It's my final blog entry of the football season. I feel like a kid on the last day of school. Wooooooooooo!
Here's your regular reminder about where you can find fantasy advice as kickoff approaches this weekend:
- Tweet the FOXSports.com fantasy team. I'm at @jhalpin37, and you can also contact Ryan Fowler (@FOXSportsFowler), Joel Beall (@FOXSportsBeall) and Mike Harmon (@SwollenDome).
- Post a message on the Facebook pages for Harmon, Fowler and me.
- Listen to FOX Fantasy Freaks Harmon, Peter Burns and Nate Lundy, on FOX Sports Radio Sunday from 9 a.m. until noon ET. You can also tweet those guys (@FantasyFreaks).
- Chat with Fowler, Beall and me on FOXSports.com Sunday from 11:30 a.m. until 1 p.m. We'll be in the chat room together, answering questions from the smaller number of you playing in Week 17, as well as looking forward to 2012.
On to the news:
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- Tom Brady owners may have heard that he missed practice Wednesday. Brady has an injured left shoulder, practiced in a limited fashion on Thursday, and is expected to play Sunday against the Bills. With home-field advantage in the AFC at stake, I wouldn't worry about Brady missing this one.
- Texans WR Andre Johnson is on track to return after missing nine of the last 11 games due to a hamstring injury. If you're planning to start Johnson, make sure he's active on Sunday morning.
- Speaking of the Texans, one Houston columnist thinks they should treat Sunday's matchup like a preseason game, and I agree. In other possible rest-a-player news, Matt Flynn is ready to take some snaps for the Packers, Falcons RB Michael Turner (groin) was limited in Thursday's practice, and Lions WR Calvin Johnson (Achilles) is day-to-day. I'd be shocked if the Lions rested anyone - since a loss would put them at risk of visiting the Saints in the wildcard round instead of the Giants or Cowboys - but since that notion has been floated by a few people, I thought I'd mention them here. The Packers and Texans have nothing to play for, and the Falcons will be in the same situation IF the Lions win in Green Bay.
- Eagles RB LeSean McCoy (ankle) doesn't want to miss Sunday's game. That's great, but make sure he's active if you own him.
- Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger (ankle) practiced fully on Wednesday and Thursday, and appears ready to go against the Browns. The main thing you need to worry about is Roethlisberger getting pulled with a big lead.
- It sounds like Cowboys QB Tony Romo (thumb) and RB Felix Jones (hamstring) will be ready to go against the Giants. If you need me on Sunday night, I'll be curled up in the fetal position on my couch.
- Speaking of the Giants, WR Hakeem Nicks (hamstring) missed practice on Wednesday and Thursday, but says he'll play this week. I live about three miles from Nicks' house in south Charlotte, and if he's not on the field Sunday night, he can look forward to a full offseason of me ringing his doorbell and running away, and toilet-papering his trees.
- The Chargers have plenty of injury issues, with WR Vincent Jackson (groin), RB Mike Tolbert (hamstring) and RB Ryan Mathews (calf) all missing practice time this week. Mathews is the only one of the trio that practiced Thursday, and is therefore the most likely to play.
- Look for John Skelton to start again at quarterback for the Cardinals.
- If you care, Bills WR Brad Smith (hamstring) probably won't play Sunday.
- Bengals WR A.J. Green (shoulder) was limited in Thursday's practice, but is expected to play in Sunday's important game.
- So, a guy who skipped a game with strep throat because his agent told him to thinks the Madden Curse is the reason for his bad season? Good grief.
- If Chiefs RB Jackie Battle (foot) can't play, it will mean more work for Thomas Jones and Dexter McCluster, as well as a potentially bigger role for QB Kyle Orton. I already wrote here that I like Orton as a matchup play this week.
- Look for Vikings QB Christian Ponder (concussion) to start on Sunday.
- It sounds like the Saints will once again be without RB Mark Ingram (toe). WR Lance Moore (hamstring) is questionable as well.
- Jaguars RB Maurice Jones-Drew (ankle) hasn't practiced this week, but is expected to play Sunday.
- Titans RB Chris Johnson (ankle) should be back at practice today after sitting out Wednesday and Thursday. The Titans need to win, so look for CJ2K to play.
- Looking for Darren McFadden one last time? Sorry - not gonna happen.
- Kellen Clemens is expected to start at quarterback again for the Rams. That will be a final stab in the back for Sam Bradford owners. Remember four months ago, when idiots like me drafted Bradford with the hope that he'd break out in Josh McDaniels' offense? Yeah, that didn't quite work out.
- I don't think we're going to see Redskins RB Roy Helu (knee, toe) this week. Look for another busy day for Evan Royster. If that doesn't scream "end your fantasy season in Week 16," I don't know what does.
- Finally, I'd like to wish a Happy Birthday to my daughter Abby, who turns eight today. She screamed with delight when opening her first gift - a poster with all 32 NFL team helmets.
performances over the last 10
Thanks for a great season, folks. Please stay in touch on Facebook and Twitter during the offseason. I'll post some baseball stuff here soon. Good luck this week!