14 Bold Fantasy Football Playoff Predictions

Dec 7, 2017

The 2017 fantasy football season has been a strange one, even when compared to some of the past seasons. Just think about this for a minute. Carson Wentz and Alex Smith rank two and three respectively in fantasy points at quarterback after 13 weeks. Alvin Kamara and Mark Ingram rank two and four at the running back position. Yes, a Saints backfield timeshare could very well lead you to a championship. Then there’s Robby Anderson and the Jets who are putting up points consistently.

The point is, these would have been bold to predict at the start of the season, but they clearly happened. Predictions may not always be right, but if this season has proved anything, what you’ll read below is far from impossible. We asked the most accurate experts this season to give us their bold playoff predictions. Good luck!

Set your playoff lineup with advice from My Playbook >>

Kenyan Drake will be one of the most-owned running backs on championship rosters. Drake was always the superior player to Damien Williams, and the Dolphins can’t deny that anymore since Williams has been out. Even if Williams returns, Drake has to remain the lead option, and no team has a better three-game schedule for running back matchups than the Dolphins.”
– Jake Ciely (RotoExperts)

Kenyan Drake will be a top 5 RB for the fantasy playoffs. Over the next three weeks, Drake is scheduled to face the Patriots, Bills, and Chiefs — three teams that have been very generous to opposing running backs and are surrendering an average of 17.50, 21.67, and 16.83 standard fantasy points to the position, respectively. Although the Dolphins are among the lower 25% of the league in plays per game with 60.9, and are likely to be playing from behind during these games, I believe Adam Gase and company will lean more heavily on Drake this late into a losing season, especially after his 23/120/1 performance versus the Broncos last week. If there were ever a time for the Dolphins to see what they have out of their third-round sophomore running back, the next three weeks would be an excellent time to do so.”
– Robert Waziak (Pyromaniac)

Stephen Anderson will be a TE1 during the fantasy playoffs. He stepped into a high target share after the Fiedorowicz injury. With the Texans also down Ellington (and possibly Fuller V), he can be started with confidence in Week 14, particularly for Rob Gronkowski owners looking for a fill-in.”
– DailyRoto (DailyRoto)

“Like Kickers, Defense/Special Teams are often a major afterthought. But with the holiday season underway and Christmas quickly approaching, the Jacksonville Jaguars D/ST will be on everyone’s wish list because they will help deliver the best December gift of all, a fantasy football championship to all those who have them on their roster. The Jaguars D/ST will score QB1 points (over 18 points) in BOTH the semi-finals and championship week. ‘Sacksonville’ plays the same Texans team in Week 15 as they did in Week 1 where they scored an eye-popping 28 points. The Jags get another cupcake matchup in Week 16 where they’ll play the 2-10 San Francisco 49ers.”
– Bill Enright (FFChamps)

Josh Gordon out-scores Julio Jones in the fantasy playoffs. Sure, it’s trendy, but it’s also a very possible outcome considering Jones has to face the Saints twice in the next three weeks. That means he’ll likely see shadow coverage from standout rookie CB Marshone Lattimore in both contests. Meanwhile, Gordon is coming off double-digit targets in his debut and should continue to get the rock from the big-armed DeShone Kizer.”
– Jeff Ratcliffe (Pro Football Focus)

Josh Gordon will be a top 7 WR through the playoffs. Many will look at his schedule and shy away considering he plays BAL and CHI weeks 15/16, however, the Ravens just lost Jimmy Smith for the season and Gordon was able to produce in his first game back against one of the top corners in the league (Casey Hayward). Look for a top 5 finish from Josh in Week 14 against the Packers and for him to be on a healthy percentage of fantasy football championship rosters this season.”
– KJ (Fantasy Team Advice)

Jimmy Garoppolo will be a top 8 QB. The new 49ers QB showed that he has everything to become a franchise one: poise, pocket presence, accuracy, and leadership; this could be a bold prediction on its own. But let’s talk fantasy. On his debut against an underrated Chicago defense, he finished with 11 fantasy points and an impressive 70.27% completion percentage. Garoppolo will have a very favorable matchup in Week 14 against the team that allows the second most fantasy points to QBs, the Texans. In the last five weeks, they have allowed four QBs (Mariota, Gabbert, Goff, and Brissett) to top 10 performances. The 49ers don’t have a stud receiver, but Marquise Goodwin and Trent Taylor could become a couple of very good assets for him.”
– Mauricio Gutierrez (Estadio Fantasy)

Jay Ajayi emerges from Philadelphia’s backfield quagmire to be a league winner. Just over a month after acquiring him, Ajayi posted the highest snap rate of any Eagles running back for the first time in Week 13. Increasingly acclimated to a new offense, Ajayi has posted touch totals of eight, eight, seven, and 13. LeGarrette Blount and Corey Clement have seen theirs decrease, bottoming out Week 13 with eight and six touches, respectively. Prohibitive favorites in each of their three fantasy-playoff matchups, the Eagles’ fourth-highest-graded run blocking will have game script on its side while facing the pliable run defenses of the Rams, Giants, and Raiders.”
– Patrick Thorman (Pro Football Focus)

“My bold prediction is that Ben Roethlisberger is the No. 1 fantasy quarterback for the fantasy playoffs. I struggled with how to rank Roethlisberger in my rest of season rankings for most of the year, knowing that come playoff time, he’d be a difference-maker. Although Baltimore, his Week 14 opponent, has a strong defense, Roethlisberger excels at home generally, and even more so in prime time games (19-3) in his career. He’s also faced the Ravens twice at home without Jimmy Smith and gone bananas both times. He’ll follow this game up with a shootout at home against the Patriots in Week 15 and a road matchup against an awful Texans pass defense in Week 16 (followed by the Browns at home in Week 17 if you go that far). If everything breaks right, he has the potential to be the top quarterback for the rest of the season.”
– Dan Harris (FantasyPros)

“With a good matchup against the Browns in Week 14 and the potential return of Aaron Rodgers in Weeks 15-16, Jordy Nelson will be a top-10 fantasy receiver during the playoffs.”
– Matthew Freedman (FantasyLabs)

“My bold prediction for the fantasy playoffs is that Blake Bortles will be a QB1. He has a tough matchup on his plate this week against the Seattle Seahawks, but they haven’t been as solid defensively this year with Richard Sherman and Earl Thomas both missing games during the year. In Weeks 15 and 16, Bortles draws extremely tasty matchups against the Houston Texans and San Francisco 49ers, respectively. Both squads have been putrid defending the pass this year. It won’t feel right starting Bortles in the playoffs, but the recipe for success is there.”
– Zach Greubel (Gridiron Experts)

Jameis Winston will reward fantasy owners by being a top 5 fantasy QB for weeks 14 thru 16. Winston faces Detroit, Atlanta, and Carolina, who have allowed the 8th, 7th, and 6th most fantasy points to opposing QBs over the past 3 weeks.”
– Ken Zalis (Pressbox)

Mike Davis will be the fantasy player owners talk about years from now when they reflect on their championship run. After being sidelined in Week 12, Davis burst back into fantasy lineups by gaining 101 yards on 20 touches, while playing 73 percent of the Seahawks snaps against the Eagles. He also passed the eye test, running with confidence and making defenders miss against one of the best fronts in the league. Davis is a borderline RB2 heading into another tough matchup versus the Jaguars, but has two easier outings on tap against the Rams and Cowboys over the next two weeks. It’s been a disappointing season for Seahawks running backs, but Davis will post top-10 fantasy numbers the rest of the way.”
– Justin Boone (theScore)

Sterling Shepard will be a top-15 wide receiver over the next three weeks. Eli Manning was peppering Shepard with targets a few weeks ago before Shepard’s bout with migraines and Ben McAdoo’s ill-conceived benching of Manning. With both players back in the lineup, Shepard could put up big numbers down the stretch.”
– Pat Fitzmaurice (The Football Girl)

Expert picks for your college football bowl pool >>

Thank you to the experts for providing their bold predictions. Be sure to give them a follow on Twitter if you’re not already doing so and check out our latest podcast below for more great advice.

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