Embed from Getty Images

RB Pickups

Remember, you’re not only picking up RBs for yourself, but you’re looking to block your opponents to potentially pick up relevant RBs this week if your opponent has injury issues or lacking someone to play at the position.

Justin Jackson – He’s still 50% owned in Yahoo, and he’s being dropped like hot cakes. He needs to be picked back up because it’s possible Melvin Gordon isn’t back on Thursday, and it’s also very likely Austin Ekeler won’t be ready for Thursday night either; Ekeler was put into the concussion protocol on Monday because of symptoms he was feeling in addition to his bruised nerve in his neck. It’s possible Jackson will be the every-down back, and have 20+ touches in a great matchup. Remember, Jackson was a 3-down back in college, so he’s very capable in the pass game if he’s given opportunity.

Kenneth Dixon – It was bound to happen with the most insecure backfield in the NFL. John Harbaugh and the Ravens’ willingness to stick with Kenneth Dixon reminds me of an unhealthy relationship after Dixon has proven that he can’t stay healthy. It’s possible that changes, but either way, Harbaugh has said on Monday that Dixon’s role will grow moving forward, and it already has taken away from Gus Edwards over the last two weeks. Dixon had 8 carries to Edwards’ 16 this past Sunday, and the most important carry at the goal line was given to Dixon specifically. Edwards played on 44% of snaps, but Dixon wasn’t that far behind with 32%. Ty Montgomery’s 27% doesn’t help either Dixon or Edwards, and just limits both from a fantasy perspective. Moving forward, Dixon might be the preferred PPR play over Edwards since Gus is not involved whatsoever in that aspect of the game. If Joe Flacco starts this week, he should get a bump in targets.

Damien Williams – Spencer Ware was a bit banged up, hurting his shoulder and tweaking his hamstring. He did finish the game, but Damien Williams might have a PPR flex-worthy role for the next couple of weeks either way. He couldn’t get much going, but had 4 red zone touches that resulted in 2 TDs compared to Ware’s 1 touch, and even came into the game specifically for a goal line carry. Williams also ran 26 routes compared to Ware’s 19, so with Sammy Watkins probably out for the foreseeable future, there are definitely targets up for grab. Keep an eye on Ware’s practice reports this week; I would grab Williams just in case I was depending on Ware moving forward. Keep in mind that this is a short week for the Chiefs; they see the Chargers this Thursday night. If Ware is out, Williams becomes a great start with him potentially get 10-15 carries in addition to his work in the passing game.

Jeff Wilson Jr. – If Matt Breida were to miss another week, Jeff Wilson Jr seems to be in for another big workload after some very encouraging usage this past Sunday. He was an every-down back, and will see the same Seahawks team he was able to a have a big game against in Week 13, except this time the 49ers will be at home. He can put up potential RB1 numbers in this matchup if he gets a similar workload, and he’ll likely be used a lot more in the passing game, as that’s a serious vulnerability for the Seahawks defense right now.

Doug Martin – Yup, Doug fucking Martin. It’s really about the matchup this week, and the assured volume he’ll get. He had 18 and 16 carries over the last two weeks against Kansas City and Pittsburgh, and we should see something similar this week in Cincinnati. If the Raiders were able to stay competitive against the Chiefs and beat the Steelers, I think they should be able to keep the run game in play all game long against the Bengals. Martin has scored in each of the last three weeks, and he’ll look to make it four straight this week.

Derrick Henry – Trust isn’t the word that we can associated with Derrick Henry and this offense in general. Lewis has out-snapped Henry all season long, including the last three weeks, but it’s way closer to a 50/50 split then it was prior to the last three weeks. Henry has also out-touched Lewis over the last three weeks, even with Lewis on the field more. Henry has averaged almost 5 yards per carry this season, so if we assume 12-15 carries, we can project 60-75 rushing yards with a 50%+ chance of scoring. He’s still a low-end RB2 because there’s no way to tell whether he’ll actually see more than 11 carries – he hasn’t since Week 7, and then didn’t since Week 3 prior to that. I would bump Henry up just a little bit as someone who’s a bit more playable in Week 15 potentially getting a few more touches after that performance. 

Elijah McGuire – Isaiah Crowell was banged up last week, and McGuire racked up a real workload with his 20 touches and 74% of his snaps this past week. If Crowell misses, McGuire will be the primary back, but the matchup is tough against Houston. He’s preferred in PPR in case the Jets abandon the run because of the tough rushing matchup. Volume is king though, and he was still able to come through in a tough matchup last week.

Darren Sproles – With Corey Clement potentially out for the season, Sproles can play a big role against the Rams this week – a matchup in which the Eagles will likely need to pass a ton in. That’s his forte, and because of the trust the coaching staff has in him when he’s healthy, he led the Eagles in snaps last week; he out-snapped Josh Adams 42 to 40%. He did score twice over the last two games on very limited touches, and with him being the passing game specialist in this backfield, he can legitimately have a solid RB2 week in full PPR leagues.

WR Pickups

Dante Pettis – Marquise Goodwin came back last week, but he only played 25 snaps. Pettis is currently the only relevant WR on the 49ers right now, and he’s shown his big play ability over the last several weeks. He had 7 targets in each of the last three games along with 4 TDs total in that time. He has primarily lined up on the left side of the offense out wide, which is where the Seahawks are most vulnerable in the pass game.

Curtis Samuel – Samuel has gotten it done over the last few weeks, and him producing 80+ yards on 11-target and 8-target games the last 2 weeks is very encouraging. This week the Panthers see the Saints at home, and while the Saints have doubled non-primary WRs going deep, he should be able to pick up short to intermediate targets in a game Cam Newton will likely have to throw a ton in.

DaeSean Hamilton – He took over Emmanuel Sanders role, and caught 7 of 9 targets with a TD. The yardage wasn’t great, but you’re happy with the result in PPR even without a TD. Case Keenum has always had an affinity for target slot WRs, so Hamilton is viable moving forward. Just know he’s a bit desperate since we only have a sample size of one game without Sanders.

Strictly Upside WRs Pickups for Week 15: Robert Foster, Josh Reynolds, Chris Conley – Foster has had 100+ yards in 3 of his last 4 games, so the big play ability is there. It’s possible Darius Slay shadows him, but it’s not a matchup to be too worried about. Reynolds is going up against a Philly team that can be fully taken advantage of in the secondary, and we’ve seen his upside as a full-time perimeter WR. Conley has a decent matchup this week if he doesn’t see too much if Casey Hayward or Desmond King, so he should be okay if Tyreek Hill plays on Thursday night. Because of that, Conley can see extra opportunity if the other WRs are better covered.

TE Pickups

Ian Thomas – From the moment Greg Olsen went off the field two weeks ago, Thomas has gotten volume. We have to temper our expectations this week in a tough matchup, but he’s still a viable start this week as Cam is looking his way often. 9 of 11 targets for 77 yards is nothing to scoff at for a TE, so if you need someone at the position this week, it’s probably a good idea to take advantage of the upside.

Cam Brate – Brate might be available in your league, and Baltimore’s vulnerability on defense is defending the TE. He also happens to be Jameis’ favorite end zone target.

Anthony Firkser – Even with Jonnu Smith involved, Firkser was getting it done on 3-4 targets consistently over the last 4 weeks. With Smith out for the season, Firkser should inherit some extra targets from a QB who has loved his TE since joining the league. 

QB Streams and DEF Streams

Josh Allen – Allen has had a high floor and ceiling since returning from injury, and has a decent matchup this week.

Most QBs and DEFs that are worth playing are probably owned right now, so if there are any questions of who to start, hit me up on Instagram – @upperhandfantasy. The comment section will probably be your best bet vs DM, but feel free to DM me as well.