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updated: 12/12/2013 8:01 PM

Who should take home fantasy awards?

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  • Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning throws against the Tennessee Titans during the first half of an NFL football game on Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013, in Denver. (AP Photo/Chris Schneider)

      Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning throws against the Tennessee Titans during the first half of an NFL football game on Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013, in Denver. (AP Photo/Chris Schneider)

  • Detroit Lions' Calvin Johnson (81) catches a pass as Philadelphia Eagles' Cary Williams (26) defends during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

      Detroit Lions' Calvin Johnson (81) catches a pass as Philadelphia Eagles' Cary Williams (26) defends during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

  • New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham (80) scores on a touchdown as Carolina Panthers cornerback Drayton Florence tries to tackle in the second half of an NFL football game in New Orleans, Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013. (AP Photo/Bill Haber)

      New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham (80) scores on a touchdown as Carolina Panthers cornerback Drayton Florence tries to tackle in the second half of an NFL football game in New Orleans, Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013. (AP Photo/Bill Haber)

  • Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon (12) spikes the ball over the goalpost after scoring on a 74-yard pass reception against the Cincinnati Bengals in the second half of an NFL football game on Sunday, Nov. 17, 2013, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/David Kohl)

      Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon (12) spikes the ball over the goalpost after scoring on a 74-yard pass reception against the Cincinnati Bengals in the second half of an NFL football game on Sunday, Nov. 17, 2013, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/David Kohl)

  • New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham (80) slam dunks over the goalpost after scoring on a touchdown reception in the second half of an NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals in New Orleans, Sunday, Sept. 22, 2013. (AP Photo/Bill Haber)

      New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham (80) slam dunks over the goalpost after scoring on a touchdown reception in the second half of an NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals in New Orleans, Sunday, Sept. 22, 2013. (AP Photo/Bill Haber)

 
 

You know what time it is. Awards time.

So shoot me an email or a tweet (@dietzonfootball) and let me know who you think should take home the fantasy football hardware for 2013.

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Please submit them no later than Dec. 23. Write-in candidates are also welcome.

MVP

Candidates:

1. Broncos QB Peyton Manning.

2. Lions WR Calvin Johnson.

3. Browns WR Josh Gordon.

4. Saints TE Jimmy Graham.

All of their numbers are other-worldly, so who do you pick?

•Manning and his 46 total TDs and 11 300-yard games?

•Johnson and his seven 100-yard games and 12 TDs?

•Gordon and his 1,400 yards, including an NFL-record 774 over the last four games?

•Or Graham and his 1,046 yards and 14 TDs?

It's a tough call, so probably best to wait until the fantasy playoffs are over to cast a vote on this one.

Biggest surprise

Candidates:

1. Chiefs RB Jamaal Charles (ranked 10th by me in preseason, currently No. 1).

2. Bears RB Matt Forte (14th, 4th).

3. Browns WR Josh Goron (42nd, 2nd).

4. Bears WR Alshon Jeffery (40th, 5th).

5. Chargers QB Philip Rivers (18th, 4th).

Comment: Two Bears among the candidates? That might be the biggest surprise right there.

Biggest dud

Candidates:

1. Patriots QB Tom Brady (3rd in preseason, currently 11th).

2. Texans RB Arian Foster (2nd, 34th).

3. Ravens RB Ray Rice (3rd, 26th).

4. Browns RB Trent Richardson (7th, 49th).

5. Falcons WR Roddy White (9th, 80th).

Comment: If you drafted one or more of these guys and are still alive, it's likely a tribute to how well you did in free agency.

Comeback player

Candidates:

1. Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald (4 TDs in 2012, 10 this season).

2. Eagles WR DeSean Jackson (6 TDs last two years combined, 1,080 yards, 8 TDs in 2013).

3. Eagles RB LeSean McCoy (530 more yards from scrimmage than last year with three games to go and 8 TDs).

Comment: Philly certainly acclimated well to Chip Kelly's offense as the team is averaging 25.7 ppg compared to 17.5 last season.

Rookie of the year

Candidates:

1. Chargers WR Keenan Allen (61-902-5).

2. Bengals RB Giovani Bernard (1,023 YFS, 7 TDs).

3. Rams RB Zac Stacy (820 YFS, 6 TDs since Week 5).

Comment: They've all had their moments, so who do you think helped fantasy teams the most?

My teams: The auction-league squad (8-6) won its season finale and qualified for the semifinals thanks to having the second-most points for the season. Losing Rob Gronkowski will hurt, but hopefully Tony Romo, Matt Forte and Jimmy Graham can stay hot for two weeks. My regular-league team survived a tight opening playoff game with a 90-85 victory. Eric Decker (20 points) and Andre Johnson (18) were huge, but I would have been toast had it not been for Cam Newton's fourth-down TD pass in Carolina's 31-13 loss to the Saints.

Good bets

•Dolphins QB Ryan Tannehill and WR Mike Wallace vs. New England. The Patriots just allowed Jason Campbell to throw for 391 yards against them. Tannehill will manage 250-275 yards and at least 2 TD passes.

•Packers QB Matt Flynn at Dallas. He's probably only being considered in 2-QB leagues, but if you are in one of those, Flynn's a great bet for 250-plus yards and 2 TDs.

•Falcons RB Steven Jackson vs. Washington. Facing a team in complete turmoil, Jackson will produce his first 100-yard game of the season and find the end zone at least once.

•Patriots RB Shane Vereen at Miami. Averaging 16.0 touches the last three games, Vereen has emerged just in time to make a huge impact on the fantasy playoffs. With Rob Gronkowski done for the season, Tom Brady will dial up Vereen over and over again.

•Cardinals RB Rashard Mendenhall at Tennessee. With 3 TDs in his last four games and double-digit touches in every game he's played in, Mendenhall is an excellent flex play vs. a weak Titans run defense.

•Packers WRs Jordy Nelson and James Jones at Dallas. Nelson's a pretty obvious name, but facing the worst defense in the NFL, I like Jones to bust loose for a long TD

•Ravens WR Torrey Smith and TE Dennis Pitta at Detroit. With TDs in three of his last five games, Smith needs to come up big in what will be a high-scoring Monday night affair. As for Pitta, if you made a late waiver claim, congrats, because Joe Flacco loves having his No. 1 red zone target back in the fold.

•Panthers WR Steve Smith vs. New York Jets. One year after producing eight 70-plus yard games, Smith has yet to accomplish that feat once in 2013. That ends this week as he goes over 100 yards and scores ... twice!

Bad bets

•Patriots QB Tom Brady at Miami. Losing Rob Gronkowski could not have come at a worse time for fantasy owners of Brady, who averaged 372 yards and 2.4 TD passes in New England's last five games. Now Gronk's gone and Brady faces a team he threw for just 116 yards against in Week 8.

•Cardinals QB Carson Palmer at Tennessee. After getting abused by Peyton Manning last week, watch for the Titans to rebound and hold Palmer in check.

•Skins RB Alfred Morris at Atlanta. Big gut call here. The Falcons are actually the third-worst rush defense in the league, allowing 133 yards a game on the ground. But Washington has packed it in. I like Atlanta to get out to a big early lead, rendering Morris useless.

•Steelers RB Le'Veon Bell vs. Cincinnati. Facing the second-stingiest defense to RBs in terms of fantasy points allowed, Bell (3.39 ypc) won't be good for more than 7-8 points.

•Giants RB Andre Brown and WR Hakeem Nicks vs. Seattle. There's always the chance Brown could get a short-yardage score, but I like a player like Steven Jackson much more this week.

•Seahawks WRs Golden Tate and Doug Baldwin at New York Giants. These two are nothing more than flex plays at this point.

jdietz@dailyherald.com

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