Hello again Razzball readers! I’ve really been enjoying contributing to Razzball so far and I look forward to answering more questions and helping more fantasy teams. Asher Molk and I will be working as a team and editing each other’s columns so feel free to ask either of us any questions; we’d love to help! And check us out on Twitter at @BraudeM and @AsherMolk.

Before you read my matchups column I would like to give you some advice:

Be sure all your players are active and ready to roll on game day. If your player is a game-time decision, check 30 minutes before game day – if he’s active, check what kind of role he is going to have in the game and make sure he’s not just an emergency option.

This article is written every Wednesday so it doesn’t always have perfect accuracy for who’s playing. I just wanted to go over those because getting a goose egg out of someone is detrimental to your team.

Before I speak about the Thursday Night game I would like to leave a personal note for my fans and supporters. I am competing in the National Fantasy Football Championship Primetime league as part of a group including my father and two friends. We call ourselves the Braintrust. Last week, we not only clinched our league but also finished first in points during the regular season, out of all 360 teams. Now only 60 teams remain but if we can finish first again – we’ll have a grand prize of $100,00 coming our way. After one week, we are 11th out of 60. On that note, good luck to everyone on their quest for a championship.

Jacksonville at Atlanta

Blaine Gabbert has had two straight multi-touchdown games but still isn’t startable as those are his only two in 11 games this season. Maurice Jones-Drew is coming off a four-touchdown performance and has been truly fantastic this season. Without a capable passing game, MJD has carried the offense on his back. Even against Atlanta’s fifth ranked run defense, Jones-Drew is a RB1. Because of Jacksonville’s inept passing attack there are no pass-catchers on this team worth starting. If you’re extremely desperate Marcedes Lewis is a low-end TE2.

Matt Ryan had his best game of the season last week, passing for 320 yards and four touchdowns. There’s no question his matchup was a big factor but he’s still a solid QB1 in this matchup against the Jaguars injury-ridden secondary. Another reason I expect Ryan to continue to produce is because of Michael Turner’s sudden inability. On my teams I stayed away from Turner because of the wear on his body over the last three years. Over the last three games Turner has slowed down noticeably, rushing 54 times for 180 yards – just 3.33 yards per carry. He should still find room to run against the Jags but he’s a RB2. With Atlanta suddenly ineffective on the ground, they’re forced to attack teams through the air. Meaning more opportunities and targets for Roddy White, Julio Jones, and Tony Gonzalez. Roddy White has scored in three straight and elite WR1 this week. Julio Jones has recovered from his multiple injuries and has the look of a high-end WR2 this week against the Jags injury-ravaged secondary. Tony Gonzalez continues to be an elite tight end – 3rd in scoring behind just Rob Gronkowski and Jimmy Graham – keep him rolling against the Jaguars.

  1. Robert says:

    Hey guys…looking for some help at WR before tonight’s game…

    Pick ONE: Roddy, VJax, S. Moss, or James Jones


  2. Mike Braude

    Mike Braude says:

    If you can only pick one make it Roddy but ideally you’d like to get VJax in your lineup also.

  3. Robert says:

    @Mike Braude:

    I may play VJax at FLEX, I’d have to decide between him, Gates, K. Smith and SJax. Thoughts?

  4. Mike Braude

    Mike Braude says:

    Thats difficult, depends on what kind of league it is. Is it PPR? And who are you starting at TE if you’re starting Gates at flex?

  5. Robert says:

    Non-PPR…2 flex spots (no TE). I’m planning on starting Gronk in the other flex spot. And for full-disclosure, I’m starting Antonio Brown in the other WR spot (+ return yards) — he’s been a monster the last few weeks. Hence not starting VJax automatically.

  6. Fernando says:

    My starting line up for wk 15

    QB: Romo, Wr: Welker, Rb: Peterson or Gerhart, TE: Gates, W/R: ? , W/R: ? , W/R: ? , K: Hanson, Def: ?

    Normally, my choices of who to start would be simple, but the match ups, injuries, and recent performances has left me confused.
    Consequently, I need help filling three W/R slots. Please help and can you explain your choices. Thank you.

    Here are my options for the three W/R slots: S. Moss, C.J. Spiller, S. Jackson, F. Gore, A. Bradshaw, R. Grant.

    As for the DEF I can play one SEA, CINN, or TENN?

  7. Salty Balty says:

    Julio Jones or Kevin Smith (non-PPR) at flex this week? Thanks.

  8. Benny says:

    Have some tough decisions to make!

    Need one:
    NYG (vs WAS)
    DAL (vs TB)
    SEA (vs CHI)

    PPR need two:
    Antonio Brown
    D. Bowe
    M. Austin

    PPR Need Two:
    M. Morris

  9. Jeff says:

    Need 3 of this group in a 1pt PPR league:

    Larry Fitz
    Santana Moss
    Brandon Marshall
    Doug Baldwin

  10. Jason says:

    Do I play the Atlanta D tonight or go with BAL or DET? Good luck with your Championship, hopefully you can help me to my second straight!

  11. Mike Braude

    Mike Braude says:

    @Robert: Yeah I completely understand about Brown – he’s been great. I would start Gates too

  12. Mike Braude

    Mike Braude says:

    @Fernando: None of these guys are playing tonight so I feel it’s only fair if I ask if it’s a PPR league because that will have an impact on the decision.

  13. Mike Braude

    Mike Braude says:

    @Salty Balty: I think Kevin Smith can do great things when healthy but I’m still concerned about the injury and Julio is a great option. I would play Julio and not look back

  14. Mike Braude

    Mike Braude says:

    @Benny: SEA defense with Hanie and Forte out. At WR, Miles Austin and Antonio Brown are your guys unless Roethlisberger is out. At RB, I’d go Bradshaw and Barber – Gore will have nowhere to run against the Steel Curtain. Good luck!

  15. Mike Braude

    Mike Braude says:

    @Jeff: Sit Baldwin, he’s the only one on that list you don’t want starting

  16. Mike Braude

    Mike Braude says:

    @Jason: I like the idea of starting the Atlanta defense tonight against Blaine Gabbert. They’ve proven they can stop the run so they should neutralize Jones-Drew and force the Jags to pass

  17. Joe from pt pleasant says:

    atlanta defense tonight or bengals defense @ STL ?


    ps: you da man

  18. zandercage says:

    Hey Mike –

    Who would you pick up and start if Big Ben doesn’t go –



  19. Sawx10 says:

    Bradshaw, M. Williams (TB), or mendy for flex in ppr?

  20. Mike Braude

    Mike Braude says:

    @zandercage: Tough question, they all have pretty good matchups but I would play Ponder. He should have a solid day against New Orleans.

  21. Timmy riggins says:

    Hi, who would you start @ flex, .5PPR: D-Jax, Driver, Donald brown, Ben Tate, cj spiller? Thanks

  22. Mike Braude

    Mike Braude says:

    @Sawx10: I would go Mike Williams because of a few reasons: first because of the PPR, Mendy plays SF who hasn’t allowed a rushing TD all season and won’t allow much rushing yardage either and Bradshaw has struggled since returning and I’m worried that Jacobs is just playing better right now.

  23. Mike Braude

    Mike Braude says:

    @Timmy riggins: I’d play DeSean. Too much upside that the other players don’t have

  24. Fernando says:

    Hi Mike. In response to my post #6 and your response #12, my league is standard scoring.

  25. Mike Braude

    Mike Braude says:

    @Fernando: Tough question but I believe the best options are Jackson, Spiller, and Gore. It’s because those three will see the touches necessary to put up solid numbers. I know Gore’s matchup sucks and if it was a PPR league I would say Moss but you have to stick with the running backs because each of these options will see around 20 carries for sure. Grant is trouble because he’s not very talented and Starks is coming back. You never know with Moss because he hasn’t produced (even last week his TD was a fluke on a trick play, I have him in a few leagues and it’s frustrating). Bradshaw simply hasn’t looked healthy and Washington has been good against the run. Jacobs is worse than Bradshaw but has looked better recently and that leads me to believe he’s playing injured – I would rather wait and see with him.

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