with 91 total yards. And he has four total touchdowns in his past four meetings with Atlanta, and this could be a game where New Orleans leans on him with Chris Ivory (hamstring) still hurt.  Thomas has disappointed Fantasy owners for most of the season, but he could be used as a flex option in this matchup.

WIDE RECEIVER

David Nelson (vs. NE): He’s worth the risk as a No. 3 wide receiver in deeper leagues based on his recent production. Nelson has three touchdowns in his past three games, and he’s coming off his best performance of the season at Miami with three catches for 61 yards and a score. The Patriots have allowed  15 touchdowns to opposing wide receivers, including six in the past five games. Steve Johnson remains the best receiving option for the Bills, but Nelson has done a solid job in replacing Lee Evans (ankle).

Derrick Mason (at CLE): Mason has reached double digits in Fantasy points in every other game since Week 10, and he’s coming off a disappointing performance last week against New Orleans with one catch for 42 yards. If that trend continues then Mason should play well in this matchup. It helps that he has a good history against the Browns. In his past five trips to Cleveland he has 32 catches for 497 yards and one touchdown. The Browns have allowed 14 touchdowns to opposing wide receivers, and Mason has three touchdowns in his past three road games. He’s worth using as a No. 3 Fantasy wide receiver for this week.

Percy Harvin (at PHI): Harvin was one of the few Vikings players who did well last week against Chicago with five catches for 72 yards and a touchdown, and he should be Webb’s favorite target in this matchup with the Eagles. Philadelphia has allowed 15 touchdowns to opposing wide receivers this season with eight in the past five games. As long as Harvin is healthy – he missed the two previous games prior to Week 15 with migraines – he remains a quality No. 3 Fantasy wide receiver in the majority of leagues.

Lance Moore (at ATL): We all remember Moore’s performance against the Falcons in Week 3 with six catches for 149 yards and two touchdowns. He has also scored in each of his past two games against St. Louis and Baltimore and has three touchdowns in his past four outings. Aside from Marques Colston, he has been the most consistent receiving option for the Saints. Moore also has a good history against the Falcons with three touchdowns in his past four meetings, and we like him as a No. 3 Fantasy wide receiver in this matchup.

Category: NFL
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