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Fantasy Roundtable: Players We’re Counting on in Round 1 of the Playoffs

Is it just me or do the playoffs bring out that extra in the community? The hot takes get a little more push back. The trolling efforts aren’t as well received. It gets a bit heavy around this time as our rosters get a little extra scrutiny. Fantasy content, perceived matchups, and our own intuition become critical tools as our seasons are won or lost on the decisions we make on who to start on our teams. With that, our writing squad got together to talk about some of the player’s they’re counting on in Round 1 of the playoffs in this week’s fantasy roundtable:

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FantraxHQ Fantasy Roundtable

“We’re into the fantasy playoffs and our victorious campaigns are a compilation of many players. Our draft selections, waiver wire pickups, and trades have all played a part. But now, it’s ‘do or die’ time. Which player on your roster are you relying on the most in Round 1 of the playoffs?”

Mick Ciallela (@themick23):

Well, considering the fact that I started Leonard Fournette on Thursday, I am relying on quite a few players this week. Believe it or not, 4.1 points were not exactly what I was expecting from my second-round pick. I basically need my entire roster to step up and get me out of this hole. But in particular, I am really hoping that a couple of other early-round selections finally pull their weight and pay off when I need them the most.

The first is Rob Gronkowski. He has had a terrible season by his standards and has been a major disappointment. He is finally off the injury report after dealing with injuries all year long and I am really hoping he can have a “vintage Gronk” performance against Miami this week.

I also need a big game out of Allen Robinson. Robinson has only put up double-digit fantasy points in two games this season. I am hoping he can make a couple of big plays against Marcus Peters and company. I also have Brandin Cooks in that game, while my opponent has Todd Gurley and Anthony Miller. My fate will probably not be decided one way or the other until Sunday night.

Etan Mozia (@FF_Wonderkid):

I’ve been lucky enough to have a first-round bye in the leagues I made the playoffs in this season so I can breathe easy for at least a week this year. With both Patrick Mahomes and Leonard Fournette, two main components of my playoff squads, in questionable matchups this week (facing Baltimore & Tennesee, respectively), the bye came just in time. However, if I had a stake in Week 14 my fortunes would have been very much tied to my RB3, Aaron Jones.

Jones faces an Atlanta defense that ranks 12th against the run by yardage and has surrendered the seventh-most TDs on the ground so far this season. Via the air, Atlanta checks in as the fourth-worst team in yards allowed to RBs. Jones also has the added benefit of the fifth-best run blocking O-line by adjusted line yards (4.89) per Football Outsiders. If this is a guy you need to come through for you you could do much, much worse.

Unfortunately, by the time I’ll need Jones in week 15 he’ll be playing against the vaunted Chicago rush defense and I’ll have to make a decision between Lamar Miller @ NYJ  and Jones. I’m officially accepting all thoughts and prayers.

Chris Allen (@ChrisAllenFFWX):

Fantasy brothers and sisters, I come to you in my hour of need. I have made it to the playoffs in my league of record. It’s filled with long-time friends and family members. Because they know what I do #onhere, they’re quick to inform me if I’m losing to them.  I get ‘I thought this was your job lmao’ texts if my squad underperforms further sending me into The Upside Down. But, it’s ok. I’m in the playoffs and facing… my younger brother.

Alvin Kamara has been one of the primary contributors to my team and I drafted him at 1.06 not truly believing in his ability to repeat his 2017 performance. But here in Week 14, I’m holding on to the RB4 in PPR leagues and need a big game from him. Tampa Bay has been lit up by combo backs seemingly every week this season. It started off with Kamara going for 8-29-2 on the ground and 9-112-1 through the air in Week 1. Corey Clement tagged them for an RB5 performance in Week 2. Since then, Christian McCaffrey was the RB3 in Week 9. Saquon Barkley was the RB1 in Week 11. The matchup is there for the taking.

His targets per game have dropped over the past three weeks, but he’s kept himself ahead of Mark Ingram with respect to snaps and total touches. The game environment sets up well with New Orleans having one of the highest implied team totals in Week 14. While I need the big game from him, I’m not worried because I know it’s going to happen for me in such a prime matchup.*

(*I reserve the right to disavow this sentence should this event not take place.)

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