Alright so this is going to be a pretty long one so if you don’t want to read then no worries! This was just a wild week one of playoffs that kept the whole league on the edge of their seats all week. FIgured I’d share the thrill with you all!
(This is a half PPR league, 3 wide and a flex. DEEP, COMPETITIVE LEAGUE)
Enter week 14, Gronk was just confirmed suspended, I have no backup tight end. A bit worried about it but my roster is stacked, still a winnable week. Only streamable option is Brate on waiver wire. Waivers went through… and my opponent used his priority to get Brate, he dropped Jared Cook for him, and I immediately picked Cook up to play.
First game, Thursday night, saints vs falcons. I have Kamara, Freeman, and Michael Thomas (my opponent has noone playing). Three corner stones of my team. Only a few minutes into the game, Kamara (who got me to the playoffs single handedly) goes out with a concussion. Our leagues group chat erupts with talk of how my season is over. A few people even direct messaged me to send condolences for my fantasy team. I couldn’t watch the game but I was constantly refreshing my phone, hoping for a solid night without my stud. The night ends, I have 42 combined points between my 3 guys, could have been worse. (Might have to buy a Michael Thomas jersey from pristine auction for him going off for me)
Sunday; my opponent struggles for a while to even come close to my 42 points, Tion Green (desperate replacement for mixon), brate, Alex Smith, Jones Jr, all doing terrible for him. I HAD to flex Corey Coleman due to nothing else on the wire (he was coming off of a big old donut last week). Coleman puts up over 60 yards and a touchdown, but AJG pooped the bed with under 7 points for me. I maintain my lead for a little while.
Out of nowhere, his team explodes. Lesean McCoy puts up 20 points, Theilen puts up 20 points, Bryant catches a 70 yard bomb and puts up 15 points. I’m trailing and starting to sweat. The league’s saying my team was cursed from the beginning because of Kamara’s injury. My team starts fighting back though, Rivers throws for 300 yards and 2 scores, Agholor grabs 8 balls for over 60 yards. And the best part is: the tight end my opponent dropped and I picked up- outscored his tight end by 15 points! My opponent is fuming, the group chat is going crazy. I regain the lead, and I’m looking good.
But then… his defense goes off for 18 points, the Broncos. I’m worried now. I only have a 9.7 lead after that. I have Steelers DST against a weak Ravens offense at home. He has 1 WR spot left to fill for the Monday night game…
Sunday night. The steelers progressively do worse and worse on defense. They won the game but lost me points for my fantasy team. They end with -1. I’m shook now. I have an 8.7 point lead. My opponent has a decision to make between Landry, Hogan, and Amendola for his last play of the matchup. My only move left is to get in his head. I knew I wanted him to play Hogan, praying for him to underperform in his first game back.
I send the news of Hogan “going to get a lot of playing time” to the group chat and said “looks like you have a decision to make… don’t overthink it @opponent”. The entire league (as expected) realizes he has a make or break start/ sit decision to make, and starts getting in his head. They start saying how he can’t mess this up, how Hogan got him off to a good start but Landry has been consistent lately. I told him " well I’m already chalking this up as a loss to be honest. It’s basically your decision whether you want to have that one big play win you the week with Hogan, or if you want to stress out cause Landry is getting you closer to a win only 7 to 10 yards at a time."
… He took the bait. He overthought it. Last minute he changes his lineup before the game, Hogan in, Landry out.
You all know what happened next… Landry erupts for over 2 scores and over 2 points on his bench. Amendola gets enough for the win with over 10 points… on his bench. Chris Hogan has a dropped touchdown pass, which may have won it for my opponent, but instead he has only one reception for one yard.
I win, final score: 110.7 to 102.6.
Thanks for reading if you made it through all of it! Between the Kamara injury, me playing his tight end he dropped, and a tough start/sit decision for the win, I’d say it was exactly the kind of matchup that makes fantasy football great. Now on to face the 2nd highest scoring team in the league for week 2 of playoffs!