How is it already Week 15? Just like that, the fantasy playoffs in most leagues are here, which normally doesn’t bode well for waivers.
Per usual, you will have a handful of wide receivers to choose from. You won’t be as lucky at other positions, which is why my Week 15 waiver column will include players to drop, stash or avoid altogether.
This will be geared toward PPR leagues unless otherwise noted. All players included are available in 40% or more of leagues, per FantasyPros’ rostership data. All stats are credited to TruMedia unless stated otherwise.
It’s important to note that the rostership numbers are a bit inflated this time in the season. A good portion of fantasy football managers have abandoned their teams, thus skewing some of the data. You will notice that quickly with the first two quarterbacks I mention as top waiver pickups for Week 15.
This section will be updated throughout the day with the latest news and data.
Daniel Jones and Jared Goff probably aren’t available in your leagues… but if they are, scoop them up now.
- Both are rostered in about 55% of leagues.
- Both scored 19+ fantasy points in Week 14.
- Jones’ fantasy production in the last five games: 18.28, 24.64, 14.52, 17.1 and 19.36 fantasy points.
- Goff’s fantasy production in the last three games: 17.6, 21.6 and 26.1 fantasy points.
- While their names may not be appealing, Jones and Goff have been consistent producers all season.
- Jones’ rushing upside – 24+ rushing yards in four of those five games and two rushing scores in two of those games – is a solid indicator of future production.
- Goff’s comfort in the pocket and passing volume – 37+ passes in each of those three games – is also a solid indicator of future production.
- Jones (at Commanders) and Goff (at Jets) probably aren’t the smartest starts in Week 15, however, both have favorable fantasy playoff matchups in weeks 16 and 17.
- If you have quarterback issues or a roster spot to spare, these guys are top priorities.
You can probably keep Ryan Tannehill on waivers.
- Tannehill is rostered in 22.9% of leagues.
- He scored 17.76 fantasy points against Jacksonville in Week 14.
- Prior to Week 14, the Jaguars had allowed the third-most fantasy points to quarterbacks.
- In the last five games, Tannehill has consistently scored between 12.5-19.4 fantasy points; so he has a moderate floor with some upside.
- If you really need a quarterback, his upcoming schedule is pretty tough, Tannehill’s next three opponents in fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks: Chargers (15th-fewest), Texans (3rd) and Cowboys (2nd).
- If you need a solid 14-ish points add Tannehill, there’s no need to force him on your roster though.
Brock Purdy is becoming a solid streaming option.
- Purdy is rostered in 8.2% of leagues.
- That number will almost certainly spike in Week 15.
- The 49ers face the Seahawks, who, despite being a top-three team in takeaways, are just 17th in fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks.
- You should always be cautious about players who’ve played in two games, but Purdy’s results have been encouraging so far.
- I’ll let my colleague Nic Bodiford explain more in his weekly recap column littered with analysis.
No, you should not add Baker Mayfield.
- Mayfield is rostered in 4.1% of leagues.
- I’m sure you’re very aware of Mayfield’s late-game heroics in his Rams’ debut.
- Mayfield scored 14.2 fantasy points against the second-easiest defense for quarterbacks in fantasy.
- Los Angeles’ leading receiver was *checks notes* Bennett Skowronek (more on him later).
- The Rams face the Packers and the Broncos next, both of which are top-ten teams against quarterbacks in fantasy.
- Even if you’re beyond desperate, don’t let anyone trick you into adding Mayfield—yet.
Jerick McKinnon is the top running back to add.
- McKinnon is rostered in 46.2% of leagues
- I mentioned him as a prime handcuff to stash last week, though he’s more of the 1B in Kansas City’s backfield.
- McKinnon scored 24.9 fantasy points in Week 14 in the first half.
- He scored 10+ fantasy points in three of his prior five games.
- McKinnon actually saw the second-most targets on the team in that five game span.
- While McKinnon hasn’t seen more than eight carries in any game this year, he has clearly been Kansas City’s primary pass-catching back; leading the Chiefs’ RBs in targets with 42, nobody else has more than 23.
- Need I remind you how potent the Chiefs’ passing offense is?
- With how bad the running back landscape is in fantasy, shoot for the upside and sound hefty waiver capital on McKinnon.
You don’t need to hold onto Michael Carter.
- Carter is rostered in 76.7% of leagues.
- Carter’s been dealing with injuries the last few weeks, but failing to eclipse six fantasy points in any of the past three games is not good.
- Zonovan Knight once again was the Jets’ best running back.
- Knight’s usage: 35 snaps, 17 carries, two targets
- Carter’s usage: 37 snaps, five carries, five targets
- Carter gets more of the passing game usage, but the Jets trailed for most of the game in week 14.
- Next up, New York faces Detroit and Jacksonville where they have a much better to chance to grab and maintain a lead in those games, thus more potential carries. If the past two weeks are any indication, those carries will mostly go to Knight.
- Don’t feel forced to keep Carter on your rosters.
If you clinched a playoff spot, start stashing handcuffs.
- Any handcuff running back could be thrust into the main role if the starter gets hurt (this handcuff data only encompasses the past five games).
- Matt Breida was tracking to be Saquon Barkley’s main handcuff, but Breida and Gary Brightwell split the backup workload.
- Brightwell seemed to the favorite early-down back, while Breida played on more third downs.
- Dontrell Hilliard has been the main back behind Derrick Henry.
- Deon Jackson has been the main back behind Jonathan Taylor.
- Ameer Abdullah has been the main running back behind Josh Jacobs but only slightly.
DJ Chark is still worth a waiver pickup.
- Chark is rostered in 29.7% of leagues.
- He scored 9.6 and 14.8 fantasy points over his last two games, respectively.
- After missing seven weeks, he seems to be assimilating into Detroit’s offense.
- Based on his snap count and targets, Chark is the Lions’ WR2 behind Amon-Ra St. Brown.
- Chark has run only 22% of his routes in the slot, whereas St. Brown has run more than half of his in the slot.
- So what did he do in Week 14? He scored 21.4 fantasy points, catching six of his seven targets for 94 receiving yards and a touchdown.
- Amon-Ra St. Brown was still Jared Goff’s go-to target, earning a team-leading nine targets.
- Prior to Week 14, the Vikings allowed the most fantasy points to wide receivers.
- The Lions face the Jets in Week 15, who have allowed the fewest fantasy points to wide receivers.
- You can still add Chark and stash him for Week 16, where he will face a more susceptible defense Carolina defense.
Richie James is worth a roster spot.
- James is rostered in 5.5% of leagues.
- James has scored 13+ fantasy points in three of his last four games; scoring a touchdown in each of those three games.
- James is clearly touchdown dependent, so he’s probably not worth starting yet.
- He’s still the Giants’ WR2 in snaps and targets over the last four games. He did, however, lead New York in snaps, routes run and targets against the Eagles in Week 14.
- His role transcends any matchup, though the Giants face the Vikings’ weak pass defense in Week 16.
- No team has given up more fantasy points to wideouts than Minnesota.
Demarcus Robinson is a fine wide receiver to roster.
- Robinson is rostered in 11.9% on leagues.
- He’s not too likely to win you your week but he’s become the Ravens’ No. 1 receiver over the last four weeks.
- In three of his last four games, he has 6+ targets, 40+ receiving yards and 10+ fantasy points.
- In Week 14, Robinson led the Ravens in snaps, routes run and targets.
- Robinson’s upcoming schedule is juicy past Week 15.
- The downside? Baltimore only threw the ball 15 times in week 14.
- The Ravens’ next three opponents and where they rank among fantasy points allowed to wide receivers: Browns (15th-fewest), Falcons (25th) and Steelers (28th).
Chris Moore is worth a lineup spot if Brandin Cooks and/or Nico Collins miss more time.
- Moore is rostered in 1% of leagues.
- Without Cooks nor Collins, Moore led the Texans in all receiving stats by twofold.
- He caught 10 of 11 targets for 124 receiving yards.
- Amari Rodgers operated as Houston’s WR2; pulling in four receptions for 57 receiving yards and a score.
- Rostering Moore is just a simple case of chasing the target share.
- With Cooks and Collins both nursing injuries, I wouldn’t be surprised if Moore emerges as the Texans’ WR1 for the rest of the season.
I still think you should avoid all Rams’ wide receivers.
- Bennett Skowronek and Tutu Atwell are both rostered in fewer than 3% of leagues.
- Van Jefferson is rostered in 25.6% of leagues.
- Skowronek led Rams wideouts with seven catches on eight targets for 89 yards and 15.9 fantasy points, though Atwell led the team in targets (nine).
- Jefferson and Skowronek led the team in routes-ran.
- The Rams were in negative game script for most of the game which led to more passes being thrown that can be expected in future weeks.
- Baker Mayfield looks to be an upgrade at quarterback over John Wolford and Bryce Perkins; however, one encouraging game against one of the worst pass defenses in football shouldn’t change much.
- Los Angeles’ schedule certainly doesn’t help. The Rams’ next three opponents and where they rank among fantasy points allowed to wide receivers: Packers (17th-fewest), Broncos (7th) and Chargers (8th).
It’s time to add Chigoziem Okonkwo.
- He’s rostered in 6.9% of leagues.
- I told you last week to watch out for him. The Titans’ tight end responded with 18.5 fantasy points.
- Okonkwo caught all six of his targets for 45 yards and a score.
- This is the third week in a row he saw 5+ targets.
- The Jaguars previously were 21st in fantasy points allowed to tight ends.
- The Titans face the Chargers and Texans next, both of which are bottom-ten teams in defending tight ends in fantasy football.
- Considering how bad the tight end position is in fantasy, a player like Okonkwo is extremely valuable.
It’s also time to add Evan Engram, if he’s still available.
- He’s rostered in 49.6% of leagues.
- Any time a tight end scores 39.2 fantasy points on 15 targets, the player deserves a second look.
- The Titans previously were 23rd in fantasy points allowed to tight ends.
- The Jaguars’ face the Cowboys in Week 15, who have allowed the eighth-fewest fantasy points to tight ends.
- After that, an alright matchup against the Jets (18th-fewest) and a delicious matchup at the Texans (27th).
- The Titans previously were 23rd in fantasy points allowed to tight ends.
- There’s obviously some risk with starting Engram, but the position’s volatility in fantasy should convince you to target the upside more often than not.
You don’t need to roster Tyler Higbee anymore.
- He’s rostered in 78.6% of leagues.
- Higbee hasn’t scored more than 3.5 fantasy points since Week 11.
- With the Rams’ offensive line woes, Higbee has been moonlighting even more as an additional blocker.
- Higbee saw eight targets in both Week 10 and Week 11.
- He’s seen that same amount combined over the last three games.
- While Higbee’s snap rate hasn’t changed much, he’s tied for the fourth-most targets on the team in that span.
- The Rams’ offense, even with Baker Mayfield, still doesn’t look great.
- And Higbee still saw just three targets in Week 14, which was the third-most on the team.
- You shouldn’t hold out hope Higbee returns to his target-happy ways from earlier in the season.
- Unless you have a top tight end, this position can be a revolving door on your lineups… a.k.a you’re probably best streaming tight ends.