Thursday, December 30, 2010

Fantasy owners are breathing a sigh of relief going into week 17

If you are one of the unfortunate ones like me, and are saddled with a fantasy commissioner who puts the championship game in week 17, you have to be resting a little easier going into the weekend. The move made by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to have division matchups in the last week of the season has left us with a slate of interesting and relevant games, which makes the job of fantasy owners a bit more simple. As shocking as it is, the Indianapolis Colts have not wrapped up their AFC south title just yet, meaning Peyton Manning and Reggie Wayne are going to be out there putting meaningful points up for their owners this year. Taking a glance at the week 17 slate, there are very few chances I see where owners need to worry. The Patriots may have already clinched the number 1 seed and the bye that comes with it, but do you really see Bill Belichick giving his team two weeks off? The Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints are still fighting for the NFC South crown, meaning Roddy White, Michael Turner, Drew Brees and Marques Colston can place them in their lineup with confidence. The Steelers and Ravens are in the same situation as the Falcons and Saints and their defenses could be in line for big days against the Browns with a dinged up Peyton Hillis and the Bengals missing Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco. The Kansas City Chiefs likely have little to play for, but can Todd Haley afford to give a week off to such a young team that will get their first playoff taste. The Chicago Bears could dial it in this week, as they will already know where they stand when they take the field against the Packers, however, Jay Cutler has already said he expects to play the entire game. All in all, there are more games this Sunday that will affect the playoff chase than not, making for an interesting finish to the fantasy season if you weren't fortunate enough to already have had your championship game.

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