You won’t find any insider information that goes more in-depth to discover trends and information pertinent to your fantasy football success. These picks are based on outliers from my Week 16 rankings:
RBs to Perform Above Expectations:
Ray Rice (@New York Giants): Jim Caldwell dropped the ball in his first week as offensive coordinator for the Baltimore Ravens by only getting Rice the ball 12 times. He was caught overcompensating for a stout Denver Broncos run defense and exposed his average passing attack as a result. Caldwell is learning on the fly and after a blowout loss, he has to realize where he went wrong. New York has given up the second highest point per game average to opposing fantasy running backs over the past five weeks. Rice also has seven of his nine touchdowns at home this season.
Stevan Ridley (@Jacksonville Jaguars): People are speculating that Ridley’s fumble last week is what opened the door for a large second-half workload for Danny Woodhead last week. It certainly didn’t help, but the personnel change by the New England Patriots should have been expected. New England was behind which means they had to throw, proven by Tom Brady’s career-high 62 attempts. Woodhead is a lock to be on the field in passing situations. This week against Jacksonville should be the contrary. New England will likely implement a run-heavy approach in the second half, which means Ridley will be featured once again.
RBs to Perform Below Expectations:
Trent Richardson (@Denver Broncos): Richardson has only averaged 2.9 yards per carry over his last four games, but has continued to be a worthwhile start with six touchdowns over that span. Unfortunately, for Richardson and his owners, the Cleveland Browns faces a Denver defense that hasn’t allowed a rushing touchdown since Week 5. Denver has ranked as the stingiest defense against fantasy running backs over the five weeks, averaging just 10.8 points per game.
Marshawn Lynch (vs. San Francisco 49ers): San Francisco is allowing only 68 rushing yards per game on the road this season. In addition to that, they are yet to allow a 100 yard rushing game on the road in 2012. Lynch was efficient on the ground in the Seattle Seahawks loss to San Francisco in Week 7, but he is averaging just 68 yards per game in his last four games against the 49ers. He has managed only one touchdown in those games and San Francisco has allowed just four rushing touchdowns all season.
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