It's the final week of the 2011 NFL regular season, and while Week 17 means that the majority of fantasy football leagues have concluded their seasons (congratulations to all who emerged as league champions), for a few hearty souls one more week remains in the 2011 campaign.
To aid those fantasy owners in setting their final lineup of the season, and taking into consideration the injuries that occurred last week and the possibility that some teams may rest players this Sunday, here's a look at the top 10 fantasy football options at each position for Week 17 of the 2011 season.
Regardless of whether or not Drew Brees breaks the single-season record for passing yards in Week 16, the New Orleans Saints will still have plenty to play for against the Carolina Panthers Sunday, making the 11-year veteran the top fantasy signal-caller for the season's final week.
1. Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints (vs. CAR)
4. Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers (at NO)
Running back Maurice Jones-Drew leads the National Football League with 1,437 rushing yards, and with a matchup on tap against an Indianapolis Colts team that allows the sixth most fantasy points per game to opposing running backs, Jones-Drew is fantasy football's runner No. 1 this week.
1. Maurice Jones-Drew, Jacksonville Jaguars (vs. IND)
2. Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens (at CIN)
3. Marshawn Lynch, Seattle Seahawks (at ARI)
5. Michael Turner, Atlanta Falcons (vs. TB)
7. Michael Bush, Oakland Raiders (vs. SD)
8. Arian Foster, Houston Texans (vs. TEN)
9. Willis McGahee, Denver Broncos (vs. KC)
10. Steven Jackson, St. Louis Rams (vs. SF)
Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson posted his second straight big game in last week's dismantling of the San Diego Chargers, hauling in four passes for 102 yards and a touchdown, and a Week 17 tilt with the Green Bay Packers and their 31st ranked pass defense should set the stage for a third straight solid statistical outing from "Megatron."
1. Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions (at GB)
2. Wes Welker, New England Patriots (vs. BUF)
3. Victor Cruz, New York Giants (vs. DAL)
4. Miles Austin, Dallas Cowboys (at NYG)
5. Steve Smith, Carolina Panthers (at NO)
6. Jeremy Maclin, Philadelphia Eagles (vs. WAS)
8. Jordy Nelson, Green Bay Packers (vs. DET)
9. Roddy White, Atlanta Falcons (vs. TB)
10. Stevie Johnson, Buffalo Bills (at NE)
The Miami Dolphins were able to hold New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski more or less in check Sunday, but given that the second-year pro torched the Buffalo Bills for seven catches, 109 yards and two touchdowns in their first meeting, Gronkowski is an excellent fantasy option this week.
1. Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots
2. Jimmy Graham, New Orleans Saints (vs. CAR)
3. Antonio Gates, San Diego Chargers (at OAK)
4. Jason Witten, Dallas Cowboys (at NYG)
5. Tony Gonzalez, Atlanta Falcons (vs. TB)
6. Jermichael Finley, Green Bay Packers (vs. DET)
7. Brandon Pettigrew, Detroit Lions (at GB)
8. Aaron Hernandez, New England Patriots (vs. BUF)
9. Brent Celek, Philadelphia Eagles (vs. WAS)
10. Dustin Keller, New York Jets (at MIA)
Kicker David Akers of the San Francisco 49ers now holds the new NFL record for field goals in a season with 42, and the 13th year veteran is a good bet to add to that total this week in a top 10 fantasy matchup with the St. Louis Rams, making him the top fantasy dog at his position for this Sunday.
1. David Akers, San Francisco 49ers (at STL)
2. John Kasay, New Orleans Saints (vs. CAR)
3. Stephen Gostkowski, New England Patriots (vs. BUF)
4. Jason Hanson, Detroit Lions (at GB)
5. Dan Bailey, Dallas Cowboys (at NYG)
6. Robbie Gould, Chicago Bears (at MIN)
7. Sebastian Janikowski, Oakland Raiders (vs. SD)
8. Mason Crosby, Green Bay Packers (vs. DET)
9. Mike Nugent, Cincinnati Bengals (vs. BAL)
10. Neil Rackers, Houston Texans (vs. TEN)
The San Francisco 49ers are fantasy football's fourth ranked defense in points scored through 16 weeks this season, and with a matchup upcoming against a St. Louis Rams team that has surrendered the most fantasy points to opposing defenses, the 49ers are the top fantasy defense available this week.
1. San Francisco 49ers (at STL)
2. Baltimore Ravens (at CIN)
3. Pittsburgh Steelers (at CLE)
4. Philadelphia Eagles (vs. WAS)
5. Seattle Seahawks (at ARI)
6. Chicago Bears (at MIN)
7. Detroit Lions (at GB)
8. New York Giants (vs. DAL)
9. Cincinnati Bengals (vs. BAL)
10. Green Bay Packers (vs. DET)