What’s going on everyone, and welcome to Week 15, the first week of the fantasy playoffs! If you’re reading and caring about this article, congrats, you’ve made it! But the hard work doesn’t stop here, so let’s talk about this upcoming Sunday and the great games that are on tap!

Let’s get to it!

*Note* – My Week 15 Rankings can be found here, and be sure to check out Rudy’s projections for this week here!

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Well dear readers, let’s just get right to the good stuff today.

QB

Ryan Fitzpatrick, $7,600 – “Bucs QB” would be worth playing since you wouldn’t have to deal with the possible benching. Ryan Fitzpatrick, on his own, carries some risk of being benched. But that risk is entirely outweighed by the fact that he’s the starting QB in Air Monken. And Air Monken throws a lot. And volume is king.  

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The baseball article I write during the baseball season has a section “Doing Lines In Vegas” but here in NFL season, we’re “Doing Lines With cinthree.” If anyone is willing bet me that Nathan Peterman will outscore the Chicago Bears defense in fantasy points tomorrow, I will take that bet. Peterman’s not going to break 10 and the Bears are probably putting up 12-15 (which makes them a bad play in DFS).

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Seriously. I could not wait for Monday Night Football just to listen to the absolute nonsense from Jason Witten and Booger McFarland, the latter of which should be prepared for someone in the crowd to black out and see a table on top of the #BoogerMobile. But despite that disaster of a football game taking place, let’s look back at at some of the action from Sunday’s games…

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We finally have a decision on Todd Gurley. He’s been an absolute stone cold mortal lock so far this season given that he’s been under $10K for most of the season and was only $10.2K last week – an insanely cheap price given the team he plays for and the role he has on it (namely, that once the Rams get into the red zone, something they do with insane frequency, they just give it to Gurley and let him run it in, and also, they’re the best team in football so they have a big lead late and let Gurley get all the kill-clock yards in the 4th quarter). FanDuel finally jacked his price up to something like $1,000,000,000 (note – it may just be $11,000, as I may be exaggerating for comedic effect). Now it becomes a decision. He’s still an absolute monster. But is he worth it? Ultimately it’ll come down to how comfortable you are with the value that you’ll need to play to roster him. And if you’re unsure on who to play, check out Rudy’s projections here at Razzball!

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The start of this week had no RB value and it just looked like a stuff Gurley, Zeek and McCaffrey into lineups week, but that’s the fun of the NFL. We saw the Browns make a good trade and get rid of Hyde to let Chubb and Duke run wild (though i’m still skeptical that coaching staff can figure out how to use those two). Theo Riddick is out, opening up Kerryon Johnson as a 3-down back and I became way more OK with Peyton Barber value as the week progressed. All this value opening up combined with a lot of the elite RBs not being on the main slate means that we might, for the first time, all season, have a WR in the flex and win the million dollars. So while normally I’d say if you’re rolling a WR in flex in FanDuel GPPs, it’s 100% wrong, the lack of stone cold locks at RB this week means you can probably get away with a WR and in fact you could conceivably place high and maybe even win. But if one or two of the value RBs go off, you’re going to need them and odds are your WR-as-flex GPP is in a boatload of trouble.

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If you saw the arguments this week on twitter, then you know there’s a question. Does defense matter for overall fantasy production? Most of the reason why people say defense doesn’t matter is because the way we measure defense is pretty terrible, and until we can measure true talent defense much better, the appearance of being a good or bad defense is super noisy and the amount of signal there is very very low. And in terms of how to predict the production for fantasy, teams vary what they do (and some teams do this randomly and are bad at it), and you would need to know what their scheme is and what player(s) they plan to exploit, and then the adjustments on the initial game plan come into play. If you have that information, first, please share it with me, and second, you’d probably be able to obliterate DFS (and Vegas, for that matter). But if you have that information, you’re not reading this article right now. So for those of you without it – let’s attack this slate with what we do know – namely, #NeverRun, offenses score points when they throw a lot, and one of the only ways we legitimately do see defenses mattering is in pass rush versus protection – it’s hard to score points when you’re being thrown down to the ground before you can throw a pass. 

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Some of the players on this list are overstaying their welcome. I’m looking at you Aaron Rodgers, Davante Adams, Will Fuller and DeAndre Hopkins. I wish they’d bring back the probable injury status. It would make my job a lot easier. Because 75% of the guys on this list are probable — just resting. Sterling […]

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