SoFi Stadium is reflected in the visor of Chicago Bears wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson during pregame warmups before playing the Los Angeles Rams.

Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

If you're reading this, congratulations—you've made it to the first round of playoffs.

Go ahead and give yourself a pat on the back, because making it through the minefield that has been the 2020 fantasy season wasn't easy. It took hours of research, a little plotting on the waiver wire, and a lot of luck with simply having the right players.

If you had McCaffrey and you made it this far, well, you're worth your salt as a fantasy football manager. You've also earned the right to be a little salty to everyone who doubted your post-season ascent.

But let's not get ahead of ourselves: You're in, but you haven't won it just yet. There are still three weeks to go, and you'll have to keep your wits about you as opponents notice your roster deficiencies and steal every available player (yes, that is a thing).

Here are some of the drops, pops and shops that'll help you clean house before Week 14.


Drop

Bears D/ST

Detroit Lions wide receiver Danny Amendola (80) makes a catch in front of Chicago Bears inside linebacker Danny Trevathan (59) during the second half at Soldier Field.Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

The fantasy player that gets overlooked all season, D/STs can make all the difference in a team's success, especially during playoffs.

While many teams tend to set and forget their defenses for the season, streaming is something to consider this week—especially if you have the Bears.

The Bears are currently the 16th-ranked D/ST because they've had fantastic games against the Giants, the Panthers, the Rams and the Vikings. Every other week was a letdown, especially the past two weeks, where they scored a cumulative -6 against divisional rivals.

While the Texans may seem to be a tantalizing option, Deshaun Watson has come into his own as of late, so it's likely that Houston's Houdini will have a high-scoring game.

Potential streaming options include the Chiefs vs. Miami, the 49ers vs. Washington, and the Cardinals vs. Giants.

Travis Fulgham

Cleveland Browns cornerback Terrance Mitchell (39) and Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Travis Fulgham (13) go for a pass in the end zone during the second half at FirstEnergy StadiumScott Galvin-USA TODAY Sports

In Week 14, it finally happened: The Eagles are starting unproven rookie Jalen Hurts over (almost) 2018 NFL MVP Carson Wentz.

Wentz has been historically bad as a passer this season; and at this point, the entire Eagles offense remains volatile for fantasy managers. Even though Travis Fulgham hasn't scored more than five total points since Week 10, he's still owned in over half of ESPN leagues.

While Fulgham and others could benefit from a change at QB, Fulgham's production dropoff combined with Hurts's rookie status equals an unsavory gamble against a 10-2 New Orleans Saints.

Pop

Matthew Stafford

Houston Texans linebacker Nate Hall (48) sacks Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) during the fourth quarter at Ford Field.Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

It's the moment we've all been waiting for: It's finally Matt Stafford SZN.

Perhaps the unluckiest guy who can seriously sling the pigskin, Matt Stafford has had the unfortunate luck of being drafted by the Detroit Lions. Like Megatron before him and Barry Sanders before him, Stafford is the last in a line of talented footballers who couldn't carry a losing franchise on their shoulders. Well, maybe not until Matt Patricia got fired.

With the Patricia Experiment finally over in Detroit, interim head coach Darrell Bevell had new plans for the Lions QB on Sunday that included 402 yards and 3 passing touchdowns against the Bears.

Scoring 19 points against the Packers in Week 2, the 12-year veteran could pick apart a Packers defense that hasn't been particularly strong. Who knows—Stafford could even build further chemistry with Quintez Cephus, a receiver you'll want to scoop up on waivers this week.

J.D. McKissic

Washington Football Team running back J.D. McKissic (41) carries the ball against the Cincinnati Bengals during the second half at FedExField.Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

A deserving ROTY candidate, Antonio Gibson was set to power fantasy managers through playoffs until he was sidelined in Week 13 with what's commonly known as "turf toe."

Despite this, the Washington Team managed to be the first to bring down the undefeated Steelers in a surprise win this week. If Washington can beat the Steelers without Gibson, perhaps you can still win Gibson-less in Week 14.

If you're looking to replace him, your options are the pass-catching J.D. McKissic and the barreling Peyton Barber. McKissick is preferred after a ten reception, 70-yard game, but Barber is someone to pluck from the waiver wire. After McKissic's success against a vaunted NFL defense, consider popping him in your lineup for Week 14.

Cole Beasley

Buffalo Bills wide receiver Cole Beasley (11) against the Arizona Cardinals at State Farm Stadium.Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

In Week 5, I told fantasy managers to pick up Cole Beasley. Were you one of them?

If so, you're probably thanking your stars that the wideout is coming through just in time for playoffs. After a nine-catch, 130-yard game, Beasley is living his best life up in Buffalo, working alongside Stefon Diggs for one of the NFL's top passing games. Considering the fact that the Bills haven't been heavy on the run, count on Beasley to get a decent amount of looks and make them count. An ironclad Steelers defense will make it difficult to replicate Week 13, yet Beasley could still be the preferred option on your team this week.

Shop

Cam Akers & Darrell Henderson Jr.

Los Angeles Rams running back Cam Akers (23) celebrates after rushing for a touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals in the second quarter at State Farm Stadium.Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Here's an existential question for you: Which Rams RB is going to be the winner in Week 14?

While no one seems to have a clear answer, both Akers and Henderson are widely available in leagues, which means it's not a bad idea to grab who you can get before they play New England.

Akers surprised everyone with 21 carries for 72 yards, a touchdown and a 22-yard reception—he's definitely a fantasy talent, it's just difficult to know who eats in a three-RB committee. While Henderson only had three carries, he made the most of it with a 38-yard touchdown run against the Cardinals, giving him almost as many points as Akers.

In Week 13, Akers easily got the lion's share of carries, making him the back you may want to back if you're weak at RB. Considering that he's available in about 64 percent of ESPN leagues, he may be the best available bet for an emergency playoff pickup.

T.Y. Hilton

T.Y. Hilton (13) of the Indianapolis Colts looks for a touchdown pass that was a little too far.Robert Scheer/IndyStar via Imagn Content Services, LLC

Owning T.Y. Hilton is kind of like owning Christian McCaffrey: He's been a fantasy non-starter all season, but he's finally back and ready to play just in time for playoffs.

While McCaffrey was sidelined by injury, Hilton has just been bad. In fact, he's been so bad this season that his grandma told him that the person she saw on television "wasn't her grand baby." That was in Week 2.

It took Hilton ten more weeks to score over 80 yards and a touchdown in two consecutive games, but it looks like the former star is shining again on the Colts offense. He's still available in 53 percent of ESPN leagues, so snag him before they take on the Las Vegas Raiders this week.

Quintez Cephus

Detroit Lions receiver Quintez Cephus tries to make a catch against Chicago Bears cornerback Kyle Fuller during the second half at Ford Field.Junfu Han via Imagn Content Services, LLC

Another benefactor of a surging Lions offense, Quintez Cephus is probably a name you hadn't heard until he snuck a 49-yard touchdown past an All-Pro cornerback this weekend.

There's not much else to say about this rookie receiver, who hasn't gotten more than four targets per game aside from the season opener against Chicago. Playing against a 15th-ranked defense from Wisconsin, the Lions are expected to pass to keep up with Aaron Rodgers.

If Matthew is cooking, Quintez could be a part of that new offensive recipe, especially if Kenny Golladay is still slated to miss time in Week 14.

ADDITIONAL WARNING: If you're anything like me, you're probably tempted by the enigmatic potential that is Cordarelle Patterson, but let's be honest: You know why he's still on waivers. Best to leave him there unless you're willing to bet he can make his infamous kick return.

SoFi Stadium is reflected in the visor of Chicago Bears wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson during pregame warmups before playing the Los Angeles Rams.Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

Josh Allen scampers for a gain against the Colts in the third quarter of the wild card game.

Harry Scull Jr. /Buffalo News

As the NFL postseason got underway last week, it became clear we need to make some halftime adjustments with our picks this week.

The Ravens were an easy cover for us, especially once Lamer found his groove and the grooves in Tennessee's D. Throw in a few head scratching punts by Mike Vrabel and that does the trick.

Meanwhile, Stefon Diggs came up two catches short for us with three targets left on the table. It was always going to be tough to get that many grabs, but it was worth a few bucks just to see what would happen.

Please, please, please remind me never to bet unders. I haven't hit one all year and yet the siren's song calls me to shore. I maintain this is the best one I bet all year. The pick 6 and DK Metcalf bomb in the second quarter killed after the best start imaginable. After 15 minutes, we had a combined score of 3, 15 minutes of game time later? 30. Bananas.

Then I don't really know what else to say about Pittsburgh losing to Baker Mayfield and co. that hasn't already been said. I just have to edit my list of completely impossible things to put, "Snowing in the Sahara desert," and "Taylor Swift ever getting back together with Jake Gyllenhaal" above "The Browns beating the Steelers in the playoffs."


Keep reading... Show less

Wizards guard Bradley Beal looks on in a game against the Celtics on Jan. 8, 2021.

Brian Babineau/NBAE via Getty Images

Put on your general manager hat for a moment and ask yourself this question: If my team struggled mightily the past couple seasons, is struggling now and will continue to struggle, would I trade my franchise star?

It's an extremely difficult decision to make, but it's something the Washington Wizards have to be pondering with shooting guard Bradley Beal.

Beal has been on an absolute rampage through 11 games, posting a league-high 34.9 points per game on 49% shooting and 38% from distance. He's also dishing out five assists and grabbing 5.3 rebounds with 1.5 steals. All that in 36 minutes a night, yet the Wizards are 3-8 which is the third-worst record in the Eastern Conference.

"I'm pissed off," Beal told reporters after his 60-point game on Jan. 6. "I'm mad. I don't count [them]. ... Any of my career-highs, they've been in losses. So I don't give a damn. You can throw it right out the window with the other two or three I've had."

His frustration is evident, and though he hasn't verbalized that he wants out of D.C., it's hard not to think that the idea hasn't crossed his mind at least once with how bad the Wizards have been recently.

From 2018-20, they went a combined 57-97 with John Wall sidelined after he tore his Achilles. Before this season began, the Wizards acquired Russell Westbrook in exchange for Wall and a pick, thinking they were getting an upgrade at point guard. Plot twist, they weren't.

Wall is healthy and playing good basketball in Houston while Westbrook is sitting back-to-backs and is currently nursing a quad injury. More importantly, he doesn't make them much better because of his lack of defense and is thus piling up meaningless triple-doubles that don't translate to team success.


Keep reading... Show less

Each Friday, FindBet will preview the week's DFS slate, highlighting players that are priced well on DFS sites, as well as some contrarian plays that can push your team to the top of the leader board.

Most NFL DFS games have you putting a team together with players from a certain slate of games. It could be just Sunday 1:00 PM games, or it could be every game that is slated for the week. Once the last game that has eligible players is over, the final payouts are made according to how many fantasy points each team scored. Each player is worth a certain dollar amount, and you have a cap of $60,000 to build your team with. You have to have 1 QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, 1 TE, 1 FLEX (RB, WR, or TE) and 1 DEF.

The general scoring rules include (6) points for each rushing and receiving touchdown, (4) points for each passing touchdown, (0.1) points for each rushing and receiving yard gained, (0.04) points for each passing yard, and also (0.5) points for each reception. There are other scoring opportunities for defenses. Let's take a look at players we like in the first round of the NFL playoffs this weekend.

Keep reading... Show less