NFL Fantasy Picks: Allen to soar once more against Falcons

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  • Atlanta Falcons
    Atlanta Falcons
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  • Josh Allen
    Josh Allen
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  • Ronald Jones II
    Ronald Jones II
    American-football player (1997-)
  • Deebo Samuel
    Deebo Samuel
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It's almost time to put down the fantasy clipboard for another year.

For many, the fantasy football season came to an end last week, but there are leagues in which Week 17 will decide the championship.

And, as the coronavirus pandemic continues to impact gameday rosters, picking a lineup to bring home the gold is an increasingly difficult challenge.

For the final time in 2021, Stats Perform identifies four offensive players and a defense who can deliver fantasy glory.


Quarterback: Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills vs. Atlanta Falcons

Coming off his best performance of the season on the road against the New England Patriots, some might see this week as a chance for an Allen letdown.

The problem with that theory is the defense of the Falcons, which has allowed the joint third-most passing touchdowns (28) in the NFL heading into a game with a quarterback who is looking for his third successive three-touchdown performance. Back Allen to continue that hot streak.

The Falcons' defense has allowed 28 passing touchdowns in 2021
The Falcons' defense has allowed 28 passing touchdowns in 2021

Running Back: Ronald Jones, Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ New York Jets

Jones has been a fantasy non-factor for most of the season. However, last week he had 65 rushing yards and a touchdown due to a hamstring injury to Leonard Fournette.

The Bucs risking 'Playoff Lenny' a couple of weeks out from the playoffs against the Jets seems unlikely and, with Tampa seeing their wide receiver depth dented, they could well lean on Jones and the run game against a defense giving up 141.3 yards per game on the ground, tied for the second-most in the NFL.

Wide Receiver: Deebo Samuel, San Francisco 49ers vs. Houston Texans

The Texans pulled off a stunner with their comfortable win over the Los Angeles Chargers last week, yet they are as porous as the Jets when it comes to defending the run, with the Pittsburgh Steelers the only team worse in terms of yards per game allowed on the ground.

They should therefore see a heavy dose of the San Francisco run game as the Niners look to take a big step towards a playoff spot after slipping up in Tennessee in Week 16.

No receiver in the NFL can claim to have the same impact in the run game as Samuel, who averages 6.84 yards per carry and has seven touchdowns on the ground this season. Look for him to add to that tally while also influencing the game as a receiver against Houston.

Tight End: Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs @ Cincinnati Bengals

If you're competing for the fantasy title, your chances will greatly increase if you have one of three tight ends. George Kittle, Mark Andrews and Kelce.

This is a week to focus on the latter. Kelce missed last week's win over the Pittsburgh Steelers due to being placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list but exploded for 191 yards and two touchdowns against the Los Angeles Chargers prior to that.

Should he be activated from the COVID list this week, Kelce will relish a meeting with a Bengals defense allowing the sixth-most fantasy points to tight ends as the Chiefs look to sew up the one seed in the AFC.

Defense: Chicago Bears vs. New York Giants

There are plenty of defenses with enticing matchups on the Week 17 slate, perhaps none more so than that of the lowly Bears.

They are playing out the string but this week face a Giants team that has scored 10 points or fewer in four of their last six games. In a season to forget for Chicago, the Bears' defense could be a fantasy title-winning selection.

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