Again I am late posting this section, and I am sorry for all you dedicated readers who have been waiting. Today I laid out the rest of my semester and I have six papers, a project, and seven exams over the next three and a half weeks, so bear with me.
Anyway, looking at football the Vikings lost on Thursday in a nail biter after Bradford threw a last minute interception. Then, on Sunday the Broncos lost on an overtime field goal by Santos. As for fantasy football, Mike Evans went off against the Seahawks defense and had 50+ yards and 2 TDs, Sammy Watkins came back and led the Bills in yards (80 yards) on 3 receptions. Mark Ingram had 146 yards and a TD on 14 carries, and Michael Thomas had 9 receptions for 108 and 2TDs. Now for the guys you should look to pick up this week and play, note that it is fantasy playoffs or the last week before playoffs start, so I will mainly be talking about guys who are owned in less than 50% of leagues that I would start this week. There might not be 2 guys in each section.
Joe Flacco – BAL (owned in 27.3% of ESPN leagues): Flacco has not had a great season, but he has been consistent. He does not have many targets to throw to, but last week he finally hit Perriman for a TD which was nice to finally see. Additionally he plays the Dolphins this week who give up on average 17.4 points to opposing QBs. Expect for Flacco to have an average game and score about 15-18 points. Although the Browns and Titans are the only two teams on bye and I do not think there is a significant QB injury except Luck (who should be returning this week), so odds are you are going to start the guy who you started all year. Remember, this is the playoffs, not time to get cute play who got you there.
Dion Lewis – NE (owned in 47.7% of ESPN leagues): Lewis has been back for 2 weeks and this past week and he has scored 16 points. Although over the past 2 weeks he has shown enough to warrant an addition to your roster. He was targeted on 47.1% of the routes that he ran on Sunday. If he keeps that number up he will be very effective through the fantasy playoffs, and as each week passes he will get a higher snap count until he gets back to where he was pre-injury. The Patriots play the Rams who are coming off a game in which they allowed 48 fantasy points to opposing RBs, including 201 rushing yards and a rushing TD.
Taylor Gabriel – ATL (owned in 3.6% of ESPN leagues): Gabriel has been a well-known secret recently. Some will say that it helps that he was once a Brown, so he must not be that good; however, like Dion Lewis, Gabriel left the Browns and is starting to flourish as a player who has a lot of fantasy value. Over the past 4 games he has yet to score fewer than 14 points, and he has 4 TDs over that span. He and the Falcons will look to play the Chiefs this week who have given up 42.5 fantasy points to opposing WRs is the second highest. I would look for Julio, Gabriel, Matt Ryan, and everyone else that is a part of the Falcons pass offense to have a good game.
Adam Thielen – MIN (owned in 18.4% of ESPN leagues): Adam Thielen has slowly gained my trust this year. There are many better options, but of the guys owned in less than 50% of leagues he might be the second best option. If you read my section, you probably realize that I like players who score consistently rather than guys who are hit or miss, and Thielen is very consistent. Thielen has scored at least 10 points in each of the past 4 games. This week he plays the Cowboys which leads me to believe that the Vikings will be down most of the game. The Cowboys have given up 36.3 points a week to all opposing WRs, which is the middle of the pack. Although, I see Thielen taking advantage of this average defense and finding gaps and making a lot of catches.
C.J. Fiedorowicz – HOU (owned in 43.8% of ESPN leagues): Fiedorowicz has had at least 4 receptions in all but one game since week 3. Over that span he has scored in double digits in 5 of the 8 games. This week he plays the Packers who on the season give up 11.8 points per game, but over the past 3 games they have given up 18.66 points per game to opposing TEs. I would expect Houston to realize this and try to exploit the holes in the Packers defense.
Chargers D/ST (owned in 35.1% of ESPN leagues): The Chargers have had an average defense; however, over the past 6 games their defense has scored in double digits 4 times. They 11 turnovers over the past 4 games, and have gotten 3 TDs. This week the Chargers play the Buccaneers who give up 7.3 points to opposing defenses. The Buccaneers have not turned the ball over much, nor have they allowed many sacks. So the reason that opposing defenses are having so much success stems from the fact that their offense has not scored many points.
The scoring that I have used is based off of ESPN’s standard PPR scoring. Good luck on the waiver wire this week and in your upcoming match-ups. Remember to follow me on twitter and the Fantasy Life app @FantasySportGM and tweet me your start/sit or trade questions this week
Waiver Wire Finds