How was your week

Posted: January 9, 2016 by Sports Time Radio in fantasy, football, sports, Uncategorized
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The playoffs kickoff this afternoon in the NFL as it’s Wild Card weekend. We have continued your picking of the games and I’ll let you know who we’re going with today at the end of the blog. What I thought I’d try to do is look at both of today’s games from a fantasy perspective. I’ll use the FanDuel system since that’s what Mr. Fantasy and I use on the Sunday podcast of Sports Time Radio when we put line ups in. Mr. Fantasy and I will be here tomorrow (Sunday) from 10 a.m. until 12 p.m. to review today’s games, preview tomorrows games, let you know who we think will win and like I mentioned find the best FanDuel plays for your money.

The first game today has the Kansas City Chiefs (11-5) at the Houston Texans (9-7). Houston is the home team because they won the AFC South while Kansas City got into the playoffs as the top wild card team.

Let’s start with the quarterbacks. This may not be the game you want to play a quarterback from as the Texans average giving up just 210.4 yards a game through and the Chiefs give up an average of 231.1 passing yards a game. Of course you only have $60,000 to spend and Alex Smith (Kansas City) at $7100 or Brian Hoyer (Houston) at $6900 might be what you can afford. Smith hasn’t broken the 20 point mark on FanDuel in 5 weeks, but he got close last week at 18.34 points. Hoyer returned to the Texans line up since leaving their Week 14 game with a concussion. Hoyer out up 12.96 points last week on FanDuel. Smith averages a few more fantasy points a week 17.4 to Hoyer’s 15.8. If you’re at the point where you have to go with one of these two quarterbacks; I’d lean towards Smith. With Smith’s running ability he should rack up some rushing yards for you and might end up with a rushing touchdown.

Maybe you’ll find a better play at running back, but both defenses are solid against the run as well. Kansas City averaged giving up 98.2 yards rushing while Houston was just a little behind them giving up 99.8 rushing yards per game. Charcandrick West is the Chiefs main running back, but in the last two weeks he has failed to score more than 7 points on FanDuel. West has actually managed to score over 15 points in the last 6 weeks. West may look like a good value at $6400, but with his performance as of late and this match up you might want to look elsewhere. Alfred Blue is #1 on the Texans depth chart at running back. Blue has been dealing with a calf injury and is listed as probably for the game. Blue scored 10.9 FanDuel points last week; it was his first time over 10 points in 5 weeks. Blue will cost you $5700 while his back up Chris Polk is at $4700, but remember Polk only got 3 carries in last weeks game because of a knee injury. None of these backs are featured in the passing game; so you won’t find any extra point there. It would be a tough choice here, but West is the only running back coming into the game without a nagging injury; so maybe he’d be the choice, but it’s a toss up.

Kansas City’s Jeremy Maclin ($7200) has had 3 solid weeks to close out the season, but hasn’t scored over 20 FanDuel points in 5 weeks. Albert Wilson ($4900) has played his way into the #2 wide receiver spot for the Chiefs. Even though Wilson has found his way into the starting line up has hasn’t scored more than 7 FanDuel points in 4 weeks and has managed to score over 15 points just once this season. Houston’s DeAndre Hopkins has established himself as not only one of the top wide receivers in football, but a top weekly fantasy pick. Hopkins is one of those fantasy players who seems to get his catches every week no matter what the match up. Hopkins got his catches last week (7), but didn’t find his way into the end zone; so his FanDuel scoring was 12.4 points. Of course there’s a price with this production. Hopkins is the 2nd most expensive wide receiver on FanDuel for today at $8800, but he might be worth it to you. It’s difficult to pick a 2nd Houston wide receiver between Nate Washington, Cecil Shorts who’s returning from injury and rookie Jalen Strong. Shorts could be a under the radar pick if the Texans use him in the wildcat formation, but they’ve never used that formation when Hoyer has been at quarterback. Shorts will cost you $5200 and that gamble might not pay off with Hoyer under center. Maclin and Hopkins are players you can use today, but after them it’s tough to find a reason to get any other wide out from this game in your line up.

Tight end Travis Kelce normally is a major weapon in the passing game for Kansas City, but as of late has been up and down FanDuel wise. Last week Kelce scored just 1.5 points and at $6200 that could end your fantasy day. Of course the 2 weeks before that Kelce scored 13.3 and 10.3 points; so which tight end are you going to get? Kelce has had some groin issues, but practiced all week and should be full strength. I think the best advice I can give you about playing a Texans tight end is DON’T. Ryan Griffin ($4800) averages the most points for Houston’s tight ends at 5.2 points per game while C.J. Fiedorowicz ($4500)averages just 2.2 points per game. Kelce might turn out to be a good play today even against a tough Houston defense as he’ll be a good red zone weapon for the Chiefs if they can get there.  

At kicker Kansas City’s Cairo Santos ($4800) averages 9.7 points per game this season while Houston’s kicker Nick Novak ($4600) averages 7 FanDuel points per game on the season. If you think this might turn into a field goal game since it does feature 2 good defenses one of these guys might be a solid choice. The question you’d have t ask yourself is how many field goal attempts do you think they’ll get?

You would probably be alright using either team defense in this game. Kansas City is the most expensive defense on FanDuel today at $5100 while Houston is the 2nd most expensive defense at $4600. You wouldn’t think this will be a high scoring game; so go with the defense of the team you think will win the game.

Let’s move along to tonight’s game. It’s an AFC South match up as the Pittsburgh Steelers (10-6) take on the Cincinnati Bengals (12-4) in Cincinnati. The Bengals won the AFC South while Pittburgh picked up the last AFC wild card spot.

This looks like the game where you’ll find your quarterback. The Steelers Ben Rothlisberger appears to be the top quarterback on FanDuel for Saturday and at $8400 he’s the highest priced. The Bengals do give up an average of 248.5 passing yards per game. So while it appears that Rothlisberger is the best quarterback start could A.J. McCarron be the sleeper FanDuel quarterback of the day. At $6400 McCarron is the lowest priced of the 4 starting Saturday quarterbacks, but does he have the best match up. Pittsburgh was the worst team in the AFC giving up an average of 271.9 passing yards per game. I always jump in on thee type of match ups and they haven’t really worked out for me, but if you go with McCarron as your FanDuel quarterback you should have some extra money to spend at the other positions.

Like I said with Houston’s tight ends’ I’d stay away from any Steelers running back. DeAngelo Williams has been ruled out for the game. That means that Fitzgerald Toussaint and Jordan Todman will be the Steelers rushing attack. As you’d expect they both are very good values with both Toussaint and Todman costing $5700. Pittsburgh hasn’t really said this, but you’d think Toussaint would get the majority of the carries since Todman hasn’t played in a game since pre-season (9/3) when he was a member of the Carolina Panthers. Oddly that game was against the Steelers. Pittsburgh’s defense is only giving up an average of 91,2 yards per game, but you have to wonder if that number is low because teams are having so much success throwing the football against them. The Bengals feature that 2-back attack. Jeremy Hill ($6700) normally gets most of the rushing attempts, but is effective in the passing game as well. Hill is paired up with Giovani Bernard ($5600) in the backfield. The tough part is picking between the Bengals running backs as Hill averages 10.2 points per game on FanDuel while Bernard’s average is 9.8 point per game on the season. Hopefully you’ll make the right choice if you go with a Bengals running back.

Since this is expected to be a high scoring game wide receiver might be the place to spend your FanDuel money. It’s no surprise that Antonio Brown is the most expensive player listed for Saturday at $9500. Even though teams know Brown is the Steelers top receiving target he still gets his catches and puts up numbers. While it’s a lot of money for one player Brown has proven he’s worth it. Martavis Bryant has had some issues with his neck and has caught 1 pass in each of the last 2 games. I’m sure you heard that Pirrsburgh”s quarterback “Big” Ben challenged Bryant, but will it have an affect on his play. Will you go wit Bryant at $6900 or save the money and take a shot with Markus Wheaton at $5900? Wheaton is the Steelers wide receiver who benefits the most if Bryant struggles. Wheaton has also found his way into the end zone in 4 of the last 6 weeks. It’s an interesting choice, but saving that extra $1000 on Wheaton could mean an upgrade somewhere else. At $8300 is A.J. Green the best wide receiver play on the FanDuel board today?  Remember Green is going up against the worst pass defense in the AFC. Green has scored touchdowns in his last 2 games and remember the last time he went up against the Steelers pass defense he scored 22.2 FanDuel points. Marvin Jones is the Bengals #2 wide receiver and at $5500 could turn out to be a great value against the Pittsburgh defense, but there are a lot of good receiver choices and you might not get down to Jones. If this game goes as it’s expected to this may be the position that helps you win.

Tight end is another position that should really pay off today. Heath Miller is a solid tight end for the Steelers that every now and then can have a big game. Miller has averaged 6.5 points per game this season, but against Cincinnati he should go over his scoring average and at $5600 he could turn out to be a good deal. Tyler Eifert is the highest price tight end playing Saturday at $6400. This is the type of season people have been waiting for Eifert to have, but he has missed 3 games this season because of concussions. Eifert has a reasonable price on him and should be a very good play for whoever pays for him.

Again; if this game goes as expected either kicker would be a good choice for your FanDuel line up. Pittburgh’s Chris Boswell will cost you $4900 while Cincinnati’s Mike Nugent is at $4800. On the season Boswell averages 10.5 points per game while Nugent scores 8.2 points per game on the season. It comes down to which team do you think will give the kicker more field goal attempts or you might need the extra $100 to upgrade another position. It looks like both kickers from this game should be good choices.

Defense in this game is a whole other story. The Steelers defense will cost you $4500 while the Bengals defense comes in at $4400. I’d have to lie t you to give you a good reason to play either one of these defenses. Would you use the Steelers defense hoping since it’s McCarron’s first playoff start he’ll have issues or could you possible give Cincinnati’s defense a play hoping that that with a depleted running game Rothlisberger will have to throw the football so many times that he’s bound to have some turnovers.

As we go into the playoffs with a clean slate here are our picks for today’s game. All of us Dan the Man, Schaumburg Stu, Mr. Fantasy and I all like Kansas City to win the first game. Now we’re split on the second game as Dan the Man and Schaumburg Stu like Pittsburgh to won and Mr, Fantasy and I have Cincinnati winning.

Don’t forget tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. Mr. Fantasy and I host the 2-hour Sunday edition of Sports Time Radio a BlogTalkRadio.com

You can find me on Twitter @Burketime

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