For most leagues, the fantasy football playoffs start this week. I have made the playoffs in 3 of my 4 leagues and have a combined regular-season record of 31-21. This intro will be a little different in the way that I will list the top 10 fantasy players per position in total points to recap the season so far.
- Josh Allen 306.06 fpts (1st in ppg with 23.54)
- Tom Brady 304.16 fpts (2nd in ppg with 23.4)
- Justin Herbert 295.68 fpts (3rd in ppg with 22.74)
- Matthew Stafford 275.82 fpts (7th in ppg with 21.22)
- Patrick Mahomes 262.68 fpts (8th in ppg with 20.21)
- Aaron Rodgers 254.96 fpts (5th in ppg with 21.25)
- Jalen Hurts 254.9 fpts (6th in ppg with 21.24)
- Kirk Cousins 251.6 fpts (10th in ppg with 19.36)
- Lamar Jackson 239.98 fpts (9th in ppg with 20.0)
- Joe Burrow 228.52 fpts (12th in ppg with 17.58)
- Jonathan Taylor 308.4 fpts (2nd in ppg with 23.72)
- Austin Ekeler 276.5 fpts (3rd in ppg with 21.27)
- Leonard Fournette 241.9 fpts (5th in ppg with 18.61)
- Najee Harris 241.0 fpts (6th in ppg with 18.54)
- Joe Mixon 233.8 fpts (9th in ppg with 17.98)
- James Conner 221.4 fpts (12th in ppg with 17.03)
- Cordarelle Patterson 212.6 fpts (10th in ppg with 17.72)
- Ezekiel Elliott 204.66 fpts (14th in ppg with 15.74)
- Derrick Henry 193.3 fpts (1st in ppg with 24.16)
- D’Andre Swift 188.4 fpts (11th in ppg with 17.13)
- Cooper Kupp 335.4 fpts (1st in ppg with 25.8)
- Justin Jefferson 262.2 fpts (4th in ppg with 20.17)
- Davante Adams 252.4 fpts (2nd in ppg with 21.03)
- Tyreek Hill 248.4 fpts (5th in ppg with 19.11)
- Deebo Samuel 245.8 fpts (3rd in ppg with 20.48)
- Chris Godwin 231.5 fpts (8th in ppg with 17.81)
- Ja’Marr Chase 223.6 fpts (9th in ppg with 17.2)
- Diontae Johnson 220.3 fpts (7th in ppg with 18.36)
- Mike Evans 218.5 fpts (11th in ppg with 16.81)
- Stefon Diggs 217.2 fpts (12th in ppg with 16.71)
- Mark Andrews 207.6 fpts (2nd in ppg with 15.97)
- Travis Kelce 194.9 fpts (4th in ppg with 14.99)
- George Kittle 168.1 fpts (1st in ppg with 16.81)
- TJ Hockenson 145.3 fpts (7th in ppg with 12.11)
- Dawson Knox 138.9 fpts (6th in ppg with 12.63)
- Dalton Schultz 137.4 fpts (8th in ppg with 10.57)
- Mike Gesicki 137.2 fpts (9th in ppg with 10.55)
- Kyle Pitts 137.0 fpts (11th in ppg with 10.54)
- Darren Waller 129.3 fpts (5th in ppg with 12.93)
- Zach Ertz 127.4 fpts (13th in ppg with 9.8)
The top players at each position should be in every lineup. Here I will identify the players who aren’t so obvious to help you set your lineup for the first week of the playoffs.
Start: Jalen Hurts PHI vs WAS
Jalen Hurts has been one of the weirdest NFL players this season. He is the overall QB7 in fantasy, yet has eclipsed 200 passing yards once since week five. However, he has run for over 60 yards in each of the last six games. Hurts will play Washington this week, who is allowing the most fantasy points to quarterbacks in the NFL. Jalen Hurts should get back over the 200-yard mark this week and should carry fantasy teams to victory this week against a poor Washington defense. Start Hurts with confidence as he could put up his best performance of the season.
Sleepers: Davis Mills HOU vs JAC and Zach Wilson NYJ vs MIA
Sit: Carson Wentz IND vs NE
Carson Wentz has been a popular quarterback streamer this season. This is because he is currently the QB14 with eight games over 17 fantasy points. This week, streaming Wentz is not a good option as he is playing one of the top defenses in the NFL. Indianapolis is playing the New England Patriots, who have been shutting down offenses week in and week out. Carson Wentz has an extremely low floor this week with a low ceiling as well. Streaming him is asking to lose this week as there are much better options on the waiver wire like Davis Mills and Zach Wilson.
Busts: Cam Newton CAR vs BUF and Joe Burrow CIN vs DEN
Start: Myles Gaskin MIA vs NYJ
Myles Gaskin has quietly been one of the best picks of the fantasy football season. After many thought Malcolm Brown surpassed him on the depth chart, Gaskin plummeted in ADP, and nobody wanted him. However, Gaskin is currently an RB2 on many playoff teams as he has completely overtaken the job as the RB1. Miami is playing one of the worst defenses in the NFL in the New York Jets this week. Myles Gaskin has legitimate RB1 upside and is a must-start in all leagues as he should have a monster game.
Sleepers: James Robinson JAC vs HOU and D’Onta Foreman TEN vs PIT
Sit: Saquon Barkley NYG vs DAL
Last week, I correctly predicted Saquon Barkley’s first game rushing over 60 rushing yards, and he had 64 with his best fantasy output since his injury with 18.5 fantasy points. This week brings a change of scenery for the former top-five pick as he goes from playing one of the worst run defenses in the NFL to one of the best. Saquon Barkley is a low-end flex this week as the Dallas Cowboys have been shutting down opponents left and right with their stout defense. Barkley could be in a lot of losing fantasy lineups this week as he is a major bust candidate.
Busts: Devin Singletary BUF vs CAR and Chuba Hubbard CAR vs BUF
Start: CeeDee Lamb DAL vs NYG
CeeDee Lamb has been a target hog in this Dallas offense over the last two games. A combined 23 targets have been thrown his way from quarterback Dak Prescott over that span. Lamb played Washington last week and gets another below-average defense in the New York Giants this week. He has only scored over 20 fantasy points three times this season, and I think that is a real possibility this week. Ceedee Lamb should continue to draw targets and has a great shot to break 20 fantasy points and enter WR1 territory.
Sleepers: Darnell Mooney CHI vs MIN and DeVonta Smith PHI vs WAS
Sit: DJ Moore CAR vs BUF
DJ Moore has been one of the weirder receivers this season as he has been providing WR2-FLEX value even though his quarterbacks cannot throw a forward pass. This week he plays the Buffalo Bills who have one of the best all-around defenses in the NFL. DJ Moore will be a major part of the defensive game plan as shutting him down almost guarantees a win for Buffalo. DJ Moore will always have WR2 upside but he has the potential to be in the “all busts” lineup of the week as he could get shut down.
Busts: Michael Pittman IND vs NE and Terry McLaurin WAS vs PHI
Start: Tyler Higbee LAR vs SEA
After being one of the biggest busts in fantasy football in 2020, Higbee has quietly rebounded and has had a very consistent TE2 season. He has between 7 and 12 fantasy points in all but 3 of his games played this season. This week, after being on the COVID list last week, he plays the Seattle Seahawks who are giving up the 4th most fantasy points to tight ends this season. Higbee is a fantastic start for teams who do not have a definite starter at the tight end position as he has a high floor and a high ceiling.
Sleepers: Hunter Henry NE vs IND and David Njoku CLE vs LV
Sit: Pat Freiermuth PIT vs TEN
Since week six, Pat Freirmuth has quietly been one of the better fantasy football tight ends in the league as he has scored under 10 fantasy points just twice. He has found the end zone six times over that span. However, this week he is playing the Tennessee Titans who do not have a great defense but are giving up the 5th least fantasy points per game to tight ends. Pittsburgh will likely look in other directions this week as Tennessee cannot seem to do anything other than stop tight ends on defense.
Busts: Jack Doyle IND vs NE and Kyle Pitts ATL vs SF