I would never recommend drafting a fantasy football player based on two games of his schedule, but the fact that linebacker Sean Lee will most likely miss the entire season for the Dallas Cowboys makes running back LeSean McCoy a strategic draft option for your fantasy playoffs.
If a player on your team faced the Cowboys’ defense last season, you probably had to wipe the puddle of drool that was spilling out of your mouth. Not only did the Cowboys rank 30th in passing yards allowing an average of 286.8, but the defense also gave up the 27th-most rushing yards with an average of 128.5 per game. Even though Lee is known for his interceptions, he racks up a ton of tackles when he is healthy.
Now that he is expected to be fully out of the mix and with little improvement on defense in the offseason or through the draft, fantasy owners will once again mark their calendars down whenever their star players face the Cowboys’ defense.
As soon as I heard the news that Lee could be out for the year, I immediately took a look at the Cowboys’ schedule to find out the teams that would benefit the most from his injury. What I found was a team that would not only face Dallas in a critical part of the regular fantasy season, but that same team was also scheduled to face “America’s Team” during the fantasy playoffs.
By now, you’ve already figured out that the team I am talking about is none other than the Philadelphia Eagles.
Most players find that their fantasy teams are either killing the competition, struggling to survive or haven’t even won a game since Week 4, so the difference between making and missing the fantasy playoffs sometimes can just be one or two games. The Eagles will first face the Cowboys in Week 13, which is the last week of the regular fantasy season for most players.
Even though the Eagles only scored three points in its first meeting with Dallas last year, head coach Chip Kelly was able to redeem himself with a win the second time the teams faced off.
The final match up between these NFC East foes will be in Week 15, which is the second-to-last game of the fantasy playoffs for most players. Again, it would be foolish to draft any offensive player on the Eagles just because of two games, but it does make a difference to know that Jamaal Charles is going against a Denver Broncos‘ defense in Week 13 that held him to under 100 yards rushing, and only allowed him one total touchdown both times he faced the team last season. In the same week, McCoy is going against a Cowboys defense that he shredded for 131 rushing yards and a receiving touchdown in the final game of the regular season last year.
Hopefully your fantasy season wouldn’t depend on those two games, but you might kick yourself if you take Charles over McCoy.