Last week, NFL Week 14, was typically the first week of fantasy football playoffs for traditional fantasy leagues. Whether you didn’t qualify for the playoffs at all, got knocked out due to no-shows from Peyton Manning, Drew Brees, Josh Gordon and Jimmy Graham, or moved on to the next round thanks to performances by the likes of Matt Ryan, Le’Veon Bell, DeMarco Murray and Julio Jones, Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) is indifferent. It is a fresh start every week. Lets identify some good plays for Week 15.
Elite, Expensive: Tom Brady, NE (Week 15 vs Miami)
Brady is returning home after two big time road games. He takes on a Miami team that pulled off an upset Week 1. Don’t think that Bill Belichick or Brady have forgotten about that game. I expect this game to be a demonstration of dominance by New England over its division foe.
Middle of the Road: Matt Ryan, ATL (Week 15 vs Pittsburgh)
After getting down early in Week 14, Ryan stormed back against the Green Bay Packers to make it a competitive game. He finished with 375 yards, four touchdowns, one interception, and 23 rushing yards. Coming home and, shockingly, looking to stay atop the division (at 5-8), expect Ryan to have another great game.
Cheap, High Upside: Mark Sanchez, PHI (Week 15 vs Dallas)
This is a repeat game of two weeks ago except Philadelphia now welcomes Dallas into their building. Philadelphia is 6-1 at home (with that one loss coming in Week 14 to Seattle). This game has big playoff implications on the line for both teams, so each side will be pulling out all of the stops. Expect a high scoring game, and lots of points for Sanchez.
Elite, Expensive: Le’Veon Bell, PIT (Week 15 @ Atlanta)
With his Week 13 and 14 performances, Bell joins Walter Payton as the only running backs to have over 200 combined yards in back-to-back weeks. Bell has also taken over as the best running back in fantasy football this year. He now gets to run against the worst run defense. He is a must start.
Middle of the Road: Justin Forsett, BAL (Week 15 vs Jacksonville)
Forsett has probably earned the, “best waiver wire acquisition” title of the year in many fantasy football leagues. He ranks among the top 10 running backs in standard scoring leagues. Jacksonville is among the top five worst run defenses in the league. Forsett will continue to feast this week.
Cheap, High Upside: Mark Ingram, NO (Week 15 @ Chicago)
The Chicago Bears just allowed 179 rushing years to DeMarco Murray in Week 14. They have been gashed by the run the last two weeks. Ingram should find open lanes and plenty of running room. He is a must start at his price.
Elite, Expensive: Antonio Brown, PIT (Week 15 @ Atlanta)
Just like Brown’s teammate Le’Veon Bell, Brown leads all wide receivers in fantasy football. Atlanta just allowed Green Bay’s number one receiver, Jordy Nelson, to post 146 yards and two touchdowns. I expect Brown to post similar numbers in Week 15. Pay up for the man.
Middle of the Road: T.Y. Hilton, IND (Week 15 vs Houston)
Hilton has emerged as an elite wide receiver this year. His five career stat lines versus Houston Texans are as follows: 9 catches-223 yards-1 touchdown, 8-78-0, 7-121-3, 4-111-1, and 3-78-1. He is in store for another huge week. Start him.
Cheap, High Upside: Malcom Floyd, SD (Week 15 vs Denver)
Floyd led the Chargers in receiving yards and touchdowns in Week 14. He has developed a good chemistry with quarterback Phillip Rivers over the past few weeks. In Week 15, the Chargers will need all their weapons firing to top Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos. Floyd could be in for a good game.
Elite, Expensive: Jimmy Graham, NO (Week 15 @ Chicago)
Graham is in a slump. He may be battling a shoulder injury, but that isn’t stopping quarterback Drew Brees from targeting him. In Week 15, Graham will face the most generous defense for tight ends. I expect him to bounce back in a major way as the Saints fight for a playoff spot. If you are going to pay for a tight end, get Graham this week.
Middle of the Road: Jordan Cameron, CLE (Week 15 vs Cincinnati)
Cleveland is a mess right now and let a win escape them in Week 14 over the Indianapolis Colts. For Week 15, Johnny Manziel will be the new starting quarterback for the Browns. With this change, he might provide a much needed spark for the team. Manziel may look Cameron’s way as a safety valve until he is comfortable as rookie quarterbacks tend to favor large, athletic tight ends. Cameron could be a sneaky play this week.
Cheap, High Upside: Dwayne Allen, IND (Week 15 vs Houston)
Prior to going out due to injury, Allen was a hot, productive tight end for the Colts. He returned in Week 14, but didn’t see much production. In Week 15, he should be back to 100% and ready to roll. At his price, he might be a steal in DFS leagues.
St. Louis Rams (Week 15 vs Arizona)
Since quarterback Carson Palmer went down, Arizona hasn’t been able to muster up much offense. St. Louis have back-to-back shut outs over Oakland and Washington. They will look for a third straight and have a good chance of getting it.
Seattle Seahawks (Week 15 vs San Francisco)
The Seattle defense looks to have found their old ways as they have been shutting down opponents. Week 15 brings the pitiful 49ers offense to Seattle. I expect a repeat of what we saw Thanksgiving night, which was Seattle dominance.