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Week 17 Fantasy Football Rankings: Pittsburgh Steelers

If your fantasy football team is still playing in Week 17, good luck to you, as some teams will be sitting their stars or planning for the offseason. If you happen to have any Pittsburgh Steelers on your team, though, you're in luck - they have a lot to play for, with a first-week bye on the line, and are playing a mediocre Cleveland Browns team to boot. The Steelers are an oasis in the Week 17 desert.

With that in mind, here are my comments on the Steelers this week. (The rankings are from ESPN.)

Ben Roethlisberger (No. 6 among quarterbacks): Roethlisberger is a fine play this week, since he has 246 or more yards in his last seven starts and the Browns have a mediocre pass defense. Also, he passed for three touchdowns in his last game against Cleveland.

Rashard Mendenhall (No. 6 among running backs): Mendenhall has scored in his last two games. Expect the Steelers to rely heavily on him against a weak Cleveland rushing defense.

Mike Wallace (No. 7 among wide receivers). Wallace keeps having one good game after another in what has become a breakout season. There's no reason to expect the party to stop this week.

Hines Ward (No. 26 among wide receivers). In the Steelers' last game against the Panthers, Ward continued his pattern of following a 100-yard game with several weak ones. He has had four 100-yard games this year, so you can't dismiss him entirely, but he has had between 40 and 100 yards only once. He's certainly capable of a big game against the Browns, but I'd still probably avoid him. Even playing Emmanuel Sanders, who has worked his way into the Steelers' offense in the past month, might be better at this point.

Heath Miller (No. 22 among tight ends). Miller had his most productive game of the year against Carolina, at least in terms of his fantasy value, but you still can't count on him for more than a few points.

Steelers (No. 1 among defenses). Yes, Colt McCoy had a pretty big game against the Steelers a couple months ago, but I wouldn't expect that to happen again. The Browns are one of the worst passing teams in the NFL, and the Steelers rarely seem to have much trouble stopping the run. Expect them to post big numbers this week.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.