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    Start Philip Rivers And Joe Mixon With Confidence

    Bobby McMann December 22, 2017 11:20AM EDT
    Congratulations to those that have made it into their league’s Fantasy Football championship. You need to carefully analyze your lineup, but at this point, there should only be a couple of tough decisions to make at most. If you are not still alive in your league, there’s no better time to start thinking about next year with some dynasty analysis.

    All I Want For Christmas by Mariah Carey

    joe mixon

    Joe Mixon is expected to return to action this week, just in time for a juicy matchup against the Lions. (AP Photo/Frank Victores)

    Philip Rivers dropped a dud last week, but can you trust him to rebound in a tasty matchup against the Jets? Yes. The Jets have been getting roasted by opposing QBs pretty much all season and Rivers had been rolling until last week’s ugly performance. He’s a QB1 this week, and he can help you win your Fantasy title. Beyond this year, it is fair to wonder when Rivers will start to decline. He’s someone you can get away with as a QB1 if the rest of your team is strong, but you will probably want to upgrade. He is best used as a dynasty league QB2 at this point in his career, or as your starter for 2018 while you groom a prospect such as Patrick Mahomes.

    Antonio Gates has had a tremendous career and with Hunter Henry on IR, he might actually have some streaming appeal this week. The Jets have been stingy to the position after a rough start but if you are desperate, you can pray for a TD. In all likelihood, Gates will retire at the end of the year and Henry will be one of the most sought after TEs in Fantasy. Expect a breakout season for him in 2018.

    You’re A Mean One, Mr. Grinch by Thurl Ravenscroft

    This one is clearly for next season as you are not going to be starting DeShone Kizer in your Fantasy championship, even in Superflex and two-QB formats. Kizer is a talented but flawed player who may never end up being a start-worthy Fantasy QB. He will also play all of 2018 as a 22-year-old and as we’ve seen from Jared Goff’s ascension this year, coaching can make a huge difference. It is too early to give up on Kizer, and I am buying based on his physical gifts. In standard leagues, he’s a bench stash and in two-QB leagues, he’s worth having as a third option.

    David Njoku is a player that can make a leap in production starting next season. He struggled at times as a rookie, which we have seen most young TEs do. However, the athletic ability and explosiveness are evident in his profile. Expect Njoku to be a TE1 for a long time and that could start as early as 2018. Buy.

    Down Wit That by Chance The Rapper and Jeremih

    Joe Mixon has had a pretty nondescript rookie season, which is in part due to the terrible line situation for the Bengals. He was building some momentum in November until a concussion sidelined him for two games. Mixon is due back in the lineup against the Lions and should be back into your lineup as a Top 20 RB play. Mixon has the potential to be a complete package at the position, and he is gifted with easy RB1 ability. How he plays in the Bengals final two weeks could dictate how cheap you’ll be able to acquire him in the offseason. He’s someone to go after aggressively.

    Last Christmas by WHAM!

    Why is Demarco Murray still out-touching Derrick Henry on a regular basis? Murray is signed through 2019, but my guess would be that he doesn’t play out the end of the contract in Tennessee. There is simply no need to pay an aging RB that kind of money when you have a monster waiting in the wings. Henry is averaging 1.2 yards more per carry, but Murray continues to limit his upside. Both players will remain in the RB2-Flex range until something changes. If Murray is shown the door in the offseason, Henry’s value would explode. His owners already know this, but there is still a chance you can get him at a slight discount given the uncertainty and frustration of Murray being the lead back.

    Charlie Brown Christmas Dance by Vince Guaraldi

    It took an Antonio Brown injury, but Martavis Bryant is finally relevant again in all formats. It has been a disastrous two years for Bryant, who has taken the league by storm when not suspended. That was until this season when JuJu Smith-Schuster took the league by storm and relegated Bryant to the back burner. Bryant is a high upside WR2 with a great matchup against the Texans secondary. With rumors of a potential trade out of town in October that never came to fruition, it will be interesting to see what the future holds for the 26-year-old. Bryant will be in the last year of his deal and very affordable at that, but his transgressions off the field have held back his future earning potential and dynasty value.

    Same Old Lang Syne by Dan Fogelberg

    Jarvis Landry is a PPR machine and has been since he stepped into the league. What he doesn’t provide is explosive playmaking ability or red zone prowess (until this year’s eight TDs). His yards per reception has never been more than 12.1 over a season and is sitting below nine at the moment for 2017. Still, he is an annual threat for 1,000 yards, 100 receptions and a handful of TDs. That makes him an optimal WR2/3 for dynasty purposes. He’s a free agent at the end of the year and where he winds up will be one of the biggest stories of the offseason. He may price himself out of Miami, which has other areas of need to address before receiver. Kenny Stills is an excellent deep threat and a serviceable overall wideout. Despite the talent and glimpses of potential greatness, the Dolphins cannot be confident in what DeVante Parker has given them thus far. Leonte Carroo was drafted likely as a Landry replacement, but he cannot even get on the field regularly.

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