Trust your studs in the fantasy football playoffs

      December 6, 2012 @ 17:24:05 PDT

Fantasy footballers often overthink their lineup decisions - and often regret the outcome of decisions in the end. Eh, if you play fantasy sports long enough, it's gonna happen plenty of times. You're probably used to it by now.

Atlanta Falcons QB Matt Ryan
Roll Ryan out there

However, when the playoffs come around - and for most of you, Week 14 is the first week of do-or-die matchups - we tend to overthink even more.

Follow the advice of real-life managers when they're constantly asked if their decision making or thought process changes in the postseason. They rarely, if ever, admit to changing their routine when the games are more important or if their team's back is against the wall.

With that in mind, keep it as simple as possible when setting your playoff lineups: Stick with the studs that got you there. I am a firm believer in this. You would hate to bench a struggling star in favor of the flavor of the month or hot waiver wire acquisition only to get burned.

Of course, it's not always as simple as the stick-with-your-studs method. Injuries are involved, and even more frustrating, hot players on good teams are rested down the stretch.

After taking all this into account, it still makes more sense to roll with your studs - in most cases.

Take the case of Matt Ryan. He's been easily one of the top quarterbacks this year and has led his squad to an 11-1 record. However, he's coming off his worst outing of the year when he completed only 18 passes for 165 yards and a touchdown against a team that normally is gold for your fantasy QB, the New Orleans Saints.

Two weeks prior he tossed five interceptions and threw no touchdowns. Heck, he's thrown only two scores against six picks in the last three weeks. After all, he's human, folks. Cut him some slack.

I understand the skepticism of late, but if you're considering benching Ryan with everything on the line, I'm calling you crazy. The Panthers have been around the middle of the pack in terms of what they give up to opposing QBs in the past month, so it's not like he's going up against a stiff defense, either.

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About Keith Hernandez

Keith, an editor with KFFL, joined the team as a Hot off the Wire analyst in 2008 and has been playing fantasy sports since 2005. He is involved in MLB, NFL and NASCAR content. He graduated from the University of California-San Diego in 2005 with a B.A. in Communications and was a four-year starter as a member of the baseball program.

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