Fantasy Football 2014: Broncos at Bengals 12/22/14 Week 16 Preview
Denver Broncos (11-3) at Cincinnati Bengals (9-4-1)
Monday, December 22, 2014; 8:30 PM ET
Finishing off the Week 16 festivities on “Monday Night Football,” we’ve got a very important game when it comes to playoff positioning. The Broncos (11-3) are coming off a win over San Diego this past weekend, and they’ll head to Cincinnati to face the Bengals (9-4-1), who embarrassed Johnny Football and the Browns in Week 15.
As you might expect, there will be fantasy implications all over the place in this one, and the actions on the field will win or lose a lot of league championships. Let’s check out the notable players on each side so we can get a feel for what to expect on our rosters.
Peyton Manning, QB, Denver Broncos: For most of the year, Manning could be counted on to deliver 25 fantasy points a game. Now that we’re in the playoffs, not so much. He had his second underwhelming outing in a row against San Diego, passing for 233 yards and just one touchdown.
Manning now has one TD and two picks in his last two games, which comes at a horrible time for fantasy owners trying to win their leagues. That said, he’s the guy who got you here, so you’ve just got to ride it out and hope for the best.
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Andy Dalton, QB, Cincinnati Bengals: Speaking of underwhelming fantasy quarterback play, Dalton fits into that category, but it’s not really surprising anyone. He posted an awful game in the Cleveland blowout, logging just 117 yards, no touchdowns and a pick.
It’s unfortunate that Dalton’s limp showing came after he accounted for three touchdowns against the Steelers, but them’s the breaks in the fantasy game. He’ll probably have a lot of pass attempts here, though, which could work out well.
C.J. Anderson, RB, Denver Broncos: Anderson did all his team’s scoring in the Buffalo game (besides the kicking, of course), but couldn’t duplicate that against the Chargers. He had 29 rush attempts, but turned them into only 85 yards. He would add 11 more on two catches.
Anderson has been a near must-start in fantasy for a while, and he’s still in that category. He’ll keep getting the work, so keep him in the lineup.
Jeremy Hill, RB, Cincinnati Bengals: Much to the chagrin of fantasy owners who spent a high pick--and pinned some high hopes--on Giovani Bernard, Hill has completely taken over the Cincinnati backfield. He took the reins against the Browns, rushing for 148 yards and two scores on 25 carries.
Bernard has been relegated to mop-up duties by this point, and Hill will continue to see the vast majority of the carries. Hopefully you were lucky enough to pick him up on waivers when Bernard went down.
Demaryius Thomas, WR, Denver Broncos: Thomas had a dreadful showing against the Bills, catching just two balls for 11 yards. He bounced back from that performance nicely against San Diego, however, logging 123 yards and a score on six catches.
Thomas has been one of the most valuable receivers in fantasy this year, which is really no big surprise. He has five touchdowns in his last four games and will look to keep that trend going here.
A.J. Green, WR, Cincinnati Bengals: With the rout on against the Browns, there really was no need for Green to do much of anything in Week 15. He caught five passes for 49 yards, breaking a two-week touchdown streak in the process.
The low total against Cleveland is definitely a disappointment after Green went double-digit fantasy points in his previous four games, but we’d imagine he’ll get some more work here.
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