clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

NFL Fantasy Football, Week 15: 5 must-starts for the fantasy playoffs

A few fantasy football options that should be in your lineups this week.

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Editor's Note: SB Nation's partner FanDuel is running a $1.2M fantasy football league on Sunday. First place wins $100,000. Join now! Sorry Washington residents, you can't play.

Week 14 In Review

If you aren't familiar with my methods yet, I'll put myself on a "PASS" or "FAIL" scale which is based on flex options scoring above or below double digit fantasy points. Above 10 points would be a PASS, and obviously below 10 would be a FAIL. I do my best to find the not-so obvious options from week to week to help you dominate your league. With that said here we go once again, let's see how I did for you, folks.

Doug Baldwin, 32.2 - PASS
Mike Evans, 6.9 Points -- FAIL
Shaun Draughn, 7.1 Points -- FAIL
Delanie Walker, 14.1 Points -- PASS
Blake Bortles, 31.7 Points -- PASS

Let's first begin by pointing out that over the past four weeks Doug Baldwin is arguably the top receiver to own in fantasy football. This guy has balled out of control for weeks now, and last week was no exception -- 32.2 points from a Seattle Seahawks wideout? Yep.

Mike Evans is an incredibly talented wide receiver whose upside is unfortunately capped by the rookie quarterback who is passing to him. Meanwhile, ey yi yi, Shaun Draughn crapped the bed and now it's probably better to just throw it out the window. Shaun saw three passing targets (slightly below expectation) and only got 11 carries -- his ceiling was reduced by volume.

Per usual the only guy catching balls worth owning in Tennessee, Delanie Walker dropped a 7-71 outing on an absurd 13 targets.

Lastly but certainly not leastly (hella cool usage there) Blake Bortles once again delivered for fantasy owners with a 3 touchdown passing performance. Blake is currently the #6 overall player in fantasy football and owners shouldn't expect the production to slow down any time soon.

Week 14: '5 under-the-radar fantasy gems'

I pride myself on making tough calls, and this week will be no exception once again. Russell Wilson is still on god mode, and the Cleveland Browns are going to get lampooned -- national.... on uh, television.

5. Matthew Stafford, QB DET

Not much needs to be said except Matthew Stafford is on a streak of low-end QB1 production, and this week he gets his hands on the very worst passing defense in the NFL -- the New Orleans Saints..

Over the past five weeks, Stafford has posted fantasy performances of: 18.7, 20.3, 44.78, 21.0, 18.3 -- all respectable scores by most owners standards. This week however, things are heavily in his favor as he and Megatron will get a chance to open up the throttle on a defense that has already allowed a league high 36 touchdowns.

Aside from the anomaly performance against rookie QB Jameis Winston, this Saints defense has been absolutely gashed by quarterbacks most people consider lower-tier talents. Just to name a few, here we go: Brian Hoyer 205-2, Kirk Cousins 324-4, Marcus Mariota 371-4.

Matt Stafford without argument has the best wide receiver corps of this entire list -- by a mile. Coming off a string of solid performances and against a pitiful New Orleans defense, Stafford should be in for a major day. Start all your Detroit wideouts named Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate immediately.

Matt Stafford is available in 16% of Yahoo leagues and 23.8% of leagues at ESPN. If you're back and forth between two quarterbacks in the same tier, I would strongly suggest hitching your playoff dreams to Matt Stafford in Week 15.

4. Michael Floyd, WR ARI

The guy has been on an absolute tear as of late and his quarterback is arguably one of the best in the game as well. In Week 15, Floyd will get his chance to blow up once again against a Philadelphia Eagles defense that has been trampled by everyone with a pulse.

This Eagles defense has allowed a second-worst 29 touchdowns to opposing offenses -- this is a horrible sign of things to come with Carson Palmer in the building. Over his last 7 eligible games, Michael Floyd has posted double digit scoring 6 times, 5 of which were over 16 fantasy points. In only 1 of his 6 double digit outings did Floyd see less than 8 targets, and as I've probably overstated before -- volume is king.

Incredibly enough, in 4 of his last 5 games Floyd has surpassed 100 receiving yards. His role seems to be solidified as the big play threat and possession receiver all in one. As John Brown offers the instant home run ability and Larry Fitzgerald provides the possession skills, Michael Floyd has found his niche as the balance between the two, This week things get really easy for Floyd though. To dynamic wide receivers, the Philadelphia Eagles have recently surrendered these performances: Sammy Watkins 5-81-1, 7-62-1, Golden Tate 7-50-1, Mike Evans 4-63-1, Jarvis Landry 7-52-1... you get the point, they all get touchdowns.

Supporting Floyds 100+ yard performances would be Philly's 9th ranked total yards allowed in 2015 with 3,365. With Palmer's hot streak and Floyd's new found role, this Eagles secondary should turn into swiss cheese.

Michael Floyd is currently available in 29% of Yahoo leagues and 27% of leagues at ESPN. It's hard to bench the #2 option in Arizona in a matchup like this.

3. Jeremy Hill, RB CIN

Jeremy Hill has been the human roller coaster this season. Going from the lead job, to a split backfield, to whatever it is now, Hill has done his best to appease owners. This is the week however that you can't bench Jeremy Hill despite your fears of failure.

In Week 15, the Cincinnati Bengals get the juiciest of defensive matchups -- the San Francisco 49ers. In what should be a slightly lesser passing performance from the Bengals, full expectation is that the gas pedal will be slammed to the floorboard in the running game.

The 49ers are surrendering a 133.2 rushing yards per game on the year, which makes them second worst in the NFL against the run. To minimize the fear of this defense even further, they have only forced 2 fumbles on the season, that ties them for second least in the NFL. The fear with Hill for owners has to be his workload fluctuation and nobody can blame people for that. Over his past 3 weeks with a healthy Gio Bernard in the mix he has averaged 15 carries per game and 1.3 passing targets. The Niners are coming off a recent game in which they allowed Isaiah Crowell to rush for 145 yards and 2 TDs on 20 carries (7.3 YPC). This defense has become the laughing stock of the NFL and this weekend Jeremy Hill is going to show owners why.

Jeremy Hill is currently available in just 4% of Yahoo leagues and 4% of leagues at ESPN. HIll has rushed for multiple touchdowns on three different occasions and this matchup has that sort of appeal written all over it.

2. Denard Robinson, RB JAC

Staying true to the original roots of this article, "Shoe Lace" Robinson is pretty much as "off the radar" as anybody can be entering Week 2 of the fantasy football playoffs (or Week 1 depending on your format).

If the reports are true, then there is more than a real shot that T.J. Yeldon may be inactive for his Week 15 matchup against the sputtering Atlanta Falcons. Over Denards past three weeks, he has maintained YPC averages of: 7.7, 7.0, 5.4 per game. Despite the lack of carries in the first two games (6 total), Robinson still went absolutely nuts when he was given feature carries.

Coming off a tasty matchup against the Indianapolis Colts, Denard spun 14 carries into 75 yards (5.4 YPC) and a score. This week Denard goes from the 8th worst run defense (IND) to the 18th in the Atlanta Falcons. On the year the Falcons are giving up 105.6 yards per game and have allowed the league's second highest amount of touchdowns with 17.

With Blake Bortle's surging pass game the Falcons depleted defense will have no choice but the respect the wideout threats giving Denard Robinson plenty of room to work. A definite avenue Robinson brings to the table is his pass catching chops -- in 2014 he hauled in 23 of 28 targets (82.1%) and averaged 2.3 targets per game. Bortles has familiarity with Robinson and coming off a hot start things should keep rolling in a soft matchup.

Denard Robinson is currently available in 60% of Yahoo leagues and 48.2% of leagues at ESPN. You could do much worse than snagging a free running back, on a solid offense while amidst your fantasy football playoffs.

1. Charcandrick West, RB KC

This may or may not seem like a wild choice considering the year I am advocating it, but his situation is appearing primed for explosion yet again.

In Week 15 Charcandrick West will get his opportunity against a recently leaky Baltimore Ravens defense. Over the past couple weeks the Ravens have allowed teams to rush for yardages of: 123, and 137. Prior to the emergence of Spencer Ware, Charcandrick West was producing on an elite level in PPR leagues. Over a 3 game span West posted games of: 20.9, 22.2, and 31.1. While the sole owner of the KC backfield job Charcandrick West was playing on a dominant level -- with Ware potentially sidelined West could get that workload back.

Despite facing a Ravens defense which is allowing just 3.8 YPC, West holds immense value as a feature back. West is currently averaging 3 targets per game on the season, and prior to Ware's role he was as high as 5 per game. Though Charcandrick is not Jamaal Charles he sure did an excellent job of imitating him when given the shot. In his 3 biggest games of the year he posted:129-1, 122-1, and 161-2 total yards per game. In a game that should maintain moderate scoring it isn't out of the realm of possibility for Charcandrick to touch the ball 20-25 times -- this makes his an absolute must start.

Charcandrick West is currently available in 16% of Yahoo leagues and 6.7% of leagues at ESPN. Volume is god in fantasy football and no running back job is more valuable than that of a starter in KC. Just remember if Spencer Ware is indeed active the expectation of West sinks a decent amount -- until then, he should be a high volume PPR option.

Good luck this week everyone.

As always you can find me on twitter @AnOutragedJew if you have sit/start questions or want steamy dating advice.