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Fantasy Football Playoffs – QB’s to target 

One of my rules going into a draft is you always take a Top 5 QB.  A solid QB will give you points every week, when drafting you always want to minimize risk, the same is to be said for the playoffs.  Most standard leagues use weeks 14,15 and 16 as playoff weeks, with a single elimination format.  (Side note: In my league (WCFFL) we start in week 13 and have the games are two weeks long, if you want to know why just ask).

I do have a really scary looking excel document that gives the break down on this stuff, but sometimes you just have to realize that may be TMI for the masses.  With that in mind, I’m keeping this simple.

QBs that face the softest schedule for the fantasy football playoffs (Weeks 14,15,16)

Quarterbacks Week 14 Week 15 Week 16
Philip Rivers DAL (24) CIN (26) TENN (32)
Kurt Warner SF (19) DET (31) STL (28)
Chad Henne JAX (29) TENN (32) HOU (12)
Drew Brees ATL (22) DAL (24) TB (27)
Matt Schaub SEA (15) STL (28) MIA (25)
Joe Flaco DET (31) CHI (20) PIT (13)
Cleveland QB PITT (13) KC (30) OAK (18)
Mark Bulger TENN (32) HOU (12) ARZ (16)
Carson Palmer MINN (23) SD (6) KC (30)
Vince Young STL (28) MIA (25) SD (6)

*QBs listed with weekly opponents (ranked by fantasy points allowed vs. QBs)

Kurt Warner – Not sold?  The Cardinals face the 49ers (19), Detroit (31), St. Louis (28) in the playoffs.  Keep in mind that Warner left the game on 11/22 with a head injury and did not return.  It would be a good idea so have a solid back up or pick up Matt Leinart.  (UPDATE)  I still like Warner down the stretch, but with this concussion issue looming prepare yourself in the even he takes another big hit.

Philip Rivers – JACKPOT!  He may not win the Chargers a super bowl, but he can lead your team to the promise land.

Drew Brees – If you have Drew you need to be a huge Vikings fan!  If the Vikings falter then the Saints could bench most of their starts the last few weeks of the season.  Proceed with caution.

Matt Schaub – I am not tying to hate on but I still have a hard time believing that he is going to play every game.

Joe Flacco – Joe has faced a pretty rough schedule thus far, but it’s about to open up…big time!

Carson Palmer – Is he really back?  His numbers have been very consistent and I would expect

(UPDATE)  Vince Young – He is making believers out of everyone right now.  I don’t think you bench your starter for him, but if your in a deep league or you have a fringe QB starting (Cutler, Ryan) then VY is looking really good right now.

I post this with caution because by no means should anyone run out and start a guy like Henne, Quinn/Anderson, Bulger or VY.  However, at this point having a guy like VY can’t hurt on your bench.

QBs that face the hardest schedule for the fantasy football playoffs

Quarterbacks Week 14 Week 15 Week 16
Matt Ryan NO (4) NYJ (2) BUF (3)
Tony Romo SD (6) NO (4) WASH (8)
Tampa Bay QB NYJ (2) SEA (15) NO (4)
Eli Manning PHI (10) WASH (8) CAR (9)
JaMarcus Russell WASH (8) DEN (1) CLE (21)
Donovan McNabb NYG (11) SF (19) DEN (1)
Peyton Manning DEN (1) JAX (29) NYJ (2)
Kyle Orton IND (5) OAK (18) PHI (13)
David Garrard MIA (25) IND (5) NE (7)
Jake Delhome NE (7) MIN (23) NYG (11)
Tom Brady CAR (9) BUF (3) JAX (29)

*QBs listed with weekly opponents (ranked by fantasy points allowed vs. QBs)

Matt Ryan – 15th ranked fantasy QB with an average schedule and the schedule is about to get rough, really rough.  Ryan has been struglling and the schedule isn’t getting any softer

Tony Romo – It seems a couple good games and everyone is on the band wagon again.  I know I said the last couple weeks to buy this guy and hopefully you did!  You bought low, now sell HIGH!  Romo typically has a horrible in December.  It looks like his slide has started early and if you own him it will be a long winter.

Eli Manning – Eli is a much better QB in real life than he is a fantasy Football QB.  The term “Game Manager” comes to mind.  (UPDATE)  I know you were warned, but now it looks like he may miss the rest of the season, stay tuned

Donovan McNabb – Will he stay healthy?  McNabb is not the fantasy QB he was years back.  He is very Jekyll and Hyde and the last thing you want is a single digit performance when it counts.

Peyton Manning – Peyton is fantasy football greatness, BUT he the Colts play two games with the Texas in week 9 and week 12.  If the Colts win both then the division is wrapped up and home field soon thereafter.  Translation Peyton can’t help you if he is sitting on the bench resting for the playoffs.  Proceed with CAUTION!  (UPDATE) The Colts look like they may clinch the #1 seed by week 14, with that said you need to have a solid back up unless you plan on picking up Jim Sorgi.

Kyle Orton – I think the clock struck 12 on this fantasy QB and how he’s injured?  The Broncos could end up 8-8.  (UPDATE) Now he is healthy, but I still wouldn’t trust him.

David Garrard – Garbage time QB!  A perfect example of why Matthew Berry is not the “be all, end all” for fantasy.  Garrard is a game manager and lets leave it at that.

Tom Brady – I don’t care who Brady is facing or what the weather is like, you start this guy!

If you have a QB on this list, my advice for you is to get a capable back up.  Do not show up to the party unprepared.