PIERRE GARCON WILL FINISH STRONG

Adam Ronis, Staff Writer December 28, 2012

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Pierre Garcon has at least seven targets in five straight games. Photo Credit: Keith Allison

I need two from Reggie Wayne, Pierre Garcon and Danario Alexander in a non-PPR.

Week 17 is always tricky. The biggest thing is trying to predict playing time. Some teams have nothing to play for as their playoff seeds are set or there’s little incentive to play since there’s not a big difference between a win or loss for playoff positioning. In this case, we know Garcon is going to play in a huge game for the Redskins against the Cowboys. Garcon is also playing at a high level ever since he came back from injury and played through it instead of going for surgery. Over the last five games, Garcon has at least seven targets in each game and is the featured player in the Redskins’ passing game. He has at least six points in a non-PPR in each game and the six points came with Robert Griffin III out. Garcon has three TDs in the five games and there’s a good chance he scores against the Cowboys. When he played the Cowboys on Thanksgiving, Garcon had five catches for 93 yards with a TD. Alexander came up real small in Week 15 for Fantasy owners with a zero after being one of the top receivers for weeks. He rebounded last week with three catches for 69 yards with a TD while going mostly against the Jets’ Antonio Cromartie, who has been one of the top cornerbacks this season. Outside of that Week 15 debacle, Alexander has six TDs in six games since Week 10. At 6-foot-5, Alexander can go up and get the ball. He’s a big target in the red zone and a deep threat. Alexander also has a good matchup against a bad Raiders’ defense. Wayne is tricky because the Colts have nothing to play for. They are locked into the fifth seed in the AFC. Coaches can say all they want about how they will play the game as any other game, but once the game starts things can change. Do you really expect coaches to say they won’t play it like a real game all week? Wayne might play, but there’s a good chance he doesn’t play the entire game. Since he presents the most risk for playing time, sit Wayne.

I need a WR2 between Antonio Brown, Kenny Britt or Torrey Smith?

It is clear Britt has not been healthy. He still has swelling in his left knee and will see a doctor when the season is over to figure out what is the issue. Britt has had trouble separating from defensive backs and the play at quarterback for the Titans has been erratic. With that said, Britt has three TDs in the last five games. The TD last week came very late in a lopsided game to salvage his day. Britt has three catches or less in five of his last six games so there is risk. The issue with Smith is playing time. The Ravens don’t have much to play for. They can get the third seed with a win and Patriots loss. The Patriots don’t play until 4:25 p.m. eastern and the Ravens play at 1 p.m. Smith has a lot of upside as we saw last week with five receptions for 88 yards with a TD, but a lot of downside. In four of the five games before last week, Smith combined for six receptions for 75 yards. Either way, Brown is a great play. Mike Wallace has been ruled out against the Browns, and Brown has been playing very well since coming back from injury. Brown has 37 targets the last four games and after showing the inability to score TDs last season and for most of this year, Brown has scored in three consecutive games. He has 22 receptions for 266 yards in the last four games. Brown is the best start although he could see a lot of Browns cornerback Joe Haden.

Is Jared Dudley someone to sell high on now? Can he keep this up?

Dudley began the season in the starting lineup and after 11 games mediocre play he was sent to the bench. He became a starter again on Dec. 8 but only played 18 minutes that game. Over the last eight games since that point, Dudley has played at least 33:50 minutes in every game and he has been on fire. After averaging just 8.9 points in his first 21 games, Dudley is averaging 19.4 points per game, 4.5 rebounds, 4.4 assists, 2.1 three-pointers and 1.8 steals over the last eight games. There were similar stretched last season in which Dudley flashed tremendous Fantasy production only to go cold again. I liked Dudley going into the season as good late round value and this type of stretch is exactly why. Dudley can’t keep up the numbers he has posted in the last eight games obviously. He’s someone to keep, but I would sell high on him if I could while he’s scorching. If someone is willing to give you a more consistent player, this is the perfect time to cash in.

I am dropping Byron Mullens since he is injured. Would you rather add Kawhi Leonard or Hakim Warrick?

Mullens has a sprained ankle and could be out for a while. In many leagues, owners don’t have room to hold injured players for possibly a month. The Bobcats acquired Warrick in a trade on Nov. 13 since the team needed depth at power forward. Warrick did not play in nine of his first 14 games with the Bobcats as he needed to learn the defensive rotations. With Mullens out, Warrick is going to play a lot of minutes with not much competition behind him as Tyrus Thomas (calf) is injured, too. Warrick had 18 points and nine rebounds against the Heat on Wednesday in 38 minutes. While Warrick will be added in a lot of leagues, he doesn’t offer much outside of points and rebounds. As a starter in his NBA career, Warrick is averaging 14.4 points, 6.5 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 0.7 steals and 0.5 blocks while shooting 49.7 percent. Leonard is not going to score or rebound as much as Warrick, so if you need those categories than Warrick is the better add. Overall, I take Leonard. He is better long term as Warrick will lose playing time when Mullens returns. Leonard is averaging 10.8 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.4 assists in 12 games. Those numbers aren’t eye-popping, but Leonard shoots 49.5 percent from the field, 90.9 percent from the foul line (just 1.8 attempts per game), 2.3 steals and 1.1 three-pointers. Leonard is starting for the Spurs and can do a little of everything. He is just 21 years old and going to get better.

All stats entering Friday December 28.

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