Just because the regular season is over doesn’t mean that fantasy football ends. The wild card round was amazing, and hopefully you got off to a great start and didn’t see a lot of your picks eliminated and tossed aside.
This weekend we have the Baltimore Ravens and Denver Broncos facing each other Saturday, 4:30pm ET in Denver, and then the Green Bay Packers roll out to the west coast to battle the San Francisco 49ers later in the evening at 8:00pm ET. On Sunday, the Seattle Seahawks invade the Georgia Dome to battle the Atlanta Falcons at 1:00pm ET, before the round wraps up with the Houston Texans at the New England Patriots at 4:30pm ET.
While we waved good-bye to fantasy studs like QB Robert Griffin III, QB Andrew Luck, RB Alfred Morris, RB Adrian Peterson, WR A.J. Green and WR Reggie Wayne, among others, there are still plenty of outstanding players available. Enjoy the Divisional Round of the playoffs, and good luck!
Quarterback – start of the week
Joe Flacco, QB, Baltimore (at DEN) – Flacco was mediocre from a fantasy perspective through most of the regular season, picking spots here or there to look like a QB1. This weekend he might surprise, although the Broncos did rank third in pass defense in the NFL during the regular season. If you play at DraftKings.com, you’ll see Flacco is the second cheapest starting QB on the board, and he should outperform a couple of the guys above him since it is likely the Ravens will be playing from behind early and often.
Quarterback – sit of the week
Matt Schaub, QB, Houston (at NE) – Schaub is dead-last in salary among the eight starting QBs this weekend, and there is good reason for it. Schaub threw for just 232 yards on 19-0f-32 passing in an embarrassing Week 14 loss in Foxboro, a memory which is still fresh in the minds of fantasy players, the Texans, their fans, the Patriots, their fans and, of course, gamblers. Schaub was picked off in the game, too, one of just three INTs over his past five games.
Running back – surprise start of the week
Marshawn Lynch, Seattle (at ATL): The one thing the Falcons really struggled with this season was stopping the run, so a matchup against the run-happy Seahawks is something they definitely can’t be happy about. The Falcons yielded 123.2 yards per game while giving up 16 rushing touchdowns in 16 regular season games. The Seahawks ran for 161.2 yards per game on the ground, third-best in the NFL, during the regular season, posting 16 rushing scores, and they rolled up 224 yards on the ground in their wild card game win at Washington. Lynch went for 132 yards and a score on 20 carries in the victory.
Running back – sit of the week
DuJuan Harris, Green Bay (at SF): Harris emerged as a relevant fantasy option with 10.5 fantasy points in DraftKings.com leagues last week against the Vikings. This week, however, is a totally different story. Harris, and all of the other Packers, will have a very difficult time putting up rushing yardage against a 49ers rushing defense which allowed just 94.2 yards per game on the ground in 16 regular season games. They managed just seven rushing touchdowns, and the 49ers did not allow one run over 40 yards this season.
Wide receiver – surprise start of the week
Golden Tate, Seattle (at ATL): Tate was so-so during the regular season, posting just one 100-yard game (Week 17 at STL), and he had just four grabs for 35 yards last week. However, Tate is a bargain at $3,000 in DraftKings.com leagues, and he has the chance to have a big-time stat line against a Falcons pass defense which allowed 242.4 yards per game through the air, ranking 23rd in the NFL against the pass.
Wide receiver- sit of the week
Andre Johnson, Houston (at NE): Johnson and the Texans hit the road for a battle against the Patriots. Like Schaub above, look for Johnson to struggle mightily. The Patriots do a great job of taking out the top threat for the other team, and since they are likely to be up, forcing the Texans to abandon the run, the Texans should be forced into plenty of passing situations. However, look for A.J. to be doubled, with the Patriots forcing lesser players like WRs Lestar Jean, Keshawn Martin and TE Owen Daniels to beat them.
Tight end – surprise start of the week: Dennis Pitta, Baltimore (at DEN)
Sit of the week: Rob Gronkowski, New England (vs. HOU)
Kicker – surprise start of the week: Justin Tucker, Baltimore (at DEN)
Sit of the week: David Akers, San Francisco (vs. GB)
Defense/special teams – surprise starts of the week: 49ers DST (vs. GB), Patriots DST (vs. HOU)
DST sit of the week: Falcons DST (vs. SEA), Seahawks DST (at ATL)
Daniel E. Dobish’s Fantasy Lineup at DraftKings.com
- Joe Flacco, QB, Baltimore – $6,800
- Marshawn Lynch, RB, Seattle – $8,700
- Knowshon Moreno, RB, Denver – $7,000
- Golden Tate, WR, Seattle – $3,000
- James Jones, WR, Green Bay – $5,700
- Tony Gonzalez, TE, Atlanta – $6,000
- Randall Cobb, FLEX, Green Bay – $5,000
- Justin Tucker, PK, Baltimore – $3,300
- Broncos defense, DST – $4,300