Welcome to Fantasy Football Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em Quarterbacks edition for Week 16 of the NFL season. In this week’s quarterback edition, we feature a former first-overall draft pick who may still have plenty of question marks surrounding his ability to be a legitimate franchise signal-caller, yet has become a sure thing in the fantasy realm.
* Reminder: Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em is intended to present you with the non-obvious choices for your fantasy lineup. We dig deep into player matchups, scoring trends, and other factors to best help you with your fantasy decisions. Superstars such as Patrick Mahomes will not be found in this column. If you’re looking for players of his caliber check out our weekly fantasy football quarterback rankings.
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QB: Start ‘Em
Start of the Week: Jameis Winston vs. HOU
Over the last two weeks Winston has lost not one, but both of his top receivers. Yet over that same span, he ranks as the highest-scoring fantasy player at his position with an absurd 35.7 points per game. He’s now averaged 25.49 points over seven of his last eight contests. Houston has allowed an average of 25.12 fantasy points to opposing QBs over the last three weeks, along with the third-most passing yards in football over that time.
Ryan Tannehill vs. NO
Don’t shy away from Tannehill due to New Orleans’ dominant performance against a beat-up, talent-deprived Colts team this past Monday night. Prior to that game, opposing QBs had scored an average of 22.4 fantasy points over the last four games against the Saints. Since being named Tennessee’s starter, Tannehill has averaged 22.9 fantasy points, including back-to-back performances with at least 25.16 points.
Ryan Fitzpatrick vs. CIN
Fitzmagic has seemingly reemerged, as the Miami gunslinger is QB6 in fantasy over the last four weeks of play with an average of 22+ ppg. Fitzpatrick has scored fewer than 20.46 points just once over that span. The Bengals are, well, the Bengals. They allow the ninth-most fantasy points to opposing QBs this season, including surrendering eight games of 19.32+ points to the position.
Sleeper: Philip Rivers vs. OAK
Rivers is fresh off of a three-interception stinker a week ago. Not a surprising stat line when you consider the type of decline in play we’ve witnessed from the 16-year pro this season. However, he has thrown for 300+ yards in back-to-back weeks. Oh, and he gets to face off against the woeful Raiders secondary this week. Since Oakland’s Week 6 bye, QBs not named Ryan Finley have averaged 25.7 fantasy points against the Silver and Black.
Deep Sleeper: Drew Lock vs. DET
Would you dare start Drew Lock in your championship game? You could do a lot worse. Lock’s underwhelming performance a week ago can in some ways be written off due to the weather conditions. Detroit has made nearly every opposing signal-caller they’ve faced this season look like a fantasy stalwart. Eight of the last 10 opponents at the QB position to face off with the Lions have scored at least 19.32 fantasy points.
QB: Sit ‘Em
Sit of the Week: Josh Allen at NE
Allen has been extremely consistent this season, scoring 17+ fantasy points in all but two games. However, one of those two games happened to be against the Patriots where the second-year pro tossed three interceptions and put up just 11.72 points on the day. Allen has also failed to eclipse 185 passing yards in three of his last five games. The Pats allow an average of just 154.8 passing yards and 11.46 fantasy points per game to opposing QBs this season.
Baker Mayfield vs. BAL
Mayfield has failed to throw for 200 passing yards in three of his last five games. Four of the last six quarterbacks to play the Ravens have failed to even accumulate 170 passing yards against them. Since acquiring Marcus Peters, Baltimore has surrendered a meager average of just 10.95 fantasy points to the quarterback position.
Sam Darnold vs. PIT
Speaking of defenses holding QBs under 200 passing yards, since Pittsburgh’s Week 7 bye, only one QB has eclipsed 196 passing yards against them. The Steelers have surrendered an average of just 9.55 fantasy points to the position over four of their last six games.
Buyers Beware: Tom Brady vs. BUF
Since returning from his Week 10 bye, Brady has scored more than 12.92 points just once. That type of production makes him the QB21 in fantasy over that span. Brady has also thrown for 190 passing yards of fewer in three of his last four games. Buffalo surrenders the second-fewest fantasy points to opposing QBs this season, including an average of just 143 passing yards in three of their last four games.
- *Check out our other Week 16 Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Ems to further optimize your lineups
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