Fabiano’s Fantasy Focus: Week 16, Volume I

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Every week during the season NFL Network and NFL.com Senior Fantasy Analyst Michael Fabiano joins Sports360AZ.com’s Brad Cesmat to share his insight on building and developing your fantasy team for success.

Here are some hi-lights from our most recent conversation (December 20th) with the Fantasy Sports Writer’s Association Hall of Famer.

What advice would you give fantasy owners who are still alive entering their championship game? “One thing I would tell people is don’t get too cute with your lineup. Russell Wilson had a bad game last week and Nick Foles had a great game but that doesn’t mean you’re going to start Nick Foles over Russell Wilson this week. If you do, it’s a mistake because Russell’s got a really good matchup against the Cowboys. Nine times out of ten you’re going to be sticking with your stud players. Don’t forget the importance of kickers and defenses every week, but especially in championship week. Every point is going to count. If you don’t have that elite defense, play the match-ups.”  

With Aaron Rodgers now out no need to go back to Brett Hundley this week, right? “No, Nick Foles is a better option. There are going to be leagues where Tyrod Taylor is available. If you’re in a league that’s not as competitive, Case Keenum is a really good option. He’s been very solid and very underrated for fantasy owners so those would be the top three players that I would look into. Blake Bortles is probably owned in most leagues but if he’s not, he’s a pretty good option, too. This guy has put up 18-plus points in four-straight games.”

Who are some good plays in place of Antonio Brown? “Hopefully you were able to pick up somebody like Martavis Bryant. JuJu Smith-Schuster would be the best alternative. I’m assuming in most leagues he’s been taken. Paul Richardson is playing the Cowboys this weekend, they’re not good against wide receivers. So there are options out there but clearly replacing Antonio Brown, you just can’t do it. He is in a class by himself.”

Fabs, who do you like more in Week 16: Dak Prescott or Case Keenum? “That is a very close call. I would probably end up going with Dak because Zeke [Elliott] is back in the mix and he averaged over 22 fantasy points while Zeke was in the backfield. Seattle’s defense is a mess right now and it’s a home game for the Cowboys. So when it’s close like that I’ll go with the home team quarterback. It’s not the same Seattle defense. They’re a mess of injuries right now.”

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A Valley native, Eric has had a passion for the Arizona sports scene since an early age. He has covered some of the biggest events including Super Bowls, national championships and the NBA and MLB playoffs in his near 20 years in local media.