As the Seahawks close in on a prime playoff seed in the NFC, many Fantasy Football players are looking to close out their 2016 seasons in grand fashion. In most leagues, this is Fantasy Super Bowl week. It's an opportunity for the Fantasy owner to get a small piece, if you will. of that same glorious feeling that washed over the Seahawks nearly three years ago in New Jersey. Winning a Fantasy championship is not obviously near a historic achievement as a team taking the Lombardi Trophy, but for most of us, it's still a terrific and memorable accomplishment, and that's why we play the Fantasy game.
While there is no media day at a Fantasy Super Bowl, there always seems to be one going on in the heads of many participants. They put extra pressure on themselves because the stakes are raised so high. It may feel like you have a horde of reporters in your mind, as you go over the same lineup challenges over and over in your mind. It is dangerous to overthink things in your biggest game of the season. Don't obsess or second-guess yourself too much. It's not easy to get to the Fantasy championship game, so realize you have done very well to get this far, and don't drastically change your approach now when it matters most.
In an NFC West battle, the Seahawks will have to fight hard to earn important Fantasy points for you. The Cardinals allow 15.38 Fantasy Points Per Game to opposing quarterbacks, the fourth-best team total on NFL.com. Russell Wilson is familiar with the sturdy Arizona front wall, and will be well prepared for this matchup. It's also a very respectable secondary he is facing. Wilson should provide you with adequate Fantasy totals, and is a Top 15 player at his position this week. A quick-hitting passing game will ensure that the offense moves well enough and keeps Wilson from taking many big hits. He's a viable play as a second quarterback in two QB leagues and superflex formats.
The Saints allow 17.60 FFPG to quarterbacks, fourth-most among NFC teams, and Jameis Winston should throw at least two TD passes and is a quality start in Week 16. The Lions have allowed 25 TD passes this season, and you can expect a solid Fantasy outing from Dak Prescott as Dallas faces Detroit. Atlanta has allowed the second-most passing yards in the NFL, so expect Cam Newton to perform well again after a strong Week 15 outing.
The Cardinals have allowed the most FFPG to wide receivers over the past four weeks (34.48), largely because of Drew Brees dropping 465 yards and four touchdowns on them in Week 15. In a divisional game between two familiar opponents, points and yardage should not be quite as easy to come by this week. But you cannot bench Doug Baldwin, the 12th-highest scoring Fantasy WR on NFL.com this season with 131.50 points. It's too important of a Fantasy contest this week, and in an essential game for the Seahawks' NFC seeding, he will be sure to make some key catches that will contribute well to your overall Fantasy total.
Tyler Lockett has scored 19 or more Fantasy points on NFL.com in two of his past three games and is coming on strong at the right time of year for Fantasy leaguers. His big-play ability demands you give him WR3 consideration this week. Even if the Seahawks only need one or two passing TDs to win the game, one of them very well could be to Lockett. The Cardinals allow just 3.02 FFPG to tight ends, best in the NFL. But few players at the position offer more upside in any matchup than Jimmy Graham. He is another Seahawk who cannot be benched in a Fantasy Super Bowl game.
Carolina allows 25.11 FFPG to wide receivers, so keep Taylor Gabriel in your lineup as a WR3 this week. The Jets surrender 24.21 FFPG to the position, and you can get New England's Malcolm Mitchell back into your lineup. The Browns allow 24.01 to wideouts, and look for some big plays from Dontrelle Inman. You can also expect Oakland's Amari Cooper to get back into the offensive flow as the Raiders get closer to the beginning of the AFC playoffs, and they have a good matchup against the Colts. At tight end, Antonio Gates is closing in on the all-time record for TDs at the position, and should score against the Browns, who allow an NFL-high 11.73 FFPG to TEs. Jason Witten is a quality PPR TE start, as the Lions have been vulnerable to the position all year.
The Cardinals allow 15.41 FFPG to running backs, and Thomas Rawls will have to earn his yardage against a solid Arizona front. But Arizona has also surrendered a dozen rushing touchdowns, and there is a good chance Rawls can finish off a scoring drive for the Seahawks this week. He is a tough runner who will not back down in this matchup, and he should be started as your RB2 or flex player.
Todd Gurley is a good RB2 or flex as well, as the 49ers have yielded an NFL-high 2,170 rushing yards and 22 TDs on the ground. Kenneth Dixon is a quality flex play, especially in PPR leagues. The Steelers allow 20.54 FFPG to the position. Lock in Jonathan Stewart again, as Atlanta allows 20.21 FFPG. Isaiah Crowell is worth a start against the Chargers, as he is always capable of a sizable run, and San Diego allows 19.96 FFPG.
The Seahawks defense should be one of the better units to keep the score down, having allowed six points in the last meeting with the Cardinals. Arizona has also allowed an NFC-high 39 sacks, so this should be a good week for Cliff Avril, Michael Bennett and the defensive line to boost your Fantasy fortunes. Also consider Miami, as Buffalo has allowed 41 sacks, second-most in the AFC, and the Rams, as the 49ers have allowed a dozen sacks over the past three weeks. Washington is fourth in the league in sacks and faces the Bears, who can be prone to turnovers, especially from the QB position.
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The Seahawks and Cardinals have matched up 35 times throughout their history, with an even split of 17 victories each as well as a tie that came earlier this season. The two teams face off again this Saturday at CenturyLink Field to see who will lead the all-time series.