Once there were many, now there are few.
With Christmas nearly upon us, the fantasy football playoffs are underway in full force. For those lucky teams still alive, a gift has already been given – another week or two of driving yourself nuts setting lineups and freaking out as the games unfold.
Some hobby, this obsession of ours.
To be honest, if you’ve made it this far (the semifinals of most leagues), odds are you aren’t digging through the scrap heap for a Week 15 starter. If you are, well – condolences. This week probably isn’t going to end well.
But just because there isn’t much hope doesn’t mean there isn’t any at all. In next week’s final IDP Waiver Wire column of the season (hard to believe another year has come and gone), I’ll focus on some youngsters of interest to IDP owners in Dynasty formats.
This week though, we’ll do an abbreviated version of the same ol’ same ol’, with a look at a couple of possible plug-and-play options at each of the three main positions.
Keep hope alive, my brothers and sisters!
Demarcus Lawrence – DE, Dallas Cowboys
In the opinion of Kelly Anderson of Rant Sports, Lawrence has emerged as the Cowboys most dependable pass-rusher in his second NFL season. “The Cowboys have struggled to get any kind of consistent pressure on quarterbacks this year,” Anderson said “and as a result, the defense cannot get off the field or create any turnovers to put their offense in a good position.”
“But it looks as though things are finally starting to turn around for them and it’s all because of the play of Lawrence. Lawrence has been a one-man wrecking crew on the line as he has three sacks over the last two games and five over the last five making him the team’s leader in sacks with six.”
This week’s Saturday night matchup with the New York Jets isn’t especially favorable, but it isn’t awful either. And regardless of the matchup, most fantasy owners aren’t going to find a hotter pass-rusher on the wire.
IF YOU CAN’T GET LAWRENCE: It’s happened very quietly during this year’s dumpster fire in San Francisco, but Quinton Dial is approaching 50 tackles on the season and has 13 stops and a sack over the past two weeks. Over that span the second-year pro is a top-10 fantasy producer in Fantasy Sharks Default IDP Scoring.
Jelani Jenkins – OLB, Miami Dolphins
After an eye-opening rookie season, not a lot has gone right for Jenkins in 2015. First there was a hot first two games, followed by a prolonged slump. Then there was an ankle injury that cost Jenkins one game and limited him in several others. Even since his return to action, Jenkins’ numbers have been uninspiring at best, For the season, Jenkins ranks outside the top 50 fantasy options at his position. WAY outside the top 50.
So, why am I recommending him? Am I drunk? Have I finally just given up. Is the waiver wire at linebacker really that bare? (well yeah, kinda)
No, this recommendation is all about the matchup. In Week 15, Jenkins and the Dolphins face the San Diego Chargers. Sure, the Chargers are a 3-10 train wreck of a football team. They are also a 3-10 train wreck of a football team that’s been giving up fantasy points to linebackers in buckets. No team in the NFL has allowed more this season.
IF YOU CAN’T GET JENKINS: Speaking of rotten football teams allowing tons of fantasy points to linebackers, the similarly 3-10 Browns are fifth in that regard. Those Browns are about to run into the buzzsaw that is the Seattle Seahawks in Week 15, which should mean at least a decent outing for outside linebacker K.J. Wright. Wright’s been piling up stops in blowouts of late, with 18 total tackles over the past two weeks.
Mike Adams – SS, Indianapolis Colts
One of the elder statesmen of the Colts, Adams told Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk that he doesn’t care if fans have written the team off after last week’s debacle against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
“[E]verybody is off the bandwagon,” Adams told reporters on Monday, “We have nothing to lose, just win. We believe we’re going to win and that’s all that matters. That’s all that matters. We’re going to go out there and we’re going to put it all on the line. Everybody is saying we lost to the Jaguars and by that wide margin. We play the Jaguars twice a year, they know us just like we know them. They’re a good football team. Great defense, they are a good team. Texans, they are a good team. People tend to count them out like they’re just some scrubs and they don’t get paid. No, they are a good team when you look at them and we’re going to have our hands full and at the end of the day we expect to win and that’s what we got to do, win. If we want to be in, we got to win.”
Adams has been hot of late, with double-digit fantasy points in each of the past two weeks. Toss in a must-win game against a Texans squad that has been a top-10 IDP matchup for defensive backs this season and as matchup plays go one could do worse.
MATCHUP CB PLAY OF THE WEEK: He may be better known for tying the record for most penalties committed by an NFL Player in a season (22 – way to go, bud), but Brandon Browner has also shown the ability to post stats in favorable matchups. This week the New Orleans Saints play a Detroit Lions team leading the league in fantasy points allowed to defensive backs, and the big-bodied Browner will likely spend much of the day muscling up Calvin Johnson. For CB streamers, Browner’s your guy.
With the fantasy playoffs underway, Fantasy Sharks has you covered. Whether it’s player rankings and projections, waiver wire targets, rookie analysis for dynasty leagues or strategy tips, IDP Staff Writer Walton Spurlin and IDP Senior Staff Writer Gary Davenport have all the information you need to dominate your IDP league in 2015. Also, for the latest IDP news and player updates follow IDP Sharks on Twitter