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Fantasy targets and touches: Week 16

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It wouldn't be a complete fantasy football season without one completely bonkers week in the fantasy playoffs. For the 2018 season, that was this week. Unexpected heroes rose from unsuspecting teams to obliterate opponents or rack up meaningless mountains of points on benches. Plenty of fantasy championship dreams crumbled under the weight of 40 or even 50-point outings, depending on league rules.

I touch on all of this and more below. Read it and weep. Or read it and try to find an advantage to battle through to the fantasy championship. We're only two weeks away.

For more on how to use this article/what the stats mean, click here.

KEY

percent TS = percentage of total team passing targets player received
percent AY = percentage of total team air yards player received

Los Angeles Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs


Chargers

Backfield
Justin Jackson, RB - 19 touches (Wk 14: 9, Wk 13: 9, Wk 12: 7), 74 percent snap share

Melvin Gordon and Austin Ekeler both missed this contest, so the Chargers turned to rookie Justin Jackson to shoulder the load. He did well, managing 58 yards and a touchdown on the ground and three catches for 27 yards through the air. Gordon was close to returning this week, and once he does (likely next week) Jackson will become bench/waiver-wire fodder. .

Passing game
Tyrell Williams, WR - 32 percent TS, 41 percent AY
Justin Jackson, RB - 11 percent TS, 3 percent AY
Mike Williams, WR - 24 percent TS, 24 percent AY

Keenan Allen suffered a hip pointer injury and could miss some time, which means it's Mike Williams' time to shine. The second-year man showed up big time on Thursday night, catching seven passes for 77 yards and two touchdowns, while also rushing for a score as well. With Allen possibly on the shelf until the playoffs, Williams will be a plug-and-play starter in fantasy championships thanks to his combination of volume and red-zone ability. Tyrell Williams carries a bit more risk, but is worth a shot as well.

Chiefs

Backfield
Damien Williams,, RB - 16 touches (Wk 14: 12, Wk 13: 7, Wk 12: BYE), 74 percent snap share

Williams scored two touchdowns on Thursday, bringing his total over the last two weeks to four. He's a strong pass-catcher, boosting his fantasy value significantly. Even if Spencer Ware returns next week, Williams will be a solid flex option.

Passing game
Travis Kelce, TE - 26 percent TS, 38 percent AY
Tyreek Hill, WR - 21 percent TS, 44 percent AY
Damien Williams, RB - 18 percent TS, 0 percent AY

The Chargers defense stifled the Chiefs passing attack after a couple early scores, holding both Kelce and a banged up Hill to under 100 yards. They should bounce back next week, though, as Hill has an extended time to heal up from a heel injury he's been fighting for a few weeks.

Houston Texans at New York Jets


Texans

Backfield
Lamar Miller, RB – 3 touches (Wk 14: 19, Wk 13: 20, Wk 12: 13), 20 percent snap share
Alfred Blue, RB – 11 touches (Wk 14: 6, Wk 13: 13, Wk 12: 14), 78 percent snap share

The Texans' offensive line issues flared up in this Saturday night affair, and things went from bad to worse when Lamar Miller injured his ankle early on. If he can't go next week, Blue makes for a solid replacement.

Passing game
DeAndre Hopkins, WR - 39 percent TS, 72 percent AY
Demaryius Thomas, WR - 26 percent TS, 16 percent AY
DeAndre Carter, WR - 11 percent TS, 9 percent AY

With the running game non-existent, the Texans relied on the passing game to move the sticks and score. Hopkins had one of his biggest games of the year when fantasy managers needed it most, dropping 10 catches for 170 yards and two touchdowns on the unsuspecting Jets secondary.

Jets

Backfield
Elijah McGuire, RB - 20 touches (Wk 14: 20, Wk 13: 7, Wk 12: 7), 74 percent snap share

Isaiah Crowell's foot injury landed him on injured reserve, so this was the Elijah McGuire show. McGuire struggled to move the pile on the ground, but found the end zone and added three catches for 29 yards.

Passing game
Jermaine Kearse, WR - 14 percent TS, 14 percent AY
Elijah McGuire, RB - 11 percent TS, 8 percent AY
Robby Anderson, WR - 30 percent TS, 51 percent AY

This was one of Sam Darnold's better games in awhile, and it's clear from the last two weeks that he favors Anderson. He's received 29 percent of Darnold's targets the last two weeks, catching a touchdown in each. He's a nice high-upside WR3 of flex to use in championships next week against the Packers.

Cleveland Browns at Denver Broncos


Browns

Backfield
Duke Johnson Jr., RB - 8 touches (Wk 14: 2, Wk 13: 2, Wk 12:, 3), 39 percent snap share
Nick Chubb, RB - 20 touches (Wk 14: 17, Wk 13: 12, Wk 12: 31,), 59 percent snap share

This was the most involvement Johnson has seen in over a month, as he hadn't seen more than four targets in a game since November 4 against the Chiefs. Still, Chubb is the workhorse here and that doesn't figure to change anytime soon.

Passing game
Jarvis Landry, WR - 27 percent TS, 23 percent AY
Antonio Calloway, WR - 20 percent TS, 14 percent AY
Duke Johnson, RB - 17 percent TS, 5 percent AY

Landry led the Browns with 37 yards, exemplifying what a ho-hum day at the office it was for Baker Mayfield and Cleveland passing attack. The Broncos defense is a formidable foe in Denver, though, so don't read too much into this. Mayfield is spreading the ball around a lot, though, removing the fantasy shine from options not named Jarvis Landry.

Broncos

Backfield
Royce Freeman, RB - 5 touches (Wk 14: 6, Wk 13: 12, Wk 12: 6), 24 percent snap share
Phillip Lindsay, RB - 20 touches (Wk 14: 18, Wk 13: 20, Wk 12: 14), 53 percent snap share

Lindsay and Freeman combined for 31 yards on 18 carries, and Case Keenum ran in Denver's only touchdown. Yeesh. This was a game to forget for this backfield.

Passing game
Phillip Lindsay, RB - 13 percent TS, 0 percent AY
DaeSean Hamilton, WR - 26 percent TS, 125 percent AY
Tim Patrick, WR - 17 percent TS, 21 percent AY

Hamilton received 12 targets in this game and led the team in air yards by a wide margin, so the peripherals are there for him to be a flex-worthy player. Putting faith in Case Keenum in championships next week is risky, though, so proceed with caution.

Green Bay Packers at Chicago Bears


Packers

Backfield
Jamaal Williams, RB - 4 touches (Wk 14: 4, Wk 13: 11, Wk 12: 1), 87 percent snap share
Aaron Jones, RB - 20 touches (Wk 14: 20, Wk 13: 15, Wk 12: 20), 10 percent snap share

Aaron Jones left this game with what is now believed to be an MCL sprain, the same injury he suffered last year that kept him out of two games. Williams will be the lead back down the stretch and offers volume-based upside. He's a tough runner and capable pass-catcher but lacks Jones' trademark vision and explosiveness.

Passing game
Davante Adams, WR - 31 percent TS, 37 percent AY
Randall Cobb, WR - 17 percent TS, 25 percent AY
Jamaal Williams, RB - 12 percent TS, 0 percent AY

Another week, another rockstar performance from Adams, who caught eight passes for 119 yards. Cobb only caught three of his seven targets, but Aaron Rodgers missed him on two deep passes where Cobb was wide open. If Cobb sticks with the team next year, he could be a solid bounce-back candidate in fantasy. Rodgers will have to rid himself of the troubling development this season of his weekly bouts with inaccuracy.

Bears

Backfield
Jordan Howard, RB - 20 touches (Wk 14: 20, Wk 13: 8, Wk 12: 8) 58 percent snap share
Tarik Cohen, RB - 10 touches (Wk 14: 13, Wk 13: 10, Wk 12: 10), 63 percent snap share

The Bears offense wasn't spectacular, but it didn't need to be. The ground game moved the chains, while Mitchell Trubisky was efficient and mistake-free. Howard found the end zone on the ground while Cohen did through the air. Both will be worthy starts when the Bears take on the plucky 49ers next week.

Passing game
Allen Robinson, WR - 25 percent TS, 36 percent AY
Tarik Cohen, RB - 21 percent TS, 4 percent AY
Taylor Gabriel, WR - 11 percent TS, 11 percent AY
Trey Burton, TE - 25 percent TS, 29 percent AY

As mentioned above, the Bears didn't ask too much of Trubisky and he delivered just what they needed. Robinson made a few big plays, but ultimately his 3-54-0 line was a bit disappointing. Burton's seven targets marked only the second time he has seen more than five in a game since the Bears' showdown with the Patriots back in October. Don't chase this surge in involvement that only resulted in a 4-37-1 line.

Miami Dolphins at Minnesota Vikings


Dolphins

Backfield
Kenyan Drake, RB - 4 touches (Wk 14: 7, Wk 13: 13, Wk 12: 13), 53 percent snap share
Kalen Ballage, RB - 13 touches (Wk 14: 0, Wk 13: 3, Wk 12: 3), 49 percent snap share

Frank Gore left this game early with an ankle injury, yet somehow Drake was still ignored. This time, it was in favor of rookie Kalen Ballage, who made Adam Gase look like a genius when he ripped off an impressive 75-yard touchdown run. Starting Drake is the fantasy equivalent of Lucy pulling the football away from Charlie Brown. At some point, fantasy owners need to stop attempting this kick.

Passing game
Kenyan Drake, RB - 14 percent TS, 0 percent AY
Danny Amendola, WR - 32 percent TS, 38 percent AY
Kenny Stills, WR - 14 percent TS, 38 percent AY

Ryan Tannehill was sacked nine times for 71 yards and completed just 11 passes for 108 yards. Amendola led the way in catches (three) and receiving yards (30). It's honestly hard for a professional passing attack to perform this poorly for 60 minutes.

Vikings

Backfield
Dalvin Cook, RB - 20 touches (Wk 14: 18, Wk 13: 17, Wk 12: 13), 59 percent snap share
Latavius Murray, RB - 15 touches (Wk 14: 3, Wk 13: 6, Wk 12: 11), 41 percent snap share

Erstwhile offensive coordinator John DeFilippo was let go, largely because he refused to heed the urgings of his head coach and run the ball. So it's no surprise newly appointed OC Kevin Stefanski committed to the run from the outset. The results are sure to put a smile on his head coach's face. Cook and Murray rushed 34 times for 204 yards and three touchdowns as Minnesota routed the Dolphins and posted a new game-high for scoring for the team this season.

Passing game
Adam Thielen, WR - 10 percent TS, 12 percent AY
Dalvin Cook, RB - 14 percent TS, 0 percent AY
Stefon Diggs, WR - 33 percent TS, 31 percent AY

Thielen's two targets were the fewest he's seen all season, and feel more like an aberration and result of game flow more than a new sea change in the offensive philosophy. I'd still confidently start him next week when the Vikings face the Lions.

Detroit Lions at Buffalo Bills


Lions

Backfield
LeGarrette Blount, RB - 7 touches (Wk 14: 14, Wk 13: 16, Wk 12: 19), 18 percent snap share
Zach Zenner, RB - 13 touches (Wk 14: 12, Wk 13: 1, Wk 12: 3), 46 percent snap share
Theo Riddick, RB - 12 touches (Wk 14: 10, Wk 13: 11, Wk 12: 6), 43 percent snap share

Zenner has now scored in back-to-back weeks despite fighting for touches in a three-way committee. If Kerryon Johnson returns this committee will largely disappear, but in a lost season it's possible the Lions try to preserve their young star. That could make Zenner a flex-worthy option in championships, albeit a risky one. His playing time percentage rose by 20 points from last week to this week.

Passing game
Kenny Golladay, WR - 30 percent TS, 69 percent AY
Theo Riddick, RB - 10 percent TS, 0 percent AY
Levine Toilolo, TE - 13 percent TS, 12 percent AY

Golladay's reception and yardage totals had dropped in four straight games coming into this contest with one of the league's toughest defenses. So naturally, he pops off for a seven-catch, 146-yard outing. Fantasy is frustrating sometimes, there's really nothing else to say about this.

Bills

Backfield
Keith Ford, RB - 15 touches (n/a), 59 percent snap share

Josh Allen did not lead the Bills in rushing for the fourth straight game. His streak was ended by Ford, who became the lead back through attrition after Marcus Murphy left with an injury. LeSean McCoy and Chris Ivory should return soon, though, making Ford's performance merely a nice little footnote in the NFL story this season.

Passing game
Robert Foster, WR - 19 percent TS, 31 percent AY
Zay Jones, WR - 23 percent TS, 35 percent AY
Isaiah McKenzie, WR - 27 percent TS, 10 percent AY

Foster has posted 94-plus yards in four of his last five games, despite not seeing an immense amount of targets per game in that span. Low-volume deep threats are risky in fantasy, but the big-game potential could be enticing against the Patriots this week.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Baltimore Ravens


Buccaneers

Backfield
Peyton Barber, RB - 21 touches (Wk 14: 15, Wk 13: 16, Wk 12: 20), 67 percent snap share

Barber doesn't appear to be taking these opportunities for granted, as he ran really hard against the Ravens, gutting out 85 yards and a touchdown on 19 carries. He's quietly been a reasonably reliable option down the stretch and makes for a nice low-ceiling flex play in championships next week.

Passing game
Chris Godwin, WR - 12 percent TS, 12 percent AY
Mike Evans, WR - 33 percent TS, 12 percent AY
Adam Humphries, WR - 25 percent TS, 73 percent AY

The normally explosive Bucs passing attack was defused by the Ravens secondary. Evans was the only one to produce, notching four catches for 121 yards. This group gets another tough draw with the Cowboys on deck in Week 16.

Ravens

Backfield
Gus Edwards, RB - 19 touches (Wk 14: 16, Wk 13: 9, Wk 12: 23), 45 percent snap share
Kenneth Dixon, RB - 12 touches (Wk 14: 9, Wk 13: 9, Wk 12: n/a), 50 percent snap share

Dixon out-snapped Edwards, but the Ravens clearly like what the big guy offers between the tackles as he handled 19 carries to Dixon's 11, taking them for 104 yards and his second touchdown of the year.

Passing game
Mark Andrews, TE - 18 percent TS, 31 percent AY
Willie Snead, WR - 27 percent TS, 32 percent AY
John Brown, WR - 14 percent TS, 25 percent AY

The Ravens are winning with their old-school approach, even if it's breaking the hearts of fantasy enthusiasts who were relying on Brown or Crabtree earlier in the year. Oh well, good for the Ravens. Here's to hoping they ride this wave into the postseason.

Arizona Cardinals at Atlanta Falcons


Cardinals

Backfield
David Johnson, RB - 16 touches (Wk 14: 23, Wk 13: 21, Wk 12: 19), 49 percent snap share

Johnson found the end zone on the ground and racked up 68 yards on three receptions, saving an otherwise disastrous outing in the fantasy playoffs. He saw less than usual as the Cardinals benched some starters with the game completely out of hand.

Passing game
Ricky Seals-Jones, TE - 22 percent TS, 19 percent AY
Larry Fitzgerald, WR - 22 percent TS, 44 percent AY
David Johnson, RB - 17 percent TS, 12 percent AY

Fitzgerald posted solid numbers, catching seven of his eight targets for 82 yards. This is a lost season for Fitz and the Cardinals in general. Hopefully, he comes back next year and can enjoy a little more success before calling it quits on a Hall of Fame career.

Falcons

Backfield
Tevin Coleman, RB - 11 touches (Wk 14: 11, Wk 13: 7, Wk 12: 11), 50 percent snap share
Ito Smith, RB - 11 touches (Wk 14: 14, Wk 13: 8, Wk 12: 6) 44 percent snap share

Just when Smith appeared to be taking the leading duties away from Coleman, he breaks out for an impressive 11-145-1 game on the ground, aided in large part by a 65-yard touchdown scamper. I'd be hesitant to start either back next week, though, as they travel on the road to face the Panthers, who are tough on opposing runners.

Passing game
Julio Jones, WR - 20 percent TS, 24 percent AY
Calvin Ridley, WR - 20 percent TS, 21 percent AY
Mohamed Sanu, WR - 17 percent TS, 14 percent AY

Jones was held without a touchdown in his first seven games of the season but has scored six in his last seven.

Oakland Raiders at Cincinnati Bengals


Raiders

Backfield
Doug Martin, RB - 9 touches (Wk 14: 16, Wk 13: 19, Wk 12: 14), 46 percent snap share
Jalen Richard, RB - 9 touches (Wk 14: 9, Wk 13: 9, Wk 12: 3), 51 percent snap share

Martin's nine carries for 39 yards were a downer after a string of successful fantasy performances. Those bold enough to flex Richard were rewarded with five catches for 67 yards.

Passing game
Jared Cook, TE - 13 percent TS, 23 percent AY
Jordy Nelson, WR - 21 percent TS, 37 percent AY
Jalen Richard, RB - 16 percent TS, 9 percent AY

Nelson offered a nice PPR outing for the third week in a row, catching six passes for 88 yards. However, the most notable (and frustrating stat) for this Raiders offense belongs to Lee Smith. Over the last three weeks, Smith has three targets, three catches, and three touchdowns. Thanks for nothing, Jon Gruden.

Bengals

Backfield
Joe Mixon, RB - 29 touches (Wk 14: 31, Wk 13: 14, Wk 12: 21), 67 percent snap share
Giovani Bernard, RB - 8 touches (Wk 14: 5, Wk 13: 11, Wk 12: 2), 35 percent snap share

Mixon is putting the injury-ravaged Bengals offense on his back of late, rushing for 240 yards and three scores over the last two weeks. Expect more of the same this week when the Bengals take on the Browns

Passing game
Tyler Boyd, WR - 16 percent TS, 62 percent AY
C.J. Uzomah, TE - 16 percent TS, 14 percent AY
John Ross, WR - 16 percent TS, 0 percent AY<

Cancel the Bengals passing attack. Andy Dalton, A.J. Green, Tyler Eifert, and now Tyler Boyd. Boyd suffered an MCL sprain, which could keep him out the rest of the season. There's no reason whatsoever to consider the rest of this bunch in fantasy in Week 16, as there's simply too much uncertainty surrounding this whole group and who, if anyone, will step up and receive the lion's share of targets.

Tennessee Titans at New York Giants


Titans

Backfield
Dion Lewis, RB - 10 touches (Wk 14: 15, Wk 13: 8, Wk 12: 11), 33 percent snap share
Derrick Henry, RB – 34 touches (Wk 14: 17, Wk 13: 12, Wk 12: 9), 70 percent snap share

Maybe this is Henry's backfield now? This was the second time all year where Henry out-snapped Lewis, and his 34 touches are a new career high. Henry has scored seven touchdowns in his last three games, and at this point, it's going to be hard to keep him out of championship lineups. He finished this game with 33 carries, 170 yards and two touchdowns.

Passing game
Corey Davis, WR - 29 percent TS, 0 percent AY
Dion Lewis, RB - 14 percent TS, 28 percent AY
Taywan Taylor, WR - 24 percent TS, 47 percent AY

With Henry once again dominating on the ground, the Titans passing attack was able to lay an egg. Marcus Mariota finished with 88 passing yards, and his leading receiver was Davis with 33.

Giants

Backfield
Saquon Barkley, RB - 18 touches (Wk 14: 18, Wk 13: 27, Wk 12: 20), 100 percent snap share

Barkley found no room to work against the Titans defense, both on the ground and through the air. His 56 total yards represent his lowest output of the season.

Passing game
Sterling Shepard., WR - 20 percent TS, 42 percent AY
Evan Engram, TE - 27 percent TS, 18 percent AY
Saquon Barkley, RB - 23 percent TS, 1 percent AY

Odell Beckham Jr. was out again, and the Giants offense clearly missed him. The Titans smothered the passing attack, forcing Eli Manning to complete fewer than 50 percent of his passes for 229 yards, no touchdowns, and one interception. Engram posted a solid 8-75-0, but other than that this was a night to forget for the Giants.

Washington Redskins at Jacksonville Jaguars


Redskins

Backfield
Adrian Peterson, RB - 21 touches (Wk 14: 11, Wk 13: 9, Wk 12: 14), 57 percent snap share
Chris Thompson, RB - 6 touches (Wk 14: 6, Wk 13: 6, Wk 12: n/a), 398 percent snap share

If you were forced to go with Peterson, he gutted out 71 total yards at least. Thompson saw just two targets. Running quarterbacks like Josh Johnson are less prone to checkdowns given their natural escapability in the pocket.

Passing game
Jamison Crowder, WR - 16 percent TS, 18 percent AY
Jeremy Sprinkle, TE - 12 percent TS, 2 percent AY

Johnson hooked up with Sprinkle for a touchdown, but otherwise, there's really nothing to report from this passing attack.

Jaguars

Backfield
Leonard Fournette, RB - 14 touches (Wk 14: 16, Wk 13: n/a, Wk 12: 21), 53 percent snap share

Cody Kessler led the Jaguars in rushing, with 68 yards on his six attempts. So . . . yeah.

Passing game
Dede Westbrook, WR - 29 percent TS, 33 percent AY
Leonard Fournette, RB - 24 percent TS, 0 percent AY
T.J. Yeldon, RB - 18 percent TS, 0 percent AY

Westbrook led this group with three catches for 21 yards. Barf.

Dallas Cowboys at Indianapolis Colts


Cowboys

Backfield
Ezekiel Elliott, RB - 25 touches (Wk 14: 40, Wk 13: 29, Wk 12: 31), 89 percent snap share

Elliott got his volume as usual, but the Cowboys were shut out and Zeke suffered along with the whole offense. He hauled in seven receptions for PPR players, though.

Passing game
Amari Cooper, WR - 16 percent TS, 32 percent AY
Blake Jarwin, TE - 18 percent TS, 27 percent AY
Ezekiel Elliott, RB - 21 percent TS, 0 percent AY

Dak Prescott threw for just 206 yards on 39 attempts, and no player for Dallas recorded more than 45 receiving yards. Cooper's insane run hit a speed bump here, but he's a good bet to rebound next week.

Colts

Backfield
Marlon Mack, RB - 28 touches (Wk 14: 14, Wk 13: 9, Wk 12: 17), 64 percent snap share
Nyheim Hines, RB - 10 touches (Wk 14: 18, Wk 13: 13, Wk 12: 11), 36 percent snap share

Welcome back, Marlon Mack. Invoking the form he displayed midseason, Mack gashed the Cowboys front for 139 yards and two touchdowns on 27 carries. He helped the Colts salt away the clock while their defense dominated the Dallas offense.

Passing game
Nyheim Hines, RB - 23 percent TS, 6 percent AY
T.Y. Hilton, WR - 31 percent TS, 63 percent AY
Eric Ebron, TE - 12 percent TS, 16 percent AY

Luck wasn't required to do too much in this game against the stout Dallas defense, but he did more than enough for the Colts to get a win. Volume was down across the board, but Hilton still posted a strong outing with five catches and 85 yards.

Seattle Seahawks at San Francisco 49ers


Seahawks

Backfield
Mike Davis, RB - 13 touches (Wk 14: 4, Wk 13: 4, Wk 12: 4), 42 percent snap share
Chris Carson, RB - 28 touches (Wk 14: 22, Wk 13: 16, Wk 12: 18), 55 percent snap share

Carson, when healthy, runs like a man possessed. Need proof? Watch him break several tackles on his short-yardage touchdown plunge. He's the lead back in this offense. If Davis' involvement in the passing game was more consistent he'd be a flex option, but for now, he's too much of a gamble to start.

Passing game
Doug Baldwin, WR - 19 percent TS, 43 percent AY
Mike Davis, RB - 26 percent TS, 0 percent AY
Chris Carson, RB - 19 percent TS, 0 percent AY

Davis and Carson ranked one and two this week in terms of receptions, but Baldwin did the most damage in terms of yardage (77) and touchdowns (two). Good to see Baldwin back in the mix . . . unless you started Tyler Lockett, who saw just two targets here.

49ers

Backfield
Matt Breida, RB - 22 touches (Wk 14: n/a, Wk 13: 8, Wk 12: 17), 74 percent snap share

Breida returned to the starting lineup and his workhorse role. Jeff Wilson Jr. didn't disappear, though, taking his seven rushes for 46 yards.

Passing game
George Kittle, TE - 29 percent TS, 44 percent AY
Dante Pettis, WR - 18 percent TS, 22 percent AY
Matt Breida, RB - 14 percent TS, 0 percent AY

Pettis will likely be atop most offseason fantasy sleeper columns this summer after the strong finish he's put together in 2018. Kittle's 3-51-0 line will disappoint plenty, but he's always contributing and has a sky-high ceiling. He'll be a top-five tight end next year with Jimmy Garoppolo back under center.

New England Patriots at Pittsburgh Steelers


Patriots

Backfield
Sony Michel, RB - 13 touches (Wk 14: 20, Wk 13: 18, Wk 12: 23), 32 percent snap share
James White, RB - 7 touches (Wk 14: 6, Wk 13: 13, Wk 12: 10), 43 percent snap share
Rex Burkhead, RB - 7 touches (Wk 14: 5, Wk 13: 9, Wk 12: n/a), 29 percent snap share

Burkhead's return has resurrected the ghost of Belitricks, as no back from this bunch can be trusted. Burkhead is siphoning rush attempts from Michel and targets from White, with the result being a near three-way split in playing time and opportunities. I'd steer clear of this bunch in championship matchups if possible.

Passing game
Rob Gronkowski, TE - 14 percent TS, 22 percent AY
Julian Edelman, WR - 31 percent TS, 23 percent AY
James White, WR - 19 percent TS, 3 percent AY

Aside from an early touchdown to Chris Hogan on a broken coverage, Tom Brady looked off in this game. Nothing was working for the Patriots aside from short passes to Edelman and White. Things don't get any easier next week when the Bills come to town either. It might be worth considering streaming options instead of Brady if your championship is on the line next week (maybe Baker Mayfield, or Sam Darnold, for instance).

Steelers

Backfield
Jaylen Samuels, RB - 21 touches (Wk 14: 18, Wk 13: 5, Wk 12: 1), 66 percent snap share

Stevan Ridley took a backseat to let the Jaylen Samuels show premier. Samuels looked phenomenal, rushing for 142 yards and adding in 30 more through the air. If James Conner is out again next week, Samuels will have RB1 upside against the Saints.

Passing game
JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR - 30 percent TS, 36 percent AY
Antonio Brown, WR - 21 percent TS, 27 percent AY
James Washington, WR - 12 percent TS, 21 percent AY

No Steelers wideout put up monster numbers, but when this group needed to make plays they did. Brown and Vance McDonald were the recipients of Ben Roethlisberger's two touchdowns, while Smith-Schuster led the way in targets and air yards, which slowly is becoming the norm for the Steelers.

Philadelphia Eagles at Los Angeles Rams


Eagles

Backfield
Darren Sproles, RB - 6 touches (Wk 14: 4, Wk 13: 9, Wk 12: 7), 31 percent snap share
Josh Adams, RB - 15 touches (Wk 14: 7, Wk 13: 4, Wk 12: n/a), 38 percent snap share
Wendell Smallwood, RB - 12 touches (Wk 7: 1, Wk 13: 4, Wk 12: n/a), 31 percent snap share

The Eagles reverted back to a full-blown committee, partially because Adams suffered a back injury, and partially because it worked. This trio kept the chains moving for the Eagles and found the end zone three times. It's a disaster in fantasy, as touchdowns aren't reliable at all, but it's good news for an Eagles team fighting for the postseason.

Passing game
Alshon Jeffery, WR - 24 percent TS, 46 percent AY
Zach Ertz, TE - 24 percent TS, 24 percent AY
Golden Tate, WR - 17 percent TS, 7 percent AY

Nick Foles started for the injured Carson Wentz (sound familiar?) and played pretty damn well (also sound familiar?). It's noteworthy that Foles targeted Jeffery early and often, resulting in a seven-catch, 153-yard outing. Perhaps because he's most comfortable throwing to Jeffery after their postseason run last year. Ertz eventually got his targets but only caught 3 for 22 yards. Keep an eye on if Foles starts again next week and adjust lineups and rankings accordingly.

Rams

Backfield
Todd Gurley, RB - 22 touches (Wk 14: 14, Wk 13: 26, Wk 12: BYE), 82 percent snap share

After a non-existent performance last week, Gurley was clearly a focal point for the Rams here, leading the team in carries and targets. He scored twice, likely securing his fantasy managers a win late on Sunday night (assuming the rest of their teams didn't take a dirt nap). Gurley did leave briefly with a lower leg injury but returned later and finished the game. It's worth monitoring, though.

Passing game
Robert Woods, WR - 16 percent TS, 7 percent AY
Brandin Cooks, WR - 13 percent TS, 17 percent AY
Josh Reynolds, WR - 22 percent TS, 49 percent AY
Todd Gurley, RB - 24 percent TS, 11 percent AY

Jared Goff bounced back a bit after last week's disaster performance, throwing for 339 yards. However, he didn't throw a touchdown and tossed two more interceptions. He's tossed a heavy wet blanket over this passing attack during the fantasy playoffs, something countless managers are sure to overreact to next season when considering drafting Goff again.

New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers


Saints

Backfield
Alvin Kamara, RB - 21 touches (Wk 14: 17, Wk 13: 19, Wk 12: 15), 64 percent snap share
Mark Ingram, RB - 14 touches (Wk 14: 14, Wk 13: 9, Wk 12: 13), 44 percent snap share

The Saints leaned on Kamara and Ingram to get them through a low-scoring slugfest with their division rival. The duo produced solid numbers, each going for over 60 on the ground, with Kamara catching seven passes for 35 yards to Ingram's two for 11.

Passing game
Michael Thomas, WR - 26 percent TS, 25 percent AY
Tre'Quan Smith, WR - 11 percent TS, 19 percent AY
Alvin Kamara, RB - 26 percent TS, 9 percent AY

Drew Brees managed just 203 yards and one interception against the Panthers, which hurt his pass-catchers as well. Thomas caught seven of nine targets for 49 yards but didn't find the end zone.

Panthers

Backfield
Christian McCaffrey, RB - 23 touches (Wk 14: 22, Wk 13: 19, Wk 12: 28), 100 percent snap share

After 14 games of doing everything he could as a runner and receiver, McCaffrey got into the mix as a passer against the Saints. He hit Chris Manhertz for a 50-yard touchdown on a 4th-and-1 trick play. He led the Panthers in rushing and receiving, but what else is new.

Passing game
Ian Thomas, TE - 14 percent TS, 6 percent AY
Jarius Wright, WR - 14 percent TS, 12 percent AY
Christian McCaffrey, RB - 38 percent TS, 34 percent AY

Cam Newton's shoulder issues are becoming more and more apparent. Making matters worse, is that his offensive line is falling apart as well. Newton struggles to throw deep, and even when he wants to the line isn't able to protect him. Outside of McCaffrey and Thomas, who is a dart-throw tight end play, it might be time to jump ship from this group.

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