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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 Wild Card weekend 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: For a limited time only - buy our full-season NFL Premium and DFS Pass, and you also get our full-season NBA Premium and DFS Pass for free! Take advantage of one of our best offers all year, and get an edge on your competition. Sign Up Now!

 

Wild Card Weekend 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.

 

Wild Card Weekend Saturday Matchups

Titans at Chiefs

Matchups We Love:

Derrick Henry (RB, TEN)
With DeMarco Murray out in Week 17, Henry carried the ball 28 times and had two targets, turning one into a 66-yard touchdown. While he was extremely ineffective on the ground, rushing for just 51 yards and 1.82 yards per carry against a tough Jaguars defense, he should find things much better against a Chiefs defense that ranked 24th in yards per attempt and allowed eight top-12 scoring weeks. The biggest risk for Henry this week is game script, as the Chiefs are currently nine point favorites at home. Still, Henry is the ninth priced running back on DraftKings at $6000 and makes for a good start in both cash and tournaments.

Eric Decker (WR, TEN)
Decker emerged as the Mariota's favorite option with 16 targets over the last two weeks. Playing primarily from the slot, he gets a great matchup against the Chiefs slot corners that allowed four touchdowns and 1.79 PPR points per target. Priced at just $3500 on DraftKings, Decker is a great tournament start and should see low ownership, though he should be avoided in cash games.

Alex Smith (QB, KC)
Smith had by far his best season as a pro, as he set career highs in yards, touchdowns, yards per attempt and rating. He gets a great matchup against a Titans defense that ranked 25th in yards per game and 16th in touchdown percentage, and allowed six top-10 scoring weeks to quarterbacks. Smith had five games with more than 20 points and eclipsed 30 twice. He did sputter a bit down the stretch but this is a potential blow-up spot for him. Priced at $6300 on DraftKings and QB4, Smith is a viable play in both cash and tournaments.

Kareem Hunt (RB, KC) had 24 or more carries in each of the Chiefs last three meaningful games, and 16 targets over that stretch. He should once again carry a sizable workload, though the Titans are a tough matchup on the ground as they ranked fourth in yards per attempt. The appeal for Hunt is in the passing game, as the Titans gave up the most points to running backs through the air. Even if Hunt is ineffective on the ground he should more than make up for it in the receiving game. Hunt is priced at $8100 on DraftKings and comes in as the third most expensive running back. With the Chiefs expected to win easily, Hunt should see plenty of work in this one and is a safe start in cash or tournaments.

Tyreek Hill (WR, KC)
Over the last five games, Hill saw at least six targets in each of them and nine or more in two of them. He gets a great matchup versus a Titans secondary that allowed 14 touchdowns and 1.61 PPR points per target. Hill is the third-highest priced receiver, but costs you just $6800 on DraftKings and is the perfect boom/bust type for tournaments. Hill is in a great "boom" spot here and makes a great stack with Smith at quarterback.

Albert Wilson (WR, KC)
In the last five games with Alex Smith under center, Wilson saw seven or more targets in three of them. He gets a great matchup against the Titans slot corners who allowed six touchdowns on the season and give up 2.06 PPR points per target. Priced at just $3300 on DraftKings, Wilson is basically free and is a sneaky start in tournaments, though he comes with considerable risk. He should be avoided in cash games.

 

Matchups We Hate:

None

 

Other Matchups:

Marcus Mariota (QB, TEN) was one of the biggest disappointments at the quarterback position, throwing for just 13 touchdowns and 15 interceptions and finishing the year as the QB18. He didn't have a single game over 20 points either. The Chiefs are by no means a tough matchup, ranking 26th in yards per game and 12th in touchdown percentage, but gave up only six QB1 scoring weeks and only one over the last five games. Priced at $5500 on DraftKings, Mariota is the second-cheapest starting quarterback, but with his low ceiling is not worth a start in tournaments. He does have some cash game appeal for players who want to save at the position but he comes with considerable risk.

Rishard Matthews (WR, TEN) had just 19 targets over the final four games, but will get good matchups all over the field against a Chiefs secondary that allowed 14 touchdowns and 1.67 PPR points per target. There is potential for garbage time in this game as well. Matthews is priced at $4900 on DraftKings, but is a risky start in cash games. He does have some tournament appeal, however, and should see fairly low ownership. Corey Davis (WR, TEN) only had more than five targets twice over the last six games, and despite being priced at just $3600 on DraftKings, is nothing more than a tournament dart throw. Now down to the number four option in this passing game, players who start him are hoping he can hit one big play to pay off his price.

Delanie Walker (TE, TEN) had at least five targets in the final six games, but only more than five in two of those. The Chiefs are an OK defense against tight ends, ranking sixth in total points allowed to the position, but did allow six top-12 weeks. Still, with the current selection of tight ends on this slate, Walker has to be considered in the upper tier. Priced at $4700, he is a safe bet in cash games, but may lack the ceiling for tournament play.

Travis Kelce (TE, KC) had seven or more targets over his final four games, and a total of 36 over that stretch. He should once again be heavily involved, and gets a good matchup against a Titans defense that gave up the 19th most points to the position but did allow seven top-12 scoring weeks. Kelce is a stud and he's priced like it, costing you $7100 on DraftKings. He is an ultra safe cash game start, but could see high ownership in tournaments.

 

Falcons at Rams

Matchups We Love:

Devonta Freeman (RB, ATL)
Despite being doubtful all week with a knee injury suffered in Week 17 against the Panthers, Freeman is off the injury report and looks ready to go. Over the last five games, Freeman had 20 or more carries twice, and 12 or less three times. He was targeted 18 times over the last three games, however. He's in a great spot this week as the Rams have a strong secondary but struggle against running backs, ranking 30th in yards per attempt as well as allowing 15 touchdowns on the ground. Priced at just $6300, Freeman is the eighth highest priced running back on DraftKings and seems like a safe start in either cash or tournaments, and could see low ownership due to concerns with his knee.

Todd Gurley (RB, LAR)
Gurley finished the season on an absolute tear and was far and away the fantasy playoffs MVP. Over the last five games that he played, Gurley had less than 17 carries just once and less than five targets just once. The Falcons are just an average run-stopping unit, ranking 18th in yards per attempt, but they struggled at stopping backs in the passing game, giving up 6.44 catches a game, the most of any team, and allowed the second most PPR points to running backs through the air. Gurley is the highest priced player on the slate at $9700, but is worth paying up for, especially in cash games.

 

Matchups We Hate:

Matt Ryan (QB, ATL)
Ryan was a major bust for fantasy owners this year, as he was drafted as QB4 and finished as QB15, posting only one top-10 finish all year. He gets a tough matchup against a Rams defense that ranked sixth in yards per game and 11th in touchdown percentage, and gave up just three QB1 weeks all season. Priced at $6100 and the QB5 on DraftKings, Ryan is someone who should see very low ownership and is nothing more than a tournament dart throw.

Gerald Everett (TE, LAR)
Everett saw a career-high six targets in Week 17, but did nothing with them and looked to be running the wrong routes on certain plays. Trusting him against a Falcons defense that finished 12th in points allowed to the position. He is minimally-priced on DraftKings at $2500, but he cannot be trusted in cash games and is nothing more than a tournament Hail Mary, though we think there are better options at his price range.

 

Other Matchups:

Tevin Coleman (RB, ATL) only has one double-digit carry game in the last four games that Freeman played, and was targeted just six times over the final three games. While the matchup with the Rams is good, his usage won't be as Freeman is not even on the injury report and should be ready for his usual workload. Coleman is only priced at $4100 on DraftKings and does have some appeal as a tournament dart throw, but should be avoided in cash games.

Julio Jones (WR, ATL) has 11 or more targets in four of the last six games, but gets a tough matchup as he will be facing shadow coverage from Trumaine Johnson. On the year, Johnson allowed only one touchdown and 1.49 PPR points per target. Jones is the highest priced receiver on DraftKings at $8000, and the fifth-highest overall player. He's someone we'd prefer to fade in tournaments, though he makes for a solid start in cash games due to his relatively safe floor. Mohamed Sanu (WR, ATL) had eight or more targets in three of the last six, and at least five in each of those games. He draws a tough matchup, however, against the Rams slot corners that gave up only two touchdowns on the year and 1.52 PPR points per target. Priced at $5600 Sanu is better served for cash games if you are set on playing him.

Austin Hooper (TE, ATL) didn't have more than five targets in any of the last six games, and despite getting a good matchup against a Rams defense that ranked 18th in points allowed to the position, likely won't see enough volume to have an impact. Priced at $2900 on DraftKings, he is the fifth-most expensive tight end though he comes at a steep discount to the number four tight end. Still, he can't be played in cash games and those starting him in tournaments are hoping he finds pay dirt.

Jared Goff (QB, LAR) did a complete 180 from his abysmal rookie year and developed into one of the league's top quarterbacks. He finished the season as QB12 and had five games of 20 or more points. The Falcons are just an OK matchup, as they ranked 12th in yards per game and 13th in touchdown percentage, but did allow six QB1 weeks. Goff is the highest priced quarterback of the slate at $6700, and while he is a viable start in both cash and tournaments we think there are better plays.

Robert Woods (WR, LAR) had seven and eight targets in his two games since returning from injury, and should continue to operate as Goff's primary target. Playing 88% of his snaps on the right or from the slot, he gets a good matchup against the Falcons slot corners and left corner Desmond Trufant. While the Falcons are good against receivers out of the slot, Trufant struggled this year allowing six touchdowns on just 61 targets. Woods is priced as the fourth most expensive receiver on DraftKings at $6600, but we think you can do better, though he isn't the worst start on the slate. Cooper Kupp (WR, LAR) had six or more targets in four of the last five games, and gets a good matchup against the Falcons slot corners that allowed just two touchdowns all year but gave up 1.78 PPR points per target. Priced at $5800, Kupp is the sixth highest wide receiver and is a cost-saving pivot from Woods, though we would prefer to play him in tournaments only. Sammy Watkins (WR, LAR) gets the toughest matchup out of the Rams receivers, as he plays 81% of his snaps from the left or slot. Falcons right corner Robert Alford only allowed three touchdowns on 99 targets and gave up just 1.42 PPR points per target. Watkins is only $700 cheaper than Kupp at $5100 and is nothing more than a tournament hail mary start, though he should see extremely low ownership.

 

Wild Card Weekend Sunday Matchups

Bills at Jaguars

Matchups We Love:

Leonard Fournette (RB, JAC)
Despite the Jaguars having nothing to play for in Week 17, they gave Fournette 19 carries and five targets. In his last four starts, Fournette had at least 18 carries and 18 total targets, including 11 red zone carries and four carries inside the five. The Bills were one of the league's worst run defenses over the second half of the season, and Fournette should be the focal point for a Jaguars team that is currently favored by 8.5 points at home. Somehow priced at just $7400 on DraftKings, Fournette is cheaper than four other running backs and six other flex players. He is close to a must start in cash and is a fine tournament play as well, though he could see very high ownership numbers.

Marcedes Lewis (TE, JAC)
Lewis only had 15 targets over the last six games, but gets a great matchup against a Bills defense that gave up the 24th most points to the position and gave up eight top-15 scoring weeks. Lewis is minimum priced on DraftKings at $2500, and for good reason, as he is unlikely to see significant targets. While he should be avoided in cash games, he makes for an interesting tournament play and should see extremely low ownership.

 

Matchups We Hate:

Tyrod Taylor (QB, BUF)
Taylor comes in as the lowest-priced quarterback on the slate, costing just $4700 on DraftKings. It's for good reason too as he gets a Jaguars defense on the road making his first career playoff start. The Jaguars ranked first in both yards per game and sack rate, and fourth in touchdown percentage. Aside from Russell Wilson's QB6 game in Week 14, they didn't allow a finish better than QB14 all year. Taylor, on the other hand, had just three games of 20 or more points but did offer a safe floor most weeks. Still, in this matchup he cannot be played in cash games and is nothing more than a tournament dart throw as a salary saver.

Mike Tolbert (RB, BUF), Marcus Murphy (RB, BUF)
With LeSean McCoy looking seriously doubtful to suit up on Sunday, the Bills will likely turn to a committee with Tolbert and Murphy. In Week 17, after McCoy went out, Tolbert and Murphy each saw seven carries and two targets. Of the three red zone carries the Bills had, Murphy had two and McCoy had one while Tolbert didn't have any. Still, regardless of how you look at it this is a tough spot for whoever starts, as the Jaguars run defense has been stout down the stretch; they held Carlos Hyde and Derrick Henry to just 95 yards on 49 carries over the last two weeks. Neither Tolbert or Murphy are in the class of Hyde and Henry, and even priced at $3700 each they are nothing more than tournament dart throws.

Kelvin Benjamin (WR, BUF), Deonte Thompson (WR, BUF), Zay Jones (WR, BUF)
Over the last three games, Benjamin has 12 targets, Thompson has 12 targets and Jones has six. They are all in brutal spots against an elite Jaguars pass defense that gave up just three touchdowns and allowed 1.18 PPR points per target. They are all priced extremely cheap, as Benjamin comes in at $3500 on DraftKings, while Thompson and Jones are $3000 each. If you're playing multiple lineups in a tournament, Benjamin and Thompson may be worth some low exposure on the off chance one of them hits pay dirt, but otherwise all three should be avoided.

Charles Clay (TE, BUF)
Clay saw eight or more targets over the last three games and could be leaned on more by Taylor if McCoy is out. He gets a tough matchup, however, as the Jaguars allowed just the 10th most points to tight ends and gave up only three top-12 scoring weeks all season. Priced at $4000 and the fourth highest tight end, Clay comes with risk in this one but could be a sneaky start in tournaments as he should see low ownership and could be the Bills only offensive weapon.

 

Other Matchups:

Blake Bortles (QB, JAC) was on a tear down the stretch, posting four 20 plus point games in a five game stretch, before completely no-showing in Week 17 against a weak Titans defense. The Bills defense give up yards but not scores to passers, ranking 17th in yards per game but first in touchdown percentage. They only allowed two QB1 scoring weeks as well. Still, Bortles offers a high ceiling in this one but also comes with considerable risk. Priced at $6000 and QB6 Bortles is a tournament play only.

Marqise Lee (WR, JAC) is set to return after missing the last three games and should slot back in as Bortles' number one target. He had 16 targets in his last two healthy games, but gets a Bills defense that gave up just seven touchdowns and 1.47 PPR points per target. Lee is priced at $5700 on DraftKings and is the seventh highest priced receiver. He is a risky start in cash games and doesn't carry a lot of tournament value either. Allen Hurns (WR, JAC) returned from injury in Week 17 and caught three passes on five targets. Playing primarily from the slot, he gets an OK matchup against the Bills slot corners that have allowed only two touchdowns but give up 1.58 PPR points per target. Hurns is priced at $4600 on DraftKings, but we think you can do better though he should see very low ownership in tournaments for those willing to take a chance. Keelan Cole (WR, JAC) broke out with Lee and Hurns out of the lineup, but saw just three targets in each of the last two healthy games Lee played. Priced at $5400 on DraftKings and the WR9, we will likely be fading Cole and expect his ownership to be too high due to recency bias. Dede Westbrook (WR, JAC) has 16 targets over the last two games, but has done little with them. Priced at $4400 on DraftKings, he should see very low ownership but is little more than a tournament desperation play.

 

Panthers at Saints

Matchups We Love:

Jonathan Stewart (RB, CAR)
Stewart missed Week 17 with back tightness, but the Panthers believe he will be ready to go on Sunday for the Wild Card game. In his four previously healthy games, Stewart had at least 11 carries in each, including 12 red zone carries and eight carries inside the five. The Saints have a strong secondary but struggle stopping the run, ranking 27th in yards per attempt and allowed 11 touchdowns on the ground. Priced at just $3500, Stewart is a great cost-saver in tournaments but is too risky for cash games.

 

Matchups We Hate:

Devin Funchess (WR, CAR)
Funchess only has 14 targets over the last three games as Greg Olsen has re-emerged as Newton's favorite weapon. Funchess draws a tough test this week as he is likely facing shadow coverage from Marshon Lattimore. On the year, Lattimore did not allow a touchdown and gave up just 1.24 PPR points per target. Priced at $5900 on DraftKings, and the fifth-most expensive receiver, Funchess is best faded this week.

Greg Olsen (TE, CAR)
In the last three games, Olsen led the Panthers with 27 targets and re-emerged as Newton's primary target. While he should again operate as Newton's favorite, he draws a tough matchup against a Saints defense that allowed the second fewest points to the position and gave up only three top-12 scoring weeks. Olsen is the second-highest priced tight end on DraftKings at $5o00, but is a risky start in either format. We would prefer to pay up for Kelce if possible.

Josh Hill (TE, NO)
Hill never saw more than three targets over the final five games, and had just 12 total over that stretch. He is unlikely to be a big part of this offense once again as he goes up against a Panthers team that allowed the fifth fewest points to the position. Priced at $2500 on DraftKings he is a big time cost saver, but is way too risky for cash games. He has some tournament appeal as his ownership should be extremely low, but you can do better.

 

Other Matchups:

Cam Newton (QB, CAR) was a boom/bust option at quarterback this year, scoring 20 or more seven times (including three with 30 or more) and scoring 15 or less six times. He struggled against the Saints in Week 3 at home, throwing for just 167 yards and three interceptions, but played much better in New Orleans in Week 13, throwing for two touchdowns (though he only had 187 yards that game as well). The Saints did rank seventh in yards per game, so throwing for big yardage on this team is tough. Priced at $6500, Newton is the QB2 on the slate but is once again a boom/bust option. Because of that he should be avoided in cash games and is a tournament play only.

Christian McCaffrey (RB, CAR) only topped nine carries once in the last six games, but did have at least four targets in each of them. The Saints are a good matchup for pass catching backs, and allowed the 13th most PPR points to the position in the receiving game. Priced at $6400 on DraftKings, and the seventh ranked running back, McCaffrey is a tough start in cash games but makes for a solid play in tournaments.

Drew Brees (QB, NO) did not have the fantasy season we are accustomed to seeing, but still played at an elite level and offered a high weekly floor. In his two starts against the Panthers, he threw for at least 220 yards and a touchdown and had zero interceptions, so he should once again be a safe floor play. Priced at $6400 and the QB3, Brees will likely be the highest owned quarterback in cash games. His ownership should be lower in tournaments but he is still a viable play there as well.

Alvin Kamara (RB, NO) only had double-digit carries twice over the last six games, and had five or less in two of those, but did see at least six targets in each game but one. He should be heavily involved in the passing game, but gets a fairly tough matchup against a Panthers defense that allowed the 12th fewest points to backs through the air. It should be noted, however, that in Week 13 against the Panthers, Kamara had 60 yards rushing and two touchdowns, and added another five catches for 66 yards. Kamara is priced at $8600 on DraftKings and is the second-most expensive player on the slate. Still, he offers a huge ceiling and a safe floor and is a viable play in either cash or tournaments. Mark Ingram (RB, NO) had 14 or fewer carries in six straight games, but did have at least three targets in each of those. The Panthers are a tough run unit, ranking 15th in yards per attempt while giving up just seven rushing touchdowns on the season. Ingram did torch the Panthers in Week 13 for 85 yards and a touchdown, plus six catches for another 37 yards. Priced at $6900, Ingram is a relative bargain compared to Kamara but is better suited for tournaments as his risk is too high for cash games.

Michael Thomas (WR, NO) was one of the most consistent players in fantasy this year, and had at least eight targets in five of the last six games. He'll be facing shadow coverage from James Bradberry, who on the season allowed only two touchdowns and 1.48 PPR points per target. Thomas is priced at $7800 on DraftKings, second only to Julio Jones for receivers. And while this spot is less than ideal, Thomas did have 18 and 21 points in the two games versus the Panthers this season. He is a safe start in cash games, and a Brees/Thomas stack should be a popular one in that format. Ted Ginn (WR, NO) only had 16 targets over his last four games, but gets a good matchup against the Panthers corners not named Bradberry. On the year they allowed seven touchdowns and 1.76 PPR points per target. Priced at $5200 on DraftKings and the WR10, Ginn is playable only in tournaments as a boom/bust pivot off Thomas.

 

More Wild Card Weekend Lineup Prep