After beating the New York Jets in a must-win game, the Bolts face an interesting predicament in Week 17 if they wish to get into the playoffs. If everything goes right for the Bolts, we could see them make a run in the postseason, but first, they have to get past the Oakland Raiders this week.
The Raiders, who officially had their playoff hopes dashed last week, are a team that has had some significant unexpected struggles this season. Starting quarterback Derek Carr has had an underwhelming season thus far to say the least and the Raiders defense has struggled mightily. The Chargers, meanwhile, have played decently as of late, but have had some injury issues as well. Before we look at this week’s fantasy prospects, let’s take a look at some significant performances from last week.
Antonio Gates, who was immediately thrust into a very significant role after Hunter Henry’s season-ending injury, stepped up and performed against the New York Jets’ defense.
At first, I was hesitant about how much the Chargers would utilize the aging veteran, but it seems that they have no issue returning him to his starter role, and he performed as expected. If your fantasy league isn’t over yet, feel free to give Gates a shot this week.
After having a rather inconsistent season early on, Melvin Gordon has really stepped up and performed well the past few weeks. With over 100 combined yards in three out of the past four weeks, he has been an integral part of the success of the Chargers’ offense, and if the Bolts are to make the playoffs, they will likely require his assistance.
If Gordon is unable to suit up or fully play on Sunday, beating the Raiders may serve as a significant challenge, but hopefully, he will be able to play and will lead the Chargers to a very important win. In fantasy terms, Gordon remains a top-tier RB1 play.
Start or Sit?
Here are the players previously mentioned along with some who were not, with the parentheses indicating the tier of each player in fantasy terms and my projection for them this week.
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- Philip Rivers – Start (QB1) – My Projection: 20 points (Standard)
- Melvin Gordon* – Start (RB1) – My Projection: 15 points (Standard), 18 points (PPR)
- Keenan Allen – Start (WR1) – My Projection: 11 points (Standard), 16 points (PPR)
- Tyrell Williams – Bench (Flex/WR3) – My Projection: 3 points (Standard), 5 points (PPR)
- Travis Benjamin – Bench (WR3/WR4) – My Projection: 4 points (Standard), 8 points (PPR)
- Antonio Gates – Start (TE1/TE2) – My Projection: 7 points (Standard), 11 points (PPR)
- Austin Ekeler* – Bench (RB3) – My Projection: 1 point (Standard), 1 point (PPR)
- Mike Williams – Bench (WR4) – My Projection: 1 points (Standard), 2 points (PPR)
Note: Asterisk (*) indicates possibility of player missing game due to injury.
Before I end this article, let me take a second just to thank you to all my readers for supporting my fantasy articles this season, it has truly been an honor for me and I hope to be able to do it again next year. Thank you.
As always, what are you expecting out of the Bolts this week in fantasy? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section.