Lineup Prep: Super Bowl

2017-02-01 09:51:12
By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer
RealTime Fantasy Sports

The big game is finally here

Well, we are at the last game of the season. It is hard to believe, but this is it. Hopefully, you had a great year and will enjoy the Super Bowl. And hopefully the Super Bowl will be an enjoyable game. The rest of the playoffs haven't been very exciting. Let's hope the big game is a great way. Now for my random thoughts of the week.

I always like to give my prediction for the Super Bowl in this column. So here we go. . . . .

I think this is going to be a high-scoring, back and forth game. For me, I think the big thing to watch will be the Falcons pass rush. If they can get pressure on Tom Brady, I think the Falcons can win the game. If Brady has time to throw, things won't work out well for the Falcons.

So I do think the Falcons will get some pressure on the Patriots. And I also think the Falcons offense will put up a lot of points. Their diverse attack is hard to game plan against, so I think they can score through the air or on the ground. I think it will be a close game, but the Falcons will do enough to win. I have Atlanta winning 34-31. Here is to hoping we have a great game. Enjoy the day.

There is a pretty amazing stat floating around this Super Bowl week. The Patriots have not lost a game with Dion Lewis active, going 16-0 with Lewis on the field. That is pretty amazing to me and shows his value to the team. I'm not totally convinced it all has to do with Lewis being that big of a difference maker, but it at least shows he is a big help to the Patriots when active.

You keep hearing all this talk from the Cowboys, sounding like Tony Romo might be back. This makes zero sense, but you can't rule it out with Jerry Jones running the show. He has a huge love for Romo, which could cause problems for the Cowboys going forward. Dak Prescott is the clear starter for the Cowboys right now and deserves to have that job going forward. There is no reason to turn back time, going back to Romo at this stage of his career. Will Jerry let that happen, though?

Here is a pet peeve of mine for the Super Bowl. Why do they start showing some of the commercials for the game the week before it takes place? What is the point of this? Part of the fun of the Super Bowl is seeing all the new, funny commercials. It sure takes away from it when they are teasing these commercials heading into the game, showing some of the commercials almost in their entirety. Craziness.

There are reports the Browns are targeting Jimmy Garoppolo this offseason. It makes sense. I actually think the Browns are closer than people think They need another top playmaker at receiver, but the defense is improving and the offensive line has some potential. I like what they are building in Cleveland. Remember, that offense moved the ball with sub-par quarterback play and so-so running backs. This is a team on the rise. They just need a few more pieces to become really fantasy relevant.

News and Notes: The Redskins re-signed linebacker Junior Galette on Wednesday. Galette missed last season with a torn Achilles' and has a long road back, but could be a top pass rusher for the team if healthy. . . . .Some reports have Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger considering retirement, but Steelers president Art Rooney said Tuesday that he expects Roethilsberger to return. . . . .Cardinals receiver Larry Fitzgerald is undecided about his future, but stated Tuesday that he will decide if he will retire pretty soon. His loss would be huge for the Cardinals, but nothing is certain with his status right now.

HOT PLAYS

Devonta Freeman, RB, Falcons. Freeman has touchdowns in each of the Falcons playoff games and 209 total yards in those two games. He gets consistent work as a runner and receiver in this high-powered offense. We expect him to get plenty of touches this week as the Falcons try to keep the Patriots offense off the field. Freeman is a good bet for another 100-plus total yard game with a touchdown or two in this matchup.

Chris Hogan, WR, Patriots. Hogan is playing his best football of the season during the playoffs. He caught nine passes for 180 yards and two touchdowns his last game and has 13 receptions for 275 yards his last two games. He is getting favorable matchups in coverage and taking advantage. We expect more of the same this week against the Falcons, a team that allowed the eighth most fantasy points to receivers during the regular season.

COLD PLAYS

Dion Lewis, RB, Patriots. It looked like Lewis was emerging as the go-to back for the Patriots late in the season, but that hasn't been quite the case in the playoffs. He has just two receptions in each of the Patriots playoff games. He also has just 52-rushing yards in those two games. If he were getting more work in the passing game, his fantasy value would be just fine. But that hasn't been the case, making Lewis a shaky fantasy play right now.

Taylor Gabriel, WR, Falcons. Gabriel had a down game his last time out, catching just two passes for 24 yards. He has fewer than 25 yards two of three games. Gabriel is a boom or bust player because he doesn't get a ton of touches. You never know when he will have that huge game. We aren't sure he goes wild against the Patriots, who normally do well against trick plays and rushes from receivers. Gabriel could be held in check once again.

SLEEPERS

Mohammed Sanu, WR, Falcons. Sanu has touchdowns in each of the two Falcons playoff games. He has scores three straight games, becoming a top red-zone target for the Falcons. This game should be a shootout, so don't be surprised if Sanu finds the end zone once again. He is a big target that could draw favorable coverages with the Patriots likely doing all they can to shutdown Julio Jones.

Martellus Bennett, TE, Patriots. Bennett has been really quiet late in the year despite being the No. 1 tight end for the Patriots with Rob Gronkowski out. He showed some signs of life his last game, though, catching five passes for 32 yards. His reception total was his highest since Week 10. He also has scores two of four games. There is always a player that surprises in the Super Bowl. Don't be surprised to see Bennett be that player for the Patriots. He is capable of the huge game any week in this offense.

High/Low Scoring Games

Each week we will take a look at some of the high and low scoring games for the coming week. In high scoring affairs, get your marginal players on those teams in your lineup to take advantage of the possible points barrage. And in the low scoring games, keep those marginal players on the bench and make sure to have your defenses involved in those contests.

High Scoring Games: Falcons/Patriots.

Low Scoring Games: None.

jeff@rtsports.com