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Winning ways

A guide to your fantasy football playoffs

By|Gabe Rivera

‘Tis the season for fantasy football playoffs and for those that made their league playoffs, congratulations! If you didn’t, then you’re already on the right track to next season’s playoffs by reading my column.

As this is my first fantasy football column I should let you know that I’ve been in the game for 18 years and winning is my top priority every season. We will dive into all the positions and examine the match-ups that will help you in your playoff run this year.

Remember, don’t get cute. I am not endorsing these players to be started over guys that have been your bread and butter all season long. Think and choose wisely.

Winning Quarterbacks

Alex Smith, Kansas City Chiefs: Smith exploded on Sunday, throwing for over 350 yards with four touchdown tosses. He scrambled for 70 yards to show off his legs. The Chiefs quarterback gets another blow up match up against the Raiders who have given up the fifth most points to opposing passers.

Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers: Rivers had a huge day against the Browns that could have been even bigger as the Chargers failed to convert five red zone trips into touchdowns. Rivers has now completed 76.3 percent of his passes for 781 yards and four touchdowns over the past two weeks and now hosts a Washington defense that is in the middle of the pack but expect Rivers to take advantage and have another fine day, making him a strong QB1 option this week.

Winning Running Backs

Rex Burkhead and Dion Lewis, Patriots: The New England backfield has been a mess over the years but it seems to have finally taken form as a two headed machine. Lewis and Burkhead have both averaged double-digit touches since the week nine byes and travel to play the Miami Dolphins whose defense has given up the seventh most points to opposing running backs this season.

Mike Davis, Seattle Seahawks: There is finally a workhorse in Seattle and he’s available in a lot of leagues. Davis took it to the No. 1 run defense on Sunday night, finishing for over 100 yards from scrimmage on 4.0 yards per carry against the Eagles. Eddie Lacy, J.D McKissic and Thomas Rawls saw only one carry each while Davis took control of the backfield with 16 rushes and four targets. Davis has the potential to win a lot of people fantasy trophies this year. Pick him up.

Winning Wide Receivers

Marquise Goodwin, San Francisco 49ers: With Jimmy Garoppolo finally under center for the red and gold, the offense looked much more efficient, holding the ball for over 19 minutes more than the Bears in Week 13. Goodwin converted all eight of his targets for 99 yards and the Niners face two of the leagues worst pass defenses in the Texans and the Titans for the next two weeks. Consider Goodwin for the WR3 discussion.

Josh Gordon, Cleveland Browns: This superstar made his return from a two year hiatus this Sunday against the Chargers and turned 11 targets into four catches for 85 yards. The only other receiver to get more yards than Gordon against the Chargers was Odell Beckham Jr. in week five. Gordon gets favorable match ups for the fantasy playoffs against Green Bay and the Baltimore Ravens, who just lost their best corner for the year. If you are looking for wide receiver help, look no further than Gordon as a WR3 option.

Winning Tight Ends

Hunter Henry, San Diego Chargers: The Antonio Gates era is at its end and Hunter Henry is reaping the rewards. The Chargers have finally realized how important a part of the offense Henry is and it is showing in the stats. Henry now has 12 receptions for 157 yards and a score over the last two weeks and now gets another favorable match up against a Redskins D that has given up the fourth most points to opposing tight ends this season. Get Henry in your lineups this weekend as a strong TE1.

Cameron Brate, Tamp Bay Buccaneers: Brate is back on the streaming radar as his favorite QB Jameis Winston is back under center. Winston constantly looks Brate’s way in the red zone and it showed Sunday when Brate caught a TD from 28 yards out and then later at 11 yards out. If you don’t have a top five tight end, Brate deserves your consideration to help you to a fantasy football title.

 

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