The second round of the playoffs is here. There are four games this weekend and some decent flex options. Let’s jump right into it and talk about some of the players that fit in the flex position and provide some nice upside.
Jonathan Stewart ($5800) – I’m not going to write about David Johnson as he’s pretty much a lock to be in the RB slot in most lineups as he is the chalk play this week. Instead, I’ll go over two other running backs on my radar. Stewart was a full go at practice this week and is no longer listed on the team’s injury report. He’s expected to play with no limitations after missing the last three games of the season. The matchup isn’t appealing, but the fact that he’s a safe bet for about 20 carries is. Following the team’s Week 5 bye, Stewart received 20 or more carries in every game until he suffered the injury. In Week 6, Stewart ran for 78 yards and scored two touchdowns against the Seahawks. On a week with so many question marks at running backs, Stewart provides a safe floor for touches.
James White ($5200) – In the last seven games of the season, White averaged 15.7 fantasy points per game. He stepped in and played the Dion Lewis role as he averaged 4.6 receptions and 6.1 targets per game in the final seven games. The Chiefs have a very good pass rush so I’m fully expecting Tom Brady will be trying to get the ball out of his hands very quickly, which could equate to plenty of dump offs to White. The Chiefs surrendered 4.4 receptions per game to running backs this season. The Patriots are a five point favorite and have the second highest implied point total of the slate.
Michael Floyd ($5100) – In the second half of the season, Floyd played some really good football. In his last eight games, he averaged 4.5 receptions, 7.5 targets, 79.5 yards, and 17.3 fantasy points per game. He also scored four touchdowns. In that span, he topped 20 fantasy points in five games. In Week 16 against the Packers, he caught six passes for 111 yards. The Packers will likely be without Sam Shields, a big piece of their secondary, this week. He would’ve been the one covering Floyd. The Cardinals game has the highest over/under of the weekend and Arizona has the highest implied point total of the slate. At this low price and in a solid matchup, you want some exposure to Floyd.
Doug Baldwin ($6800) – I haven’t heard a ton of buzz about Baldwin this week and I’m happy about that. I know that the thought of Josh Norman on the opposite side is concerning, but Baldwin plays a lot out of the slot and Norman does not shadow, so they won’t be matched up often. Since Week 10, Baldwin averaged 5.8 receptions, 7.9 targets, 85.1 receiving yards, and 24 fantasy points per game. In that span he scored 13 touchdowns. That kind of production can’t go unnoticed. Granted this was while Marshawn Lynch was sidelined and he is expected to return, but Baldwin should still be heavily involved in the offense this weekend.
Greg Olsen ($6900) – I have Olsen as my top tight end this week. When you look at this Seahawks defense, the way to attack them is in the middle of the field. They are stout against the run and also on the outside against receivers. However, against tight ends, not so much. The Seahawks surrendered 54.6 receiving yards per game to tight ends, while giving up eight touchdowns. They have allowed +3.6 points above expectation to opposing tight ends, per Fantasy Labs. The last time that Olsen played against the Seahawks he caught seven passes for 131 yards and a touchdown. That was good for 29.1 fantasy points which was the second most fantasy points he scored in a single game this season. He averaged 7.8 targets per game this season and was a big part of this offense. That should continue this week in a potential close game.
Heath Miller ($3200) – Much like the Seahawks, the Broncos are very good against the run and have two of the league’s best corners on the outside, so the way to attack them is in the middle. They surrendered 4.9 receptions and 56.8 receiving yards to tight ends this season, while giving up seven touchdowns. With Big Ben hurting and potentially the inability to get the ball downfield, he could lean on short passes which should benefit Miller. He needs just 9.6 fantasy points to pay off his salary and that’s something he can do without finding the end zone. Miller also provides some salary cushion for those trying to roster David Johnson and a top receiver. I’m expecting plenty of targets heading Miller’s way on Sunday.