QB10 in fantasy scoring and QB2 in NFL passing yards through 4 weeks, Matt Ryan visits the Lone Star State in matchup carrying the tied-for-2nd highest point total in week 5. The 13th toughest fantasy defense against quarterbacks, the Houston D/ST unit look a lot tougher on paper than what I believe will be on display this Sunday. Two of Houston’s best defensive outings were against quarterbacks that entered the season as backups on their respective depth chart. Including 6th round rookie QB Gardner Minshew (JAC) in his first NFL start and 2nd year backup Kyle Allen (CAR) getting the 2nd start of his career. In Houston’s two matchups against top 10 NFL quarterbacks Drew Brees and Philip Rivers, the defense surrendered an average of 327.5 passing yards per game, QB12 (Brees) and QB13 (Rivers) fantasy finishes, and 4 total passing touchdowns. After nearly topping 400 yards passing (397) last week, Matt Ryan failed to pass for a TD against TEN. This is a prime bounce back spot for Matt Ryan to find the endzone through the air in a game where ATL are -4.5 underdogs and an implied score that includes 3 TDs for the Falcons. Rudy projects Ryan as the QB8 this weekend. 

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If you are reading along this week then it means one of two things; A) you are still alive in your fantasy football league or B) you have really enjoyed following my pieces all season long. My brain says option A but my heart wants to believe option B. After a couple of quiet weeks, we have a lot of meat on the bone today. If you have not been following along all season, please pick up your studs handcuff heading in to the playoffs. Exhibit-A: Melvin Gordon. I am angry with the Chargers and how they handled their star RB but let’s have that conversation elsewhere. The main point here is to not get caught with your pants down.

I will jump straight in to the Bad Boyz of week 13, enjoy!

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For some of you, (me included) this is your last chance to make the playoffs. Some smart decisions and a big week here could lead you to fantasy glory. You know what doesn’t help? Melvin Gordon tearing up his knees. You know what else doesn’t help? Leonard Fournette watching Creed 2 before his games. Take a look at my recommendations and your waivers to see who is available to replace them this week. If you have any questions — as always — post a comment below and I’ll get back to you. Let’s get this chip!

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It feels just like yesterday that I was writing pre-season articles for you. Now, we are facing the last week(s) of the fantasy football regular season. While we are all getting stuffed on side-dishes (because we all know turkey is just taking up space on our plate), we have crucial decisions to make regarding our rosters. What is your favorite thanksgiving dish?

This week, due to the holiday, I’ll keep it brief and get straight to this weeks culprits. We have a few backfield situations worth monitoring…

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If you didn’t notice, or if you didn’t read yesterday’s post, we are now travelling the December part of our football journey. And it’s almost as if a few weeks ago, some misguided couple named their child “Playoff Implications”. And let me tell you guys, when this kid grew up, he joined the military. And yesterday, that child reached the rank of “Major”. And the concept of that wonderful anecdote I just shared was manifested in the most ridiculous way possible… in the NFC South. Surprise! On a day that saw back-to-back shutouts for the Rams, the Jets still Jets’ing, it was no surprise to see the Saints lose and lose soundly at home to just an awful Carolina Panthers team. The Atlanta Falcons, with an unlikely win tonight (against the Packers at home), can build an insurmountable divisional lead and first place with a 6-7 record. AND they could probably do the same by losing! Heck, Carolina could take the division with a 6-9-1 record if they wanted to. ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN AT ANY TIME. If only the division wasn’t comparable to reading dildo reviews…

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For the past 13 weeks, I have presented you with fantasy football lineups that your league mates might set for you if you got drunk, passed out, and left your laptop open and logged in. While some were fitting you for a roman soldier helmet, others were laughing it up as they picked some of the shittiest options available for your lineup and changed your team name to something terribly immature. Well here’s another such group of players that appear to be a guaranteed one-way ticket to last place. But once again the joke’s on them as this lineup combined for 214.42 points in Yahoo! half point leagues and undoubtedly would have won any head-to-head match up.

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The Internet nearly broke this week when the Cleveland Browns announced they were going to start rookie Johnny Manziel at quarterback… or so we think. It looks like Brian Hoyer might be sent to the bench to give the Browns a spark, according to published reports. But is he worth it from a fantasy standpoint? We’ll examine that and more as we take a dive into the waiver wire. There are three or four weeks left in your fantasy season, so this is the time to make the solid moves that will get you into the playoffs. So, what about Manziel? Yes, he was a change of pace for the Browns, as he rushed for a touchdown last week, but let’s see why you don’t want him. Tight end Jordan Cameron is questionable for this week after missing his last five games with concussion symptoms. Miles Austin is still hospitalized after taking a hit to his lower back and hurting his kidneys. Andrew Hawkins is the best receiving threat the team has right now that’s healthy. Yes, Josh Gordon is there too, but I would want to see how Manziel works with all of his weapons before seeing how much he impacts fantasy values on Lake Erie. The Browns finish the season with Indianapolis, Cincinnati, Carolina in Week 16 and Baltimore in Week 17. The chances are there for Manziel to throw it a bunch and get the all-important rushing yardage as well with a pair of weak rush defenses during the fantasy playoffs. Dare we say it, Manziel could be a nice play down the stretch if you want a quarterback with a good situation that you can pick up now.

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While it’s a bit too tempting to take time in the lede to discuss what was the “potential Super Bowl match-up” of the year between the Packers and Patriots, or even the discussing the Ravens snatching defeat from the jaws of victory against my Chargers. And heck, you could even throw in the Jaguars beating the Giants, who were in full derp mode, making Tom Coughlin even more salty and vinegary (to be taken at it’s most literal definition), but, in the end, I do find the slow collapse of the Arizona Cardinals team fascinating… While I normally don’t root for Cardinals, (that’s more St’ Louis’ and Busch’s fault. Double entendre alert!), you had to respect the fact that they found themselves 9-1 despite starting Drew Stanton, not Carson Palmer, for a majority of those games. While 9-1 and those two names don’t really make sense when used in the same sentence, a stifling defense and some luck have been two things that lesser teams have had success with (See Broncos, 2011). But ending the regular season against the Chiefs, Rams, Seahawks, and 49ers, there are legitimate scenarios where they could now miss the playoffs, and some, where the Rams could actually sneak in. This is all to say, wow, the NFC South is a dumpster fire in the truest sense of the word. You could ask for reasons why that gives context (they did just lose to the 4-7 Falcons), but I would still say NOOOOPE, I need no reasons.

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If you don’t remember from last week, and since most people don’t remember what they had for breakfast I wouldn’t be surprised, we discussed that paying down at QB makes sense unless under extreme circumstances if you are using the rule of 5. If you don’t remember but wish you did, well, here. The concept revolves directly around how much can you reasonably expect from your QB vs a skill position. Now, Drew Brees scored over 32 this last week. At 8.2K, that was probably the best return you could’ve expected and was close to 4x value. But the second best? Eli Manning with over 27 at 5.8K. Sure, you lost 5 points but you gained 2.4K to spend on skill positions. Skill positions that could score you 39.4 points (Odell Beckham) or 36.7 (Demaryius Thomas). It’s that wiggle room you want to create from QB by playing matchups so you can pay up at the skill positions most weeks. Wanna know who gives me that wiggle this week? Alex Smith. Not that kind of wiggle. Gross. Don’t look at his season stats to weigh his $6,200 price tag. Instead, look back on weeks where KC had to throw to keep in the game. I can already tell you you’re not looking in the right place. That’s his 2014 game log. You’ll find nothing there. Go back nearly a full year to week 12 of 2013 and you’ll see a healthy line against the Broncos where he threw for 293 yards, 2 TDs and ran for 46 yards. Sure, doesn’t sound that exciting but it’s roughly 24 points and gives you the chance to pair with…oh, I’m getting ahead of myself so you’ll just have to read on. Here’s my red hot takes for the week 13 DK slate…

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 10 team league of Razzball writers and friends to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us before you do. It lets us know that you care!

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