Fantasy Football Week 15 Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em

Start ‘Em

Eddie Lacy, Green Bay Packers

Aaron Rodgers (shoulder) remains out, so the Packers figure to feature Lacy and the run game heavily, even if Lacy is struggling with an ankle issue. Tyler Dunne of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel tweets that Lacy feels better than he did in the second half last week, so you should like Lacy for at least 60 yards and a touchdown here.

The Dallas Cowboys have allowed the fifth-most rushing yards and have been dead last in fantasy against running backs.

Steven Jackson, Atlanta Falcons

He has looked like he’s closer to retirement than fantasy lineups for the most of this season, but he has been a solid fantasy contributor for the past three weeks. His best is yet to come. The Redskins are the second-worst team in fantasy against running backs, giving up a league-worst 17 rushing touchdowns. Jackson finds the end zone at least once in this one.

Chris Ogbonnaya, Cleveland Browns

With Willis McGahee (concussion) ruled out, the Browns likely turn to Ogbonnaya as their primary ball-carrier, with Fozzy Whittaker filling in behind him. The Browns don’t run the ball well—fifth-worst in football—but the Bears have the worst run defense in football and are the third-worst team in fantasy against running backs. They have allowed a 100-yard rusher for six consecutive weeks, and if not for 95 yards by Alfred Morris in Week 7, it would have been every game since New Orleans in Week 5!

Ogbonnaya won’t reach that total perhaps, but he will be a factor in the passing game and will hit double digits in fantasy points.

Andre Ellington and Rashard Mendenhall, Arizona Cardinals

Say what you want about Mendenhall and Ellington’s timeshare, but they have both been good enough to rank among the top 28 running backs in standard leagues this season. They should be at their combined best against a Tennessee Titans defense that has allowed the fourth-most points to fantasy running backs this season. Both Cards backs rank among the top 30 options this week.

Daniel Thomas and Lamar Miller, Miami Dolphins

This is another frustrating duo for fantasy owners, but this is a week where both Thomas (ankle) and Miller (concussion) can get enough touches to hit double-digit fantasy points. The New England Patriots are the second-worst rush defense in football, and the Dolphins have to pound the ball at them if they are to pull off this upset. Thomas is the better of the two plays here, as he does the goal-line work, but you can use Miller as a Hail Mary too.

Sit ‘Em

Adrian Peterson, Toby Gerhart and Matt Asiata, Minnesota Vikings

It isn’t the matchup here that should scare you. It is the shaky status of Peterson (foot) and Gerhart (hamstring). You cannot be sure which ones will be active at this point or how long they can prove effective. The guess here is none of this trio proves to be good for any more than a mere five fantasy points. Avoid them all.

Chris Ivory and Bilal Powell, New York Jets

The Jets had a comeback game last week against the Oakland Raiders, but we should all expect them to go right back in the tank against the Carolina Panthers defense coming off a stinging loss, especially at home. Ivory has decent in good matchups but bad in tough ones (35 yards against the Baltimore Ravens and 11 yards against the Cincinnati Bengals).

The Panthers are better than both, with the best run defense in football and No. 3 in fantasy against running backs. Don’t trust the Jets here.

DeAngelo Williams and Mike Tolbert, Carolina Panthers

On the other side of the field, don’t expect the Panthers to muster much on the ground either. Sure, Jonathan Stewart (knee) is out of the way, but the Jets have the second-best run defense in football and are No. 2 in fantasy against backs. You didn’t get to your fantasy semifinals riding these two guys out, so don’t bother with them this week.

Bobby Rainey, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

We have to admit we were dead wrong about calling Rainey a sit last week. But we have even more merit to label him as such all over again. The San Francisco 49ers are a top-10 team against the run and in a must-win situation. Expect them to load the box to take away Rainey to the tune of 15 carries for 45 yards. If that is enough to get you by in the fantasy semifinals, by all means, use him. It should be.

Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens

This one hurts. You cannot start you first-round pick in your most important week of the season, the one that can get you to the Super Bowl. If you have come this far, you know it is not because of Rice at this point. You can do without him, especially against the sixth-best run defense in football in the Lions. They have given up just 99.3 yards per game, and that is after the Eagles freezer-burned them for almost 300 in the snow last week.

Week 15 Running Backs Rankings – Eric Mack
1 Jamaal Charles KC at Oak 1 0
2 LeSean McCoy Phi at Min 2 0
3 Knowshon Moreno Den vs. SD 7 +4
4 Matt Forte Chi at Cle 3 -1
5 Marshawn Lynch Sea at NYG 5 0
6 Eddie Lacy GB at Dal 6 0
7 DeMarco Murray Dal vs. GB 4 -3
8 Shane Vereen NE at Mia 10 +2
9 Frank Gore SF at TB 15 +6
10 Zac Stacy StL vs. NO 8 -2
11 C.J. Spiller Buf at Jac 22 +11
12 Alfred Morris Was at Atl 9 -3
13 Chris Johnson Ten vs. Ari 23 +10
14 Reggie Bush Det vs. Bal 16 +2
15 Steven Jackson Atl vs. Was 14 -1
16 Ben Tate Hou at Ind 11 -5
17 Ray Rice Bal at Det 26 +9
18 Le’Veon Bell Pit vs. Cin 13 -5
19 Andre Brown NYG vs. Sea 12 -7
20 Giovani Bernard Cin at Pit 19 -1
21 Darren Sproles NO at StL 38 +17
22 Rashard Mendenhall Ari at Ten 30 +8
23 Rashad Jennings Oak vs. KC 20 -3
24 Ryan Mathews SD at Den 18 -6
25 Daniel Thomas Mia vs. NE 42 +17
26 Chris Ogbonnaya Cle vs. Chi 31 +5
27 Danny Woodhead SD at Den 28 +1
28 Andre Ellington Ari at Ten 35 +7
29 Bobby Rainey TB vs. SF 17 -12
30 Chris Ivory NYJ at Car 40 +10
31 Montee Ball Den vs. SD 27 -4
32 Stevan Ridley NE at Mia 41 +9
33 Donald Brown Ind vs. Hou 32 -1
34 BenJarvus Green-Ellis Cin at Pit 34 0
35 Fred Jackson Buf at Jac 24 -11
36 Jordan Todman Jac vs. Buf 36 0
37 Lamar Miller Mia vs. NE 37 0
38 Toby Gerhart Min vs. Phi 21 -17
39 Joique Bell Det vs. Bal 33 -6
40 Trent Richardson Ind vs. Hou 47 +7
41 Pierre Thomas NO at StL 25 -16
42 LeGarrette Blount NE at Mia 50 +8
43 DeAngelo Williams Car vs. NYJ 43 0
44 Mike Tolbert Car vs. NYJ 49 +5
45 Matt Asiata Min vs. Phi 52 +7
46 Bryce Brown Phi at Min 59 +13
47 Marcel Reece Oak vs. KC 46 -1
48 Bernard Pierce Bal at Det 60 +12
49 Kendall Hunter SF at TB 66 +17
50 Robert Turbin Sea at NYG 63 +13
51 James Starks GB at Dal 44 -7
52 Knile Davis KC at Oak 69 +17
53 Shonn Greene Ten vs. Ari 53 0
54 Roy Helu Was at Atl 56 +2
55 Benny Cunningham StL vs. NO 57 +2
56 Dennis Johnson Hou at Ind 61 +5
57 Peyton Hillis NYG vs. Sea 58 +1
58 Brandon Bolden NE at Mia 65 +7
59 Bilal Powell NYJ at Car 51 -8
60 Jacquizz Rodgers Atl vs. Was 55 -5
61 Mark Ingram NO at StL 54 -7
62 Michael Bush Chi at Cle 62 0
63 Brian Leonard TB vs. SF 72 +9

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