Week 15 is nearing its completion, meaning most Fantasy Football leagues are only a week away from championship week. Waiver wire acquisitions get risky this time of year, and if you’re competing for the championship, you ideally have your lineup already set for Week 16. However, with injuries lingering across the league, and playoff teams in contention, there may be some valuable acquisitions that are worth the gambling. Below, I will outline five players that I would consider adding for the final week of the fantasy football season.
QB Brandon Weeden, Houston Texans
It is the next-man-up approach for the Texans, as they have now lost T.J. Yates in addition to Brian Hoyer. After Yates went down early in the Texans’ huge win, and first win ever in Indianapolis, to take a one-game division lead in the AFC South, Weeden, who was extremely unimpressive in his stint as the Cowboys’ quarterback earlier this season, came in and looked very composed as he lead his team to victory. I would never, ever recommend Weeden to fantasy owners, except for this type of situation. The Texans need one win to clinch the division, and Weeden is a sure bet to start in next week’s game against the Titans. This is a must-win game for Houston, as they would have to play a difficult game against Jacksonville in Week 17. While Alfred Blue rushed for over 100 yards in Week 15, the Texans’ rushing game has been struggling over the past several weeks as a whole. Therefore, I expect Weeden to be throwing ball a lot next week, and he has some great targets to throw to in DeAndre Hopkins and Nate Washington. In the Week 15 victory over Indianapolis, Weeden completed 11 of his 18 passes for 105 yards and a touchdown. If you need another idea, see if Peyton Manning is available in your league.
RB Mike Gillislee, Buffalo Bills
Gillislee, a former 5th round pick of the Dolphins in 2013 out of Florida, has seen a limited number of carries over the past several weeks, but has seen some success. Now, after the knee injury suffered to LeSean McCoy, he could be in line for an increased workload in next week’s game against a Cowboys team that is known for its terrible run defense. Gillislee may in fact get the start in next week’s game over Karlos Williams. He received only four carries in the Week 15 loss against the Redskins, but one of those carries was a 60-yard touchdown run. On the day, he rushed for 81 yards on his four carries, including the touchdown. He also caught two passes for two yards. He could catch some passes in the backfield next week, which could give him added value in PPR leagues. Overall, he has averaged 9.7 yards per carry on his 15 carries over the past three weeks.
RB Donald Brown, San Diego Chargers
Brown, the former starting running back for the Colts, is in his second season now with the Chargers, but has been third on the Chargers’ depth chart this season, behind both Melvin Gordon and Danny Woodhead. Now, with Gordon leaving the Week 15 game due to injury, the Chargers may look to Brown to finish out the season as the backup to Woodhead. The Chargers like to use Woodhead as a receiver, not necessarily as a rushing back, so I expect Brown to get the majority of the carries next week if Gordon is not able to play. However, the Chargers play a rather tough opponent, the Oakland Raiders next week. Still, Brown put up some favorable numbers in the Week 15 victory over the Dolphins, so it may be worth riding the hot hand. On the day, he rushed for 90 yards on 12 carries, in addition to catching two passes for 14 yards.
WR DeVante Parker, Miami Dolphins
Parker is still vying for targets against both Jarvis Landry and Kenny Stills, but the struggling Dolphins are failing to get anything going with their running game over the past several weeks. With that being said, Parker has been making the most of his targets recently, so he may be worth a look this week. The Dolphins play the Colts next week, a team struggling mightily on both ends of the field. Therefore, I could see Parker putting up some solid numbers in next week’s game. He had the most receiving yards of all Dolphins’ receivers on Sunday. On the game, he caught four passes for 87 yards. His six targets were tied for second of all receivers, as well.
WR Marvin Jones, Cincinnati Bengals
Jones has been the #2 receiver on the Bengals all season long, and as put up solid numbers. However, due to the presence of both A.J. Green and Tyler Eifert, he’s often a second-thought in all fantasy leagues. Now, with Eifert out with a concussion, and his status for next week’s game is currently uncertain, Jones has been the recipient of even more targets. Additionally, Green was limited to only one catch for 37 yards in Sunday’s game, so he may not even be 100% healthy as well. The Bengals face off against the Broncos on Monday Night Football next week, and Jones could be a great play and be a deciding factor in some fantasy football championship matchups. He has received five targets in all but two games that he’s played in this season. He received six targets, the most of any Bengals’ receiver in their Week 15 victory against the 49ers, catching four passes for 89 yards.