Matt Ryan ready to right the ship in Week 8
Welcome to the Matchups Machine, which narrows down ideal matchups from around the league on a weekly basis using the tools we have available at PFF, the Las Vegas odds, and insight from yours truly.
PFF has all the tools to break down each individual matchup. Do you want to know how your wide receiver is going to do? Well, if he lines up as a split end on 90 percent of his snaps, we can pinpoint which cornerback he will be matching up with for those snaps. We can also tell you how that cornerback has performed.
Of course, as was the case in the past, this column will become more accurate as the season goes on and we compile more grades for the players and get a feel for the tendencies and overall strengths/weaknesses of the 32 teams.
The goal of this column is to help you with those tricky decisions in year-long leagues, but also to help you narrow down your best options in daily fantasy leagues. You will see a mix of big-name players and fringe starters. Without further ado, let’s get into it.
Matt Ryan vs. Buccaneers
Matt Ryan has been a fantasy football disaster — drafted as a QB1, he has eclipsed the 20-point mark in just one week this season. In Week 8, he draws the perfect matchup against a Buccaneers team that is short on the talent necessary to compete in Lovie Smith’s defensive scheme. After allowing Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins to complete 82.5 percent of his passes for 317 yards and three touchdowns, there is no reason to think that this defense can stop a similar offensive blueprint. Ryan will have low DFS ownership in spite of the excellent matchup, thanks to some poor games against the Redskins and Titans, and this makes him an excellent play in his easiest matchup of the season.
The Falcons will be able to control the game on offense — they are PFF’s top-rated run blocking team and only three teams have earned a worse run defense grade overall than the Buccaneers. This will open things up in the play-action passing game. The Buccaneers don’t make stops in the passing game often, but when they do, it’s because they are able to generate pressure up front with Gerald McCoy and William Gholston. The Falcons have a done a pretty solid job in pass protection — only seven teams have earned a higher PFF grade.
Dan Schneier is a staff writer at PFF Fantasy and he covers the NFC East beat for FOX Sports. You can find him on Twitter @DanSchneierNFL. You can also add him to your network on Google+ to find all of his past material.