Fantasy Football News and Updates: 2013 NFL Week 17 Players to Scout, Sleepers
Jason's Fantasy Football Analysis: Week 17 Players to Watch
December 28, 2013
Week 17 Players to Watch
It is the last week of the NFL season, and the majority of fantasy football leagues ended last week. So while some owners are either wallowing in their losing sorrow or rejoicing in their winning glory, the true fantasy champions are already beginning to work on building a winner for next year. Since the regular season is about to end, there are going to be several young players getting the chance to start and earn a place in the NFL. While none of these players are very familiar to fantasy footballers now, there is a chance one or two could become a relevant fantasy option next year. It is never too early to start scouting for next season, and here are a few young players that will be given a chance to show they belong in the NFL this week.
1. Jerrel Jernigan - Jernigan is in his 3rd NFL season, but he has not seen the field much until week 15 of this year. In the last two weeks, since Victor Cruz has been hurt, Jernigan has received 20 targets which he has turned into 13 catches for 147 yards and a touchdown. Jernigan may finally be starting to live up to his expectations coming out of college. Jernigan was drafted in the 3rd round by the Giants in the 2011 draft, and he has finally gotten a lot of playing time the last two weeks. With all the offseason upheaval that is about to happen to the Giants, Jernigan is totally playing for a job next year, and he could even end up being a starter if he continues to progress as a wide receiver.
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2. Jonathan Grimes - Grimes is arguably the most unknown player getting a start this week, but he has a great matchup against the poor Titans run defense. Grimes is an undrafted free agent out of WIlliam and Mary. Grimes was mainly a kick returner in college, so his skills at running between the tackles are virtually unknown to the NFL world. Grimes was not a feature back in college, and he has only 7 career carries in the NFL. Never the less, Grimes is going to get the start this week against the Titans and if he has a good game, then it is possible he could earn a job with the Texans next year. Since Foster is seriously banged up and Tate may not be a Texan next season, there is a very slight window of opportunity for Grimes to earn a job this week.
3. Edwin Baker - Baker's name is starting to become familiar to some fantasy owners as he has scored two touchdowns in his last two games for the Browns. Baker was drafted in the 7th round last year by the Chargers, but he was cut before the 2012 season started. The Browns acquired Baker from the Texans practice squad late this season, and now Baker will finish the year as Cleveland's starting running back. The Browns will probably not rely on Baker to head their rushing attack next season, but Baker will be playing a job this week anyways. Baker has performed relatively well is his few games this year as he is averaging 4.1 yards per carry on his 25 attempts. Baker could earn a job backing up a big time running back next season, and that means he could get more time on the field in the future if he can finish the 2013 season with a strong performance.
4. Ryan Griffin - Griffin has become a key cog in the Texans offense the last two weeks since Garrett Graham and Owen Daniels have been unable to play. Griffin is a rookie out of Connecticut who was drafted in the 6th round by the Texans. Griffin was not a huge receiving threat in college as he never had more than 33 catches for 499 yards in a season. However, Griffin has become a reliable receiver for the Texans as he has caught all 11 of his targets for 128 yards over the last two weeks. Griffin's production is more likely a product the Texans' system which has always featured a pass catching tight end, but Griffin is taking advantage of his opportunity, and now he will get a chance to show off his receiving skills one more time against the Titans.
5. Matt Asiata - Asiata jumped onto the fantasy scene in week 15 when he scored three touchdowns against the Eagles. Asiata faded from the fantasy scene last week, but he is going to be given the chance to reemerge in week 17 when the Vikings face the Lions. Asiata is playing to earn the job as AP's handcuff since Gerhart is going to be a free agent and will most likely sign with a new team. Asiata scored a lot of touchdowns in week 15, but he did not run very well as he only had 51 yards on 30 carries. Asiata will try to prove he is better than those number suggest, and he is a player to watch, especially for any fantasy owners who are thinking of drafting Adrian Peterson next year.