Picture this: You’re 10-3; top of the league in points scored, and lose in the fantasy championship because you started a quarterback in a bad matchup. Trust me, I know from experience.
In 2018, I led the league in scoring and lost in the championship because I started Phillip Rivers against Baltimore. Rivers scored a cool 3.3 points, and I lost my matchup by 8.1. If I swallowed my pride and started a lesser known quarterback against a bad defense, the title would’ve been mine.
Triggered? Yes. Upset? Yes. Could’ve been more prepared? Also yes.
There is a decent amount of luck involved in fantasy, so we have to reduce it where we can. If you’re likely making the playoffs, you should be looking ahead at matchups during playoff weeks. In this article I’ll include a few quarterbacks you should consider adding for your playoff run.
All of the players are under 50% owned in ESPN leagues, through week 10.
Baker Mayfield (45.3% owned in ESPN leagues)
Before his week 11 21.8 points against Pittsburgh, this would’ve been a tough sell. Baker Mayfield and the rest of Cleveland’s offense were brutal in the first half of the season. Through his first 8 games, Mayfield averaged 12 PPG in regular leagues. He even had a -2 point performance against San Fransico.
But he’s scored at least 17.1 points in his last 3, all against top 7 fantasy defenses against QBs, according to FantasyPros. Get a load of this beautiful schedule in week 12 and beyond.
Week 12 Miami (7th most points allowed to QBs)
Week 13 @ Pittsburgh (25th) – Daunting but worth rostering for later games, if you have the space.
Week 14 Cincinnati (3rd)
Week 15 @ Arizona (1st)
Mayfield should absolutely be rostered. If you can’t add him this week, keep an eye out on waivers before week 13. Owners might be nervous about his matchup against the Steelers and cut him.
Nick Foles (18% owned)
Foles was one of my late round quarterback targets in drafts this offseason. He broke his collarbone on a beautiful deep touchdown throw in week 1, against my Chiefs. Now back from injury, I’m on the Foles train like I never left. You could make a legitimate case for Jacksonville having the easiest passing matchups remaining in the NFL.
Like Mayfield, you can add Foles for future matchups but can also play him now. I love his weapons, offensive coordinator, and, most importantly, his schedule. If something were to happen to Foles and Gardner Minshew becomes the starter again, I’d start him in these matchups, too.
Week 13 Tampa Bay (2nd most points allowed to Quarterbacks)
Week 15 @ Oakland (3rd) The only thing that scares me here is that this may be the Raiders last ever game in Oakland. Most narratives are overblown, but the Raiders will come to play this game.
Week 16 @ Atlanta (5th)
Ryan Tannehill (15.8% owned)
At the start of your season, I imagine you never thought you’d be starting Ryan Tannehill in the playoffs, but here we are. He’s not my first recommendation, but if you’re in a pinch I think he’s usable.
Tannehill has quietly been balling out since being named starter before his week 7 match. In fact, he was the QB7 in weeks 7-10, averaging just over 20 fantasy points per game.
Tannehill and the Titans have a relatively easy passing schedule in weeks 14-16. He’s also one of the few quarterbacks in the league that amass points with his legs. Since becoming the starter, Tannehill has scored 13.9 points from rushing, which is 3.4 per game.
Week 14 @ Oakland (4th)
Week 15 Houston (9th)
Week 16 New Orleans (13th)
Overall, there are decent streaming options in the playoff weeks this year. It might feel gross playing Nick Foles or Ryan Tannehill, but points are points. There is also an added disrespect factor involved if you beat your opponent with a quarterback that isn’t all that great.
Good luck, and go get yourself a fantasy championship with these guys.
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