The Matchup Machine: Week 10 November 6, 2013  |  Scott Watson

Welcome back Fake Footballers!  It’s already Week 10 and that means most leagues have just four more weeks until the fantasy playoffs.  Which is absolutely mind blowing.  It feels like we were speculating only yesterday about what the Marc Trestman and Chip Kelly offenses would look like…about how Reggie Bush, Steven Jackson, Danny Amendola and Wes Welker would perform on their new teams…and would Tom Brady still provide elite production despite the loss of his biggest targets.  Well, most of that speculation is behind us, but we still have more speculating to do!  Fantasy Playoff speculating!  So let’s take a glance at some matchups to avoid and exploit come fantasy playoff time:

Good Fantasy Playoff Schedules for RBs:

•  Buffalo (vs. Tampa, vs. Jacksonville, @ Miami)
•  Miami (@ Pittsburgh, vs. New England, @ Buffalo)
•  Green Bay (vs. Atlanta, @ Dallas, vs. Pittsburgh)

Bad Fantasy Playoff Schedules for RBs:

•  Seattle (@ San Francisco, @ New York Giants, vs. Arizona)
•  San Diego (vs. New York Giants, @ Denver, vs. Oakland)
•  New York Jets (vs. Oakland, @ Carolina, vs. Miami)

Good Fantasy Playoff Schedules for QBs:

•  Chicago (vs. Dallas, @ Cleveland, @ Philadelphia)
•  Philadelphia (vs. Detroit, @ Minnesota, vs. Chicago)
•  San Diego (vs. New York Giants, @ Denver, vs. Oakland)

Bad Fantasy Playoff Schedules for QBs:

•  Indianapolis (@ Cincinnati, vs. Houston, @ Kansas City)
•  Denver (vs. Tennessee, vs. San Diego, @ Houston)
•  Arizona (vs. St. Louis, @ Tennessee, @ Seattle)

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves; we do after all have to make the playoffs first!  So, here are some highlights for a few Week 10 matchups…

Jacksonville @ Tennessee

•  Jacksonville is quickly mastering the art of accumulating garbage time stats, and Cecil Shorts is their budding Picasso.  The suspension of Justin Blackmon opens the door for another WR to learn the fine art of garbage time stats: Mike Brown.  Unfortunately there are two potential obstacles preventing them from allowing their talents to shine this week: 1) This game has the lowest spread of the week, meaning Jacksonville’s opponent may not sit back on a 24-point lead in the third quarter and 2) Tennessee is surprisingly good at defending the pass.  They have not allowed a receiving TD to an opposing WR in the last six games, and in that span are allowing only 8 receptions for 104 yards.
•  Chris Johnson is unofficially back.   There is a good chance he will be officially back this time next week.  So stay tuned.  After thrashing the Rams for 170 total yards and 2 TDs, he is facing his best matchup of the season.  Jacksonville is allowing nearly 170 total yards to opposing RBs and 1.3 rushing TDs per game.  This is the game every Chris Johnson owner has had marked on their calendar…so enjoy!

Houston @ Arizona

•  Case Keenum sure brought some excitement to Houston last week.  Last week he made Andre Johnson very relevant again.  This week, Keenum will face a defense that allows an average of 7 receptions, 91 yards and 1 TD per game to opposing TEs.  That breakdown is accurate for the season as well as the last four games.  This makes Garrett Graham an interesting option for Jordan Cameron and Rob Gronkowski owners.
•  Houston has been stellar against the pass so far this season.  Opposing WRs have averaged just 8 receptions for 99 yards against the Houston Defense.  TY Hilton did buck that trend last week so there may be some hope for Larry Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd owners.

Denver @ San Diego

•  It turns out the AFC West isn’t so bad after all and this game is a pretty big game in that division.  Peyton Manning, fresh off a bye week, will be facing a San Diego secondary that has allowed 230+ yards to opposing WRs in each of the last two games.  This works for Peyton because his WRs are averaging 249 yards per game.
•  2013 Phillip Rivers is more than capable of keeping up with Peyton Manning.  Denver is allowing opposing QBs to throw for an average of 319 yards per game, but they have been significantly better recently, allowing just 237 to over the last three games.  Most of those yards Denver has given up have come from the WR position.  If Keenan Allen is capable of avoiding pass interference calls like this one (yup, that was called offensive pass interference), then he could be in for a nice game in this high-scoring shootout.

Below is data produced by the Matchup Machine.  A quick reminder of how the Matchup Machine works: the higher the score, the better the matchup.  Scores are calculated using data from the first nine weeks of 2013.  The data only takes into account the strength of the opponent, not the strength of the player.  For example, Robert Griffin III has highest QB score this week.  That does not mean he is the best QB, it means he is playing Minnesota who offers the best matchup for QBs.  Minnesota is allowing opponents an average of 300 passing yards and 2+ passing TDs per week.  Take a look and good luck in Week 10!


8 Responses

  1. frot says:

    Eli has a great matchup against the Raiders D,
    Raiders D has a great matchup against Giants

    • Scott Watson says:

      Hi Frot – They are mutually exclusive statements. Per the last paragraph, the matchup machine only takes into account the strength of the opponent, not the strength of the player. Oakland has been giving up passing stats to opposing QBs, while the NY Giants offense has been giving up stats to opposing defenses. Hope that helps…

  2. Lewis says:

    HI Scott!
    I have Lynch, Charles, Spiller, Vereen as my RBs in a PPR league with 2 WR, 2RB and a W/R Flex. My WRs are TY, Antonio Brown, Jeffrey, Roddy. Is it crazy to trade Lynch or Charles for a Gronk or Graham? Or maybe lynch for Lacy based on their respective playoff schedules? Thanks!

    • Scott says:

      Hi Lewis – I would investigate if you can transform a Beast into a Gronk. Especially if the playoffs are in your future…turn those points on your bench into points on the board…good luck!

  3. Kiko Alonso says:

    Thinking about dealing Trent Richardson for Steven Jackson. Thoughts?

    • Scott says:

      Welcome Kiko! I’d stick with Richardson – he is on a much better offense which in theory should make him more valuable.

  4. Norman says:

    Hi Scott, 12 team PPR, in 3rd, 7-2. My team: Rivers, R WIlson, AJ Green, Antonio Brown, Torrey, Harvin, R Bush, Spiller, B Tate, Ellington, JStew, Andre Brown, Olsen, Walsh, NE D, AZ D (for NE bye this week). We start 1 QB, 2 WR, 2 RB, 1 TE, 2 Flex. How do you think I should roll this week?

    • Scott says:

      Hi Norman – congrats on a good year! I would go with Rivers, AJ, Antonio, Bush, Spiller, Olsen, Torrey and Tate . Good luck!

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