Sunday Six Pack 2015 Week 15
- Johnny Football Catches His Dream
And shackles it to his heart. Assuming that he can stay out of bars and clubs for the next month, Browns QB Johnny Manziel should be the starter for the rest of the season in what will amount to a four week audition for next year’s starting position. Manziel looked decent enough in the last full game that he played in week 10 against the Steelers completing 73.3 percent of his 45 pass attempts for 372 yards with one passing TD and one INT. This week he gets the 49ers’ 27th ranked passing defense that is giving up an average of 269.9 yards per game. If you are desperate at QB, Manziel actually offers adequate upside, especially with the projected return of WR Travis Benjamin. Benjamin is still the PPR WR21 despite going through a rough patch between weeks 7 and 9, and missing most of the last two weeks with a shoulder injury. While Gary Barnidge has had better production with Josh McCown under center, he is still a focal point of the Browns offense. With a new contract extension, Barnidge is squarely in the TE1 discussion for next couple of years. Since taking over for an injured Carlos Hyde, 49ers RB Shaun Draughn is the PPR RB8 in average FPs per game at 15.6. Against a Browns defense that is ranked next to last in rushing defense and giving up an average 136.3 yards per game, Draughn is a solid RB1 option for Week 14.
- 5000 Carries in The Wind
You take a running leap and you learn to fly. Now that overall PPR RB3 Mark Ingram is on the shelf with a shoulder injury, the question for many teams that Ingram led to the fantasy playoffs is what to do now. Maybe you have CJ Spiller already rostered or were able to acquire blast from the past Tim Hightower. Is either one of them startable in Ingram’s stead? My best guess is that the initial plan is to split up Ingram’s massive workload between the two, but it’s hard to believe that the Saints, who are still alive in the playoff hunt, will suddenly decide to trust Spiller, especially with the task of keeping their most important asset by a galaxy — QB Drew Brees — healthy. Hightower, although not spectacular, is an able pass protector. I would be very surprised if Hightower did not out-snap Spiller in this game by a decent margin. That certainly won’t put Hightower anywhere near Ingram’s consistent point scoring, but it might make him serviceable, even against the Buccaneers’ good run defense (ranked seventh in average yards per game given up) if you don’t have anyone else on your roster in RB2 territory. The other side of this game has overall PPR RB4 Doug Martin against the Saints’ rushing defense that is ranked dead last in the league and giving up an average of 137.8 yards for game. As Keith Jackson would say, “Whoa Nellie!”
- Eric Decker Has Sex Hair
But whoa-oh, you’re such a beautiful mess. Despite missing one game, Jets WR Eric Decker is the overall PPR WR13 and is tied for fifth in the league with eight TD receptions. Decker and Brandon Marshall have quietly made up the most effective WR duo in the NFL this year and have made Ryan Fitzpatrick a borderline QB1. While the Titans’ passing defense is ranked seventh overall in the league — only giving up an average of 230.6 passing yards per game — I still would start Decker as a WR2 without hesitation and Marshall is without question a WR1. In fact, with some back-end QB1s having difficult matchups this week, Fitzpatrick is almost startable in 12 team, one QB leagues. I’d start him over Matthew Stafford, Jay Cutler or Ryan Tannehill. For the Titans, WR Dorial Green-Beckham broke out last week, catching five of six targets for 119 yards and one TD. He may have a difficult matchup this week with the anticipated return of Darrelle Revis however, but the dynasty future certainly looks bright for DGB. Overall PPR TE4 Delanie Walker should continue to carry the Titans’ offense this week. He’s a great model for upcoming UDFA Dwayne Allen in my opinion.
- Remember Alfred Morris?
All I’ve got is a memory. After three years in a row of being at least a PPR RB2, and averaging over four yards per carry, the wheels have fallen off for Redskins RB Alfred Morris in 2015. He is currently the overall PPR RB61 and only has six games with double-digit carries this year. His average yards per carry this year is just 3.5. It is hard to believe that Morris just forgot how to be a good RB. An UDFA after this year, I would not expect Alf to return to our nation’s capital in 2016. He is a decent dynasty hold or buy-low with the hope that greener pastures will bring him back to life. Meanwhile if you have to start a Washington RB against the Bears’ 29th-ranked rushing defense that is giving up an average of 127.9 yards per game, look at Matt Jones who ran the ball 18 times last week against Dallas and could see increased passing down work with Chris Thompson out again with an injury. Meanwhile, Matt Forte out-carried rookie Jeremy Langford 21 to 12 last week and saw five targets to Langford’s three. That workload distribution is likely to continue against a Redskins rushing defense that is ranked 25th in the league, giving up an average of 124.2 yards per game. Forte is squarely in the RB1 arena while Langford should be considered a Flex.
- West and Ware: Two Birds Holding Hands
We’ll do anything together. Even eat some bacon. In a game that was back and forth until the fourth quarter, Chiefs RBs Charcandrick West and Spencer Ware combined for just 16 total carries (nine for West and seven for Ware) and five targets (three for West and two for Ware). This near even split makes either hard to trust in the fantasy playoffs. Theoretically, West is still the lead back, but Ware seems the better bet for goal line carries. If I can, I’d probably try to avoid both, even in a good matchup against the Chargers and their 26th-ranked rushing defense that is giving up and average of 124.6 rushing yards per game. Despite seeing just three targets last week in what is supposed to be a great matchup for TEs against Oakland, TE Travis Kelce is still the overall PPR TE6, which says a lot about the position. Even with that game, Zeus is still averaging 6.75 targets per game and its unlikely that you have someone else better to start. Jeremy Maclin has put up back-to-back 30 point PPR games, seeing double digit targets in both weeks. At this point, Maclin is a high-end WR2 with WR1 upside. Other than Antonio Gates, there’s no one on the badly injured Chargers that you can feel comfortable starting, even overall PPR RB7 Danny Woodhead, who has averaged just 6.57 PPF FPs per game over the last three weeks.
- Thomas Rawls is a Menace Ball
Spread your wings and fly. Despite sporadically playing for the first half of the season, Seahawks RB Thomas Rawls is the overall PPR RB23 and the PPR RB1 over the last three weeks averaging a little more than 23 carries per game over that span. He’s operating as a bell cow back for a Seahawks offense that is firing on all cylinders heading into the fantasy playoffs. Indeed, Russell Wilson is the QB1 over the last three weeks, averaging almost 34.5 points per game and Doug Baldwin is the PPR WR2 averaging 25.6 over his last three. All three should be started against Baltimore’s 19th ranked passing defense. Since Week 4, Ravens WR Kamar Aiken has just one game under ten PPR FPs. The problem is that this week his QB is likely to be Jimmy Clausen and he’ll be up against Richard Sherman and the Seahawks defense. Any Raven not named Buck Allen (the PPR RB2 since Week 11) should probably be on your bench. Allen probably falls out of the RB1 ranks into mid-RB2 territory based on the matchup, but should still have a relatively high floor based on his involvement in the passing game (12 or 13 targets for 107 yards and a TD against the Dolphins.