Imagine how exhausting it can be playing in 10+ redraft/dynasty fantasy football leagues and partaking in legalized sports gambling every week. I can imagine….and I’m exhausted! I’m also excited though, because week 15 marks the beginning of the fantasy football playoffs and it marks the point in the season when anything goes for some of these teams with their roster decisions. Names like Dare Ogunbowale and Khalif Raymond can appear near the top of position rankings out of nowhere! It adds another element to a game we all love and hate.
For me, week 14 was half as predictable as I’d prefer with the Vikings and Lions scoring a combined 57 points and the Dolphins and Chargers only getting to 40 points. I 100% overestimated the Dolphins ability to bounce back against what had been a defense trending the wrong way. I have two picks for week 15 that I’m hoping can get to and beat their overs: JAX @ DAL and CHI @ PHI.
JAX @ DAL (-4.5) over/under 47.5
The first matchup features the Jaguars and Cowboys and the over/under is set at 47.5. On the season, both teams rank inside the top-9 in beating their overs. There’s good reason to have confidence in a Dallas offense that ranks third in points scored in 2022, but the Jaguars carry a good bit of momentum into this matchup after scoring 36 in a win against the AFC South leading Titans. Which is great news because over the last five weeks, the Cowboys have scored a lot of points and forced their opponents to stay on the throttle as their games have averaged 58 combined points in that span.
Another positive item to note is the play from Trevor Lawrence this year. He currently has a PFF passing grade of 72.1, which is 6 percentage points higher than Dak Prescott and he ranks as the overall QB8 this season. Lawrence and the Jags offense are capable of scoring points and should be playing catch up all game which gives me a good bit of confidence in a couple of plays in this one.
The first is at the wide receiver position. Over the last four weeks, DK Metcalf narrowly leads CeeDee Lamb in half-PPR points per game at 15.7 to Lamb’s 15.6. While CeeDee gets this point friendly matchup with the Jaguars, DK gets to contend with the San Francisco 49er’s defense that ranks first in the NFL against the pass in that same four game span. Seattle has also played the 49ers this year and in that game, DK was held to 4 catches and just 35 yards. I’d fire up CeeDee over Metcalf without hesitation this week.
Play: CeeDee Lamb > DK Metcalf
The second play is between the two QB's in this matchup. I prefer Lawrence over Prescott based on season long and recent performances. Lawrence ranks as the overall QB4 since week 10, averaging 23.9 fantasy points per game. In that same span, Dak is at just 18.4. This isn’t to say that the Jaguars have the better offense, it just points to the fact that the Cowboys don’t need Dak to throw as much with how good they are everywhere else. Dallas has the 11th ranked running game since week 10, while Jacksonville ranks 28th in that same span.
For this matchup, I don’t project the Jaguars 28th ranked defense to give Dallas any problems in the run or pass game. Conversely, the Jaguars offense should be limited on the ground by the Cowboy’s 7th ranked run defense. All of that combined leads me to believe that the Jaguars should be forced to throw early and throw often in this matchup, which is why I favor Lawrence over Prescott this week.
Play: Trevor Lawrence > Dak Prescott
CHI @ PHI (-9) over/under 48.5
The final matchup here is between the Bears and the Eagles and carries an over/under of 48.5. On the year, these teams are number one and two in beating their overs. You absolutely love to see that! We also know both teams here can score points. The Bears have scored 24 or more points in 5 of Justin Fields’ last 6 games. It makes sense when you factor in how bad Chicago’s defense has been in that span ranking dead last in terms of efficiency. Philly meanwhile, has scored 35+ in three straight weeks.
I have no doubt that the Eagles will score their share of points and force Chicago and Justin Fields to press on offense. That should lead to big days for several players on both sides in this matchup. I have two that I carry a good amount of confidence in for the weekend.
Over his last four games, Justin Fields has finished as the overall QB1, QB7, QB5, and QB5. In that same span, Fields ranks first in fantasy points per game at 28.4. Those are pretty good numbers! Unfortunately for Fields, he won’t have Darnell Mooney for the remainder of the season and he faces the second toughest matchup for QB’s this year. Philadelphia is giving up just 13.1 fantasy points per game to the QB position and leads the league in turnovers with 24.
As for Jalen Hurts, he has finished as the QB2, QB1, QB2, and QB1 in his last four games. He does trail Fields in points per game in that span, but the gap has narrowed to just a tenth of a point (28.4 vs. 28.3) as Hurts has improved his play. I’m taking Hurts and the Philadelphia offense over Fields with confidence this weekend.
Play: Jalen Hurts > Justin Fields
In my second play, I’m taking the stack and going with AJ Brown over Amon-Ra St. Brown. AJ Brown goes into this weekend’s matchup with the Bears with an excellent matchup advantage. PFF has him graded out at an 88 against all Chicago defenders which is good for the 9th best matchup on the slate. St. Brown on the other hand, gets a much lower grade of 56 and gets the Jets who rank as the third toughest matchup for the WR position this weekend.
I admire what Detroit has accomplished over their last six games, but Philly gets Chicago’s 31st ranked pass defense and that’s too good to pass up.
Play: AJ Brown > Amon-Ra St. Brown
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