This is the time of the season where you know one of three things: you will make the playoffs, you might make the playoffs, or you're not making the playoffs.
If you are 1-7 or 2-6, the best you can do is try to earn some respect from fellow owners and play the role of spoiler. Don't let up – the contending teams expect you to bring your best team to the table every week.
If you are 7-1 or 6-2 you should be good to go. But don't necessarily play the cards you were dealt. Now is the time to look ahead to the playoff weeks, 14,15, and 16. The reason is some players have more favorable matchups than others, and since the trading deadline is coming up, you may want to pull off a couple deals to strengthen your playoff team.
For example, Detroit plays Philadelphia in Week 14 – that should make for a big day for the Lions' offense. Carolina plays New Orleans, and the Panthers should put a lot of points on the board. Seattle and San Francisco play each other – two of the best defenses in the league. That means you probably won't want to start many offensive players from those two teams, not even Frank Gore and Marshawn Lynch.
In Week 15 San Diego and Denver play at Mile High Stadium. That should result in a lot of points for both teams. One player to grab now is Keenan Allen, who has quietly developed into the Chargers' top receiver. Antonio Gates is another player who should have a big game that day.
Green Bay and Dallas face off in Week 16 – again, a lot of points could be scored. Terrance Williams, a Cowboys' receiver, is someone you can probably trade for now that will help you then – he's developing into a big star.
If you are struggling to secure a playoff berth, your focus needs to be a little different. Look ahead to the next few weeks. There are six teams on "Bye" this week – meaning they won't play. If you haven't already made adjustments, good luck – you probably waited too long.
New England is off Week 10, so if you have Gronk, Brady et al make pick up replacements now. Ditto Kansas City – if you've been riding that defense, find another team ASAP. Dallas is off in Week 11, and there are probably five offensive players on the Cowboys who are in fantasy lineups. If you have one or more you need to do something quick.
Now is the time when championships are won. Don't be complacent.
"Skippy Brown" recently won the Draft King Spring Fling contest, besting over 1000 other professional fantasy baseball players. For comments, tips, advice, rants, or just to annoy him you can now contact the Skipper via email: firstname.lastname@example.org