There are several different versions of Fantasy football playoff challenges, and unfortunately we can't address every scoring system. But the objective for most of these leagues is basically the same, which is picking the players you expect to play the most games.

With that in mind, you should map out the playoffs with the teams you expect to reach Super Bowl LV in Tampa. That's what I've done here with these PPR rankings for the entire postseason.

In the AFC, I expect the Bills, Steelers and Ravens to advance in the wild-card round. I have the Chiefs beating the Ravens in the divisional round, as well as the Bills over the Steelers. In the AFC Championship Game, I expect the Chiefs to beat the Bills and advance to the Super Bowl.

In the NFC, I like the Saints, Seahawks and Buccaneers in the wild-card round. I expect the Packers to beat the Buccaneers in the divisional round, and the Saints should beat the Seahawks. In the NFC Championship Game, I like the Packers to beat the Saints and face the Chiefs.

Now, all of these games can obviously end in a different result, but this is just how I expect it to unfold. Like I said, sketch out your own playoff outline to determine the players you expect to advance, and that's how you should build a team for your playoff challenge.

At the end of the week, I'll provide rankings for each round, as well as DFS suggestions for FanDuel and DraftKings. And after each round, we'll update these rankings as well.


1. Patrick Mahomes
2. Aaron Rodgers
3. Josh Allen
4. Drew Brees
5. Tom Brady
6. Lamar Jackson
7. Russell Wilson
8. Ben Roethlisberger 
9. Ryan Tannehill
10. Philip Rivers
11. Baker Mayfield
12. Jared Goff
13. Alex Smith
14. Mitchell Trubisky

Mahomes and Rodgers don't play in the wild-card round, but I love their chances of playing three games each if they reach the Super Bowl. Allen and Brees can also play three games if they advance to the championship round.

Allen has scored at least 21 Fantasy points in five games in a row, and he's taking on a Colts defense that has allowed at least 20 Fantasy points in four games in a row. And Brees has scored at least 25 Fantasy points in two of his past three outings. He also should have a healthy Alvin Kamara (illness) and Michael Thomas (ankle) this week against the Bears, who allowed 23 Fantasy points to Brees in Week 8.

Brady doesn't have an easy matchup against Washington, which is No. 3 in Fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks. But he's scored at least 27 Fantasy points in three games in a row, and I expect him to play multiple games in the playoffs.

Jackson is on fire coming into the playoffs with at least 25 Fantasy points in five games in a row. He's taking on a Titans team that has allowed 24.8 Fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks this season. And last year, Jackson lost to Tennessee in the playoffs, but he had 365 passing yards, one touchdown and two interceptions, along with 143 rushing yards.

In that same playoff game, Tannehill had 88 passing yards, but he added two touchdowns, along with 13 rushing yards and a score. The Titans can easily win this game, giving Tannehill the chance for multiple games, but I like Baltimore in this matchup.

Wilson and Roethlisberger don't have high ceilings based on their recent level of play, but I do expect them to play at least two games. Wilson is facing the Rams in the wild-card round, and they have allowed an average of just 14.6 Fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks. Wilson averaged 15.0 Fantasy points per game against Seattle in two meetings this year.

Roethlisberger didn't play in Week 17 against Cleveland and only scored 12 Fantasy points against the Browns in Week 6. He also scored 17 Fantasy points or less in three of his past five outings.

I expect Rivers, Mayfield, Goff, Smith and Trubisky to be one-and-done in the wild-card round. Goff isn't a lock to play against the Seahawks because of his thumb injury, and I would avoid John Wolford as well if he starts for Los Angeles.

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Running backs

1. Alvin Kamara
2. Aaron Jones
3. J.K. Dobbins
4. Derrick Henry
5. Ronald Jones
6. Chris Carson
7. Nick Chubb
8. Jonathan Taylor
9. David Montgomery
10. Clyde Edwards-Helaire
11. James Conner
12. Antonio Gibson
13. Zack Moss
14. Cam Akers
15. Darrel Williams
16. Devin Singletary
17. Gus Edwards
18. Jamaal Williams
19. Kareem Hunt
20. J.D. McKissic
21. Latavius Murray
22. Nyheim Hines  
23. Le'Veon Bell
24. Ty Montgomery
25. Leonard Fournette
26. Malcolm Brown
27. A.J. Dillon
28. Benny Snell
29. Carlos Hyde
30. Mark Ingram

With the Saints playing the Bears on Sunday, Kamara should be eligible to play after being placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list prior to Week 17. It's something to keep an eye on, and if he's out, Murray should be available to start. Murray couldn't play in Week 17 because he was considered a high-risk, close contact with Kamara. 

Aaron Jones will likely share touches with Jamaal Williams and Dillon, but I still like Jones as the No. 2 running back in the postseason since the Packers should play three games. Hopefully, Green Bay leans on Jones and doesn't make this too much of a committee.

Dobbins and Henry could be interchangeable depending on how you pick that matchup, but I like Dobbins' chances of playing at least two playoff games. He's scored a touchdown in six games in a row, with seven touchdowns scored over that span. And Henry, who ran for 2,000 yards this season to lead the NFL, had over 200 total yards and a passing touchdown against the Ravens in the playoffs last year. He also had 20 PPR points against Baltimore in Week 11.

Ronald Jones has scored at least 13 PPR points in three games in a row, and you can make a case he should be No. 3 on this list. Since the Ravens-Titans game can go either way, there's a better chance for Jones advancing to the divisional round with his matchup against Washington.

Carson hasn't been great down the stretch, scoring 10 PPR points or less in three games in a row, including Week 16 against the Rams. But he's had at least 15 total touches in four of his past five games, and I expect Seattle to beat Los Angeles, giving Carson at least two playoff games.

Chubb has scored a touchdown in six games in a row, with seven touchdowns over that span, and he just had 16 PPR points against the Steelers in Week 17. It wouldn't be a huge shock if the Browns upset the Steelers, so Chubb and Hunt have the potential for two playoff games. Hunt hasn't been as productive with Chubb healthy, scoring nine PPR points or less in five of his past seven games.

I wish Taylor wasn't playing the Bills because he's been awesome down the stretch, scoring at least 19 PPR points in five games in a row. He should be great in just one playoff game, and Buffalo has allowed five total touchdowns to running backs in the past three games.

I feel similar about Montgomery and Gibson that I do about Taylor. I love what they've done this season -- especially Montgomery down the stretch with at least 19 PPR points in six games in a row -- but I don't see them playing more than one playoff game.

It's hard to know what to expect from the Chiefs' backfield with Edwards-Helaire (ankle) missing the final two games of the regular season. I expect Darrel Williams to lead Kansas City's backfield if Edwards-Helaire is out, but Bell should also factor in. The only benefit for the Chiefs is the potential to play three playoff games. 

Even though I expect the Steelers to play at least two playoff games, I'm still unsure about Conner. The nice thing is he has 10 catches in his past two games, but he only has one touchdown since Week 8. He did have 20 carries for 101 yards and a touchdown against the Browns in Week 6, but that seems like a lifetime ago.

Two backfields I would prefer to avoid are the Bills and Rams. I don't expect Los Angeles to beat the Seahawks, and Akers is likely still not 100 percent from his ankle injury. 

And even though I like the Bills to play three playoff games, it's always a guessing game between Moss and Singletary. I lean toward Moss given his goal-line work, but I don't love either one as playoff challenge Fantasy options.

Wide receivers

1. Davante Adams
2. Tyreek Hill
3. Stefon Diggs
4. Michael Thomas
5. Diontae Johnson
6. Chris Godwin
7. Marquise Brown
8. A.J. Brown
9. D.K. Metcalf
10. Antonio Brown
11. JuJu Smith-Schuster
12. Robert Woods
13. Mike Evans
14. John Brown
15. Corey Davis
16. Cooper Kupp
17. Emmanuel Sanders
18. Jarvis Landry
19. Tyler Lockett
20. Allen Robinson
21. Terry McLaurin
22. T.Y. Hilton
23. Allen Lazard
24. Sammy Watkins
25. Cole Beasley
26. Marquez Valdes-Scantling
27. Chase Claypool
28. Rashard Higgins
29. Darnell Mooney
30. Isaiah McKenzie
31. Josh Reynolds
32. Mecole Hardman
33. David Moore
34. Willie Snead
35. Demarcus Robinson
36. James Washington
37. Gabriel Davis
38. Michael Pittman
39. Cam Sims
40. Dez Bryant
41. Zach Pascal
42. Van Jefferson
43. Donovan Peoples-Jones
44. Miles Boykin

45. Anthony Miller

Adams was the No. 1 PPR receiver in 2020, and Hill likely would have been second if he played in Week 17 since he finished three points behind Diggs. All three of them should be special, especially with the potential of playing three playoff games.

Along with Diggs in Buffalo, I like John Brown now that he's healthy. He scored 17 PPR points in Week 17 after being out for five games due to injury. We'll also see if Beasley (leg) is able to play in the wild-card round against the Colts. He could be a quality playoff-challenge Fantasy option if healthy -- he averaged 13.5 PPR points for the season -- but look at McKenzie as a sleeper since he played well in place of Beasley in Week 17 with six catches for 65 yards and two touchdowns on nine targets against Miami.

The Saints should get Thomas back, and hopefully he's at 100 percent with the ankle injury that sidelined him for most of this season, including the final three games of the year. He only played one full game with Brees this season and scored 10 PPR points at Tampa Bay in Week 9. Sanders is also worth using with the chance of the Saints playing three games. 

I expect the Steelers to play at least two games, so Johnson and Smith-Schuster are worth using in a playoff challenge, with Claypool and Washington also in consideration. Johnson has the most upside with at least 12 PPR points in eight of his past nine games, and Smith-Schuster has scored at least 17 PPR points in three of his past four outings. He had six catches for 65 yards and a touchdown on eight targets in Week 17 at Cleveland, and Johnson had three catches for 96 yards on four targets.

The Buccaneers are hopeful Evans (knee) will play in the wild-card round after he injured his knee in Week 17, but it's risky to trust him. I prefer Godwin and Antonio Brown as of now, and both of them have four touchdowns in their past three games heading into the wild-card round.

I'm hopeful Marquise Brown takes advantage of his great matchup with the Titans, who are No. 4 in Fantasy points allowed to receivers. Brown has six touchdowns in his past six games, and he had seven catches for 126 yards on 11 targets in the playoff matchup against Tennessee last year.

In that same game, I also like A.J. Brown and Davis, and both played well against the Ravens in Week 11. Brown had four catches for 62 yards and a touchdown on seven targets, and Davis had five catches for 113 yards on seven targets. If the Titans beat the Ravens, you'll be happy to have Brown and Davis on your playoff-challenge roster.

The only reason I have Metcalf at No. 9 is because of his matchup with Jalen Ramsey in the wild-card round. In two meetings with the Rams this year, Metcalf has combined for eight catches for 87 yards and no touchdowns on 12 targets. He also has just one touchdown in his past six games. Lockett also had eight catches for 110 yards and no touchdowns on 14 targets against the Rams, and he's been extremely inconsistent to close the season with one game above 10 PPR points in his final four outings.

The Rams are hopeful Kupp (illness) can play in the wild-card round after missing Week 17 because he tested positive for COVID-19, so keep an eye on his status. You also have to worry about Goff's health, and it might be best to avoid Kupp and Woods since the Rams could play just one playoff game.

Four receivers who have plenty of upside, but might be limited to just one playoff game, include Landry, Robinson, McLaurin and Hilton. All are worth using for their potential in one game, but they don't have much long-term appeal unless their teams can pull off an upset in the wild-card round.

Tight ends

1. Travis Kelce
2. Robert Tonyan
3. Jared Cook
4. Mark Andrews
5. Eric Ebron
6. Rob Gronkowski
7. Logan Thomas
8. Austin Hooper
9. Jonnu Smith
10. Dawson Knox
11. Greg Olsen
12. Tyler Higbee
13. Jack Doyle
14. Cole Kmet
15. Jimmy Graham
16. Will Dissly
17. Gerald Everett
18. Mo-Alie Cox
19. David Njoku
20. Cameron Brate

The easy tight end to choose in a playoff challenge is Kelce. He was easily the No. 1 tight end in 2020, and the Chiefs have the potential to play three playoff games.

I would lean toward Tonyan next because I believe in the Packers and their chances to make a Super Bowl run. Tonyan also has scored a touchdown in six of his past seven games.

Cook has scored at least 11 PPR points in four of his past five games, and he had 16 PPR points at Chicago in Week 8. And Andrews has scored at least 12 PPR points in three of his past four games, and he had 20 PPR points against Tennessee in Week 11.

Ebron (illness) missed Week 17 at Cleveland because he was placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list and considered a high-risk close contact, but he should be able to play in the wild-card round. He's always a threat to score, and the Browns were No. 7 in Fantasy points allowed to tight ends in 2020.

Gronkowski is always a threat to score as well, and he had three touchdowns in his past four games. The Washington Football Team has only allowed one touchdown to a tight end since Week 9, but I still like the potential for Gronkowski to play two playoff games.

Thomas, Hooper and Smith could be solid playoff-challenge tight ends if they played more than one game, but I don't expect that to happen. Thomas has scored at least 12 PPR points in five of his past six games, and Hooper scored at least 13 PPR points in three games in a row. Smith had 12 PPR points against the Ravens in Week 11.

Knox is worth taking a flier on in the playoffs since the Bills have the chance to play three games. And he's scored three touchdowns in his final six games heading into the wild-card round.


1. Saints
2. Steelers
3. Seahawks
4. Ravens
5. Packers
6. Rams
7. Chiefs
8. Buccaneers
9. Bills
10. Bears
11. Browns 
12. Titans
13. Colts
14. Washington


1. Harrison Butker
2. Mason Crosby
3. Wil Lutz
4. Tyler Bass
5. Ryan Succop
6. Jason Meyers
7. Justin Tucker
8. Matt Gay
9. Matthew Wright
10. Sam Sloman
11. Cody Parkey
12. Rodrigo Blankenship
13. Cairo Santos
14. Dustin Hopkins