Week 16 Fantasy Football Quarterback Streaming: Trusting RGIII
You've made it this far. Why stop now?
If you've successfully navigated the NFL season and wound up with a spot in your league's championship game while streaming quarterbacks, then congratulations. No matter what strategy you use, it's tough to make it through a long season and knockout playoffs without slipping up. But for quarterback streamers, a big decision looms over the next couple of days: who should you start for the final?
Here are the top options for streaming at the quarterback position this week, as well as some cheaper daily fantasy options for those of you turning to DraftKings, FanDuel and other sites now that you're out of the running in season-long.
Robert Griffin III, Washington
Robert Griffin III has once again been thrust into the starting role for Washington, despite Jay Gruden's best attempts to bench the Baylor product this season. Filling in for Colt McCoy against the Giants, Griffin completed two-thirds of his passes and picked up a touchdown pass while also chipping in with nearly 50 rushing yards.
Griffin and his teammates will face the Eagles this weekend, who have been good at forcing turnovers on defense, but have allowed plenty of fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season. Apart from Tony Romo's Week 13 letdown, Philly has allowed 18.9 or more fantasy points to opposing signal-callers in every road game, and overall they allow the third-most points per game to the position.
Griffin might not seem like the safest play, but all the numbers stack up in his favor, and he played well last week, which is all the encouragement I need to roll with him as a streamer in Championship Week.
Alex Smith, Kansas City Chiefs
The Pittsburgh Steelers have allowed the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season, and have allowed the most over the past five weeks. That's a dream matchup for most quarterbacks, but for Alex Smith, expectations are tempered just a bit.
Smith and the Kansas City passing game are boring and tame even on their best day, but coming off of his second-best fantasy output of the season against the Raiders, things are looking up for a decent streaming performance for Smith against a bad pass defense.
Since Week 7, the Steelers have allowed 16 or more fantasy points to every quarterback they've faced. That's a floor you can count on for nearly every quarterback in the league against Pittsburgh, but you may have to sweat it a bit with Smith. He's a good bet to get you 10-12 points, which isn't enough to stream, but the upside is there against a bad defense for a bigger day.
Shaun Hill, St. Louis Rams
The Rams are on a "mini-bye" week coming off of a Thursday night game, and will be refreshed and ready to bounce back after a poor offensive performance against the smothering Arizona defense. The best remedy for that is the New York Giants defense, which is bad enough to lead the fine folks in Las Vegas to predict a three-touchdown output from the Rams.
Shaun Hill will almost certainly be involved in one or two of those scores, as the veteran quarterback went over 16 fantasy points in his two previous games before this past week's letdown against Arizona. He's got a low ceiling, but his floor is high in this matchup against a below-average defense.
New York has allowed the 10th-most fantasy points per game to enemy quarterbacks this season, and have allowed 14 or more points to the other team's passer in 11 of 14 contests. Like Smith, Hill isn't going to set your league on fire, but if you need a safe play under center to compliment an otherwise stacked roster, he's a good plug-and-play option.
Kyle Orton, Buffalo Bills
If you are chasing a bigger point total from your quarterback, Kyle Orton might be the guy to pick up. He'll lead the Bills into a road game at Oakland, which provides a good matchup in a hostile environment, which could keep the game competitive and keep the ball in the air for the Bills.
The Raiders are 22nd in our Net Expected Points (NEP) rankings against the pass, and are in the bottom-10 over the last five weeks in points per game against. They were able to hold Colin Kaepernick and the horrible San Francisco offense in check, but have otherwise allowed big scores in recent weeks, including 21 or more to both Shaun Hill and Alex Smith.
Orton throws the ball quite a bit, especially on the road, where he's gone over 39 attempts in four of five starts this season. That kind of volume provides more opportunities for yards and touchdowns, which is obviously what a fantasy player is chasing when selecting a quarterback. There's three-touchdown potential for Orton in this game, but if the Bills pull away with a big lead, his floor will suffer.
Andy Dalton, Cincinnati Bengals
Andy Dalton and the Bengals host the Denver Broncos on Monday Night Football this week -- the same Broncos who have allowed 20 points to Kyle Orton and 26 to Ryan Tannehill over the past few weeks. They've allowed the seventh-most points to opposing quarterbacks this season, a trend that will likely continue under the lights in Ohio this weekend.
Dalton has been running the ball a bit this season, which boosts his fantasy value just a bit, but his arm has been good enough at times to be start-worthy in nearly every format. The problem with Dalton is predicting when he'll be "Good Andy," but based on the season he's had so far, we can take a pretty good guess as to what leads to a good week for the Bengals' quarterback.
Three of Dalton's four best fantasy outputs came at home, as well as five of his top eight. All four of his best games came against teams in the top-10 in points per game allowed to opposing quarterbacks, which is where Denver finds itself currently. Home games against fantasy-friendly defenses are spots where we can expect something usable from Dalton as a streaming option, and this week's game checks both of those boxes.
Dalton will be owned in a lot of competitive leagues, but if he's available in yours, he's the top streaming option this week for players with a bit of bravery. There's a potential three-point game on the horizon for Dalton, but all the evidence suggests the Cincy signal-caller will do much better than that in an important home game for his team's playoff chances.