2018 All Fantasy Football Playoffs Team: Derrick Henry, Deshaun Watson, Players Who Dominated December
USA Today Sports. Pictured: Derrick Henry, Deshaun Watson
- Ian Hartitz highlights players who dominated December in our 2018 All Fantasy Football Playoffs Team.
- Deshaun Watson and Derrick Henry headline the position-by-position picks for championship-caliber players.
Congrats to the fantasy owners who managed to grind their way to championship glory. Apologies to those who were on the wrong side of variance.
What follows are the highest-producing players in PPR scoring at every position during fantasy playoffs (Weeks 14-16). Consider this your chance to relive victory and/or scoff at the randomness of a three-week sample size in December.
Quarterback: Deshaun Watson, Houston Texans
Houston fans are sweating the Texans’ 1-2 performance over the past three weeks, but Watson fantasy investors couldn’t be happier with his recent stretch. He added 110 rushing yards and two touchdowns on the ground to 900 passing yards and five touchdowns through the air against the Colts, Jets and Eagles.
Only Patrick Mahomes has a higher ceiling in fantasy when all of Watson’s weapons (read: Will Fuller) are healthy, and the idea of Watson behind an above-average offensive line is borderline erotic.
The dominance of Mahomes has overshadowed what has largely been another glorious fantasy season from Watson. He’s the overall QB5 in fantasy this season after debuting as the Michael Jordan of fantasy football as a rookie.
Second-Team: Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers
Rodgers saved his best performance of the season for the fantasy championship against the Jets, completing 37-of-55 (67%) passes for a season-high 442 yards (8 yards per attempt) with two touchdowns and zero interceptions. He also chipped in 32 rushing yards and another two scores on the ground.
Running Backs: Derrick Henry, Tennessee Titans & Christian McCaffrey, Carolina Panthers
Their stat lines demonstrate the changing of the guard at running back as well as the age-old rule that it’s hard to tackle big and athletic men.
Henry especially embodies the latter, as he racked up nearly all of his production on the ground against the Jaguars, Giants and Redskins:
- Rushing in Weeks 14-16: 71 rushes, 492 yards, 6.93 YPC, 7 TDs
- Receiving: 2 targets, 2 receptions, 8 yards, 0 TDs
Meanwhile, Run CMC continued to work as a fantasy-friendly hybrid RB1/WR2 against the Browns, Saints and Falcons.
- Rushing in Weeks 14-16: 52 rushes, 217 yards, 4.17 YPC, 2 TDs
- Receiving: 31 targets, 26 receptions, 281 yards, 0 TDs
Volume is king in fantasy football, but championships are won when your workhorses are also devastatingly-talented athletes with a history of success with high-touch counts.
Second-Team: Damien Williams, Kansas City Chiefs & Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys
Williams — 31-166-3 rushing and 17-127-2 receiving in Weeks 14-16 — found the end zone five times in tough matchups against the Ravens, Chargers and Seahawks after seizing control of the Chiefs’ backfield with Spencer Ware (hamstring) sidelined.
Elliott — 64-285-0 rushing and 24-144-0 receiving in Weeks 14-16 — somehow hasn’t found the end zone since Week 13, but his heightened receiving role has made him one of fantasy’s most consistent backs regardless of game script and/or scoring opportunities.
Wide Receivers: DeAndre Hopkins, Houston Texans & Robby Anderson, New York Jets
Hopkins has demonstrated a significantly higher ceiling with a healthy Fuller over the past two seasons, but the league’s premier contested-catch artist remains plenty capable of dominating any matchup with enough volume. Fantasy investors saw this against the Colts (4-36-1), Jets (10-170-2) and Eagles (9-104-0) in Weeks 14-16.
Meanwhile, Anderson’s rise to glory was a bit harder to foresee considering his performance in Weeks 1-13:
But his late-season surge was made possible by Sam Darnold’s return from injury combined with Quincy Enunwa’s (ankle) absence. Still, Anderson has demonstrated a WR1 ceiling on multiple occasions over his short career and now has a real chance to build chemistry with Darnold ahead of 2019.
Second-Team: Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh Steelers & Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers
Davante Adams caught 11-of-18 targets for 71 yards and a walk-off 16-yard touchdown in Week 16 after dusting the Falcons (7-81-1) and Bears (8-119-0) in Weeks 14 and 15. His 169 targets this season are easily the most by a Packers player since Rodgers took over at quarterback in 2008.
Meanwhile, AB powered through a modest first half of the season to finish as the overall PPR WR2. He overcame down performances against the Raiders (5-35-0) and Patriots (4-49-1) before exploding for a 14-185-2 line against the Saints in the fantasy championship.
Tight End: George Kittle, San Francisco 49ers
Kittle absolutely destroyed the Broncos (7-210-1) in Week 14 before finishing the fantasy season with mediocre (for him) performances against the Seahawks (3-51-0) and Bears (7-74-0).
Still, Kittle isn’t done scoring fantasy points this season considering his proximity to the all-time single-season record for most receiving yards by a tight end.
Second-Team: Zach Ertz, Philadelphia Eagles
Ertz posted a meh 5-38-0 line against the Cowboys in Week 14 before limping to a 3-22-0 performance with Nick Foles under center against the Rams in Week 15.
Alas, the Eagles’ No. 1 receiver came alive for a 12-110-2 line in the fantasy championship against the Texans to claim the single-season record for most catches by a tight end (113 and counting).
Be sure to check out FantasyLabs’ industry-leading NFL News and Models, along with the Multi-Lineup Builder, Stack Builder, ownership projections and more. Other tools for the 2018 season are also available, including the Matchups page, DFS Contests Dashboard, NFL Ownership page and NFL Correlations page.