Top Ten Playoff Plays - Week 14


And just like that, we are already at the fantasy playoffs. Seems like just a few weeks ago I was writing about sleepers and must draft players. It has been a wild a bumpy ride to get to this point.
  • Royce Freeman was supposed to be what Phillip Lindsay is in Denver. Instead Lindsay has turned into one of the leagues most productive backs.
  • Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady have been quite pedestrian. Further driving home the point of you shouldn't waste a high pick on a quarterback.
  • Patrick Mahomes is and was the real deal.
  • Case Keenum was not.
  • Andrew Luck is back.
  • Phillip Rivers never left. You just chose to ignore him.
  • David Johnson has been a disappointment.
  • Todd Gurley, Ezekiel Elliot, and Christian McCaffrey have not been.
  • Jarvis Landry has been a disappointment.
  • Michael Thomas, Adam Thielen, and Antonio Brown have not been.
  • If you drafted the Jaguars defense far to early, you got everything you deserved
Hopefully you have been on the right end of most of these outcomes and have made the post season. Now for myself, there is some fancy rule where if you are the number one seed you get a bye week, so I do not have a matchup to worry about this week. However, this is the season of giving, so I will still give you some advice. Here are the top ten players for Week 14.

10. Courtland Sutton
  • There is clearly some risk with projecting Sutton to be one of the top 10 players this week. Especially when you consider he had not scored more than 10 points in a game until last week. With that said, he dropped 18 last week on a terrible Bengals team. This week he gets an equally terrible Niners team and Denver just lost Emmanuel Sanders for the rest of the year. Sutton is now the default number one wideout in the Mile High City and I LOVE his chances of a 20+ point output against San Fran.
9. Amari Cooper
  • Amari Cooper has been worth every ounce of that first round pick so far for the Cowboys. Not only has he been putting up pretty good fantasy days, but he has done wonders for the Cowboys offense as a whole. Cooper had a breakout game on Thanksgiving against the Redskins and had an appetizing matchup last week,  but the Cowboys plan against the Saints was to play keep away, limiting Cooper. This week they have the Eagles with the division on the line. The Eagles continue to have a strong run defense and even though you know Dallas will feed Zeke regardless of the defense he is going up against, Cooper has a really good chance at a strong game this week. The Eagles secondary is depleted and that is putting it lightly. They are down to their third and fourth corners and Cooper will be able to expose them. I think Dallas plays this game backwards. Open up the running lanes by hitting the Eagles through the air early, then it finally goes to Zeke to put the game away. Start Cooper with supreme confidence this week.
8. Michael Thomas
  • Michael Thomas got shut down by Byron Jones against the Cowboys last week. Thankfully for him, the Buccaneers do not have a soul on defense that can come close to a shut down performance. Thomas initially showed up on the Saints Injury Report (ankle), but came off Thursday after putting in a full practice making it clear it was more of a maintenance day. Thomas will be all systems go come Sunday. Back in Week 1, in his first matchup against Tampa's 29th ranked pass defense, Thomas went OFF with 16 catches, for 180 yards and a touchdown. 16 catches may be out of the question but at least 100 yards and another score are not. 

7. Drew Brees
  • Drew Brees will have had 10 days to stew over being absolutely neutralized last game against Dallas. He now couldn't have a better matchup to take that frustration out on than the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Week 1 was an absolute fluke when the Saints fell to the Bucs. I can assure you that is not happening again this week. The Saints will take all their frustration out on Tampa and Brees should fall back into his MVP form and run up the score this week. Expect big things.

6. Phillip Lindsay
  • Boy, I have never seen a Rolls Royce break down faster than the one in Denver. My prediction of Royce Freeman being bell cow in Denver was a swing and a miss but the Broncos picking up Phillip Lindsay was a grand slam. Lindsay has been on a roll the last two weeks and the good times should keep rolling with a trip to San Fransisco on deck for Sunday. This is however a San Fransisco team that has quietly been a pretty decent run defense this year giving up just 4 yards per carry. That is good for 8th best in the league. With that said, the Broncos are down to Courtland Sutton being their number one wideout, so expect them to lean on the run again. Lindsay has faced some stiff challenges so far this season and overcame them. I expect him to do that once again.
5. Christian McCaffrey
  • Christian McCaffrey has been on fire the past month, racking up fantasy scores of 36, 16, 46 and 30! Week 14 brings Carolina to face a Browns team that is pretty good at one thing; Defending the pass. Couple that with the fact that Newton is nursing a shoulder injury, so if he does suit up, he will not be 100 percent. Enter Christian McCaffrey. This game script should have his name written all over it. He should be given ample opportunities to flash his skills both on the ground and also in the pass game for easy dump offs for Newton. There is a good chance you will be looking at another 30+ point output. 

4. Aaron Jones
  • Mike McCarthy's 13 year tenure as the Green Bay Packers head coach came to an end this week. Along with that, the odd love affair with backup Jamaal Williams is also out of the building. This is Aaron Jones job and his carry sharing with Williams should be over moving forward. This week the Falcons head to the frozen tundra in Green Bay and they bring their bottom 5 run defense with them. In a cold day in Wisconsin, Aaron Jones should have the hot hand.

3. Antonio Brown
  • I feel like every season Antonio Brown is good for a couple 30 point fantasy outbursts. Well this season, he just now had his first 30 plus point performance last Sunday against the Chargers. Well lucky for him and you, he now gets the Oakland Raiders. Or at least, what is left of them. There is nobody, and I mean nobody, on this Raiders defense that can contain Antonio Brown. And with James Connor out for this game, look for Big Ben to take to the air even more. What can Brown do for you? Well its Christmas time and he will deliver. That's what.

2. Ben Roethlisberger
  • Antonio Brown can only go as Big Ben goes so if Brown is having a big day, Ben is having a bigger one. Ben's road woes of the past seem to be just that, in the past. Ben is playing well home or away this year and should face little resistance out west. Again, with no James Connor, look for Ben to air it out early and often to make the Raiders black hole just a little darker.

1. Phillip Rivers
  • Rivers should not win the MVP this season, but he should be in the discussion. I feel Mahomes is the current MVP leader after Brees got shutdown in Dallas last week. But after Mahones and Brees, it should be Rivers. Rivers has already thrown for 3400 yards and 28 touchdowns. This week the entire Chargers offense should be licking their chops as they are at home against a horrid Bengals team. Chargers will still be without Melvin Gordon to run the rock which could mean more air time for Rivers. Everything is pointing in his direction this week giving him a better than great shot to be the top performer this week (well, besides Derrick Henry shocking the world Thursday night...).

Follow Ryan on Twitter and ask your Fantasy Questions @BesseBoy. 

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Boston Sports Syndicate: Top Ten Playoff Plays - Week 14
Top Ten Playoff Plays - Week 14
Boston Sports Syndicate
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