Popular Features

  • 2019 First Round NFL Mock Draft: Pre-Combine
    February 28, 2019
    2019 First Round NFL Mock Draft: Pre-Combine

    Pre-Combine NFL Mock Draft The 2019 NFL Draft is over 50 days away but the speculation on how the first round will go is in full swing. I have been waiting my whole football career to be in the position to do a first-round NFL Mock Draft and with so much intrigue, especially amongst the top…

  • Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Rankings premium
    March 1, 2019
    2019 NFL Draft: Pre-Combine Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Rankings

    Pre-Combine Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Rankings Earlier this week, Anthony Amico published his pre-combine rookie WR rankings. Now that the NFL combine is upon us, here are my Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Rankings. I have done them by position: Quarterback, Wide Receiver, Running Back and Tight End. These positional rankings are going to change for…

  • First Round Rookie Mock Draft
    February 18, 2019
    First Round Dynasty Rookie Mock Draft

    With the Combine only a couple of weeks away, now seems like a good time to start evaluating not just who to target in dynasty rookie drafts, but where those targets may go in your league. I got together with Davis Mattek (@DavisMattek) to do a first round rookie mock draft. Our objective in this…

  • The 2019 Post-Combine RB Success Model 2
    March 2, 2019
    The 2019 Post-Combine RB Success Model

    Which 2019 RB Prospects Have the Best Odds to Succeed? I’ve been doing a lot of modeling on the wide receiver side of things so far, but very little with running backs. There are some new modeling techniques I’ve been eager to try, with one of them being a logistic regression to find success probability…

  • 2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Josh Jacobs, Alabama
    March 15, 2019
    2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Josh Jacobs, Alabama

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  • Best Ball Fantasy Football: Players I've Invested In Early
    March 22, 2019
    Best Ball Fantasy Football: Players I’ve Invested In Early

    Best Ball Fantasy Football Portfolio: Players To Stock Up On Early I have already begun the process of drafting Best Ball Fantasy Football teams for 2019 (using our quite useful Best Ball fantasy football tools) and cannot wait to do more. A big part of our idea to launch the NFL365 package was to aid…

  • 2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Miles Sanders, Penn State
    March 21, 2019
    2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Miles Sanders, Penn State

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  • 2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Greg Dortch, Wake Forest
    March 21, 2019
    2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Greg Dortch, Wake Forest

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  • You Are Probably Too Low On Damien Williams For Fantasy Football
    March 19, 2019
    You Are Probably Too Low On Damien Williams For Fantasy Football

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  • 2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Deebo Samuel, South Carolina
    March 19, 2019
    2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Deebo Samuel, South Carolina

    Deebo Samuel 2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile Scouting Report Deebo Samuel has had a wild ride as a prospect. In 2017 lists and at the start of the 2018 season, he was perhaps regarded as one of the best wide receiver prospects in the entire class. Samuel was pretty consistently hampered by injury while at…

2018 NFL Playoff Fantasy Football Targets

2018 NFL Playoff Fantasy Football Targets
Davis Mattek January 1, 2019 11:49AM EDT

The Top Playoff Fantasy Football Targets

The name of the game in playoff-long NFL Fantasy formats is to make the best combination of per game projections while also weighing in how likely each player’s team is to reach the Super Bowl. The more games that a player participates in , the more valuable they will be in playoff Fantasy formats. Of course, there will be very good players who are on teams that participate in only one game and Fantasy-nothings who make it to the Super Bowl.

The idea here is to identify a few of the players who are not on the top two seeds in each conference that should outperform their peers, as well as looking at the odds-on Super Bowl favorites and making a few decisions about who to anchor our playoff hopes on.

Worthwhile Risks

Andrew Luck and T.Y. Hilton

Picking players from a sixth seed is generally tough for some obvious reasons. They have the most difficult matchups of active teams and generally, sixth-seeded teams are not very good. This Colts team bucks that trend and Luck and Hilton are generally the sorts of players that you would want to target from teams who are underdogs to advance. Luck started out the season with six straight games under seven yards per attempt and threw five interceptions over that span. However, since Week 10 of the NFL season, he’s been under eight yards per attempt only three times. There is a growing narrative that he should be included in the MVP conversation because of this run, which is a bit bogus, but it does reflect how well he’s played. Hilton has been the biggest beneficiary of this resurgence for Luck. Hilton has a 34 percent Market Share of the Colts’ Air Yards, the highest Average Depth of Target on the team and a 22 percent Market Share of the team’s total targets. Hilton is the sort of big-play, high-volume guy that can swing playoff Fantasy leagues if the Colts can beat Houston and you get two games out of him (even if they don’t make the Conference Championship).

Melvin Gordon

Gordon is going to be pushed down on playoff Fantasy league draft boards for several reasons. He was injured to end the 2018 regular season. He did not play in Weeks 13, 14 or 15 and actually left the Chargers’ Week 17 game with an ankle injury. Reports seem to suggest that he will be fine to go on the road and play at Baltimore … which is another reason he will be not as popular as his Fantasy point totals suggest he should be. The Ravens’ defense is a good one, insofar as good defenses matter. However, when Gordon is healthy and when the Chargers need to win games, he has one of the five best workloads of any running back in the NFL. There is perhaps some small threat that Austin Ekeler or Justin Jackson takes away receiving work from Gordon as they did at times in the regular season, but that seems less likely given the stakes at play. MG3 as the fourth or fifth ranked RB in these pools does seem like a pretty obvious value, especially if the Chargers can win this game in Baltimore, which does seem quite possible given that the Ravens are not even a three-point favorite at home.

Zach Ertz

The tight end pool in playoff leagues is BAD. After Travis Kelce, who is so obviously one of the most valuable players in the playoff Fantasy format due to positional scarcity, the table basically drops off. The Eagles are not only 25/1 to win the Super Bowl (the lowest odds on the board), they are also the biggest road underdog of any team playing on Wild Card Weekend. Still, Ertz is probably my favorite gamble to take. After Kelce, your options are a version of Rob Gronkowski that scored only three times in 11 games (by far the worst rate of his career), Trey Burton, Eric Ebron and…. That is where the Fantasy contributors from the regular season stop. Even if Ertz only gets one game, at his target share of 26 percent, he might still end up the third- or fourth highest-scoring tight end of the playoffs based on how the position has gone in 2018.

Top-Tier Stalwarts

Patrick Mahomes

The goal at quarterback is, of course, finding a QB who is going to play the maximum amount of games. There is probably some argument for Philip Rivers or Deshaun Watson as high-risk, high-reward picks because they both could theoretically play four games, as both Houston and the Chargers are good enough to make the Super Bowl. It is Mahomes that is the best overall Fantasy player in playoff leagues, though. The Chiefs are the favorites in the AFC, have scored 51 points against the favorite from the NFC, and went over 40 against the AFC’s second favorite. Mahomes had the most Fantasy points of any QB in NFL history, even more than Peyton Manning in his 2013 season, and was just the second quarterback ever to pass for more than 5,000 yards and 50 touchdown passes. I am making Chiefs offensive pieces my top priority in all playoff Fantasy formats, and Mahomes provides a significant edge over every other QB in the field, both for his Fantasy point scoring prowess and odds of playing three games.

James White

James White is Tom Brady’s foxhole guy. When the going gets tough and the games really matter, White is the man who shows up for the Patriots. White scored four touchdowns in last year’s playoff run for the Patriots (one in every game) and had 16 targets in the dramatic comeback win against the Atlanta Falcons. The safety valve in the New England offense is more valuable for Fantasy than ever because the Patriots no longer really have the element of the deep ball. The Patriots’ two most targeted players (White and Edelman) have Average Depths of Target of 3.3 and 7.7 yards down the field; this is a short-passing, timing-driven offense that no longer has Josh Gordon playing on the outside. If the Patriots have any hope of beating the other high-powered offense in their conference, it is likely that they will have to abandon hopes of establishing the run and progress the ball through the air, which should play right into White’s wheelhouse.

Robert Woods

One of the weirder things about these NFL playoffs is how many stud wide receivers are absent. We are without Davante Adams, Antonio Brown, Julio Jones, Mike Evans, Adam Thielen/Stefon Diggs and JuJu Smith-Schuster. That creates some interesting decision-making after Michael Thomas and Tyreek Hill who are the two clear top options. DeAndre Hopkins is the best Fantasy point per game player, but realistically, might only get one game. Woods, on the other hand, is the top volume option on the NFC favorite and I think should be the third-ranked playoff Fantasy Football wide receiver. Woods has a 23 percent target share of the Rams’ offense, the highest Weighted Opportunity Ranking on the team. Should the Rams get into a competitive, high-scoring game, the expectation should be that Woods will lead the team in passing game usage. The Hopkins vs. Woods debate should really be centered on how many games we project Hopkins to play, but Woods is almost locked in to at least two games, and that should give him the edge.

Popular Features

  • 2019 First Round NFL Mock Draft: Pre-Combine
    February 28, 2019
    2019 First Round NFL Mock Draft: Pre-Combine

    Pre-Combine NFL Mock Draft The 2019 NFL Draft is over 50 days away but the speculation on how the first round will go is in full swing. I have been waiting my whole football career to be in the position to do a first-round NFL Mock Draft and with so much intrigue, especially amongst the top…

  • Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Rankings premium
    March 1, 2019
    2019 NFL Draft: Pre-Combine Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Rankings

    Pre-Combine Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Rankings Earlier this week, Anthony Amico published his pre-combine rookie WR rankings. Now that the NFL combine is upon us, here are my Dynasty Fantasy Football Rookie Rankings. I have done them by position: Quarterback, Wide Receiver, Running Back and Tight End. These positional rankings are going to change for…

  • First Round Rookie Mock Draft
    February 18, 2019
    First Round Dynasty Rookie Mock Draft

    With the Combine only a couple of weeks away, now seems like a good time to start evaluating not just who to target in dynasty rookie drafts, but where those targets may go in your league. I got together with Davis Mattek (@DavisMattek) to do a first round rookie mock draft. Our objective in this…

  • The 2019 Post-Combine RB Success Model 2
    March 2, 2019
    The 2019 Post-Combine RB Success Model

    Which 2019 RB Prospects Have the Best Odds to Succeed? I’ve been doing a lot of modeling on the wide receiver side of things so far, but very little with running backs. There are some new modeling techniques I’ve been eager to try, with one of them being a logistic regression to find success probability…

  • 2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Josh Jacobs, Alabama
    March 15, 2019
    2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Josh Jacobs, Alabama

    Josh Jacobs 2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile Scouting Report Josh Jacobs is not an easy prospect to evaluate. For most NFL scouts and self-styled NFL Draft analysts on the internet, he is either the best running back in the 2019 NFL draft class or at least in the conversation. I have a distinct feeling that…

  • Best Ball Fantasy Football: Players I've Invested In Early
    March 22, 2019
    Best Ball Fantasy Football: Players I’ve Invested In Early

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  • 2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Miles Sanders, Penn State
    March 21, 2019
    2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Miles Sanders, Penn State

    Miles Sanders 2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile Scouting Report Miles Sanders is an interesting case study in how to evaluate prospects. Our general analysis weights breakout age and production as a true freshman as something that is fairly important. When evaluating wide receivers, this task becomes a little easier because no football team ever has…

  • 2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Greg Dortch, Wake Forest
    March 21, 2019
    2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Greg Dortch, Wake Forest

    Greg Dortch 2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile Scouting Report Greg Dortch is one of the best age-adjusted producers in the entire 2019 wide receiver class. In 2017, he broke out with 35 percent of Wake Forest receiving yards, and a ridiculous 47 percent of the touchdowns. Dortch accomplished this prior to his 20th birthday. He then…

  • You Are Probably Too Low On Damien Williams For Fantasy Football
    March 19, 2019
    You Are Probably Too Low On Damien Williams For Fantasy Football

    Damien Williams: First Round Fantasy Football Pick Damien Williams is being ranked and drafted erroneously. As of this moment, his Expert Consensus Ranking on Fantasy Pros (which combines rankings from across the industry) plants him as the 43rd overall player. At the running back position, he is being ranked behind Derrick Henry, Kerryon Johnson, Phillip…

  • 2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Deebo Samuel, South Carolina
    March 19, 2019
    2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile: Deebo Samuel, South Carolina

    Deebo Samuel 2019 NFL Draft Prospect Profile Scouting Report Deebo Samuel has had a wild ride as a prospect. In 2017 lists and at the start of the 2018 season, he was perhaps regarded as one of the best wide receiver prospects in the entire class. Samuel was pretty consistently hampered by injury while at…