Fantasy Football Week 8 Rankings: Targets For This Weeks Injured Stars

I’m sure you’re still trying to catch your breath from the Divisional Round of the 2021 NFL postseason. Please, take as much time as you need to process what was one of the greatest weekends of football ever. We get it. However, two great games are on deck as the Conference Championship Sunday slate is set and ready to go for this upcoming weekend. Of course, with that, is another opportunity to play around with some NFL playoff fantasy football.

It will be hard to match the fantasy football production that the Chiefs and Bills game produced on Sunday night. The final few minutes of the game gushed with fantasy goodness. Specifically, Bills wide receiver, Gabriel Davis, logged 14.9 of his eye-popping 52.1 PPR points in the final minute of regulation time. While many star players, like Davis, are no longer a part of this NFL postseason, there are plenty of studs left to plug into your NFL playoff fantasy football lineups. Four great teams remain and will not disappoint with Super Bowl 56 just around the corner.

Whether you need rankings for a “one-and-done” league where you choose players once and then never again throughout the NFL postseason, setting a Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) lineup, or any other type of playoff fantasy football format, look no further than the positional rankings below. Of course, all rankings are subject to change throughout the week as injury, Covid-19, or other breaking news becomes available. Good luck!

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NFL Conference Championship Positional Rankings

QUARTERBACK

RANKPLAYERTEAMOPPONENT 
1Patrick MahomesKCCIN
2Joe BurrowCINat KC
3Matthew StaffordLARSF
4Jimmy GaroppoloSFat LA

Patrick Mahomes emerges victorious from epic showdown against Josh Allen and the Bills. Whichever of the two young stars able to advance from that game was always going to be the top-ranked quarterback in the Conference Championship playoff fantasy football rankings. Making his fourth-straight AFC Conference game appearance is probably all of the convincing needed to place Mahomes at the top. Add home field advantage, his full arsenal of healthy, receiving weapons, and some rushing ability and it’s a no-brainer. I expect Mahomes to lead the Chiefs to their third-straight Super Bowl appearance, or at least put on another show at Arrowhead trying.

Joe Burrow comes in as the second-ranked quarterback attempting to knock off the aforementioned Chiefs. Though he did not record a passing touchdown against the Titans last weekend, he did throw for 348 yards, despite being sacked nine times. The Bengals open as seven point underdogs. If they are to keep up with Mahomes, Burrow will have to throw. I do expect success through the air against a Chiefs defense that just allowed Josh Allen to shred them for 329 yards and four touchdowns. Joe Burrow has made it clear, he and Cincinnati are ready to make noise.

Matthew Stafford is set to make his first Conference Championship appearance of his career. The San Francisco 49ers have taken down the Rams twice this season, outscoring them 58 to 34. Stafford’s thrown four touchdowns, but also four interceptions in those contests. He offers no rushing upside, but he should  continue to produce a stable floor during playoff fantasy football throwing to Cooper Kupp and Odell Beckham, Jr., among others. His opponent, Jimmy Garoppolo is likely to lead a typical run-heavy offense. He has yet to top 200 passing yards in two playoff games nor throw a touchdown pass. He should not be in any playoff fantasy football lineups, if possible.

RUNNING BACK

RANKPLAYERTEAMOPPONENT
1Joe MixonCINat KC
2Cam AkersLARSF
3Jerrick McKinnonKCCIN
4Elijah MitchellSFat LAR
5Clyde Edwards-HelaireKCCIN
6Sony MichelLARSF
7Samaje PerineCINat KC
8Kyle JuszczykSFat LAR

Joe Mixon is the best all-around running back remaining in playoff fantasy football. With 20 touches against the Titans last weekend, Mixon totaled 105 all-purpose yards and scored the Bengals’ only touchdown. Just three weeks ago, Mixon logged 86 scoreless yards on 19 touches against the Chiefs. The important thing here is that no other back on the Cincy offense is a legitimate threat to Mixon’s workload, especially in the passing game. Kansas City allowed the fourth-most receptions and third-most receiving yards to running backs during the regular season.

With volume at the forefront of these playoff fantasy football rankings, it’s hard to keep Cam Akers any lower following a game in which he touched the ball 27 times. The Rams notably fed Akers with 24 carries against a top-rated Buccaneers run defense. He should produce better on the ground against the 49ers on Sunday. Sony Michel would need Akers to get dinged up to see significant usage at this point. Akers has 46 opportunities (carries + targets) compared to Michel’s 16 so far during the postseason.

Jerrick McKinnon will likely continue to lead the Chiefs’ backfield in touches for the remainder of playoff fantasy football. It’s worth noting, however, that Clyde Edwards-Helaire looked much more effective carrying the ball on Sunday. In a shootout against the Bills, McKinnon’s value as a pass-catcher played a huge role in Kansas City’s offensive output. There is, of course, the possibility that the Chiefs blow the Bengals away lending to a clock-killing, run-heavy offense. I, however, doubt Mahomes takes his foot off of the gas, regardless of the score, and expect McKinnon to get into the end zone at least once this weekend.

WIDE RECEIVER

RANKPLAYERTEAMOPPONENT
1Cooper KuppLARSF
2Ja'Marr ChaseCINat KC
3Tyreek HillKCCIN
4Deebo SamuelSFat LAR
5Tee HigginsCINat KC
6Odell Beckham Jr.LARSF
7Byron PringleKCCIN
8Brandon AiyukSFat LAR
9Tyler BoydCINat KC
10Van JeffersonLARSF
11Jauan JenningsSFat LAR
12Mecole HardmanKCCIN
13Demarcus RobinsonKCCIN

I still don’t understand how Cooper Kupp gets as open as he does against opposing defenses, but I am not complaining. Kupp has scored a touchdown in all but six of 19 games this season. He has eight touchdowns in his last eight games. He is undoubtedly the top-ranked wide receiver for the Conference Championship round of playoff fantasy football. Kupp will look to add to his 18 receptions for 240 yards that he’s recorded in two games versus the Niners this season. Get the 2021 fantasy football MVP into your lineups.

Ja’Marr Chase is the first rookie ever to have multiple 100+ yard games in the NFL postseason. In two games, thus far, Chase has 116 and 109 receiving yards respectively. Just three weeks ago, he absolutely torched the Chiefs defense with 266 receiving yards and three touchdowns. Tyreek Hill looks healthy and enters the AFC Championship averaging eight receptions for 103.5 yards and a touchdown on nine targets per game. As the best quarterback remaining, Patrick Mahomes’, top target, Hill cracks the top three of Conference Championship playoff fantasy football rankings.

Deebo Samuel is seeing more carries than targets during this postseason. The “wide back”, which is a self-proclaimed title for his wide receiver and running back role, has 20 carries and just seven targets through two games. Deebo is remarkable when the ball is in his hands. However, it will be hard to finish at the top of the position with a lesser receiving role than others above him in these rankings.

Byron Pringle gets a huge boost for this round of NFL playoff fantasy football. He is just behind Tyreek Hill (18) and Travis Kelce (16) in postseason targets with 14 of his own so far. The most significant reason Pringle is in the top half of the rankings this week is his role in the red zone, having hauled in three touchdowns over the last two weeks. The three touchdowns have a total distance of 16 yards. He is a legitimate threat to find the end zone again this week.

TIGHT END

RANKPLAYERTEAMOPPONENT 
1Travis KelceKCCIN
2George KittleSFat LAR
3C.J. UzomahCINat KC
4Tyler HigbeeLARSF

As options at the tight end position become more scarce, Travis Kelce will remain the top option as long as the Chiefs are alive. He is the best choice for any playoff fantasy football lineup, regardless of the matchup. Even against a top-ranked Bills defense, Kelce posted an 8-reception, 96-yard, and one-touchdown receiving line. He’s such a key piece to the Kansas City offense. Fire him up again against the Bengals.

George Kittle continues to dominate in snap count amongst all 49ers pass catchers. However, there are no points awarded in playoff fantasy football for snaps played. Kittle did see double the amount of targets against Green Bay (6) as he did against Dallas (3) the week prior. He’s also notably seen seven targets in each of the two previous games against the Rams this season. Kittle’s obvious talent and ceiling lands him as the TE2 for the Conference Championship round of playoff fantasy football. We just have to hope he is Jimmy Garoppolo’s favorite red-zone target this weekend and perhaps finds the end zone.

C.J. Uzomah is going to be a volume-based play for the Conference Championship round of playoff fantasy football. The Bengals tight end has at least six targets, six receptions, and 64 yards in both playoff games thus far. With an expected pass-heavy approach against Mahomes and the Chiefs, I like a third-straight performance of double-digit fantasy points from Uzomah this weekend.

The San Francisco 49ers only allowed six touchdowns to tight ends during the entire regular season. Tyler Higbee accounts for half of those touchdowns. Even in a passing attack, often dominated by Cooper Kupp and Odell Beckham Jr., Higbee continues to carve out a role for himself. He has at least four targets, three receptions, and 46 yards in both playoff games. He’s a good of a bet as any of the above to get into the end zone this weekend.

KICKER

RANKPLAYERTEAMOPPONENT
1Evan McPhersonCINat KC
2Matt GayLARSF
3Harrison ButkerKCCIN
4Robbie GouldSFat LAR

DEFENSE/SPECIAL TEAMS

RANKTEAMOPPONENT
1Los Angeles RamsSF
2Kansas City ChiefsCIN
3San Francisco 49ersat LAR
4Cincinnati Bengalsat KC

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Source : https://www.fantraxhq.com/2021-nfl-playoff-fantasy-football-conference-championship-rankings/

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