There are very few great matchups this week and quite a few bad matchups. That’s the price fantasy owners must pay during playoff football season.
It’s cool though. There are still values to find. Using matchups to build winning lineups is not the one key to winning at sites like FanDuel and Draft Kings. But used as part of a greater knowledge base they can lead to huge gains.
I built a lineup using just the top matchups across the list and was pleasantly surprised with the results.
Just like last week I’m going to present the matchups for all teams and positions still alive in the playoffs. In the preseason we added and subtracted some statistics in cases where there were strong good and bad matchups to accentuate the players we could expect to do better or worse than they might normally.
All players except kickers and defenses will be ranked based on reverse Defense-adjusted Value Over Average, a Football Outsiders’ exclusive statistic which tries to eliminate outliers and give us a true sense of how a defense performs against each position.
I’ve also included the DVOA rank (again top-10 and bottom-10 rankings should really be noted). For quarterbacks, running backs, tight ends, kickers and defenses, I’ve included PPR fantasy points per game allowed by the opposing defense in the last five games. For wide receivers I’ve included targets and yards allowed.
Thanks for reading all season. If you have any interest in other daily fantasy sports — and you should, especially for NBA games — please check back this week. I’m going to have some fresh content coming soon. I’ve entered a pile of low-end tournaments in the last week, gathering information and seeing how the chips fall. I’m starting to feel confident enough to write about them.
Running back receiving matchups
Shane Vereen/LeGarrette Blount vs. Indianapolis — 31st DVOA, 6.5 targets for 47.9 yards allowed per game — this is one matchup why I really liked Shane Vereen this week. We need 18-20 points from either of these running backs if we want to win a tournament this week and I think Blount is more likely to reach those expectations. But this matchup sets Vereen’s floor pretty high, making him a nice start in 50/50s and season-long leagues.
Eddie Lacy/James Starks vs. Seattle — 18th DVOA, 8.1 targets for 43.8 yards allowed per game — One of the few areas where the Seahawks can defense has shown a bit of weakness. They’re still only middle of the pack, but the opportunity for catches should boost Lacy’s potential in PPR formats.
Marshawn Lynch/Robert Turbin vs. Green Bay — 16th DVOA, 6.2 targets for 43.7 yards — Lynch is in for a big day, this middle-of-the-road matchup can only enhance his upside.
Daniel Herron/Zurlon Tipton vs. New England — 12th DVOA, 7.7 targets for 45.8 yards — The lion’s share of the running game should fall on Herron again and if he gets 6 or 7 targets he should get a serious production boost. I have a feeling most of my lineups will be Lynch-Blount, but when I pivot off them the first player I’ll consider is Herron.