COVID-19 has undoubtedly contributed to an especially wild fantasy football season.
It started before we ever stepped foot on the field, when a number of players – Damien Williams of note offensively, and CJ Mosley in IDP – opted out of the season altogether. It continued when big names like Lamar Jackson, Cam Newton, Baker Mayfield and Ben Roethlisberger landed on the dreaded COVID reserve list.
It reached its height when the Broncos played an entire game without a quarterback.
And yet, here we are. We made it to the finish line, hopefully in one piece. Championship week has arrived in full force.
I wish you nothing but the best. In what has been a devastating year for the ages, I wish you this one happy moment.
Now, let’s go and do the only thing we can do…
Let’s go win a fucking fantasy football title.
Potential Pickups for Week 16
(Always for Superflex or 2 QB)
Marcus Mariota, Raiders: I gotta admit… I didn’t see that one coming. First we thought Mariota might be out for the season – a strained pectoral initially landed him on IR – then, even upon return, I wasn’t expecting much from him. Instead, Derek Carr goes down with a “significant” groin injury, and Mariota comes in like a man on fire. He looks like a solid QB in Carr’s absence right now. He’s displaying the full run/pass option.
C.J. Beathard, 49ers: It looks like Nick Mullens may need Tommy John surgery, so CJB is getting the call this weekend. It’s always hit or miss with him – he can look sharp, or totally lost at times – and I suppose the same could be said of the Cardinals’ enigmatic defense. Mariota is the better long-term play here, but their results could be similar this week because Beathard gets the slightly better matchup.
Malcolm Brown, Rams: Andddd we’ve come full circle. Brown was an early season pickup after a smokin’ hot start, but he has since become the Rams’ solid RB3 behind Cam Akers and Darrell Henderson. Now Akers is down, and Henderson hasn’t looked as strong in the second half of the season. Brown is certainly worth a short-term look in 14-team leagues.
Darrell Henderson, Rams: I list him second, because he’s probably still taken in your league. Henderson, in a vacuum, is a better player than Brown; but the former also looks a little beat up in recent weeks. I might like Brown better here, anyway.
Le’Veon Bell, Chiefs: “CEH” went down, and Bell might still be out there in some of your leagues. Lev is slow and old at this point, but we always love the fluidity and upside of the Chiefs’ high-powered offense. Of course, no matter what, Lev is still a productive pass catcher out of the backfield.
Tony Pollard, Cowboys: Kid is a BEAST. Should be a starting running back in this league. If Zeke sits again this week, Pollard is the best play in this entire article, at any position.
Salvon Ahmed, Dolphins: Back with a vengeance! I hope you hadn’t given up on him in the short-term. Ahmed roared back from injury with a super strong fantasy performance. I don’t trust Myles Gaskin at this point, anyway. Ahmed seems to be the best of the Dolphins’ backfield bunch.
Running back is where it’s at this week. Wide receiver doesn’t have much to offer…
Allen Lazard, Packers: I’ve been saying all along that he’s a better all-around receiver than teammate Marquez Valdes-Scantling, but the injury woes slowed Lazard’s progress. This past week, he seemed to be (mostly) back to fine form. Of course the great Davante Adams will always lead the way in Green Bay, but I do believe Lazard can outplay “MVS” going forward.
Keke Coutee, Rashard Higgins & Russell Gage: All mentioned in the past. Coutee offers the most upside of the trio. Nothing dramatic to write home about, here.
Week 16 DFS Plays
SATURDAY SPECIAL: The Millionaire Maker is Out There
Safe: Kyler Murray $7,500 vs. SF
Sleeper: Tua Tagovailoa $5,400 @ LV
Perfect Storm: Tom Brady $6,800 @ DET
Safe: Josh Jacobs $6,600 vs. MIA
Sleeper: Chase Edmonds $4,600 vs. SF
Perfect Storm: D’Andre Swift $6,400 vs. TB
Safe: Chris Godwin $6,000 @ DET
Sleeper: Lynn Bowden Jr. $3,900 @ LV
Perfect Storm: Antonio Brown $5,300 @ DET
Safe: Darren Waller $7,000 vs. MIA
Sleeper: Dan Arnold $3,200 vs. SF
Perfect Storm: T.J. Hockenson $4,600 vs. TB
I hope you win the whole damn thing!!
John Frascella is a published sports author and fantasy football analyst with over two decades of experience. Follow him on Twitter @LegendSports7 for all things fantasy football.