Fantasy football start/sit advice, Week 17: Buccaneers vs. Saints


The Buccaneers are 1-6 on the road, while the Saints are 7-0 at home. One guess how this game is likely to go.

After starting the season 0-8, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have been a respectable 4-3, and would love a win to close the season out on a relatively hot streak. The New Orleans Saints, meanwhile, have a much stronger reason for a win -- the playoffs. If the Saints lose Sunday, they risk falling all the way out of the NFC playoff picture, while a win could propel them into a first-round playoff bye. The two teams face off at 4:25 p.m. ET Sunday in New Orleans, Here's a look at the fantasy players to consider:


Start in every league: ...

Start if you're desperate: Vincent Jackson

Bench: Mike Glennon, Bobby Rainey, Tim Wright, Rian Lindell, Defense/special teams

It's hard to find anyone fantasy owners can start confidently on the Tampa Bay roster, not when they're facing New Orleans in New Orleans. But Jackson comes close, averaging 10 fantasy points a game in his last four and not scoring fewer than six since Week 10.

The wheels have totally come off for Glennon, who has scored seven or fewer in three of his last four and is averaged only 6.8 in that time. ... Rainey, too, is a doing very little of late, averaging barely two yards a carry since his big Week 14 game. ,,, Wright is very boom-or-bust at tight end, following up a 14-point Week 15 with a two-point Week 16. He's put up exactly one point four different times. How can you trust him? ... Lindell has only converted more than two field goals in a game once all season, and comes in as the No. 28 kicker. ... The Buccaneers' defense is a top-10 unit, but on the road at a strong Saints offense, there's got to be a better option.


Start in every league: Drew Brees, Marques Colston, Jimmy Graham

Start if you're desperate: Defense/special teams

Bench: Pierre Thomas, Darren Sproles, Mark Ingram, Shayne Graham

A road-playing Brees is a low-end QB1. A home-playing Brees scores more points per game than Peyton Manning. ... Colstonhas averaged 15 points a game in his last three, with a six-point outing as his low in that span, as opposed to his veritable no-shows. He's a fine start. ... Any concern about Graham after his poor Week 15 evaporated with his fine performance in Week 16. Have fun there.

The Saints' defense has reached double figures four different times, with all four coming on the road, and the Buccaneers don't exactly have a super-powered offense. Still, the unit hasn't topped 13 points all season, so it's hardly a guarantee.

The Saints' running game has become an amalgam of awful lately. Thomas has two points or fewer in three of four games. Sproles hasn't topped five since Week 11. Ingram put up eight in Week 16, but had only topped three one other time all season. If you think you can trust any of the group, you're probably wrong. ... Graham put up eight last week, but it was his first game all season. Find someone else.

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