We're getting closer to the fantasy football playoffs, which start in most leagues in Week 14, so each week becomes vitally important for fantasy owners.
And with that being the case, I've continued to focus in on matchups that are very favorable by the numbers.
As you'll see down below, the players I've listed have very good matchups based on what the opponent is giving up to a particular position.
Now it's on to Week 8!
Matchup: Cincinnati Bengals vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
It's not often that a matchup looks this enticing, but Dalton's matchup against the Buccaneers defense is almost as good as it gets. The eighth-year pro, who is on pace to throw for over 4,000 yards and over 30 TD passes this season, will face a defense that has been awful against opposing quarterbacks.
Quarterbacks are completing 75.4% of their passes, have thrown for 18 TD passes and have passed for just shy of 350 yards per game (341.6) over six games so far this season.
Oh, did I mention those numbers I listed above are the worst in the NFL in each category?
This should be a high-scoring game, and there simply is no fathomable reason why you shouldn't give Dalton a start this week.
Matchup: Washington Redskins vs. New York Giants
You would think after all of these year and so many carries (2,675 through last week's game), Peterson would slow down and retire. Peterson, even at 33, felt that he still had a lot left in the tank, and it's hard to argue with him.
The 13-year pro is averaging a very respectable 4.3 yards per carry and is averaging over 18 carries per game. He'll face a Giants defense which will be without run-stopping DT Damon Harrison, who was traded earlier this week.
Look for the Redskins to call Peterson's name early and often and he could be in store for his best game of the season to date.
Matchup: Indianapolis Colts at Oakland Raiders
Hilton, now in his 7th season, has become one of the NFL's elite wide receivers. You don't hear much about him as the Colts have been on a downward trend over the past few seasons.
And Hilton's numbers took a nose dive last season due to QB Andrew Luck's absence.
However, he put up three straight 1,000 yards-plus receiving yard seasons (2013-2016) with Luck behind center for a majority of the time.
Luck and Hilton will face a Raiders defense that is giving up and NFL-worst 15.26 yards per catch to opposing wide receivers and that has given up 9 TDs to that position in just six games.
Matchup: Los Angeles Rams vs. Green Bay Packers
With slot WR Cooper Kupp out again this week with his knee injury, Cook should continue to see an increase in the Rams passing game.
The fifth-year pro put up respectable numbers last week (4 receptions, 64 yards and a TD vs. SF), and keep in mind that the Rams got up big early and only threw the ball 24 times last week.
You can expect the passing tempo to pick up against the Packers since they still have one of the NFL's best passing games, so look for Cooks to get more opportunities this week.
And he'll face a Packers defense that has given up 10 TDs to opposing wide receivers, which tied for third worst in the NFL.
Matchup: Cleveland Browns at Pittsburgh Steelers
I had mentioned in last week's piece that Njoku's numbers had increased in a major way since rookie Baker Mayfield had taken over the starting quarterback job. Over Mayfield's four starts, Njoku has posted 22 receptions, 228 yards and two TDs (both in the last two games).
It's very clear that the two young players have developed chemistry very quickly over a short period of time. Whether it's coming from practice or from their work in the preseason, it's apparent Mayfield is looking his way over the middle each week.
Njoku will face a Steelers defense that gives up a 73% catch rate and nearly 8 receptions to the tight position per game. So, it's looking like a favorable matchup again for the second-year pro.
Matchup: Oakland Raiders vs. Indianapolis Colts
With the trade of Amani Cooper earlier this week, the Raiders are really light when it comes to depth at wide receiver. In fact, other than Nelson, seldom used Martavis Bryant and inside player Seth Roberts are really all that's left of note at the position. And with Cooper leaving, that's 32 pass targets that are gone from the Raiders passing game.
The Raiders will face a suspect Colts pass defense, which is giving up a 73.6% catch rate to opposing wide receivers (second worst in NFL in that category) and is giving up nearly 14 receptions per game to that position.
Nelson, at a very affordable price, is worth a start this week.
|QB||Andy Dalton||Bengals vs. Buccaneers||$7,800|
|RB||Kareem Hunt||Chiefs vs. Broncos||$8,100|
|RB||Adrian Peterson||Redskins @ Giants||$7,000|
|WR||T.Y. Hilton||Colts @ Raiders||$7,400|
|WR||Brandin Cooks||Rams vs. Packers||$7,500|
|WR||Mike Evans||Buccaneers @ Bengals||$7,800|
|TE||David Njoku||Browns @ Steelers||$5,700|
|FLEX||Jordy Nelson||Raiders vs. Colts||$5,300|
|D||Arizona Cardinals||Cardinals vs. 49ers||$3,400|
Play this lineup at FanDuel.
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