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Weekly Matchups: Strong Plays, Weak Plays Week 16

Kyle Fisher

Kyle Fisher writes about fantasy sports for RotoWire.


Matt Schaub vs. MIN

Schaub is coming off a solid 261-yard, one -touchdown performance in the division-clinching win against Indianapolis last week. This week, Schaub and the Texans have a chance to secure home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs with a win over the Vikings and their struggling pass defense. The Vikings ranks 29th in fantasy points allowed to the quarterback position and have given up five touchdown passes in their last two games, averaging 329 passing yards in the last three weeks. Look for Schaub to be a major fantasy contributor this week for the Texans.

DeMarco Murray vs. NO

Injuries pretty much damaged any major fantasy impact that Murray would have in 2012; however, owners who stuck with him have been rewarded by Murray scoring touchdowns in his last three games. This week, Murray has the type of matchup that could be very beneficial to owners in championship game as he faces the Saints. The Saints have allowed the most fantasy points to running backs this season and have given up at least 117 yards in six of their last eight games. Look for Murray to be a big factor for the Cowboys who are fighting for the NFC East with the Giants and Redskins.

DeAngelo Williams vs. OAK

Williams has been fantasy relevant the last two weeks after being a non-factor most of the season. This week, Williams has the benefit of another favorable matchup that will make it difficult to keep him out of your lineup against the Raiders. The Raiders have given up the third most fantasy points in standard scoring leagues and have given up touchdowns to running backs in eight or their last nine games. Look Williams to again be on the fantasy radar and be a potential play this week.

Danny Amendola vs. TB

Amendola came back after missing another two games to catch six passes for 58 yards and a touchdown in a loss to the Vikings. Amendola averages almost 6.5 catches a game and while not a huge touchdown producer has once again been, great for PPR owners when healthy. Amendolaís nearly 10 targets a game would rank him in the top-10 had he played the full season. This week, Amendola has his best matchup of the season against the worst fantasy pass defense vs. wide receivers. The Buccaneers give up 28 fantasy points a game to wide receivers and have given up touchdowns in nine straight weeks while allowing the second most total catches. Amendola would be a great WR-3 or flex option this week and should contribute nicely during most leaguesí championship week.

Cecil Shorts vs. NE

Shorts has been one of the hottest receivers in the league coming down the stretch, either scoring a touchdown or breaking the 100-yard mark in five straight games. This week, should be another productive fantasy day facing the Patriots. The Patriots have given up the seventh most points to fantasy wide receivers this year and are coming off allowing a three touchdown pass game to the 49ers. Look for Shorts to continue be a valuable weapon and have another solid fantasy outing in Week 16.


Colin Kaepernick vs. SEA

Kaepernick has been very consistent since gaining the starting job and has scored 17 to 23 fantasy points in every start. However, Kaepernick has benefitted from playing some of the weaker pass and overall defenses during that stretch, and this will not be the case this week in Seattle. The Seahawks rank as the toughest in the league among quarterbacks in fantasy points allowed and have held fantasy quarterbacks to 10 points or fewer in standard scoring leagues nine times this season. Look for this to be a tough afternoon for Kaepernick in what could be a defensive battle in Seattle on Sunday.

Trent Richardson vs. DEN

While Richardsonís yards per carry have been subpar, fantasy owners are pleased with his 12 total touchdowns and 48 catches, and overall Richardson has been a solid back in his rookie season. This week, Richardson faces a very tough test in the Broncos run defense. The Broncos rank fourth in fewest fantasy points allowed to running backs and have allowed only one rushing touchdown since Week 5. Look for this to be a tough week for Richardson against the stingy Broncos.

BenJarvus Green-Ellis vs. PIT

Green-Ellis has been hot, rushing for more than 100 yards in four of his last five games and averaging more than five yards a carry in that time. This week, Green-Ellis faces division-rival Pittsburgh in crucial battle for the playoffs. In Week 7, the Steelers held Green-Ellis to just 69 yards and his second worst fantasy point outing of the season. The Steelers rank sixth in fewest fantasy points allowed on the season and have been especially tough on the ground at home this season. Look for Green-Ellis to struggle much like he did in earlier this season against the Steelers.

Danario Alexander vs. NYJ

After five straight productive fantasy weeks, Alexander was held without a catch in the loss to the Panthers last week and should have a tough time regaining his fantasy form this week against the Jets. The Jets rank second in fewest fantasy points allowed to wide receivers and have been especially tough the last three weeks. In a bad season for the Jets, the pass defense has been solid all year, and we expect that to continue this week. Look for Alexander to have his second straight subpar outing.

Martellus Bennett vs. BAL

Bennett was held to just one catch for 15 yards in a blowout loss to the Falcons last week, and while he should be a little better this week, he faces a very difficult task in the Ravens. While the Ravens arenít the defense they used to be, especially against the run, they do rank as the fourth toughest defense against tight ends. The Ravens have allowed just two touchdowns all season and have held teams to 36 yards or fewer to the position in five of their last seven games. Look for this to be another tough week for Bennett in this critical matchup for the Giants.