Welcome to the championship week and congrats if you've it this far. The hardest part is still to come though since second place is the first loser (although you probably got some money for making it to the Super Bowl). As we look at players to add for the week, allow me to provide a disclaimer by saying there really isn't a whole lot to grab in the most important of times. In fact we pretty much covered most of the guys last week, so hopefully you were able to heed my advice (especially for running backs). Don't forget you can ask me anything you want on Twitter about which guys to add/drop or start/sit all week. Let's just get right to it:
Matt Moore (10)
Matt Flynn (12)
David Nelson (8)
Jared Cook (13)
Matt Moore- Matt Moore has been mentioned quite a few times in this column for his fantastic playoff schedule. He did a fair job on Sunday with 214 yards and two scores even with his running back putting up two hundo. This week he gets the 32nd-ranked Patriots pass D at Foxborough. He's a decent player to start with the Dolphins likely to pass more than they'd like to.
Bottom Line: The Dolphins have been scoring on a fairly consistent level and Moore seems like a lock for a couple scores this week.
Jake Locker- Jake Locker was clearly the best quarterback on the field at Lucas Oil Stadium. He almost brought the Titans back by moving the ball efficiently on 11-of-16 passing for 108 and a TD to Nate Washington. Locker gets a very soft Jacksonville secondary and his running ability makes him a QB with nice upside this week.
Bottom Line: If you don't feel comfortable with your QB, Locker might be the best option to grab since he could have a big day with CJ2K banged up.
Matt Flynn- Now that the Pack have no reason to play their guys for Week 17 (that's assuming they beat the Bears), Matt Flynn could be in for a big day against the Lions to start 2012. He's worth a stash for anyone that owns Rodgers.
Kyle Orton- Maybe some of the Tebow Magic rubbed off on Orton as he was able to top the best team in the history of the NFL and the most dominating group since the Roman Empire. OK, maybe they're not that great. Orton showed command of his new offense and has a decent matchup against the vulnerable Oakland secondary (see Stafford, Matt).
Bottom Line: The Chiefs will likely resort to the run more than the pass, so Orton isn't exactly a guy you'd like to lean on. Plus the Chiefs could have trouble protecting him.
Kahlil Bell- I was all over this one last week:
If you were Lovie Smith would you be willing to give Marion Barber the ball after Sunday? I wouldn’t. Bell got 14 touches in a game where the Bears were not trailing until the game ended (click here for Price is Right sound effect). Bell is a decent bet to clear 15 touches and could be lethal on some slip screens against the aggressive Seattle defense.
Bottom Line: Bell has a very nice matchup next week too against the Pack and might emerge as an RB2 with a solid day Sunday. He’s worth a look in almost all PPR leagues.
Below-Bottom Line: He should be owned in all leagues in a very good matchup this week.
Donald Brown- Brown has a tougher matchup this week as he'll take on the second-ranked defense (fifth-ranked run D). He has a firm grip as a featured back though, so he's a flex play in almost all leagues.
Bottom Line: Even if you're not going to start him, it's probably a good idea to grab him just in case your opponent plays him against you. He could have another big day on Thursday.
Lance Ball- Willis McGahee practiced today and looks like he's a go this week. Ball is a nice player to own just in case and should see over 10 carries even with an active Willis.
Bottom Line: He's a must-own guy for McGahee owners and most people should be able to find a roster spot for him at this point of the season.
Jackie Battle- The Raiders jumped from 29th against the run to 26th and held Kevin Smith in check all game. Jackie Battle should have some more success with a run-first mindset of Romeo. The Packers D is far from a Steel Curtain-type D and they still held the Chiefs to just one TD as a team (Battle's score).
Bottom Line: Battle really isn't worth starting this week unless KC announces he will be featured.
Jamie Harper- I touched on Harper last week just in case Chris Johnson was hurt and it turns out he did need to have his ankle taped in the second half of Sunday's game and could be questionable for Sunday against the Jags. The Titans need to win this game and there's nothing to make any person think CJ won't be active. If Johnson is inactive, Harper would see the bulk of the carries at tailback. His upside is the highest of any back in this list.
Bottom Line: #28 owners will definitely want to handcuff him. If you don't have room to cut anyone, I'd suggest cutting your kicker, adding Harper, then cutting him on Saturday just so nobody else can start him (assuming he goes on waivers until at least Monday).
Evan Royster- Royster emerged as the handcuff two weeks ago and was mentioned last week, too. The Helucopter might need some maintenance with his toe and knee ailments and could be a game-time decision. Royster saw 10 carries on Sunday against the Giants and could see 15 even with Helu active. The Skins get the pathetic Minnesota secondary and the scoring burden will likely be on Rex and the passing game.
Bottom Line: He's Helu insurance.
Darrius Heyward-Bey- DHB busted loose for eight catches for 155 yards and a score. He saw nine targets and was really a whole different receiver. The Maryland product was more of just a deep threat for most of the year and he was actually going over the middle on Sunday. He'll likely see a lot work again with Jacoby Ford probably out for another game.
Bottom Line: He's not a must-start WR by any stretch of the imagination, but he should be a WR3 in almost any format.
Greg Little- Greg Little was one of my flops on the year and it took his quarterback to go down for him to have his best game of the season. Little saw nine targets and hauled in five for them for 131 and a score. It won't be easy for him to repeat this performance against the Ravens this week though.
Bottom Line: Chances are you're not going to start him this week. He's worth owning just to keep him away from your opponent since his upside as a WR1 for Cleveland is pretty high.
David Nelson- Stevie Johnson is dealing with a groin issue and might miss Sunday's game against the Broncos.
Jared Cook- Cook became a Cookie Monster for eating up nine receptions of his 11 targets for 103 yards. He ran a lot of vertical routes and showed why so many people were so high on him back in August (including me). The Jaguars allow a lot of points to fantasy tight ends and owners shouldn't focus on how they shut down Tony Gonzalez.
Bottom Line: The Titans should be able to score a bunch and Cook might lead the team in receptions again. He's a low-end TE1 this week.
Titans- They get Blaine Gabbert. Nuff said.
Cincinnati- Cincy is susceptible to deep balls with their secondary not exactly laden with talent at the corner position. Skelton and the Cardinals don't exactly stretch the field and the Bengal pass rush could make it a rough day at Paul Brown.
Carolina- This is for owners that totally neglected planning ahead on defense. The Bucs are a joke on offense and the Panthers are doing a better job at stopping the run (Arian Foster doesn't count). They have decent matchups on paper and they held the Bucs to 19 points last time (even though it was without Freeman).