It's playoff time, folks. Time to get those lineups inked in, with the best blend of "safe" and "upside". Here are some matchups to exploit this weekend.
Good luck to all!
Detroit (vs. CHI): Let's just say this now: the Bears are (Charles Barkley voice) TURRIBLE. And in their defense, most of their dee-fense is either hurt or suspended. The red-hot Lions come off a big victory in the Superdome and now return home to face a Bear team that's just reeling. The Lions have much to play for in this divisional battle and while the Bears have actually given up the 9th-fewest fantasy points to QBs, that's a skewed number to say the least. Matthew Stafford is on a roll under the play-calling of Jim Bob Cooter and this offense should easily roll over the depleted Bears defense. Solid Starts: Stafford, Golden Tate Good Starts: Marvin Jones, Eric Ebron, Anquan Boldin
Tampa Bay (vs. NOS): Another team (and specifically, its offense) which is on a roll are the Bucs. The Saints have been playing better defense as of late, but that's been at home. In Tampa, the Bucs should have no problem moving the ball on the Saint defense. And, in the favor of fantasy owners of Buc offensive players, the Saints should score on the Buc D too. Jameis Winston is one of the hottest fantasy QBs right now and is a must-play. So too is his #1 option, Mike Evans. And TE Cameron Brate has come out of nowhere to become a legit TE1. Solid Starts: Winston, Evans, Brate Good PPR Start: Russell Shepard
Cincinnati (@CLE): Folks have had this contest marked down for a few weeks now, as the Bengals suffer losses both in the win/loss column AND in terms of significant injuries. If there's ANY game the Browns could win, this is it. Jeremy Hill remains as the Bengals' best offensive option and best chance of staving off a Brown victory. Expect him to touch the ball at least 25 times, turning into 100 combined yards and a likely score. For those of you needing a deeper PPR pluck, Gio Bernard replacement Rex Burkhead could see enough usage this week to matter. Solid Start: Hill Deep PPR Play: Burkhead
Buffalo (vs. PIT): The Bills have a very outside chance of making the playoffs, and if they were to, it'd be on the strength of their running game. Specifically, LeSean McCoy. McCoy was a beast last week, and if it were not for two Mike Gillislee TD vultures, his game would have been absolutely monstrous. That said, in a game where ball control (keeping Big Ben/Brown/Bell off the field) will be key, both McCoy and Gillislee represent good starts. In the case of McCoy, we see no reason why he wouldn't replicate last week's numbers, making him a solid start. Solid Start: McCoy Good Start: Gillislee