Each week we take a look at a marquee matchup in the dynasty lague managed by the IDPDynasty.com writers. We use Matchup of the Week to highlight key players and provide sit/start advice
After a thrilling season it has all come down to one game. The Semi-Finals turned in some great matchups but two surprising teams were victors. First off 2nd place Team Mascia was up against 3rd place Can You Digglet?. Led by a team wide effort and 24.8 points from Blake Bortles, Digglet pulled off the upset. Even though Marcus Peters exploded for 32.3 points (3 tackles 2 ints and a TD), Mascia’s Jarvoris Allen and Clay Matthews were a huge reason for the loss combining for -1 fantasy points. It allowed Digglet to overcome Adrian Peterson’s injury after 6 points to pull off the 222-205.3 point victory.
In the 1st vs 4th matchup Saved By Le’Bell was overmatched for only the 3rd time this year. On the offensive side, Renegades of Punt was led by 41 points from Cam Newton (440 total yards and 5 TDs) in addition to Antonio Brown’s ridiculous 16 catch 189 yard 1 TD (38 points) performance. The defense held their own as well with great performances from Luke Kuechly (24.3 points), David Amerson (24.5) and Kurt Coleman (20.8). Le’Bell’s team didn’t fare so well with only one player, Russell Wilson, over 20 points with 25. He was also pounded with injuries as LeSean McCoy, Danny Amendola, and Tyrrann Mathieu all left early in their games with injuries. There was no topping the Renegades this week though as they finished with a league season high 299.5 points to Le’Bells 203.
This brings us to the finals matchup of 3rd place Can You Digglet? vs 4th place Renegades of Punt. Thursday Nights game has already passed and the Renegades of Punt are off to a huge lead with 45.8 points from Khalil Mack 9.8, David Amerson 6.5 and a huge 29.5 from Malcolm Brown (14 tackles 1 FF). Anything can still happen though here in Week 16 starting with the Eagles and Redskins tonight.
Can You Digglet has some fantastic matchups this week starting with Blake Bortles is against the Saints who have the worst pass defense in the league. He also has Adrian Peterson against the 24th ranked Giants rush D and Devonta Freeman going aginst the Panthers D that was just shredded by the Giants for 157 and a TD on the ground last week.
On defense he has top guys Lavonte David, Muhammad Wilkerson, Kawann Short, Ronald Darby and Mark Barron who are all top 4 at their positions who have carried Digglet all year. Also Stephen Tulloch is going against the 49ers who give up the 5th most points to LBs and Antwon Blake going against the Ravens who give up the 5th most to CBs.
One player with a tough matchup though that should still be in your lineup is Larry Fitzgerald. As I mentioned you have to start your studs. Larry Fitzgerald is graded out as the #4 receiver this year by Pro Football Focus with a 94.3 grade. Thats better than Odell Beckham, AJ Green and DeAndre Hopkins. Fitzgerald lines up in the slot 59% of the time so he will be covered by Casey Hayward who has had a great season but Fitz has historically dominated the Packers. He has scored at least one TD in all three games hes faced and two in their playoff matchup in 2009. Even though Fitzgerald hasn’t scored a TD since the Week 9 bye he always shows up in huge games. The Cardinals need a big win to stay in the hunt for the #1 seed in a potential playoff matchup preview and Fitzgerald will be a huge reason why. I can easily see Fitz finishing with around 7 catches for 85 yards and a TD.
As mentioned, carried by Cam Newton and Antonio Brown the Renegades of Punt have jolted to the finals. They both are now ranked 1st overall in fantasy points at their positions. The Renegades are also strong on D with Geno Atkins, Luke Kuechly, Malcolm Smith, David Amerson and Kurt Coleman all in the top 8 at their positions. They have lost a few key guys though the past few weeks with the suspension to Kwon Alexander, a hamstring injury to Alshon Jeffery and a knee injury to Shaun Draughn as they will all miss this week.
One must start though is Golden Tate. Tate has been on fire the past five weeks catching at least 6 passes in each game in addition to multiple TDs in his past two. With Calvin Johnson battling his ankle injury he has been a non factor the past two games and Tate has picked up the slack just like he did last year. The 49ers have actually been pretty solid against WRs this year as they haven’t allowed one to score since Week 11 but that will change this week. Before their Week 10 bye they had already been torched by smaller guys like Antonio Brown, Odell Beckham, Steve Smith, Tavon Austin and John Brown for at least 98 yards this year so look for Tate to have a huge game. Golden has been elite in the redzone this year too and is now third in the league with 12 RZ Targets scoring on five of his 10 catches. Tate will get his first 100 yard game this week and help the Lions to a meaningless victory over the 49ers.
Overall its been a great season. Throughout all the injuries and ups and downs the two hottest teams have propelled to the finals. Can You Digglet? and Renegades of Punt have both scored over 200 points three straight weeks including a head to head matchup in Week 14. With that 274.3 to 241 point matchup they showed everyone who the powerhouses were heading into the playoffs and will now fight for fantasy greatness.
Good luck to both and may the best team win.