Week 12: Player Downgrades
Wallace will have three negative match-ups out of his final six games. Two games -- Weeks 14 and 17 -- come against the Cleveland defense, which has limited wide receivers to the fewest receptions, yards, and TDs this season. In addition, Pittsburgh's Week 12 game against Kansas City will be tough as well. The Chiefs can be beat by big plays, but they've only allowed receivers to score two touchdowns since Week 7. Obviously Wallace is one of the best fantasy receivers to be had, but that doesn't necessarily mean he'll play like it in these three games. While sitting Wallace isn't recommended, the implied lesson here is that you shouldn't get too high risk/reward with the rest of your roster. Stick with the safe lineup plays in weeks that your best players go against tough defenses.
Ballard appeared to be coming into his own just a few weeks ago, but the problem with him is that he isn't targeted on a consistent basis. He was held to one catch for 13 yards last week and while Eli Manning typically does a good job spreading the ball around to his many receivers, Ballard's production looks like a fluke on paper. He's only had five or more receptions once all year. Although Ballard has some good match-ups on tap, starting him basically amounts to a hail mary pass hoping he scores a TD. With Hakeem Nicks finally recovered and back on the field, the slight uptick Ballard saw in his targets is likely to spiral downward in these last few games.