Now that the fantasy playoffs are here, the Fantasy Doctor will be making regular house calls, answering readers' fantasy questions each Wednesday and Thursday. Send your questions to the Doc at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Somehow I made it to the championship game. Been here twice before but never won so I need some meds. Do I play Aaron Rodgers or David Garrard at QB? What about Anquan Boldin, Dwayne Bowe or DeSean Jackson at WR (pick two)? Help!!!
— John, Chicago, Ill.
These are two good questions, John, as I could make a strong argument for all of these guys. I'll try to pick the best ones, though.
At QB, it looks like Rodgers will play this week after sitting out last Sunday with a concussion. With that being the case, I can't suggest sitting him even against a good pass defense like the Giants. Rodgers had been the No. 1 fantasy QB prior to his injury, and it seems like he'll be a full go this week in a game the Packers need to win. I know Garrard has a terrific matchup with the Redskins, but he's not worth starting over Rodgers.
All three of your wideouts could be in store for big days, but I'd go with Jackson and Bowe. Given his big-play ability and high ceiling, Jackson belongs in your lineup every week. Bowe, meanwhile, has been cold lately but is due for a major rebound against the Titans' weak pass defense. With QB Matt Cassel back healthy, I see Bowe having a prolific day. Boldin could as well against a Browns team he torched for three TDs earlier this season but he has been so inconsistent lately that it would be hard to trust him in a game where the Ravens might not need to throw often.
I managed to squeak by last week and move on to the second round of my playoffs, but I need your help to get to the championship. I need one RB, two WRs, and a flex starter. I have Peyton Hillis, Jamaal Charles and Ryan Torain at RB, and Greg Jennings, Stevie Johnson and Vincent Jackson at WR. Any suggestions on the best combo?
I do, in fact, have a suggestion of whom I would play here, Will.
First off, Charles is a definite start against the Titans. He has been extremely hot lately and faces an average Titans run defense, so I expect big things. The matchup isn't quite as good for Hillis, who takes on the Ravens, but I would have trouble benching him considering how consistent he has been all season. He did have 22-144-1 rushing vs. Baltimore back in Week Three and should see a huge workload again this Sunday. I'd plug him in as your flex.
At receiver, I don't see any way you can sit Jackson after he exploded for 5-112-3 last week. With Antonio Gates hurt, Jackson will be the Chargers' main source of offense against a Bengals pass "D" susceptible to the big play and could go off again. The final wideout is a close call, but I give the nod to Jennings. He has 12 TDs in 2010 and is having a monster second half. With QB Aaron Rodgers expected back, I think Jennings will do well even with a tough opponent in the Giants. In championship week, I trust those guys over Johnson, who often has been boom-or-bust.