Hopefully you are celebrating making it to the fantasy playoffs this week. If not, there is always next year. We are starting off this week with a little added strategy that you may want to start to consider. Also there is one player who has a good matchup coming up that you’re probably okay dropping.
Seahawks, Rams and Browns defense: I usually don’t do stream defenses to watch out for in this, but this is a special circumstance. Playoffs should be officially kicking off, and these are the three teams that are going to be facing the Jets in Week 14, 15, and 16 respectively. In normal years it is easier to pull off stashing these defenses for down the road, but I understand if maybe you only want to stash one or two of these defenses instead just to make sure you have as many options for the current week.
Ty Johnson, RB, Jets: “Who?” the fantasy football world asked as a collective. Frank Gore went down with a concussion early in the Week 13 game against the Raiders, and Johnson took the opportunity and ran with it. 24 total touches, 117 yards and a touchdown on the day. This guy is a must add in just about every league. Sure, the Seahawks are a slightly tougher matchup that will have the Jets playing with a different script, and there is a chance Gore comes back healthy for next week. On the other hand, if Gore doesn’t come back healthy you have a guy who proved he can actually produce in New York, and you better believe they will try to ride that momentum the rest of the season.
Cam Akers, RB, Rams: It took the entire fantasy football season, but it appears you can finally almost trust a Rams’ running back. Akers had 21 of the team’s 28 carries, and he turned that into 72 yards and a touchdown. He also had 22 receiving yards on a single catch. It is hard to say you can completely trust this, and the Patriots will almost certainly try and take away the running game next week like they did in their Super Bowl matchup a few years ago. Still, if you really need a flex option, there are worse players to go with. Plus he gets the Jets in two weeks.
T.Y. Hilton, WR, Colts: Hilton has also crawled his way back to fantasy relevancy. He had eight catches for over 100 yards and a touchdown Sunday after scoring 18 points last week. It appears he and Philip Rivers are finally on the same page, and they took advantage of some good matchups these past two weeks. They face a struggling Raiders team next week, and the a Houston again the following week. Not a bad time to stay at the Hilton.
Keke Coutee, WR, Texans: This one is more of a “hey this guy had a good game, maybe your gut is telling you to roll the dice” kind of pick up. Coutee has been practically nonexistent this season, but injuries forced him into playing the slot for Randall Cobb. He also may see more snaps now with Will Fuller suspended for the rest of the season. Coutee had eight catches for 141 yards on the day. The bad news is he faces a Bears defense next week that happens to be the second worst matchup for wide receivers. Then again, the Colts are ranked as the 27th best matchup, and he had a career day on them. He also faces them in Indianapolis following a trip to Chicago. If you believe Coutee has become Deshaun Watson’s guy, then this is a good time to pick him up.
Duke Johnson, RB, Texans: Duke Johnson had a nice stretch in fantasy when he didn’t have to compete with David Johnson in the backfield. However, David Johnson returned and Duke Johnson only had a little over 30 yards on the day with six catches being his only call to fantasy relevance. Pretty easy to move on now if that is going to be the production going forward.
Travis Fulgham, WR, Eagles: Fulgham had a nice five game stretch this season, but ever since the Week 9 bye, he just hasn’t been worthy of rostering in fantasy. He has a really rough matchup next week against the Saints even if the team makes a permanent switch to Jalen Hurts. He hasn’t scored more than four points in the past four games, and he went scoreless on Sunday. Time for the half of leagues who still have him rostered to move on.
Giovani Bernard, RB, Bengals: Bernard is a starting running back, and he does have a matchup with the Cowboys next week who are a top 10 matchup. I’ll still call my shot here and say it isn’t going to go well for you if you play Bernard in Week 14. It has nothing to do with the veteran running back. I think he is very talented, but the team surrounding him has defenses daring the Bengals to beat them through the air, and they just haven’t shown they have any sort of consistency in that department.
Chase Edmonds, RB, Cardinals: Edmunds is rostered in almost 75 percent of leagues. He is not a reliable fantasy option when he has to compete with not only Kyler Murray but also Kenyon Drake in the redzone. He scored a receiving touchdown in Week 11, which was the only time he scored over 12 points in the last five games. He has a decent matchup against the Giants next week, but he hasn’t been that noteworthy even in those games over that stretch.