Week 16 saw heaps of fantasy title-worthy performances, led by the Dallas/New Orleans shootout that saw Dez Bryant explode yet again as his fantastic fantasy season continues. Week 16 also provided a few crippling fake football stat lines, led by Arian Foster’s unfortunate exit. In addition to reviewing the highlights and low lights from week 16, let’s also take a quick look at how the notable performers will fair in 2013 drafts, now that our fake football seasons have come to an end. Take a second to dry your eyes, and proceed…
Arian Foster: Just when fantasy owners needed their #1 draft choice the most, they were dealt a very bad hand, as Foster left Sunday’s game with an irregular heartbeat. The issue was reportedly minor, but did cost Foster the rest of the game and swung countless fake football title games. Foster will still be an unquestioned first round pick next season, but the shine is wearing thin despite another solid year.
Drew Brees: The Saints head honcho is now averaging a tasty 362 passing yards per game over the last 4 weeks, and he shredded Dallas on Sunday for 446 and 3 touchdowns. Brees will end the season with the 2nd highest interception total of his illustrious career, but the yardage and touchdown totals are still spewing fantasy gold. Brees will probably command a similar pick in 2013 as he did in 2012, in the mid-late 2nd round, which will be too rich for my blood in the QB department.
Tony Romo: Despite a healthy interception total and the standard drama surrounding the Cowboys, Romo has put together arguably his best fantasy season. Before falling short in overtime, Romo led the ‘boys back from 14 points down late in the 4th quarter on Sunday against New Orleans and finished with 416 yards and 4 touchdowns. Romo will probably be a late 4th-5th round type of quarterback in 2013 drafts, which is a moderate buy considering his weapons.
Dez Bryant: Ladies and Gentlemen, Mr. Dez Bryant is now OFFICIALLY a monster. The Dallas wide out is now 8th among NFL receivers in yardage and 2nd in touchdowns (to James Jones, yuck). The sky is the limit for Dez, who will look might fine in my top 3 wide receivers for 2013. If you have your mitts on Bryant in a dynasty league, hold on tight and consider moving him into your safety deposit box.
Russell Wilson: Russ was at it again on Sunday, throwing 4 more touchdown passes as the Seahawks crushed the 49ers. Wilson can do it all and has a future as bright as Clark Grizwold’s house in December. Wilson will be a lower end QB1-high end QB2 in 2013 fantasy drafts, but let’s hope the offseason hype machine doesn’t sap this young stud of all his draft day value.
Jamaal Charles: Did you lose your week 15 playoff game because of Charles’ 28 total yards? Me too. As an apology, Jamaal thought it would be humorous to rumble his way for 226 yards this week against Indianapolis, which included an 86 yard touchdown run. For everyone’s sake, let’s hope Kansas City figures something out at the quarterback position so Charles doesn’t get muddled in the slow moving Chiefs offense as he did in week 15 (and week 8, and week 2). JC Superstar should be a solid mid-late first rounder next season.
Ray Rice: Rice followed Jamaal Charles’ lead and rebounded in a big way in week 16, as he racked up 158 total yards and a touchdown. The PPR machine also chipped in 6 catches and demonstrated his well-rounded game, which will be a fixture in the top tier of 2013 first rounds.
Alfred Morris: Another great effort from Alfie, as the young Redskin ran for 91 yards and even added a 17 yard reception. Morris has been nothing short of sensational this season, and will most likely be an early 2nd round pick in 2013. I like my building block backs to be more involved in the passing game, but Morris will continue to get plenty of running lanes with the looming threat of RGIII in the Washington backfield.
DeAngelo Williams: In a great matchup, Williams disappointed mightily with just 48 total yards against the Raiders. My two wishes for this offseason are that Williams gets traded/cut/lost at sea and Jonathan Stewart decides to get healthy and ready to rock in 2013. Williams will be on nobody’s wish list next season, so move along…
James Jones: Even if Greg Jennings leaves Green Bay this offseason, Jones is the biggest candidate for regression since Brady Anderson hit 50 home runs in 1996. Jones now has a whopping 13 touchdowns after scoring another one on Sunday, which is a total he will not even sniff in 2013. Please let the other schmucks in your league draft Jones far too high next season.
Cecil Shorts: Shorts has been incredible this season, but has now received his 2nd concussion of the year. Cecil will sit out week 17 and hopefully spends the offseason resting up before I draft him in the 5th round of all my drafts next year expecting an encore!
Antonio Brown: Brown is one of my personal favorites at the wide receiver position and I have a strong feeling that his ankle injury this season may suppress his 2013 draft value enough to provide a nice bargain. Brown caught 5 passes for 97 yards and a score on Sunday in yet another strong effort since returning from injury. Brown’s stats through the 12 games he has played amount to 85 catches for 1,020 yards over a 16 game season. Put Antonio on your 2013 value list…I know you’ve got one!
Randall Cobb: After catching 3 passes for 62 yards and a score, Cobb left Green Bay’s week 16 game with an ankle injury. Reports claim the X-rays were negative, so Cobb shouldn’t be in jeopardy of missing any playoff games. Cobb will be a top 10-12 option next year at receiver and will be a PPR king.
Hakeem Nicks: As the Giants have crashed and burned down the stretch, Nicks has gone down along with the plane. It was all goose eggs for Nicks on Sunday against Baltimore, who has been a major disappointment while battling injury all season long. When 2013 drafts roll along, Nicks will be a decent selection as he should bounce back with some time to heal.
Lance Kendricks: Kendricks had the game of his life on Sunday, tallying 119 yards and a touchdown. This blurb only concerns the 2013 season, as Kendricks didn’t determine any fantasy titles in week 16, but the young tight end will be worth a late round pick in deeper leagues next season.
Heath Miller: Large Ben’s security blanket shredded his right knee on Sunday while the Steelers were being eliminated from playoff contention. This is a disappointing end to a career best season for Miller, who was a rock steady tight end option when Roethlisberger was healthy. I am going to go out on a limb and guess that Miller won’t heal quite as fast as Adrian Paterson, but keep an eye out for his status next summer.
Vernon Davis: Seattle’s Kam Chancellor put an abrupt end to big Vern’s night on Sunday Night Football with a MONSTROUS hit. Davis received a concussion on the play and was removed from the game immediately. 2012 has been nothing short of a disaster for Davis, who may miss additional time this season due to the injury. This hit would have killed a normal human, so give Davis credit for continuing to breathe after the collision.