Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:


Already have an account? Log in here.


Forgot Password


While the fantasy season is over for most leagues, there's still plenty to play for. Whether you are in a playoff league or are just trying to win the milly maker on DraftKings, we've got you covered with the best and worst matchups.

This week's matchup analysis will help answer all your start/sit lineup questions for the Divisonal Round and provide some DFS advice too.

I'll be on Reddit to answer all your start/sit questions as well. You can also reach me directly on Twitter @ChrisMangano if you can't wait. 

Editor's Note: Get our rest-of-season NFL and DFS Premium Pass for only $9.99, with coverage through the Super Bowl. If you prefer the DFS Lineup Optimizer, just click here! Take advantage of our lowest pricing all year, and get an edge on your competition. Sign Up Now!


Divisional Round Game Notes

Important note and credits about data used in this article:

  • All snap counts taken from Football Outsiders. Adjusted line yards also taken from Football outsiders. You can read more here.
  • Success rate is taken from Sharp Football Stats (Warren Sharp). You can read more about it here.
  • Wide receiver snap percentages and corner grades/stats are taken from Pro Football Focus.


Divisional Round Saturday Matchups

Falcons at Eagles

Matchups We Love:

Julio Jones (WR, ATL)

Jones has double-digit targets in four of the last five games and hauled in just his fourth touchdown catch of the season against the Rams. He gets a much easier matchup this week as the Eagles outside corners allowed 16 touchdowns and 1.59 PPR points per target. With the Falcons likely to struggle running the ball, the passing game may be asked to do more and Jones should once again be heavily targeted. Priced at $7900, he is the second highest priced receiver on DraftKings behind Antonio Brown, and is a strong play in both cash and tournaments.


Matchups We Hate:

Devonta Freeman (RB, ATL) / Tevin Coleman (RB, ATL)

In the Wild Card game against the Rams, Freeman had 18 carries and two targets while Coleman had 14 carries and three targets, as the Falcons made a concerted effort to run the ball against a defense that had a top-tier secondary. This week they face a defense that is just the opposite, as the Eagles gave up just 3.8 yards per carry (tied sixth) and only seven rushing touchdowns (tied third). Freeman is priced at $5900 on DraftKings, just the seventh highest on the slate, while Coleman comes in at just $4400, 13th cheapest. Neither can be recommended in cash games and both should be considered touchdown dependent plays in tournaments. We think you can do better, however.


Other Matchups:

Matt Ryan (QB, ATL) was once again a safe start but one with a low ceiling as he threw for 218 yards and one touchdown against a tough Rams secondary in the Wild Card Round. He should post better numbers against an Eagles defense that allowed just 6.5 yards per attempt (tied third best) but did allow 24 touchdowns (tied for 12th most). Priced at $5700 and QB6 on DraftKings, Ryan is a safe cash game start but doesn't have the ceiling needed for tournament play.

Mohamed Sanu (WR, ATL) has 19 targets over the Falcons last two games, and gets a good matchup out of the slot against the Eagles slot corners that gave up four touchdowns on the season and 1.51 PPR points per target. Sanu comes in priced at $5700 on DraftKings and is a viable WR2/3 play in both cash and tournaments.

Austin Hooper (TE, ATL) saw five targets in the Wild Card round, more than he had seen in the previous five games. Unfortunately he was not targeted in the red zone and offers little upside against an Eagles defense that ranked 15th in points to the position and gave up only five touchdowns. Hooper is priced at $3200 on DraftKings but is nothing more than a touchdown dependent, tournament dart throw.

In Weeks 15 and 16, Nick Foles (QB, PHI) attempted 76 passes but threw for just 400 yards (5.26 yards per attempt). He did have four touchdowns and one interception versus the Giants, but followed that up with a dismal one touchdown, one interception showing against a putrid Giants defense while throwing for just 3.63 yards per attempt. The Falcons allowed just 6.7 yards per attempt (tied eighth best) and allowed 22 touchdowns (tied 12th best). Priced at $5200 0n DraftKings, Foles is the seventh cheapest quarterback but cannot be trusted in cash games. He makes for a contrarian tournament start, however, as he should see low ownership and does offer a nice potential ceiling.

Over the Eagles last three meaningful games, Jay Ajayi (RB, PHI) saw 15, 14 and 12 carries to go with seven total targets. LeGarrette Blount (RB, PHI) saw seven, seven and five carries and had just three targets over that stretch. Corey Clement (RB, PHI) had three, four and two carries and just six total targets. The Falcons are a good run-stopping unit, allowing 4.1 yards per carry (tied 14th) and just nine touchdowns (tied sixth). One area they struggle is stopping running backs in the passing game as they allowed the second most points to running backs via the pass. Still, this is not a strength of the Eagles attack and it's hard to see any of the three running backs exploiting this. All three running backs do come at a discount, however, as Ajayi leads the group priced at $4600 on DraftKings, with Blount at $3700 and Clement at $3200. Still, none can be trusted in cash. If we were going to play one in tournaments we would lean towards Ajayi though Clement does offer some sneaky appeal for multi-lineup players.

Alshon Jefferey (WR, PHI) saw 11, 10 and two targets in Nick Foles' three meaningful starts, and draws a good matchup against the Falcons outside corners that allowed 10 touchdowns and 1.68 PPR points per target. Jeffrey is always a risk to give you a dud which makes him less attractive in cash games, but his $5500 cost on DrafKings gives him good tournament value and he should see fairly low ownership. Nelson Agholor (WR, PHI) had 11, nine and seven targets in Foles' three starts that mattered, and could be heavily involved again facing the Falcons slot corners who allowed only two touchdowns all year but gave up 1.78 PPR points per target. Priced at just $4800 on DraftKings, Agholor should be a fine play in both cash and tournaments as a WR3/flex start.

Zach Ertz (TE, PHI) was targeted 23 times in his two meaningful games with Nick Foles, and should once again be heavily involved. The Falcons are just an OK matchup for tight ends as they allowed the 12th most points to the position but only allowed four touchdowns. Ertz is priced at $5800, a significant discount to Gronkowski, and is a viable start in either format.


Titans at Patriots

Matchups We Love:

Marcus Mariota (QB, TEN)

Mariota delivered one of his best games of the season in the Wild Card round, throwing for two touchdowns (including one to himself!) and adding another 46 rushing yards. He gets a great matchup against a Patriots defense that gave up 7.3 yards per attempt (eighth worst) and 24 touchdowns (tied 12th worse). Mariota is priced at $5900 on DraftKings, fifth highest among quarterbacks, and brings a risk/reward option to tournament players but is too risky to trust in cash games.

Derrick Henry (RB, TEN)

In the last two games with DeMarco Murray out, Henry has 28 and 23 carries and two targets in each. Murray has already been ruled out for Saturday's game, which means Henry should once again get all the running back work. The Patriots are one of the worst run defenses, allowing 4.7 yards per attempt (second worse) but did only allow six rushing touchdowns (second best). Henry looked great against the Chiefs, and even when the team was in negative game script he continued to see plenty of work. Priced at $7300 on DraftKings, Henry is the third most expensive running back on the slate. He is worth it though, and is a great start in both cash and tournaments, though his ownership percentage may be one of the highest.

Tom Brady (QB, NE)

Brady is coming off an MVP caliber year at the age of 40, and could be motivated by a report that was recently published on a big-time network which cited, among other things, that he celebrated when Jimmy Garoppollo was traded. An angry Brady is usually a dominant one, and even if he isn't motivated by the report he should have no trouble handling a Titans defense that allowed 6.8 yards per attempt (tied 12th) best and gave up 27 touchdowns (tied eighth worst). Brady comes in as the highest priced quarterback on the slate at $7000, and for good reason. He is a fine start in both cash and tournaments.

James White (RB, NE)

In his final four healthy games, White had 15 targets. While that isn't a lot, Rex Burkhead had 10 over that span. With Burkhead likely out, White should absorb his share of those targets. While the Titans are strong against the run, they are terrible at stopping backs in the passing game. On the year they gave up the most points to running backs through the air. If the Patriots take advantage of this fact, which doesn't seem out of the question, White could have a big role in this one. Priced at $4300 on DraftKings, White is a great value but is a tournament play only as his risk is too high for cash games.

Chris Hogan (WR, NE)

Hogan has played just once since suffering a shoulder injury in Week 8. He returned in Week 14 but had a set back and is just now healthy enough to play again. He does get a great matchup against the Titans corners not named Adoree Jackson, who combined allowed nine touchdowns and 1.74 PPR points per target. Hogan is somehow still priced at $5200 on DraftKings, and he carries plenty of risk, which makes him nothing more than a contrarian tournament play despite the good matchup.

Danny Amendola (WR, NE)

Amendola only had seven or more targets twice over the last six games, but gets a great matchup out of the slot against the Titans corners who allowed six touchdowns and 2.06 PPR points per target on the year. Amendola is priced at $4100 on DraftKings, and while he is too risky for cash games, he makes for a sneaky contrarian play in tournaments, though Chris Hogan's return could hurt his value.


Matchups We Hate:

Dion Lewis (RB, NE)

In the last two games without Rex Burkhead and James White, Lewis handled 24 and 26 carries and five and seven targets. In the previous four games he didn't see over 15 carries and only had more than two targets once, including a game with zero targets. While Burkhead looks to be in serious doubt to play, White is ready to return which may place Lewis back into the early down role. If that's the case, he'll be facing a Titans defense that allowed only 3.6 yards per attempt (fourth best) and four rushing touchdowns (best) all season. Yes, Derrick Henry did run well on them, but the Patriots tend to play away from teams strengths which means Lewis will likely have to do most of his damage in the passing game. Lewis is the fifth highest priced running back of the slate at $6600 but is too risky for cash games. He is fine for tournaments though we think you can do better.


Other Matchups:

Delanie Walker (TE, TEN) led the team with eight targets in the Wild Card round and should once again be Mariota's favorite target. The Patriots are an OK tight end matchup, ranking 13th in points allowed while giving up just five touchdowns. Walker is the third highest priced tight end at $5000 and is a solid start in either format.

Rishard Matthews (WR, TEN) only has more than five targets once over the last five games and will draw shadow coverage from Malcolm Butler. On the year, Butler allowed just six touchdowns and 1.77 PPR points per target, though most of that occured early in the season. Matthews did see two red zone targets in the wild card game, and priced at $4500 he is a tournament sleeper only who will need a touchdown to pay off. Corey Davis (WR, TEN) was second on the team with seven targets in the Wild Card game, but will draw the tougher matchup against Stephon Gilmore who allowed just three touchdowns and 1.65 PPR points per target. Mariota missed Davis when he was a wide open for a touchdown last week so opportunities were there, though Davis is still without a score on the season. Priced at just $3400, Davis can only be played in tournaments. Eric Decker (WR, TEN) saw five targets in the Wild Card game and hauled in the game winning touchdown, and now has five or more targets in six straight. He gets the best matchup against slot corner Eric Rowe who gave up only one touchdown but did allow 2.05 PPR points per target. Decker is priced at just $3800 and has some sneaky tournament value in this one.

Brandin Cooks (WR, NE) is coming off an 11 target Week 17 game, but didn't have more than seven targets in five straight prior to that. He'll face shadow coverage from Adoree Jackson who allowed just five touchdowns and 1.43 PPR points per target on the year. Cooks is priced at $7000 on DraftKings, fifth highest among receivers, but we think there are better options at that price range.

Rob Gronkowski (TE, NE) had 39 targets over the last four meaningful games he played, including eight red zone targets. He gets the "best" tight end matchup of the slate against a Titans defense that ranked 19th in points allowed to tight ends but only allowed five touchdowns. Priced at $7100 on DraftKings, Gronk is the highest priced tight end and eighth highest priced player. We're never going to argue against playing him, but he will likely be the chalk.


Divisional Round Sunday Matchups

Jaguars at Steelers

Matchups We Love:

Leonard Fournette (RB, JAX)

Over the last two weeks, Fournette has played the most snaps he played all year and should continue to be leaned on heavily as Blake Bortles has proved entirely incapable of leading a passing attack. Since Ryan Shazier's injury, the Steelers run defense has been awful, allowing 6.2 yards per carry against the Bengals, Ravens, Patriots, Texans and Browns. Not exactly running powerhouses. Jacksonville should once again try to lean on Fournette and their defense in this one, though game script could become an issue. Fournette is priced at $6900 on DraftKings, the fourth highest of the slate, but is a fine start in both cash and tournaments.


Matchups We Hate:

Blake Bortles (QB, JAX)

Bortles was...not good against the Bills, but did just enough with his legs to give his team the win. Passing for just 87 yards and one touchdown on 23 attempts will not be good enough against a Steelers defense that gave up the eighth fewest passing touchdowns and led the league in sacks. Bortles costs you just $5000 on DraftKings, and is the cheapest of all the starting quarterbacks. Still, he is nothing more than a tournament hail mary.

Marcedes Lewis (TE, JAX)

Lewis was targeted just three times in the Wild Card round, and had a touchdown vultured by Ben Koyack. He's in a tough spot this week against a Steelers defense that ranked fourth in points allowed to tight ends and gave up just two touchdowns. Lewis is minimum priced at $2500 on DraftKings, but shouldn't be started in any formats.

Ben Roethlisberger (QB, PIT)

Roethlisberger's season was a tale of two halves, as he looked like a quarterback who should have retired early in the season, but then played like a two-time Super Bowl winner down the stretch. The return of Antonio Brown will help as well, but this is as tough as a matchup as a quarterback can get as the Jaguars gave up just 6 yards per attempt (tied first), 17 touchdowns (tied third) and finished second to the Steelers in total sacks. When these teams met in Week 5 Roethlisberger was intercepted five times. While things should be much better this time around, priced at $6200 and the third highest quarterback, Roethlisberger is a player to avoid in cash games and is a tournament contrarian play only.

Antonio Brown (WR, PIT) / Martavis Bryant (WR, PIT)

After missing the last two plus games with a calf injury, Brown is set to return and all reports are he is at or close to 100%. Brown was having an MVP caliber season before his injury, but gets a brutal matchup against the best cornerback duo in the league in Jalen Ramsey and A.J. Bouye. Brown was the only receiver to top 100 yards against the Jaguars this year, catching 10 passes on 19 targets for 157 yards, so this isn't a complete avoid. Brown comes in as the second priced player on the slate, however, at $8100 on DraftKings. He is a fine play in both cash and tournaments, but we understand if you want to fade him this week. Bryant, meanwhile, has six or more targets in five of the last six but also draws the brutal outside coverage of Ramsey and Bouye. Priced at $5000 on DraftKings he is the cheapest of the Steelers wide receivers but is nothing more than a desperation tournament play.

JuJu Smith-Schuster (WR, PIT)

Smith-Schuster saw 17 targets in the two games Antonio Brown missed, but only 11 in the previous two games that Brown played. While he gets the "better" matchup out of the slot, it is by no means great as the Jaguars slot corners gave up just one touchdown and 1.39 PPR points per target. Smith-Schuster is priced at $6000 on DraftKings, the seventh highest wide receiver, and should be avoided completely in cash games. He makes for little more than a touchdown dependant, contrarian tournament play as well.


Other Matchups:

Dede Westbrook (WR, JAX) led the team with eight targets in the Wild Card round and now has eight or more targets in five of the last six. He seems to be Bortles' most trusted target at this point and gets a good but not great matchup against the Steelers outside corners who allowed seven touchdowns and 1.57 PPR points per target. The Steelers could be without Artie Burns, however, who suffered a non-contact knee injury on Wednesday which would boost Westbrook's value. Westbrook is still priced at just $4400 and is a great tournament option. In his first game back from injury, Marqise Lee (WR, JAX) had only one target. He should be more involved this week but is barely on the fantasy radar at this point. Priced at $5100, we'd prefer to just start Westbrook.

Over the last five games, Le'Veon Bell (RB, PIT) had less than 14 carries just once, and did not have less than six targets in any of those games, including two games of 10 or more. The Jaguars run defense has improved since these teams met in Week 5, but it is still the weakness of this team. Unlike that Week 5 meeting when the Steelers threw the ball 55 times, they'd be smart to run it more with Bell and not test this elite cornerback tandem. Regardless of the gameplan the Steelers choose, Bell is a stud and is priced as such at $9600 and the most expensive player on the slate. We're not going to argue against playing Bell in either format, but at that price he better deliver a big game.

Jesse James (TE, PIT) had one game of 12 targets over the last five meaningful games, but saw just 12 total over the other four. He did see a red zone target in five straight so he does have desperation touchdown potential. The Jaguars are a good defense against tight ends ranking 10th in points allowed while giving up five touchdowns. James is priced at $3500 on DraftKings but is little more than a touchdown dependent tournament play.


Saints at Vikings

Matchups We Love:

Latavius Murray (RB, MIN)

Over the last three games, Murray had 20, 21 and 20 carries and should be heavily involved once again facing a Saints defense that allowed 4.4 yards per attempt (tied fourth worst) and 11 rushing touchdowns (tied 13th). He is priced at $5400 on DraftKings which makes him close to a steal at this price and is a great tournament play. He is a bit riskier in cash games but should still be a solid RB2 start.

Adam Thielen (WR, MIN)

Thielen has seen his target share dip of late, as he doesn't have more than seven targets in three straight games. And while the Saints possess one of the league's best secondaries, an area they struggle is out of the slot. On the year they allowed three touchdowns and 1.81 PPR points per target to slot receivers. Thielen is priced at $7600 on DraftKings, third highest among receivers, and may see low ownership due to matchup concerns. He is a viable start in either format.


Matchups We Hate:

Drew Brees (QB, NO)

Brees did not disappoint against the Panthers, throwing for 376 yards and two touchdowns. While that matchup was good, this matchup is one of the toughest as the Vikings gave up just 6 yards per attempt (tied first) and only allowed 13 touchdowns, best in the league. Brees is a stud, and if anyone can overcome this matchup he can, but priced at $6300 and the second-highest quarterback on DraftKings he is best left for tournament play only.

Alvin Kamara (RB, NO) / Mark Ingram (RB, NO)

For the first time in six games, Kamara out-carried Ingram 10 to nine and also out-targeted him three to one. Both Kamara and Ingram underperformed as the Saints avoided the Panthers strong run-stopping unit and aired it out. The matchup this week is even tougher as the Vikings allowed just 3.7 yards per attempt (fifth) and 10 touchdowns (tied ninth) on the ground. Things weren't better for running backs through the air either as they allowed the third fewest points to backs via the pass. Kamara is still priced very high at $7800 on DraftKings and is second only to Le'Veon Bell among running backs. This could be a good week to fade him, however, as he should still see fairly high ownership levels based on name value. Ingram's price has plummeted to $5600 and he can't be considered more than a touchdwon dependent tournament play in this one.

Michael Thomas (WR, NO)

Thomas has been a stud this year and had a monster game in the Wild Card round, but will draw tough shadow coverage from Xavier Rhodes on Sunday. On the season Rhodes has allowed only two touchdowns (both to Marvin Jones on short rest) and gave up just 1.34 PPR points per target. Thomas should remain heavily targeted, but priced at $7200 on DraftKings and in a tough spot makes him a risky start in either format.

Josh Hill (TE, NO)

Hill was targeted four times in the Saints Wild Card win, catching three including a touchdown. He will find things much more difficult this week against a Vikings defense that gave up the fewest points to tight ends and allowed only three touchdowns. Hill is barely priced over minimum at $2600 and is nothing more than a tournament desperation play.

Stefon Diggs (WR, MIN)

Diggs had a bit of a late season resurgence, leading the team in targets two of the final three weeks and scoring 14 or more DraftKings points in each game. He finds himself in a tough spot this week, however, as he will face shadow coverage from Marshon Lattimore. The rookie has held opposing receivers to zero touchdowns and 1.24 PPR points per target on the year. Priced at $6200 on DraftKings, Diggs may see higher ownership due to recency bias but we suggest avoiding him in all formats.


Other Matchups:

Ted Ginn (WR, NO) has sneaky appeal in tournament formats, as he will face the Vikings corners not named Xavier Rhodes. Despite avoiding Rhodes this is by no means a soft spot, as the rest of the Vikings corners allowed just five touchdowns and 1.42 PPR points per target. Ginn has six targets in back-to-back games and could be looked at more by Brees in this one. Priced at $5800 on DraftKings he is a boom/bust tournament play only.

Case Keenum (QB, MIN) was one of the biggest quarterback surprises in 2017. After the team's Week 9 bye, Keenum had 17 or more points on DraftKings in every meaningful game. The Saints are just an OK matchup as they allowed 7 yards per attempt (tied 16th) and 22 touchdowns (tied 12th). Quarterbacks making their first playoff start have not been good historically so there is risk with Keenum. Still, priced at $6100 and the fourth highest quarterback on the slate, Keenum is a viable start in either cash or tournaments.

Jerick McKinnon (RB, MIN) only topped nine carries once over the final five games, and only had more than three targets twice over that span. The Saints are a poor run-stopping but are an average unit against backs in the passing game, as they allowed the 14th most points via the air to running backs. McKinnon is priced at $4900 on DraftKings, right behind teammate Latavius Murray. We'd prefer Murray out of the two and McKinnon is a tournament play only.

Kyle Rudolph (TE, MIN) only had six targets over the last three games and one red zone target over that stretch, but has a chance to score against a Saints defense that ranked second in points allowed but did give up six touchdowns. Rudolph is priced at $4700 on DraftKings, fourth among tight ends, and while he is too risky for cash games he makes a viable cost-saving option at the position for tournament players.


More Divisional Round Lineup Prep