To quote the immortal Jim Mora, “Playoffs? Don’t talk about—playoffs?! You kidding me? Playoffs?! I just hope we can win a game!” That be how some of y’all are feeling as the fantasy football season crashes ahead into Week 11. Defeated, despondent, dejected, and just plain ole devastated. This column is not for you. This column is for those who are sitting comfortably on the edge of glory. Your playoff spot is all but assured and the only question for you is, who are your picks for fantasy players to stash for the playoffs?
Looking ahead to the playoffs there are some juicy matchups to capitalize on and players available on waivers and free agency who can help you capitalize on some of those. The margins in the playoffs tighten. You are looking for any edge you can eek-out. A team’s WR3 with a stretch of soft defenses looks mighty appealing in the flex Round 1. The high volume quarterback against a suspect secondary in Round 2 is always a great fantasy playoff stash as well.
Fantasy Players To Stash For Playoffs
Alex Smith (QB) – 5.8% of Rosters
Week 14 – San Francisco, Week 15 – Seattle, Week 16 – Carolina
Over his starts, Alex Smith has come out and thrown for 300+ yards in two of them. Sure, the touchdowns have not come yet, but touchdowns are flukey. Anyone who is going to throw consistently for 300+ yards deserves a spot on your radar. Then you look at Washington’s Weeks 14-16 matchups and you start to really get excited. The 49ers are 20th in passing yards allowed, Seattle is 1st, and Carolina is 5th. With a soft matchup like that and developing chemistry with his young weapons, Smith is the kind of late-season stash who carries you to a championship.
Tony Pollard (RB) – 27.9 % of Rosters
Week 14 – Cincinnati, Week 15 – Houston, Week 16 – Pittsburgh
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) November 22, 2020
Come playoff time it is time to start making some weird moves and making some Hail Mary heaves. Pollard is that Hail Mary heave. Without an injury to Zeke, Pollard most likely has little value as a fantasy player. That being said, he has flashed some vale at times and has looked like a back who deserves more work. Dallas just paid Zeke, but he has looked less than stellar throughout the season. Pollard has looked shifty and explosive and as Dallas battles mediocrity, Pollard might just start to work his way into Flex consideration. Looking at the available running backs, Pollard may have the most upside among the fantasy playoff stashes.
Marquez Valdes-Scantling (WR) – 24.0% of Rosters
Week 14 – Detroit, Week 15 – Carolina, Week 16 – Tennessee
Marquez Valdes-Scantling has been the second-most targeted player on the Packers this season. We always knew that someone had to be Robin to Davante Adams’ Batman, but thought it would be Lazard. MVS has been a consistent boom-bust flex play, sure that is a bit of an oxymoron, but it can work. He is the kind of player you throw into your Flex spot in Week 15 when you know you need a guy to blow up to push you over the hump to the championship game.
KJ Hamler (WR) – 10.0% of Rosters
Week 14 – Carolina, Week 15 – Buffalo, Week 16 – Los Angeles Chargers
— ThatsGoodSports (@BrandonPerna) November 23, 2020
Unlike MVS, KJ Hamler has not been firmly established as the second option in Denver, but he has a softer schedule coming up. There have been several times where Hamler has flashed potential and the big-play ability he showcased at Penn State. The promising upside that this young rookie has and a soft defensive schedule upcoming leads to the very real possibility that Hamler can work his way into the Flex rotations. Hamler has the elusiveness to pick up yards in chunks and get to the endzone in multiple ways.
Dalton Schultz (TE) – 34.3% of Rosters
Week 14 – Cincinnati, Week 15 – San Francisco, Week 16 – Philadelphia
Andy Dalton to Dalton Schultz.
Cowboys 31, Vikings 28. Vikings ball, now with 1:30 to play
— Jori Epstein (@JoriEpstein) November 23, 2020
The tight end position is a wasteland beyond the top three. However, by playing matchups you can really capitalize. Dalton Schultz is that player with some great upside over the next few weeks. He has been consistently targeted since Week 8 and is deserving of more work. With easy matchups against the Bengals, 49ers, and Eagles over the next three weeks, Schultz looks like the tight end to scoop up for fantasy playoff stashes.
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