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Topic: AFC Team by Team News and Notes for Week 17
 Russ Bliss_108
Membership: Starter
Joined: September 04
Total Posts: 19878
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Post Date: 12/29/12 09:25
Buffalo: Scott Chandler tore his ACL in week 16 and his season is over. His status for the start of next year is also in major question. Ryan Fitzpatrick is expected to be cut after this season so this week is another chance to audition for another team. Too bad his weak arm usually struggles in bad weather conditions. C.J. Spiller should tear thru the Jets run defense this week.

Miami: Davone Bess is OUT with the back injury that has prevented him from playing the last few weeks. While usually a matchup against the Patriots means good potential from an opposing QB and WR's, it's winter in New England and the Dolphins are a warm weather team. The only Miami offensive player I'd be counting on this week is Reggie Bush.

New England: New week; same story. TE Aaron Hernandez and WR's Wes Welker and Brandon Lloyd are all listed as Questionable, but each will start and be fine to start this week. TE Rob Gronkowski is also Questionable and he is not expected to play. Even if Gronk is somehow made active, I wouldn't trust him. The RB situation behind Stevan Ridley is unclear after another twist week 16. In week 16 it was Shane Vereen who was ignored and Brandon Bolden who got decent playing time. Stay away from all Pats RB's other than Ridley. The Pats can finish anywhere between the #1 and #4 seeds in the AFC depending on what happens this weekend.

New York Jets: Greg McElroy tried hiding a concussion but eventually came clean and now will miss week 17. Mark Sanchez will start at QB. Tim Tebow is assured of getting his walking papers at the end of this season as he never got any chances to be the starting QB. Dustin Keller is Doubtful and will miss week 17 with his ankle injury. Chaz Schilens is also Doubtful and won't play because of a knee injury. Braylon Edwards is expected to be fine to start despite being listed as Questionable with both hamstring and knee injuries.

Baltimore: The Ravens have a chance to move up to the 3rd seed in the AFC if they win and the Patriots lose. That could be enough incentive for them to not rest their starters at all. Anquan Boldin is expected to play despite being Questionable with a shoulder injury. He could be limited some though. It's a bit of a risk trusting any Ravens given they may decide to rest players, but it's hard to sit Ray Rice as he is likely to play at least most of the game.

Cincinnati: The Bengals are locked into the 6th seed in the AFC and cannot change that no matter what happens. Expect the starters to play some, but don't be surprised if they don't play much after halftime. You risk much starting any Bengals player this week. Kicker Mike Nugent was placed on injured reserve earlier this week with his calf injury, so Josh Brown will finish out the season as the kicker.

Cleveland: With both Brandon Weeden and Colt McCoy OUT with shoulder injuries, Thaddeus Lewis not only makes his first ever NFL start, it's the first regular season action I think he's ever gotten in his 3 year NFL career. Don't expect a lot in a tough matchup against Pittsburgh. Trent Richardson is also OUT with a minor ankle injury. The Browns are being smart here sitting him as though itís a minor injury, it would have normally cost him 1-2 weeks. Montario Hardesty will start in Richardson's place and likely will split some time with both Brandon Jackson and Chris Ogbonnaya.

Pittsburgh: Mike Wallace will miss week 17 with a hip injury. Emmanuel Sanders will start in his place. Wallace is likely out of Pittsburgh after this season. Expect a time share again between Rashard Mendenhall and Jonathan Dwyer again this week. Neither has looked particularly strong as a featured RB but both seem to excel in committee. Heath Miller was placed on injured reserve after tearing his ACL in week 16. His status for the start of the 2013 season is in question.

Houston: The Texans look to lock up the top seed and home field advantage by getting a win. If they lose, they could fall as low as the #3 seed and not get a bye at all, so expect them to be motivated. Arian Foster's arrhythmia is not expected to be an issue, but after making him miss a good bit of week 16, it has to be a concern for fantasy owners as it's not a condition we can see on the field. I expect the Texans to get back to better football this week as they need this win while their opponent, Indianapolis, can't change their playoff seeding at all.

Indianapolis: WR Donnie Avery is expected to be held out of week 17 because of a shoulder injury. The Colts can't change their playoff seed (5th) no matter what, but they say they won't be resting their starters. We'll see whether that holds up after the first couple of big hits taken by their offensive stars. While I'm sure they would like to win so as to give them a chance to not have to face New England or Denver in the first round of the playoffs, their starters could likely use some rest.

Jacksonville: Both Maurice Jones-Drew and Rashad Jennings were finally placed on injured reserve earlier in the week. MJD required surgery to repair his foot injury and the Jags could have saved themselves a lot of time and frustration if they had gone that route 2 months ago. Montell Owens finishes the season as the starting RB. Cecil Shorts was placed on injured reserve Monday after he suffered another concussion week 16. Toney Clemons is expected to start opposite Justin Blackmon.

Tennessee: Chris Johnson is expected to start week 17 without issue despite being listed as Questionable with an ankle injury. TE Craig Stevens is OUT with a concussion. WR Kendall Wright is expected back this week after missing last week with a ribs injury. WR Damien Williams is expected to miss this week though because of a foot injury that has prevented him from practicing all week.

Denver: KR Trindon Holliday is Doubtful. Otherwise, I say start all your Broncos in a meaningful game against a pitiful Chiefs team playing on the road in Denver. A win locks up a first round bye for the Broncos. A win and a loss by the Texans gives Denver homefield advantage throughout the playoffs. There will be no resting of Denver starters until this game is well in hand in the 4th quarter.

Kansas City: Tony Moeaki is Questionable with a concussion and while he may play, even if he does I wouldn't recommend him being anywhere near a fantasy lineup this week. I wouldn't recommend any Chiefs except maybe Jamaal Charles against a strong Denver defense looking to lock up a first round bye in the playoffs. WR Dexter McCluster is Questionable with an undisclosed illness but will play.

Oakland: With Carson Palmer out with a broken ribs injury, the raiders have decided to bypass unimpressive Matt Leinart and instead give untested Terrelle Pryor the start at QB week 17. The Raiders look to clean house after this season is over and the only one I'd even think about having in a fantasy lineup this week is Darren McFadden. Even then, with a suspect OL, and poor matchup, McFadden isn't a sure thing as anything more than weak RB2.

San Diego: Ronnie Brown is expected to play and split time with Jackie Battle despite Brown being listed as Questionable with a hamstring injury. A good matchup this week against a Raiders defense that has likely packed it in for the season bodes well for the fantasy prospects of Philip Rivers, Danario Alexander, and even Antonio Gates. Trusting a Chargers RB though is tough to do.

On any given Sunday any fantasy team can beat another, only to still lose Monday night.
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