Hogs & Dogs: Week 16
It’s championship week folks, and here to provide you with the best fantasy advice and content on the interwebs, are the FF Gurus. It better be championship week this week for your league(s). If it’s not, might be time to hit the old dusty trail. With that being said, if you’ve made it this far, congratulations. And if you’re playing in a third place game, that’s great as well. It’s now time to cut bait on all those handcuffs, since they obviously aren’t usable this week, and the season is done-zo after that. Last week had some ups and down from a Hogs and Dogs standpoint, so here’s hoping I can give you that better info this week. Let’s win some ships!
This article is our Wednesday special, our weekly start and sit article that we like to get out to you before Thursday’s games. While discussing starts and sits in Hogs and Dogs, we also like to sprinkle in some buy lows, sell highs, and contrarian views that might not exactly mesh with what the majority of other experts are saying. We want to give you a different perspective of the NFL while also delivering some helpful advice that can translate to success in your leagues. Here we go…
Ben Roethlisberger – Couldn’t really tell you exactly why, but I like Big Ben this week. I think he’s out for some revenge after losing to Baltimore earlier this year. It’s also a division showdown, so you know both teams are going go balls to the wall. Baltimore needs a win for any hope of tasting the playoffs and the Steelers want to move up the playoff seed standings. He threw it 45 times last matchup and has excelled at home this year. In Large Benjamin, I will place my trust.
Jordan Howard – A guy I haven’t been high on all year (incorrectly, I might add) has a juicy matchup this week in Washington, who just got gashed by a personal favorite of mine Jonathan Stewart. Howard has been in the double digits in points in four straight and hasn’t dipped below 9.00 points since week seven. Howard has been one of the most consistent backs this year, with just two games under that 9.00 point mark. He scored 3.10 in week two and 2.20 in week seven. Talk about a model of consistency. And talk about being flat out wrong about a guy. Oops. All systems go for Howard this week.
Mark Ingram – Will the squeaky wheel get the grease seems to be a hot question every week in New Orleans. First Brandin Cooks, and now Ingram. I thought Ingram played really well last week against a stingy Arizona defense, but for some reason, Payton didn’t let him punch in either of the short two scores and instead left that up to Hightower. Playing a spoiler role this year, the Saints should again give Ingram 15 plus carries after only seeing seven for three out of four weeks. Expect him to see an increase in pass work as well. Marky Mark is a sneaky RB2 play this week.
Bilal Powell – Not a huge fan of Powell’s game because of his size, but think he could get some quality garbage time play this week against the Pats. He’s played well in his last two despite this and even though the Pats may key in on him, once they get up big I think Powell will benefit from check downs and screens. This is a risky play as we can never predict game flow, but I expect the Pats to demolish New York this weekend. Santa comes early!
Malcolm Mitchell – This is a close one with Chris Hogan, but I like Mitchell a little bit more this week. Before last week’s obviously tough matchup, Mitchell has put up at least 8.20 points in four straight games. I think he’s a little safer than Hogey Bear this week and that’s why I prefer him. If you need the higher upside, Desean Jackson-esque play, then maybe go with Hogan. But overall I like Mitchell better this week and think he could be in for a huge game against the Jets, who have no interest in showing up for these last two weeks of the season.
Adrian Peterson – All Day is currently unsure if he’ll be playing this weekend, but even if he is I don’t think you can take the chance. I love the talent, just as all of us do, but I think we need to see at least one game of him back in action and playing the way we know and love. His offensive line is also in shambles, so even when he was healthy earlier this year he wasn’t finding anything. If you’ve made it this far, do you really want to take your chances with the Purple Jesus on a potentially gimpy knee? Then again, it will be Christmas this weekend.
Terrelle Pryor – Rrrrellllll! Holy smokes, RG3 is not a good quarterback. Pryor has seen just 11 targets over the past two weeks and that’s resulted in five catches for 22 yards. Yowza! I like the talent with Pryor but unfortunately, these next two weeks will not be kind to him, especially an unappetizing matchup with Casey Hayward. Pryor has had some trouble getting on the same page with RG3 and faces continuous badgering from off the field situations. This week it was former Brown great Brian Hartline saying he thinks Pryor is barely a number two receiver for a team. Things are not trending in the right direction.
Alshon Jeffery – Rough matchup city, facing Josh Norman and the Redskins who need to win out to have a chance at the playoffs. Jeffery and quarterback Matt Barkley couldn’t get on the same page until the fourth quarter last week, and I think Norman will be able to keep Jeffery mostly under wraps. I’m not expecting a dud from Jeffery this week, but I don’t see more than WR3 potential, either. Ultimately, this will play out as a Jordan Howard (see above) and Cameron Meredith game, something my co-worker Doug Eddy can certainly agree with me on. This was not the ideal (contract) year for Jeffery, who will probably be finding a new home this offseason. Tampa Bay or Tennessee anyone?
Hunter Henry – Henry is really shaping up to be a great tight end and I think we’ll be hearing his name for years to come. But, the Chargers and Philip Rivers are quite set on getting Antonio Gates his tight end touchdown record. Gates needs three touchdowns to tie and four to surpass (obviously) the all-time record held by Tony Gonzalez with two games to go. Henry is probably the better tight end at this point (and doesn’t need a wheelchair to get around the field), but I think Rivers will be force feeding him these next two weeks so he doesn’t have to play next year.
Greg Olsen – I feel like I’m consistently putting at least two to three tight ends on these lists every week, and I have absolutely no clue why since the position is a hot bag of nuts. Olsen banged up his elbow last week against Washington and will be on a pretty short week going from Monday to Saturday. I think Atlanta actually keys in on the tight end position this week after giving up 76 yards and a touchdown to Olsen last time they played. Olsen has been held under double-digit fantasy points for six straight weeks and I actually think that continues this week as he struggles to find the end zone (only 3 TDs). He’s probably the best option you have at this point, but just be aware that his production could be down this week.
And that wraps us up. Good luck this week everyone. Remember to send us your lineup questions on Twitter @TFFGurus, @TheFantasyBoys, and @DaFantasyFather, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re here to help you, and if you can’t get enough of the Gurus be sure to check out Trophy Time, our twice a week podcast that you can find on iTunes, Google Play, etc. Also, if you have a player that you want to be covered in Hogs & Dogs please email or tweet us that player. I’d love to tackle a player or situation each week that either slipped my mind or I wasn’t going to originally include. So send in your conundrums and we’ll try to include some info for you! Finally, make sure to check out and follow our Facebook page, The Fantasy Football Gurus.