Thanks for the shoutout on my post.
Dan, the reason I use VLC for these is because it can create a playlist from an RSS feed. Windows Media Player doesn't do that. Also, while Windows Media Player does have high speed playback, it's a little trickier to get to if you want to control the playback speed more than the preset 1.4x "Fast" speed - right-click, enhancements, play speed brings up a floating window with slider. VLC has a handy shortcut - ] is 10% faster, [ is 10% slower.
Those tips are listed in no real order, I've been using the HTML5 playback speed in the browser pretty often, too. So many good videos to catch up on!