Ryan Mathews' Instant Fantasy Reaction for 2013 Fantasy Playoffs

Joseph ZuckerFeatured ColumnistDecember 12, 2013

Dec 8, 2013; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Chargers running back Ryan Mathews (24) before the Chargers game against the New York Giants at Qualcomm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports
Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sport

With a strong performance in Week 15 against the Denver Broncos, Ryan Mathews may have run his way into your fantasy football lineup during the playoffs.

He finished with 128 yards and a touchdown on the ground in the San Diego Chargers' 27-20 win on Thursday night. It's his fifth game of the season with over 100 yards, which Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune notes is tied for the league lead.

Although it's a strong performance from Mathews, make sure to temper expectations for the final two weeks. He's been up and down all year, and ESPN Stats & Info indicates that this is the first time all season that he's had touchdowns in back-to-back games.

There's no question that Mathews was running the ball well. Bleacher Report's Michael Schottey mentioned Edgerrin James' name to describe the way Mathews carried the football.

The Chargers get the Oakland Raiders next week and finish up with the Kansas City Chiefs. Mathews could have success in both of those games, as neither has been stout against the run this year and any success that Philip Rivers has could open up holes for the running game.

With so much on the line, it makes sense if you'd like to start a more reliable running back in your lineup.

If you're willing to take the gamble, go ahead and fit Mathews in as an RB2 or flex option for the rest of the regular season.