Barrera's Week 15 Fantasy Players to Watch
Rejoice - Week 15 is finally here! Playoffs may have started for some, but for those (and myself) in a 4-team playoff, now is the time where the pressure of setting your lineup becomes a bit more stressful. A bunch of great choices to plug in, but I've laid out a few that I really think will take your team to the next round.
Alvin Kamara - New Orleans Saints v Kansas City Chiefs
Ok.. Kamara should be gimme, but the Top 5 Fantasy back has not been himself since Taysom took over under center. Although Kamara had a fairly solid day vs a banged up Philadelphia squad, his previous 3 weeks had given fantasy owners a legitimate cause for concern. Specifically, Alvin had not exceeded more than 17 points in PPR formats during that span. That worry could be left on the bench this week, as Drew Brees may be back in the starting role. In a game that I expect to be a high scoring affair, I see Kamara feasting on a defense that has allowed the eighth-most rushing yards per attempt, and the fourth-most yards per target. Even if Hill does get the start, I believe Kamara is trending back to his early-season form.
Kyler Murray - Arizona Cardinals v Philadelphia Eagles
Similar to Kamara, Kyler has not been himself of late. Hell, the Arizona Cardinals as a whole have not been themselves since the last-second victory over Buffalo. Murray has noticeably been nursing a shoulder injury over the past few weeks, which certainly impacted his rushing totals. Prior to the Giants game this Sunday, Murray had a total of 61 rushing yards over the previous 3 weeks. Their Sunday victory though should put some ease to your nerves. Even with just average numbers, Kyler looked healthier, rushed for just under 50 yards, and played comfortably versus a surprisingly decent New York defense. The Cards' offense has a mouth-watering matchup vs the banged up Eagles secondary, who just lost Rodney McLeod for the year with a torn ACL. Expect Hopkins, Kirk, and Philly-killer Larry Fitzgerald to have a field day against the Birds., and Murray should return to elite-fantasy form.
Brandon Aiyuk - San Francisco 49ers @ Dallas Cowboys
Deebo Samuel left last week's game vs Washington with a hamstring injury, and Aiyuk stepped up in a big way. The nifty wideout hauled in 10 catches off 16 targets, and ended the evening with 119 yards. Kyle Shanahan, even with injuries and a backup QB, has found ways to make Aiyuk a staple of his offense. If you don't believe me, just look at the rookie's numbers. Brandon has surpassed 70 yards in six of his outings, and has scored 19, 20, and 21 points in his previous 3 games in PPR format. Lastly, Brandon is facing the susceptible Dallas defense, who have been more than generous to wideouts throughout the season. Expect Aiyuk to continue his stellar rookie year.
T.Y. Hilton - Indianapolis Colts vs Houston Texans
One of the biggest disappointments of the season has been the veteran Colts wideout, but he has recently found the fountain of youth. T.Y. has now scored in three consecutive games, and he has his second matchup in four weeks vs the abysmal Houston Texans. Hilton had a big game versus Houston in week 13, as he turned 8 receptions into 110 yards and a TD. It's unclear if Mr. Hilton's hot streak has come to an end, but it's hard to pass him up right now. I think he's a solid WR2 option with a high floor.
J.D. McKissic - Washington Football Team vs Seattle Seahawks
The Football team has taken control of the NFC East, and they certainly appear to be a team to take seriously....for now. Alex Smith seems to be OK for this week's matchup vs the Seahawks, and, with Gibson still recovering, expect McKissic to continue to lead the backfield. Even against tougher defenses, J.D. has been able to surpass 70 total yards in back-to-back outings. JD now faces a weak Seattle defense, where you should expect to see McKissic used effectively in the passing game. If Washington's defense can continue their strong performance, Alex Smith and company could very well pull out the victory. I think J.D. is a strong flex option in PPR leagues.
- Mike Barrera