Fantasy football advice, Week 16: Who to start/sit for Falcons vs. Saints
One of these teams is probably going to the playoffs … somehow.
Somehow, the winner of the Week 16 game between a 6-8 team and a 5-9 one has a good shot at a playoff spot. It’s the awfulness of the NFC South, and the New Orleans Saints and Atlanta Falcons face off Sunday as the two battle — along with the Carolina Panthers — to be the season’s worst playoff team.
The Falcons have injury concerns throughout their receiving corps. All three of the team’s top receivers — Julio Jones, Roddy White, Harry Douglas — were on the weekly injury report. Jones, still dealing with a hip issue, is clearly the biggest worry. The team hasn’t announced for sure whether he’ll be active Sunday, and there’s the risk that he’ll be active only as a decoy. The Saints, meanwhile, only had three names on their entire injury report for the week, and none of the three is fantasy-relevant.
The Saints will host the game Sunday, scheduled for 1 p.m. ET. Here’s a look at the fantasy names to consider:
Start ‘em: No matter who plays at receiver for Atlanta, Matt Ryan makes for an intriguing play, going against a bad defense in a dome. With all his receivers, he’s a top-six or top-seven quarterback; even if he’s down a guy, he’s top 10. … Steven Jackson has played much better of late, and against New Orleans he’s a sure RB2. … No matter what happens with his high-profile teammate, Roddy White is a must-start receiver. … Matt Bryant has been a top-flight kicker for several weeks now, and is an easy must-start.
Start ‘em?: At this point, even if Julio Jones plays, I’m pretty loathe to play him — it’s hard to imagine he’ll be anywhere near full strength. Meanwhile, Harry Douglas is an increasingly appealing option, and if Jones is ruled out, I think he becomes close to a must-start.
Sit ‘em: There’s just nothing going on for Levine Toilolo in fantasy. … The Falcons’ defense isn’t anywhere near fantasy-useful.
Start ‘em: Maybe Week 14 was a blip, because Drew Brees put up 11 that week but 27, 30 and 27 in the games around it. He looks like a top-flight option. … You’re probably still using Mark Ingram, but where he was a low-end RB1 a few weeks back, he’s now more like a low-end RB2. … I’ll admit to some concern over Jimmy Graham‘s health, but he’s still Jimmy Graham, and you’re still using him.
Sit ‘em: Neither Pierre Thomas nor Khiry Robinson is much of a fantasy option; they’re mainly there to hurt Ingram’s stock. … Shayne Graham hasn’t reached double-digit fantasy points in any of his last seven games. … The Saints’ defense did great against the Bears in Week 15, but had four straight negative fantasy games before that.
Start in every league: Matt Ryan, Steven Jackson, Roddy White, Matt Bryant, Drew Brees, Mark Ingram, Jimmy Graham
Start if you’re desperate: Julio Jones, Harry Douglas, Kenny Stills, Marques Colston
Bench: Levine Toilolo, Atlanta defense, Pierre Thomas, Khiry Robinson, Shayne Graham, New Orleans defense