Congratulations on making it to the fantasy football playoffs! I don’t need to tell you that start/sit decisions are more important than ever so let’s just get right into it. I’ll update these rankings every few hours up through the weekend and those changes will show up on this page. You can use the tabs for flex or even Superflex as well as half-PPR, PPR or standard leagues to help make your start/sit decisions. If you have more questions, don’t hesitate to let me know on Twitter. Now before I show you all the rankings, let me tell you about four particular rankings that might surprise you and why I have them as I do.
Mitch Trubisky (QB #11 vs ECR #15)
It seems as though Trubisky is going to play, and frankly, it seemed like he would have been good to go last week had the Bears thought they needed him. As it turns out, they did. He has been spectacular from a fantasy perspective this season, scoring 173 fantasy points in his 6 games versus bottom-half defenses 28.9 per game). The Rams are this week’s opponent and they, too, fall into that bracket, ranking 22nd versus QBs in fantasy scoring. You may think a negative game script will work against his rushing ability, but the opposite is true. Sure, running backs see fewer carries, but QBs tend to run more when trailing. Expect another QB1 performance from Mitch in his first week back.
Adrian Peterson (RB #15 vs ECR #22)
This entire season has been up and down for AP, but the up games have actually been pretty easy to predict. Washington abandons the run when they are down big, otherwise, Peterson tends to see plenty of carries. You can bank on 15+ versus what may be the worst run defense in football since they Giants traded Damon Harrison to Detroit. This isn’t to say AP is without risk this week, of course, but it is well worth noting that the last time these two teams squared off, Peterson rumbled for 156 yards and 2 scores on 27 touches.
Tre’Quan Smith (WR #41 vs ECR #33)
I get it on Smith, I really do. His matchup against the Bucs couldn’t be better and he exploded two weeks ago versus the Eagles, but in the other five games since the Saints bye, he has just 8 receptions for 85 yards. He is a talented player, without question, but the Saints are so volatile in how they use him that you shouldn’t rely on him for your playoff game. In fact, the weather conditions, opponent and game script might lead to another 1 target day for the Saints who threw the ball just 50 times for 298 yards over the past two weeks. If you are fine with playing a boom or bust player, but want a safer floor, turn instead to Mike Williams or even Zay Jones this week.
Dan Arnold (TE #14 vs ECR #29)
If you are desperate at the tight end position, this is your best bet. Yes, better than Cameron Brate and Kyle Rudolph this week. It is ugly at the tight end position so sometimes you’ve got to play a guy you’ve never heard of. Believe me, though, you’ll know his name by this time next year. I’d wager he will be a top 12 fantasy tight end next year once Benjamin Watson retires. Arnold has been running the majority of Saints tight end routes and goes up against a Bucs team who is among the worst in the league versus tight ends. He may only see 5 targets, but they are coming from a Hall of Famer QB and in a near-perfect matchup. That should do the trick.