2016 Draft Kit

Tight end matchups for conference championship weekend: Sleepers and busts

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.

Conference championship boom or bust projections

Matchups: QB | RB | WR1 | WR2 | WR3/4 | TE | K | DEF | RB (rec.)

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.

Tight end matchups

Dwayne Allen/Coby Fleener vs. New England — 29th DVOA, 8 targets for 65.6 yards allowed per game, 13.0 FFPPG/5 — These tight end matchups for the Colts and Patriots are the best of the week among skill position players. Allen and Fleener hurt each other because they are on the same team. If we could play them as one player that player would be right up there with the Rob Gronkowskis and Jimmy Grahams. Allen is a 3-TD game threat while Fleener is more likely to accumulate 100 yards and a touchdown. I’ll probably go with Dwayne Allen in every lineup where I want to pivot off Rob Gronkowski

Rob Gronkowski/Tim Wright/Michael Hoomanuwanui vs. Indianapolis — 27th DVOA, 7.3 targets for 58.2 yards allowed per game, 15.5 FPPG/5 — I listed those other guys, but this is Gronk’s matchup to take advantage of. There is no bigger must-play this week. I can’t wait to see what Gronk’s ownership rate is in some of these tournaments this weekend.

Andrew Quarless/Richard Rodgers vs. Seattle — 18th DVOA, 6.4 targets for 41.4 yards allowed per game, 7.8 FPPG/5 — Quarless and Rodgers each scored touchdowns last week. I suggested Quarless as an interesting pivot off Gronkowski and Greg Olsen. He’s here again this week in the one position with a not horrible matchup against the Seahawks.

Luke Willson vs. Green Bay — 14th DVOA, 7.4 targets for 55.9 yards, 8.0 FPPG/5 — I can’t get behind starting Willson over Gronk, Allen, Fleener or Quarless, but the Seahawks TE did score a touchdown last weekend in a solid performance. There are some who have been waiting for Willson to step up this season. He very well could be giving us a 2015 audition. If you are building multiple lineups this week you should consider adding Willson to one of them.

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