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Fantasy Football Start/Sit: Week 16

NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Las Vegas Raiders Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports



Jalen Hurts, Eagles (vs. Cowboys): Hurts was impressive in his first NFL start against the Saints, but he took it to another level by leading all quarterbacks in fantasy points last week with 37.82 points against the Cardinals. He is a top-tier option this week against the Cowboys. The Cowboys defense has been struggling all season. They are allowing 30.9 points per game to opposing offenses (second-most in the NFL) and 161.8 rushing yards per game (most in the NFL).

Baker Mayfield, Browns (vs. Jets): Mayfield is averaging 26.82 fantasy points over his past three games. He should continue to produce at a high level against the Jets, who are giving up the second-most fantasy points to quarterbacks this season. If you need to stream a quarterback this week, Mayfield is a solid option.

Sleeper: Mitchell Trubisky, Bears (vs. Jaguars)


Ben Roethlisberger, Steelers (vs. Colts): Roethlisberger put up only 6.7 fantasy points against the Bengals last week. In addition, he has not reached 20 fantasy points in a single game since Week 10. Right now, he is simply not a reliable starting option. I do not trust him against the strong Colts defense.

Jared Goff, Rams (vs. Seahawks): It is difficult to project Goff’s performance week to week. He did not take advantage of his matchup against the Jets last week, and he has a total of four passing touchdowns and four interceptions over his last four games. On paper, the Seahawks are an ideal matchup, but he faced the Seahawks in Week 10 and finished with only 10.48 fantasy points. It is a lot safer to keep him on the bench this week. There are other available options with both higher ceilings and higher floors.

Running backs


Leonard Fournette, Buccaneers (vs. Lions): Fournette should start against the Lions, as Ronald Jones will likely miss Saturday’s game.

Fournette rushed for 49 yards and two touchdowns in Jones’s absence last week. He could be in store for a big game against the Lions defense. The Lions are allowing the most fantasy points to running backs this season. In addition, they have given up a league-high 24 rushing touchdowns. He is a must-start.

Le’Veon Bell, Chiefs (vs. Falcons): Clyde Edwards-Helaire will likely not play this week, according to Andy Reid.

Without Edwards-Helaire, Bell could receive a large workload. He had 15 carries for 62 rushing yards and a touchdown last week, despite Edwards-Helaire not exiting the game until the fourth quarter. Bell has a lot of upside against the Falcons.

Sleeper: Tony Pollard, Cowboys (vs. Eagles)


Kareem Hunt, Browns (vs. Jets): Hunt had only 28 scrimmage yards against the Giants last week. Additionally, he has now had single-digit fantasy performances in four out of his last five games. With limited touches, he is a risky play in fantasy championships.

Adrian Peterson, Lions (vs. Buccaneers): Peterson has produced some solid games this season, but D’Andre Swift is clearly the lead back in Detroit right now. Peterson is just not a starting option at the moment, especially against the Buccaneers defense. Tampa Bay has given up the fewest rushing yards in the NFL this season.

Wide receivers


Jarvis Landry, Browns (vs. Jets): Since Week 12, Landry is ninth among wide receivers in fantasy points. He is a must-start against the Jets, who have allowed 3,917 passing yards (third-most in the NFL) and 30 passing touchdowns (third-most in the NFL) this season.

Emmanuel Sanders, Saints (vs. Vikings): With Michael Thomas on the IR, Emmanuel Sanders led the Saints with four receptions and 76 receiving yards against the Chiefs. He carries a lot of upside as a flex option against the Vikings, who are giving up the fourth-most fantasy points to wide receivers.

Sleeper: Mecole Hardman, Chiefs (vs. Falcons)


JuJu Smith-Schuster, Steelers (vs. Colts): Smith-Schuster has been wildly inconsistent as of late. Here are his fantasy point totals from his past five games: 5.9, 17.7, 9.8, 17.5, 2.5. After recording three receptions for 15 yards and a fumble against the Bengals last week, it hard to be optimistic about him facing the Colts defense this week.

Tyler Lockett, Seahawks (vs. Rams): Look, Lockett is still capable of being a WR1 on any given week. Still, his production has dipped over the second half of the season. He has only one receiving touchdown over his past eight games; he had seven receiving touchdowns in his first six games. Now, he will face the Rams, who are allowing the least fantasy points to wide receivers this season.

Tight ends


Logan Thomas, Washington Football Team (vs. Panthers): Thomas had 13 receptions for 101 yards last week. Since Week 6, Thomas is third among tight ends in fantasy points. Still, he is only being started in 45.9% of ESPN leagues right now. He should be locked in as a TE1 moving forward.

Sleeper: Tyler Eifert, Jaguars (vs. Bears)


Trey Burton, Colts (vs. Steelers): Burton has a total of two receptions for 19 yards over the past three weeks. In addition, the Steelers are allowing the second-fewest fantasy points to tight ends.