2013 Fantasy Football Week 15 Dark Horse: Matt Ryan

Matt Ryan

Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports

I’m going to start this one off by repeating a few things I’ve already written this week. First off, if your fantasy season is still going, congratulations to you. The second thing I’m going to repeat is that a very big part of fantasy football is taking advantage of the correct matchups. It is why you might want to consider sitting a stud receiver who lines up against Joe Haden or Aqib Talib, or you don’t start your running back who is playing against the Seattle Seahawks for example.

I know that this season Matt Ryan has not delivered at the level that many owners thought he would. A big part of that is obviously the fact that Julio Jones was lost for the season, Roddy White was banged up and Steven Jackson missed a month. Additionally, his offensive line hasn’t exactly done a great job of keeping pressure off Ryan. Any quarterback that has to deal with those types of problems is obviously going to have a drop in production.

Even with the turmoil, Ryan is currently ranked 12th on the season among quarterbacks in standard scoring leagues, and is only a few touchdowns away from top 10 numbers. This week when the Atlanta Falcons host the Washington Redskins, Ryan is a sneaky start for your fantasy playoff.

Ryan is a beast at home, with a career completion percentage of 66.19 percent and a 35-9 record. Compared to a TD:INT ratio on the road of 78-46, Ryan’s home ratio is 70:27. On top of that, the visiting Redskins are allowing the fifth most fantasy points per game to quarterbacks. Their defense has been terrible on epic levels, ranking as the worst passing defense in the league according to Pro Football Focus. They have allowed eight quarterbacks to throw for at least two touchdown passes, including twice allowing four touchdown passes in a game, and only three quarterbacks have failed to clear 200 yards against them.

The Falcons are also getting healthier of late. Steven Jackson has shaken off his injuries, and is spearheading a decent running attack. Roddy White is the healthiest he has been since August. Tony Gonalez is still capable of catching almost anything thrown within his reach and remains one of the best in the league at going out to catch the ball, opposed to letting it come to him.

Much of fantasy football is playing the right matchups. This week Ryan has arguably the best matchup in fantasy football. He hasn’t performed at the level expected of him this season, but that doesn’t mean he can’t. Start Ryan this week and enjoy advancing to the next round of your playoff.

As always, I welcome your comments. If you think I’m wrong, I’m willing to listen. Just back it up with some facts and solid evidence. Thanks for reading and good luck this season.

Dustin Manko is an author at Rant Sports.com. Follow him on Twitter @DustinManko, ”Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google

Read more from Dustin here.


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