Just when you thought you were out of the fantasy football season, we’re going to pull you back in. It’s time for the NFL playoffs, which means another month of fantasy before the offseason.

Postseason fantasy football is not a new idea, but it has been increasing in popularity over the last few years. At only a quarter of the length of the regular season, these leagues are a great way for those who are jonesing to get one more fantasy fix or a chance for redemption to rid that bad aftertaste of a losing season.

There are a variety of formats you can use in the NFL playoffs, but the three most-common are salary cap, one-and-done and traditional draft-and-hold. Regardless of which your league uses, the idea remains the same — pick the players who are going to score the most points.

In draft-style leagues, this task is much easier in the regular season. Barring any injuries or suspensions, all players play the same number of games. But in the playoffs, as teams are eliminated, you lose their players. The key here is to draft not just quality players, but quality players on teams that have the best chance to play multiple games and hopefully advance to the Super Bowl.

To determine which teams you think will advance, I suggest drawing up a bracket and make your picks just as you would for the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament. When mapping out your picks, remember that Vegas is your friend. Here are the current odds to win the Super Bowl:

Kansas City Chiefs: 2/1
Green Bay Packers: 9/2
Buffalo Bills: 7/1
New Orleans Saints: 7/1
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 10/1
Baltimore Ravens: 12/1
Seattle Seahawks: 13/1
Pittsburgh Steelers: 22/1
Tennessee Titans: 28/1
Los Angeles Rams: 30/1
Indianapolis Colts: 40/1
Cleveland Browns: 50/1
Chicago Bears: 80/1
Washington Football Team: 80/1

Two things should be quite obvious right away — 1) The Chiefs are the odds-on favorite to win the Super Bowl with Green Bay just edging the Bills and Saints as the second choice, and 2) The Bears and Football Teams are massive longshots at 80/1. There are also a number of teams tightly bunched in the middle, and that makes this a challenging bracket to fill out.

It can be difficult to use the Super Bowl odds to our advantage here, but we can use the odds to win the AFC and NFC to help us out. Here’s the AFC:

Kansas City Chiefs: 5/6
Buffalo Bills: 7/2
Baltimore Ravens: 7/1
Pittsburgh Steelers: 10/1
Tennessee Titans: 13/1
Indianapolis Colts: 15/1
Cleveland Browns: 18/1

The Chiefs earned home-field advantage in the playoffs and come in as the top pick, with the No. 2 seed Bills as the second choice. From there, the Ravens and Steelers are somewhat appealing dark horse candidates. Tennessee and Indy have rough draws in the Wild Card Round, and Cleveland will have their work cut out for them against the Steelers with head coach Kevin Stefanski unavailable to coach due to a positive COVID-19 test.

In the NFC, there’s a bit of a larger gap between the top teams and the back of the pack:

Green Bay Packers: 8/5
New Orleans Saints: 11/4
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 4/1
Seattle Seahawks: 9/2
Los Angeles Rams: 12/1
Chicago Bears: 33/1
Washington Football Team: 33/1

The No. 1 seed Packers were installed as the odds-on favorites. At the other end of the spectrum, the Bears and Football Team are the biggest underdogs. Given the odds, the Saints and Buccaneers are the best bets to give you at least two games with the potential to deliver four games of fantasy production. Getting four games from your players is one of the biggest factors in winning fantasy playoff leagues.

With all of this information, you can now draw out your playoff brackets. Of course, the Vegas odds are typically very chalky, but you don’t need to follow them 100% of the time. Remember, it’s your draft, so draw up the brackets based on who you think will win. Here’s how I project the playoffs:

Wild Card Round

Buffalo defeats Indianapolis

The Bills are rolling into the playoffs after putting up a 50-burger against an impressive Dolphins defense. They’ll have no problem against the Colts. There’s a fair argument to be made for Josh Allen as the first pick in postseason drafts.

Seattle defeats LA Rams

With Jared Goff looking extremely unlikely to play, the Rams just don’t have enough juice to win with John Wolford under center.

Tampa Bay defeats Washington

Ron Rivera said this week that he could end up using Alex Smith and Taylor Heinicke in a rotation in this contest. As the old saying goes, if you have two quarterbacks, you have no quarterback.

Baltimore defeats Tennessee

This is the most exciting game on the slate and the toughest to predict. Mike Vrabel’s squad got the best of Baltimore back in November, pulling out a 30-24 victory in overtime. This is also a rematch of last year’s Divisional Round contest where the Titans also bested Baltimore 28-12. Despite those outcomes, Lamar Jackson’s recent play gives the Ravens the slight edge.

New Orleans defeats Chicago

Matt Nagy looks like he saved his job, but the Bears just don’t have the firepower to compete with a stout Saints defense on the road in the Super Dome.

Pittsburgh defeats Cleveland

Yes, the Browns did just defeat the Steelers last week, but they only barely squeaked by a short-handing Pittsburgh squad. The Steelers will be at full-strength this weekend with Ben Roethlisberger back after a much-need week of rest. To make matters worse for the Browns, head coach Kevin Stefanski will not be on the sideline after testing positive for COVID-19 earlier this week.

Divisional Round

Kansas City defeats Baltimore

We got an early preview of this contest back in Week 3. That game delivered 54 combined points with the Chiefs taking the win 34-20. Patrick Mahomes put the Chiefs on his back and posted 385 yards and four score through the air in that contest.

Buffalo defeats Pittsburgh

These two teams faced each other just under a month ago, with the Bills winning fairly handily 26-15. Buffalo largely controlled the pace of the game and leaned on Stefon Diggs, who caught 10 balls for 130 yards and a score in that contest.

Green Bay defeats Tampa Bay

This is arguably the most pivotable game for postseason leagues. Tom Brady and company winning this game would completely flip postseason leagues upside down. It’s something to consider as you set up your own fantasy rankings. And let’s not forget that Tampa did beat up on the Packers back in October 38-10. But that was in Tampa, and this one would be in Lambeau.

New Orleans defeats Seattle

Weird stuff happens to the Saints in the playoffs every year, but it’s tough to see them losing at home. New Orleans has been one of the league’s top run defenses in 2020, and that bodes poorly for a Seahawks offense that has become increasingly run-heavy down the stretch.

Conference Championship

Green Bay defeats New Orleans

Home-field advantage is a massive factor here. Put Drew Brees at home in the Super Dome and this one is essentially a toss-up. But Brees outdoors in Green Bay in mid-January is a no-go, especially give his very clear declining arm-strength. To be fair, the Packers run defense is a fantastic matchup for Alvin Kamara, but the Saints could really struggle to move the ball in this one.

Kansas City defeats Buffalo

This was one of the toughest games to decide on. Buffalo’s offensive prowess is very intriguing, but Mahomes on the other side is the deciding factors.

Super Bowl

Kansas City defeats Green Bay

Sometimes the result of the Super Bowl impacts your fantasy draft decisions, but the losing team can still put up major fantasy points.

So these results give use the following amount of games for each team: Chiefs (3), Packers (3), Bills (3), Saints (3), Buccaneers (2), Seahawks (2), Steelers (2), Ravens (2), Browns (1), Bears (1), Titans (1), Football Team (1), Rams (1) and Colts (1).

While it’s very easy to simply leave things like this, I’d strong advise against it. Using full games, we’ll end up with a set of rankings that is heavily weighted towards the three-game teams. And the reality is that the teams that we pick to lose don’t have a zero percent chance to win.

Based on the projected spread for each game, we can calculate the team’s percentage change of winning. If you’d like to calculate the chance of winning, here’s the formula: 0.0319*x+0.5001 where “x” is the spread.

So given the numbers I ran in my model, these percentages can be converted to the following games played: Bills (2.7), Saints (2.7), Chiefs (2.3), Packers (2.3), Buccaneers (2.2), Seahawks (2.0), Ravens (1.9), Steelers (1.8), Titans (1.5), Browns (1.4), Rams (1.4), Football Team (1.3), Colts (1.3), and Bears (1.2). Using these game projections, we can now rank all of the players for the playoffs. We’ll be using the following roster requirements: 2QB, 2RB, 2WR, 2TE, 2FLEX, 2DST, 2K.


1. Josh Allen, BUF, QB1, 69.8 pts, 2.7 games
2. Davante Adams, GB, WR1, 55.2 pts, 2.3 games
3. Travis Kelce, KC, TE1, 47 pts, 2.3 games
4. Alvin Kamara, NO, RB1, 52 pts, 2.7 games
5. Stefon Diggs, BUF, WR2, 53 pts, 2.7 games
6. Tyreek Hill, KC, WR3, 50.3 pts, 2.3 games
7. Patrick Mahomes, KC, QB2, 59.3 pts, 2.3 games
8. Aaron Rodgers, GB, QB3, 56.2 pts, 2.3 games

The top tier shows you just how important quarterbacks are in postseason fantasy football with three of them in this group. To be fair, Mahomes and Rodgers may go slightly earlier than I have them, but the value at wide receiver is tough to pass up in the first round of drafts.

9. Michael Thomas, NO, WR4, 43.9 pts, 2.7 games
10. Aaron Jones, GB, RB2, 40.1 pts, 2.3 games
11. Drew Brees, NO, QB4, 49.4 pts, 2.7 games
12. Tom Brady, TB, QB5, 45.3 pts, 2.2 games
13. Lamar Jackson, BAL, QB6, 45.2 pts, 1.9 games
14. Mark Andrews, BAL, TE2, 24.2 pts, 1.9 games
15. DK Metcalf, SEA, WR5, 31.1 pts, 2 games
16. Robert Tonyan, GB, TE3, 23.2 pts, 2.3 games
17. Derrick Henry, TEN, RB3, 29.5 pts, 1.5 games
18. Jared Cook, NO, TE4, 23 pts, 2.7 games
19. Mike Evans, TB, WR6, 30 pts, 2.2 games
20. Chris Carson, SEA, RB4, 28.4 pts, 2 games
21. Chris Godwin, TB, WR7, 29.7 pts, 2.2 games
22. Ronald Jones, TB, RB5, 27.8 pts, 2.2 games
23. Russell Wilson, SEA, QB7, 40.8 pts, 2 games

Try to get the most bang for your buck in this range. The depth at quarterback suggest that you don’t have to take a signal caller in the first round. You can still end up with Brees, Brady, or Jackson in Round 2. And don’t forget that games played isn’t everything in these drafts. Even if you don’t think a team will play more than one game, players like Henry still have the potential to outscore multigame players. And there’s always the chance you’re wrong on your game picks.

24. John Brown, BUF, WR8, 28.5 pts, 2.7 games
25. Rob Gronkowski, TB, TE5, 20.6 pts, 2.2 games
26. Clyde Edwards-Helaire, KC, RB6, 26.6 pts, 2.3 games
27. Tyler Lockett, SEA, WR9, 26.9 pts, 2 games
28. Cole Beasley, BUF, WR11, 26.3 pts, 2.7 games
29. Emmanuel Sanders, NO, WR10, 26.3 pts, 2.7 games
30. Diontae Johnson, PIT, WR12, 26.2 pts, 1.8 games
31. Nick Chubb, CLE, RB7, 24.1 pts, 1.4 games
32. Dawson Knox, BUF, TE6, 17.5 pts, 2.7 games
33. Devin Singletary, BUF, RB8, 23.4 pts, 2.7 games
34. A.J. Brown, TEN, WR13, 24.4 pts, 1.5 games
35. J.K. Dobbins, BAL, RB9, 23 pts, 1.9 games
36. James Conner, PIT, RB10, 22.4 pts, 1.8 games
37. Latavius Murray, NO, RB11, 22 pts, 2.7 games
38. Eric Ebron, PIT, TE7, 15.2 pts, 1.8 games
39. Antonio Brown, TB, WR14, 22.7 pts, 2.2 games

Depending on your roster requirements, you may have to prioritize tight end early in your drafts. With two tight ends required in our settings, we have seven tight ends in the 40 players. This is also the section of the draft where you’ll start to see a lot of onesie players hanging on the board. Be careful to not draft too many of these guys.

40. Tyler Bass, BUF, K1, 24.7 pts, 2.7 games
41. Zack Moss, BUF, RB12, 20.6 pts, 2.7 games
42. JuJu Smith-Schuster, PIT, WR15, 21.8 pts, 1.8 games
43. Marquise Brown, BAL, WR16, 21.6 pts, 1.9 games
44. Jonathan Taylor, IND, RB13, 20.2 pts, 1.3 games
45. Logan Thomas, WAS, TE8, 13.8 pts, 1.3 games
46. New Orleans Saints, NO, DST1, 20.3 pts, 2.7 games
47. Leonard Fournette, TB, RB15, 19.3 pts, 2.2 games
48. Jamaal Williams, GB, RB14, 19.3 pts, 2.3 games
49. Ben Roethlisberger, PIT, QB8, 32.5 pts, 1.8 games
50. Ryan Tannehill, TEN, QB9, 32.1 pts, 1.5 games
51. Buffalo Bills, BUF, DST2, 19.5 pts, 2.7 games
52. David Montgomery, CHI, RB16, 18.8 pts, 1.2 games
53. Jonnu Smith, TEN, TE9, 12.4 pts, 1.5 games
54. Gabriel Davis, BUF, WR17, 20.1 pts, 2.7 games
55. Antonio Gibson, WAS, RB17, 18.8 pts, 1.3 games
56. Chase Claypool, PIT, WR18, 19.8 pts, 1.8 games
57. Robert Woods, LAR, WR19, 19.7 pts, 1.4 games
58. Corey Davis, TEN, WR20, 19.5 pts, 1.5 games
59. Cam Akers, LAR, RB18, 17.9 pts, 1.4 games
60. Austin Hooper, CLE, TE10, 11.5 pts, 1.4 games
61. Allen Robinson, CHI, WR21, 18.9 pts, 1.2 games

If you didn’t grab your second quarterback earlier in the draft, this is essentially the point of no return. Roethlisberger is the last of the options at the position with a good shot at two games played, but you might also be able to get plenty of bang for your buck with Tannehill even if the Titans lose in the Wild Card round.

62. Gus Edwards, BAL, RB19, 17.1 pts, 1.9 games
63. Allen Lazard, GB, WR22, 18.4 pts, 2.3 games
64. Wil Lutz, NO, K2, 20.8 pts, 2.7 games
65. Kansas City Chiefs, KC, DST3, 17.3 pts, 2.3 games
66. Le'Veon Bell, KC, RB20, 16.6 pts, 2.3 games
67. Kareem Hunt, CLE, RB21, 16.5 pts, 1.4 games
68. Jarvis Landry, CLE, WR23, 17.6 pts, 1.4 games
69. Tyler Higbee, LAR, TE11, 9.7 pts, 1.4 games
70. Sammy Watkins, KC, WR24, 17.2 pts, 2.3 games
71. Cameron Brate, TB, TE12, 9.5 pts, 2.2 games
72. Terry McLaurin, WAS, WR25, 17.1 pts, 1.3 games
73. Harrison Butker, KC, K3, 19.8 pts, 2.3 games
74. Jacob Hollister, SEA, TE13, 9.2 pts, 2 games
75. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, TB, DST4, 16.2 pts, 2.2 games
76. J.D. McKissic, WAS, RB22, 15.5 pts, 1.3 games
77. Jimmy Graham, CHI, TE14, 9 pts, 1.2 games
78. Pittsburgh Steelers, PIT, DST5, 16 pts, 1.8 games
79. Cooper Kupp, LAR, WR26, 16.5 pts, 1.4 games
80. Mecole Hardman, KC, WR27, 15.7 pts, 2.3 games
81. Ryan Succop, TB, K4, 18.3 pts, 2.2 games
82. Baltimore Ravens, BAL, DST6, 14.7 pts, 1.9 games
83. T.Y. Hilton, IND, WR28, 15.2 pts, 1.3 games
84. Marquez Valdes-Scantling, GB, WR29, 15.1 pts, 2.3 games
85. Seattle Seahawks, SEA, DST7, 14.5 pts, 2 games

Unlike in regular season leagues, you don’t want to wait to grab your kicker and defense. Again, you’ll want to lean heavily on your bracket picks and draft the kickers and defenses you project play the most games. Wil Lutz and Tyler Bass will likely be the first kickers off the board with the Saints defense likely being picked in the same range. But there will still be plenty of defenses and kickers to choose from in this part of the draft.

From this point forward, continue to load up on the teams you think will go the furthest, and don’t be bashful. This means picking guys deep down the depth chart. So players like Isaiah McKenzie and Tyler Kroft are very intriguing in the later rounds if you happened to load up on the Bills.

86. Trey Burton, IND, TE16, 7.3 pts, 1.3 games
87. Will Dissly, SEA, TE15, 7.3 pts, 2 games
88. Nyheim Hines, IND, RB23, 13.6 pts, 1.3 games
89. Green Bay Packers, GB, DST8, 14.3 pts, 2.3 games
90. Gerald Everett, LAR, TE17, 7.1 pts, 1.4 games
91. Carlos Hyde, SEA, RB24, 13.4 pts, 2 games
92. Demarcus Robinson, KC, WR30, 14.6 pts, 2.3 games
93. Anthony Firkser, TEN, TE19, 6.7 pts, 1.5 games
94. Adam Trautman, NO, TE18, 6.7 pts, 2.7 games
95. Rashard Higgins, CLE, WR31, 14 pts, 1.4 games
96. Isaiah McKenzie, BUF, WR32, 13.8 pts, 2.7 games
97. Cole Kmet, CHI, TE20, 5.8 pts, 1.2 games
98. Marcedes Lewis, GB, TE22, 5.6 pts, 2.3 games
99. Jack Doyle, IND, TE21, 5.6 pts, 1.3 games
100. Mason Crosby, GB, K5, 15.5 pts, 2.3 games
101. Jace Sternberger, GB, TE23, 5.1 pts, 2.3 games
102. Jason Myers, SEA, K6, 15.5 pts, 2 games
103. Justin Tucker, BAL, K7, 15.2 pts, 1.9 games
104. Baker Mayfield, CLE, QB10, 24.3 pts, 1.4 games
105. Mo Alie-Cox, IND, TE25, 4.6 pts, 1.3 games
106. Tyler Kroft, BUF, TE24, 4.6 pts, 2.7 games
107. David Njoku, CLE, TE26, 4.6 pts, 1.4 games
108. David Moore, SEA, WR33, 11.9 pts, 2 games
109. Greg Olsen, SEA, TE27, 4 pts, 2 games
110. Tre'Quan Smith, NO, WR34, 11.7 pts, 2.7 games
111. Lee Smith, BUF, TE28, 3.8 pts, 2.7 games
112. Harrison Bryant, CLE, TE29, 3.3 pts, 1.4 games
113. Benny Snell, PIT, RB25, 9.6 pts, 1.8 games
114. Darrel Williams, KC, RB26, 9.5 pts, 2.3 games
115. Geoff Swaim, TEN, TE30, 3 pts, 1.5 games
116. Zach Pascal, IND, WR35, 10.5 pts, 1.3 games
117. Willie Snead, BAL, WR36, 10.4 pts, 1.9 games
118. Los Angeles Rams, LAR, DST9, 9.8 pts, 1.4 games
119. James Washington, PIT, WR37, 10.3 pts, 1.8 games
120. John Wolford, LAR, QB11, 22.2 pts, 1.4 games
121. Darnell Mooney, CHI, WR38, 10 pts, 1.2 games
122. MyCole Pruitt, TEN, TE31, 2.3 pts, 1.5 games
123. A.J. Dillon, GB, RB27, 8.6 pts, 2.3 games
124. Philip Rivers, IND, QB12, 21.8 pts, 1.3 games
125. Indianapolis Colts, IND, DST10, 9.2 pts, 1.3 games
126. Cleveland Browns, CLE, DST11, 9.1 pts, 1.4 games
127. Josh Reynolds, LAR, WR39, 9.5 pts, 1.4 games
128. Washington Football Team, WAS, DST12, 8.9 pts, 1.3 games
129. Michael Pittman, IND, WR40, 9.5 pts, 1.3 games
130. Josh Hill, NO, TE32, 1.7 pts, 2.7 games
131. Tennessee Titans, TEN, DST13, 8.7 pts, 1.5 games
132. Vance McDonald, PIT, TE33, 1.4 pts, 1.8 games
133. Deonte Harris, NO, WR41, 9 pts, 2.7 games
134. Tanner Hudson, TB, TE34, 1 pts, 1.1 games
135. Scott Miller, TB, WR42, 8.6 pts, 2.2 games
136. Nick Keizer, KC, TE35, 0.7 pts, 1.1 games
137. Deon Yelder, KC, TE36, 0.6 pts, 1.1 games
138. Darrynton Evans, TEN, RB28, 7 pts, 1.5 games
139. Mitchell Trubisky, CHI, QB13, 20.2 pts, 1.2 games
140. Equanimeous St. Brown, GB, WR43, 8.2 pts, 2.3 games
141. Marquez Callaway, NO, WR44, 8.1 pts, 2.7 games
142. Johnny Mundt, LAR, TE38, 0.3 pts, 0.7 games
143. Stephen Carlson, CLE, TE37, 0.3 pts, 0.7 games
144. Chris Boswell, PIT, K8, 10.7 pts, 1.8 games
145. Cam Sims, WAS, WR45, 8 pts, 1.3 games
146. Dez Bryant, BAL, WR46, 8 pts, 1.9 games
147. Reggie Gilliam, BUF, TE39, 0.2 pts, 1.3 games
148. Demetrius Harris, CHI, TE40, 0.1 pts, 0.6 games
149. Jeremy Sprinkle, WAS, TE41, 0.1 pts, 0.7 games
150. Temarrick Hemingway, WAS, TE42, 0 pts, 0.7 games
151. Malcolm Brown, LAR, RB29, 6.3 pts, 1.4 games
152. Rodrigo Blankenship, IND, K9, 10.3 pts, 1.3 games
153. Darrell Henderson, LAR, RB30, 5.9 pts, 1.4 games
154. Matt Gay, LAR, K10, 9.8 pts, 1.4 games
155. Chicago Bears, CHI, DST14, 6.5 pts, 1.2 games
156. Lil'Jordan Humphrey, NO, WR47, 6.9 pts, 1.4 games
157. Cody Parkey, CLE, K11, 9.4 pts, 1.4 games
158. Sam Sloman, TEN, K12, 9.3 pts, 1.5 games
159. Miles Boykin, BAL, WR48, 6.6 pts, 1.9 games
160. Dustin Hopkins, WAS, K13, 8.8 pts, 1.3 games
161. Cairo Santos, CHI, K14, 8.8 pts, 1.2 games
162. Anthony Miller, CHI, WR49, 6 pts, 1.2 games
163. Donovan Peoples-Jones, CLE, WR50, 5.7 pts, 1.4 games
164. Steven Sims, WAS, WR51, 5.6 pts, 1.3 games
165. Peyton Barber, WAS, RB31, 4.3 pts, 1.3 games
166. Jeremy McNichols, TEN, RB32, 4.2 pts, 1.5 games
167. Jordan Wilkins, IND, RB33, 4.1 pts, 1.3 games
168. Rashaad Penny, SEA, RB34, 3.8 pts, 2 games
169. Ke'Shawn Vaughn, TB, RB36, 3.6 pts, 2.2 games
170. Artavis Pierce, CHI, RB35, 3.6 pts, 0.6 games
171. Mark Ingram, BAL, RB37, 3.5 pts, 1.9 games
172. Khadarel Hodge, CLE, WR52, 4.8 pts, 1.4 games
173. LeSean McCoy, TB, RB38, 3.4 pts, 2.2 games
174. Taysom Hill, NO, QB14, 16.7 pts, 2.7 games
175. Cordarrelle Patterson, CHI, WR53, 4.3 pts, 1.2 games
176. Freddie Swain, SEA, WR54, 4.2 pts, 2 games
177. Adam Humphries, TEN, WR55, 4.2 pts, 1.5 games
178. Devin Duvernay, BAL, WR56, 4.1 pts, 1.9 games
179. Byron Pringle, KC, WR57, 3.9 pts, 2.3 games
180. D'Onta Foreman, TEN, RB39, 2.5 pts, 1.5 games
181. Anthony McFarland, PIT, RB40, 2.4 pts, 1.8 games
182. Cameron Batson, TEN, WR58, 3.5 pts, 1.5 games
183. Tyler Johnson, TB, WR59, 3.3 pts, 2.2 games
184. Van Jefferson, LAR, WR60, 3.2 pts, 1.4 games
185. Jaylen Samuels, PIT, RB41, 1.7 pts, 0.9 games