The great news is that it’s playoff time and this is typically the best week of NFL action. The bad news is this will be our last week of having more then two games, so daily fantasy pretty much is over after this. But fear not, The Commish is here to help guide you in the right direction this week on DraftKings. Without further adieu, lets review each game and the tastiest of match-ups.
Seahawks @ Falcons
Overview: The well rested Falcons will look to use that bye week to their advantage this week against the visiting Seahawks. The Hawks ran the ball surprisingly well last week in that thumping they put on the Lions with Rawls ripping off over 160 yards. Despite a few critical injuries, they also looked like the Super Bowl caliber Seattle D as well. However, this week they must exchange that banged up Lions team for a pretty healthy Falcons team that had arguably the best fantasy offense this season in the entire NFL. The biggest knock on the Seahawks is that offensive line. Can they protect Russell Wilson down the postseason stretch and continue to pound the rock? Atlanta’s Vick Beasley hopes to continue his impressive year against that questionable front. As for the Falcons, I suppose the biggest question is will they be a bit too rested and will this be a Matty Ice postseason performance for the ages or back to his old habits in disappointing past efforts?
Who to Own: I love most of the Falcons fantasy values with Freeman ($5,900) and Coleman ($4,500) as very nice deals for a RB2 this week. Matty Ice for $7,000 seems fair as it’s the third highest QB value this week behind Brady and Rodgers and I consider him the third best play behind those QBs as well. Personally, I’d rather spend a little more and get Brady ($7,600) or a little less and get Dak ($6,000), but you can’t argue with the price considering the Seahawks have shown holes in their secondary this season. I’d honestly avoid the TE position for Atlanta as it’s a bit iffy about who is even starting for them this weekend. Lastly, my favorite Atlanta value besides from maybe Freeman is Taylor Gabriel at $4,400. This simply an excellent deal for that one or two budget moves you need to make on your rsoter. As for the Seahawks, I’m not crazy about many of their deals; however, Jimmy Graham is one of a few good TE options this week and at a solid price ($4,900) and if you’re looking for a wildcard streamer Paul Richardson could be that deep ball beneficiary that pays off. Russell Wilson isn’t terrible either at $6,900, but I’d prefer to spend that money on somebody else with the O-line concerns.
Who Not to Own: Thomas Rawls will likely be one of the hottest plays this week having played well last week and with news that CJ Prosise is in fact doubtful for this weekend. At $6,900 which is the thirds most at RB by a ton this week, I don’t like the value considering I have three RBs for significantly less (Blount, Freeman, Ware) ranked ahead of Rawls. Also considering his 162 yard effort last week was more than his 4 or 5 combined efforts before that and you have a RB that has only averaged more than 3 yards per carry in 3 or 4 games this year. This is a risky proposition. The same goes for Doug Baldwin who I love as a fantasy player, but again $8,100 is a considerable amount more than most of the WRs this week (besides Brown and Julio). Honestly, I’m not too high on Julio either considering his $8,400 price tag, but I still like him much more than Baldwin for nearly the same price.
Final Thought: I think this will be a fairly high scoring matchup and both teams possess a lot of depth offensively, so I’m focusing more on the second WRs and cheaper values at RB as a whole here. Falcons win 35-24.
Texans @ Patriots
Overview: In what seems to be the biggest lopsided game of the week (if not in NFL Playoff history), the New England Patriots will host the Houston Texans. The Patriots of course have a long history of playing excellent defense down the stretch and pounding teams into submission in these icy playoff tilts; whereas Brock Osweiler and the Houston Texans have a much briefer history of pretty much bowing out around this time of the year with poor QB play and overall just getting dominated. To be honest, the Houston Texans are only here for two reasons: they play in the weakest division in football and they got the lucky matchup last week of facing a team with their rookie backup QB in.
Who to Own: LeGarrette Blount seems primed for a classic 30 carry 120 yard or more pounding of the Texans type of day. Assuming the Patriots get up a few scores, Blount should see a second half that scores him at least 10 to 15 points. Although he doesn’t provide much in the receiving department of these .5 leagues per catch, he should hit pay dirt at least once and at $5,800 that’s an excellent value for the bruising back who is no longer listed on the injury report. Brady at $7,600 seems like the safest QB play this week of any (although I worry a bit about how much he will throw in the second half). Martellus Bennett is a nice value at $4,000 as well if you prefer to save your money at TE. Lastly, I like all the Patriot WR values, but the only problem is picking the right one. Edelman is pretty expensive at $6,800, so I like Chris Hogan the best at $3,900 followed by Floyd and Amendola at $3,800 and $3,500 respectively. I think that Hogan and Floyd will be the best values and perhaps Floyd sees a lot of action due to his run blocking skills and catches a TD. Oh, and I’m spending a lot to have the Patriots D in all my lineups although they’re $1,000 more than the next best options.
Who Not to Own: Any Texans (well besides from that Fedora guy).
Final Thought: Seems like a game destined for Blount to smash the opposition again and again doesn’t it? Patriots win 42-14.
Steelers @ Chiefs
Overview: In one of the harder games to predict this weekend, the Kansas City Chiefs will host the Pittsburgh Steelers. With arguably the most talent in the league on offense, the Steelers have been a tough team to predict week-in and week-out this year. However, last week they looked like they are primed for a Super Bowl run thanks largely to the performances of LeVeon Bell and Antonio Brown. They will be tested though as they are facing one of the best defenses in the league this weekend in Kansas City. The Chiefs boast an excellent home record and one of the most balanced teams in the league with a solid running game, decent passing game and excellent defense. Oh, and the weather called for a delay, so this could easily impact fantasy output.
Who to Own: My two favorite players to own this week for this game are Tyreek Hill ($5,400) and Spencer Ware ($5,200). Both Chiefs playmakers seem undervalued with Ware listed outside the top 6 at RB values and Hill barely in the top 10 at wideout. Both should be valued as at least top five in each of their respected positions. Travis Kelce is the clearcut best TE to own this week; however, it will come at a steep price at $6,100. Honestly, I’d rather save thousands of dollars by utilizing another TE and hope Kelce doesn’t crush it. Speaking of which, Jesse James is my favorite TE steamer this week at $2,800. Although I’m not crazy about the player, I think that’s a fine price to throw the dice on an iffy position. Lastly, the Chiefs have a great DEF of ranking this week, but I’d prefer to spend a little more on the Patriots if you can.
Who Not to Own: LeVeon Bell won a lot of money for daily players last week and I think he’ll come back down to Earth this week, but have another solid week here against a very tough D. I can’t fathom paying him over $10,000 when there are so many better values out there and that’s a very large chunk of your overall budget. Same can be said for Antonio Brown with well over $9,000 as well. And Roethlisberger as the fourth highest paid QB at $6,500 seems a bit high on the road as well considering the weather, the tough defense he’s playing, and he’s a little banged up. Pretty much I don’t hate any of these “Killer B’s”, but I just think these values are awfully high for what could end up being the lowest scoring game of the week in terrible conditions.
Final Thought: I expect this to be the lowest scoring game, so don’t go crazy spending over half of your budget on it. Steelers win 20-17.
Packers @ Cowboys
Overview: In what is pretty much the game of the week we have the hottest QB in the league playing against arguably the best regular season team. It’s a clashing of different football philosophies. On one side you have a team that struggles running, but can air it out against the best rushing team in the league this year but a little shakey throwing it sometimes. Of course the Packers will also be without Jordy Nelson which is clearly going to put them at a disadvantage as well. Will the Cowboys manhandle the Packers or will Aaron Rodgers find a way to continue winning even with a limited cast of playmakers? We shall see this weekend.
Who to Own: I never like Dez Bryant in dailies because he’s almost always overvalued, but alas I love his value this week at $6,400. I have Dez ranked as the second or third best WR this week and with that value he’s not even in the top 5 for price. Although I love Dez, I love one person even more. Ezekiel Elliott ($8,500) is in my opinion the best big money play this week. I have him in every lineup because I think he mows down the Packers questionable defensive front. Lastly for the Cowboys, I love Dak Prescott’s value of $6,000 although I think you have to curb your expectations a bit. As for the Packers, Rodgers is the best QB play, but pretty high value at $8,200. I prefer saving $600 on Brady considering Rodgers will also not have his top target. Lastly, I do like two Packers sleepers this week in TE Jared Cook ($3,900) and Geronimo Allison ($3,900).
Who Not to Own: Ty Montgomery ($5,300) doesn’t inspire much confidence considering he’s banged up and facing the toughest run defense in the league. There’s not really a lot of other values here I don’t like.
Final Thought: In the biggest game this week, I’ll take the Cowboys over the Packers 31-20.