Week 16 Fantasy Football: Toughest Quarterback Matchups This Week

Jason MarcumCorrespondent IIIDecember 18, 2013

KANSAS CITY, KS - DECEMBER 07:  The Philip F. Anschutz trophy is seen on the field before the start of the match between Real Salt Lake and Sporting Kansas City in the 2013 MLS Cup at Sporting Park on December 7, 2013 in Kansas City, Kansas.  (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Scott Halleran/Getty Images

The NFL playoffs are still two weeks away from starting, but the fantasy football playoffs are in full swing. Many leagues are conducting their championship this week, and it's crucial that your quarterback has a great game this week.

In most leagues, it's the QB who is scoring the majority of your team's points, so if he comes up small this week, it will likely cost you a championship and whatever winnings that come with it.

That being said, here are four QBs facing tough matchups this week, and whether you should start them or sit them.


Drew Brees vs. the Carolina Panthers

NEW ORLEANS, LA - DECEMBER 8:  Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints jogs onto the field during a game against the Carolina Panthers at Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 8, 2013 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  The Saints defeated the Panthers 31-13.  (Pho
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

The Saints have struggled on the road this year, and even Brees is now admitting his team isn't playing up to its potential when away from the friendly confines of the Superdome.

"We're kind of proving you guys right, which is unfortunate, because we certainly don't feel that way about ourselves, Brees said. "But the record doesn't lie. We have to play better on the road." 

This ESPN chart shows Brees' struggles on the road:

Comp pct73%63%
Yds per att8.86.9
Total QBR80.355.8

Brees is correct in saying the record doesn't lie, as the Saints are 3-4 in games played away from New Orleans, and the biggest culprit for their struggles has been the offense.

They are averaging 25.6 points per game this year, but that number drops to 18.4 in games played on the road.

That's bad news going against a Panthers defense surrendering just 14.9 points per contest. They've also allowed just 14 passing touchdowns this year.

But this is Drew Brees, and regardless of the Saints' struggles on the road, he's still thrown four or more touchdowns in three of the past four games against the Panthers.

You should keep him in your starting lineup this week. .


Andrew Luck vs. Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs are terrorizing opposing quarterbacks at home this year when they have a healthy Justin Houston and Tamba Hali coming off the edge.

The two outside linebackers had a combined 20 sacks between them before suffering injures in Week 12 vs. the San Diego Chargers.

But both players should be healthy enough to play this week vs. the Colts, who have allowed just 30 sacks this year but have allowed an NFL-leading 51 QB hits, according to Pro Football Focus (subscription required).

They've also allowed 201 QB pressures, the fourth-most of any team, and needless to say, Luck has had a tough time putting up good numbers against defenses that thrive off of their pass-rush.

Also, in four of the past six games, Luck has thrown one or zero touchdowns. You need to bench him this week and find a QB facing a better matchup.


Carson Palmer vs. the Seattle Seahawks

Palmer is having a career-resurgence under new head coach Bruce Arians, but he's facing his toughest test of the year on Sunday. This Seahawks defense just intercepted Eli Manning five times while not giving up a single score vs. the New York Giants last week.

Palmer has typically struggled against good pass defenses in road games, and with wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald possibly missing this game with a concussion along with Michael Floyd dealing with an ankle injury, he may be down his two best receivers.

And according to FFToday, the Seahawks are the NFL's No. 1 defenses in terms of points allowed to opposing quarterbacks.

Do yourself a favor and bench Palmer this week.


TAMPA, FL - NOVEMBER 17:  Quarterback Matt Ryan #2 of the Atlanta Falcons warms up for play against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers November 17, 2013 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images

Matt Ryan vs. the San Francisco 49ers

The 49ers defense has been on lockdown over the past month, as they're allowing the second-fewest fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks over the past five weeks, according to FFToday.

Ryan has played better as of late now that Roddy White is healthy, but this is not a matchup that figures to see the Falcons offense generate many points.

The only hope here is if the 49ers start fast and build a big lead quickly and Ryan get a lot of garbage-time points, but in a championship game, do you really want to count on garbage-time points to carry you to victory?

Sit Ryan vs. the 49ers.  


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