The Trade Report – Tasty Playoff Match-ups
By now, you have a solid idea whether you’re making the playoffs or not. If you’re in need of that extra help for week 13, check out our rankings from Walker, our waiver wire adds from Josh and all our other weekly articles. However, I’m going to give you the low down on the tastiest play-off match-ups. Some of your guys that have been disappointing recently may be primed for some big games, so be ready. The majority of fantasy football leagues hold their play-offs in weeks 14,15,16, so those are going to be my focus. Let’s roll!
1)Josh Rosen(ARI)- Rosen had a rough game last week, however, the Chargers are the 3rd best defense vs. quarterbacks. Rosen’s playoff schedule becomes much more generous. Following a tough home game vs. the Lions in week 14, weeks 15 and 16 he faces two teams (Falcons and Rams) that have generous pass defenses and promise to score a lot of points. Rosen will be in a lot of garbage time at the end of these games. So if you’re streaming QBs, Rosen is a great choice.
2)Lamar Jackson(BAL)- Assuming that Lamar Jackson has successfully stolen the starting job from Joe Flacco, Jackson has a tasty week 14 and 15. If you have Jackson on your roster, that means you got where you are without him so far. During the championship week, Jackson faces the Chargers which is less than ideal. However, in the first two rounds of the playoffs, Jackson has Kansas City (28th) and Tampa Bay(29th). Thanks to his rushing points, his floor is higher than most quarterbacks. If he’s the starter, feel comfortable starting him at the beginning of the playoffs.
3)Ben Roethlisberger(PIT)- There are two staples in fantasy that are telling you to roll out Big Ben during the playoffs. 1)Home Ben is a stud. Week 15 he has a date with the porous New England defense at home. 2)New Orleans can put up points. In Week 16, Big Ben will be forced into a shootout with Drew Brees and that terrifying New Orleans’ offense. I see the Steelers playing catch up a ton, leading to Big Ben putting up a ton of garbage time points. If you can survive Week 14’s trip to Oakland, Big Ben will aid you on your quest for a championship.
1)Philip Lindsay(DEN)- Poor Royce Freeman drafters. You thought you were getting Denver’s lead back, only to realize the undrafted rookie is the guy. If you were fortunate enough to snag Philip Lindsay, you’ll be happy to know that his playoff schedule is very generous. After facing an average rushing defense in San Francisco week 14, Lindsay gets two bottom 10 defenses in Cleveland and Oakland. Both games look promising in terms of game script, so feel confident plugging Lindsay in during the post-season.
2)David Johnson(ARI)- Ever since Byron Leftwich took over the Arizona offense, David Johnson has been used in much more creative ways. I expect Leftwich and Johnson to take full advantage of the soft post-season schedule. While the championship week vs. the Rams isn’t too kind, Johnson gets a pair of bottom 10 defenses in weeks 14 (Detroit) and 15(Atlanta). Both of those weeks are in a dome, in nice conditions so I expect Johnson to be utilized in the passing game a lot and fantasy football owners will be the primary beneficiary.
3)Dalvin Cook(MINN)- After laying a bit of an egg in his first week back, Cook has shown the burst and agility that owners drafted him for. After a tough match-up in week 14 vs. the Seahawks, Cook finishes strong with games vs. the Dolphins (27th vs RBs) and in a dome at Detroit (23rd vs. RBs). Vikings will look to establish the run vs. both of these teams and Cook will benefit big time. I expect big numbers from Cook in the last two weeks of the post-season, so confidently place him in your lineup and watch the points pile up.
1)KeKe Coutee/Demaryius Thomas(HOU)- I’m not going to include DeAndre Hopkins in this because he’s a must-start week in and week out. However, Houston’s complimentary options in the passing attack are in good shape. Week 14 they have a tough match-up with Indy’s 8th ranked pass defense, however, that could still turn into a shootout. Weeks 15 and 16 are where the money is at. The Jets and the Eagles are the 29th and 31st best defenses vs WRs. I expect Deshaun Watson to be airing it out, early and often, and Coutee and Thomas represent solid flex plays.
2)Marquez Valdes-Scantling/Equanimeous St. Brown(GB)- Similar to the Texans and Hopkins, you’re always going to start the touchdown monster, Davante Adams. However, each week during the playoffs, the Packers face defenses ranked 23rd or worse. Aaron Rodgers can’t target Adams for every drop back. I fully expect MVS and ESB to be fed targets and find success against the Falcons in week 14 and especially the Jets during championship week.
3)D.J. Moore/Devin Funchess/Curtis Samuel(CAR)- The Carolina offense has been humming for a while now. Rookie Moore, 2nd year Samuel, and Funchess have all seen increased usage over the last few weeks. All three pass defenses the Carolina receivers are facing this week are 23rd or worse. They start the playoffs vs. Cleveland. Then if you have a bye, your Carolina receivers start out by facing the worst defense in the Saints. That promises to be a shootout. Finally, they finish up with a home game vs. Atlanta for the championship. All three of these defenses promise to give up a ton of points to receivers. Take advantage.
1)David Njoku(CLE)- Njoku had one of his best games as a pro last week while scoring one of the weirdest touchdowns. If you haven’t seen it, I encourage you to check that out now. Since Baker took over the starting job, Njoku has been averaging almost 6 targets per game, including scoring 3 touchdowns in his last 6 games. During the playoffs, Njoku faces the two worst defenses against tight ends (Carolina and Cincinnati). With his increasing chemistry with Baker, along with generous match-ups in the playoffs, Njoku is a must play.
2)Jared Cook(OAK)- Cook has been an enigma this season. Cook will alternate 20+ point games with two straight single-digit point games. That is likely due to the Raiders being a mess, not Cook’s talent. The first two weeks of the playoffs, Cook faces Pittsburgh (25th) and Cincinnati(31st). If you are stuck streaming tight ends during the season, Cook is a must play in the post-season.
3)C.J. Uzomah(CIN)-Uzomah may seem like an off addition to the list. He hasn’t been a hot tight end during the year, even in Eifert’s absence. However, with Dalton out for the year, back up Jeff Driskel may look to a security blanket like the big tight end. Furthermore, Uzomah faces three bottom half defenses when it comes to defending the tight end, culminating in Cleveland (26th) during the championship week. C.J. could be in for a big play-off.
Tell me your thoughts! Did I miss someone obvious? Am I the best fortune teller you’ve ever seen or just plain wrong? If you want to let me know or if you’re just looking for free fantasy football advice, you can find me on Twitter @Sam_Wise730 or you could use our company handle @tffgurus. Also, feel free to check out the podcast page @trophytimepod and shoot us a follow. See you next week.