Howdy everyone. I don’t know about you but not all my teams made it to the fantasy playoffs so the best way to keep the fantasy fire burning is in Daily Fantasy. If you did make it to the playoffs and came to get some DFS goodies, hello to you as well. As always we shall be going off of the DraftKings App, using the Sun-Mon selection for our players.

Week 15 Fantasy Football DFS Optimal Lineup

Quarterback

Drew Brees vs Indianapolis Colts – $6,900

Last week Drew Brees had 6 total TDs; 5 through the air, 1 on the ground. There’s no way he’ll match that performance this Monday against the Colts but with his hot hand, Brees is very tempting. Since his return from injury Brees has been averaging 25.5 fantasy points per week. Seemingly coming back into our fantasy hearts without missing a beat. Not to mention, Brees has 12 TDs in the last 4 weeks.

Their opponent, on the other hand, has had some rough weeks in their past matchups. Last week they gave up 38 points to Jameis Winston and the Buccs. The week before that, Ryan Tannehill and the Tennessee Titans blew them up for 31 points. They lost the week prior to the Texans, so currently they are riding 3 straight loses. Winston ended up finishing as QB 1 last week against the Colts, so feel free to plug Brees in and worry no more.

Alternative QBs: Baker Mayfield @ Arizona Cardinals – $6,400, Jimmy Garoppolo vs Atlanta Falcons – $6,100

Running Back

Chris Carson @ Carolina Panthers – $7,500

With Rashaad Penny being placed on IR, Chris Carson is a slam dunk play in your lineups this week. Carson didn’t have much of a game last week against the Rams but that shouldn’t falter your thoughts. He has had double-digit performances 11 of 13 weeks and that was with Penny’s blowup games sprinkled in. Carson has only scored seven TDs, five on the ground, two through the air, but his usage on the team is the clear cut RB1 getting yardage on the ground.

It is no secret that the Carolina Panthers have been suffering this year against the run. Currently, they are ranked 28th against RBs, allowing an average of 139.2 rushing yards a game and have given up the most TDs to RBs with 24. If that’s not enough to persuade you, smart readers, then how do 5.3 yards a carry sound? Pretty sweet when you consider Carson’s current yards per carry at 4.4.

Alternative RB: Aaron Jones vs Chicago Bears – $7,300

Austin Ekeler vs Minnesota Vikings – $6,700

We all know how well Austin Ekeler played last week against the Jacksonville Jaguars. I know too well because he was on my bench. Luckily I had clinched a playoff birth in my league so the loss would not have impacted me.

Ekeler has been on a fantasy roll this whole season. Currently, Ekeler is averaging 20.8 fantasy points a game, this is of course including his huge game last week, but still fairly impressive. He has already doubled his yardage from last season (404) to this one (830) and surpassed his career receiving TDs (6) by two. With or without Melvin Gordon, Austin Ekeler is being used.

Alternative RB: Phillip Lindsay @ Kansas City Chiefs – $5,600

Wide Receiver

Michael Thomas vs Indianapolis Colts – $8,700

If we’re picking Breesus, you already know we want to pair him up with Michael Thomas. Thomas has been nothing but Mr. Reliable for seasonal fantasy users, but daily fantasy coaches as well. Right now he leads the league in targets and receptions with 148 for 121, and he tops all NFL WRs in receiving yards with 1,424. That’s 200 more yards than number two WR Chris Godwin. Brees and Thomas are like peanut butter and jelly, one compliments the other and elevates the dish as a whole.

Alternative WRs: Chris Godwin @ Detroit Lions – $7,700, Davante Adams vs Chicago Bears – $7,600

Darius Slayton vs Miami Dolphins – $4,700

There is no denying the hard work that Slayton has put into this season. After Monday’s game, he finished 2nd overall among WRs and totaled 32.4 fantasy points. This is the 2nd time in four games that Slayton has scored more than 30 points. The other two weeks, Slayton finished just over 10 points but it is still fairly evident that he has a lot of play in the Giants’ offense. Within those past four weeks, Slayton has also gotten at least seven targets per game.

The thing that might have fantasy coaches hiccupping on Slayton could be the QB change that has just taken place in New York. Eli Manning is now the QB again this season with Daniel Jones sidelined. This, however, shouldn’t be anything to derail your confidence in the Giants’ receiver. There were plenty of seasons and games that Odell Beckham Jr. was on Eli’s side of the ball and had amazing fantasy performances. Eli knows how to feed the ball to an offensive weapon so do not fret.

Alternative WR: Mohamed Sanu @ Cincinnati Bengals – $4,300

Dede Westbrook @ Oakland Raiders – $4,600

With D.J. Chark looking to be sidelined for this weekend’s game between the Raiders and Jaguars, Westbrook looks to be the number one guy in Jacksonville again. From a seasonal perspective, Westbrook has been less than great. In daily fantasy though, his low dollar amounts have most likely been exploited in one week or another and proven to either be a true boom or bust.

This week I believe Westbrook is going to be a boom. Gardner Minshew II has proven that he can put up some points with a WR so slipping Westbrook in Chark’s spot shouldn’t have any issues. Picking Westbrook could be risky because of Chris Conley and his usage in the offense. But do not fret my fellow managers Conley might have 70 more receiving yards than Westbrook on the season, but Westbrook has the targets and receptions.

Alternative WR: Mike Williams vs Minnesota Vikings – $4,600

Tight End

Tyler Higbee @ Dallas Cowboys – $3,900

Higbee’s success has definitely been at Gerald Everett’s cost. Because of Everett’s time off the field, Higbee has been exploding for the Los Angeles Rams. Last week was a clear sign of that with 11 targets for 7 receptions and 116 yards. This is Higbee’s second straight week of over 100 receiving yards and 8 targets or more. With his low dollar amount Higbee is a smash play for your daily lineup.

Alternative TEs: *Greg Olsen vs Seattle Seahawks – $3,900 / Ian Thomas vs Seattle Seahawks – $3,100, O.J. Howard @ Detroit Lions – $3,500

* Greg Olsen is dealing with concussion protocol so if he is not playing Sunday, Thomas would be just as likely to eat all of Olsen’s targets.

FLEX

Ronald Jones II @ Detroit Lions – $4,600

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have been on a three-week win streak but that is mostly thanks to Jameis Winston. Ronald Jones began the season strolling his way to the top of the RB depth chart for Tampa Bay, but in recent weeks he has been less than appetizing. This week, the Bucs face the Lions who haven’t exactly been great against the run.

Not only that, Winston is dealing with a hand injury that could affect the way he moves the ball downfield. On the pace the Bucs have been on, Jones would be a skeptical play. Winston nursing an injury is what earns Ronald Jones a second glance for this week’s lineup.

Alternative FLEX: Adrian Peterson vs Philadelphia Eagles – $4,400, Larry Fitzgerald vs Cleveland Browns – $4,300

D/ST

Detroit Lions vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers – $2,300

The Lions by no means have been a force to reckon with this 2019-2020 season. They have been up, they have been down. They are going against the Bucs this week which has a very tempting ceiling for Detroit. Winston has no problem giving up some turnovers and the Lions secondary will hopefully be there to pick up the slack.

Naturally, my D/ST was like my 8th or 9th pick, so it was either suffer on D or my FLEX. I favored my FLEX because for the most part defenses don’t really amount to the point totals that positional players can provide.

Alternative D/ST: Arizona Cardinals vs Cleveland Browns – $2,200

If you have been following me this far, you should have an extra $100 left in your salary. This gives you some leeway on a player or two for your supporting cast but I would like to caution you. Sometimes this surplus of money might be a poison because once you’ve made your lineup, you see that extra money and think how to improve your team. If you’re confident in your team, let the money ride. You did the research so don’t second guess yourself.

However, if you think I have some picks that you wouldn’t favor, use this money and that player’s value and get who you think will have a better week. If you think Slayton or Westbrook could be improved to Tyrell Williams and Allen Hurns, so be it. If you want Alvin Kamara instead of Austin Ekeler, you could do that too. Use your money how you see fit. If you like your team submit it, if not, tinker around and see what players you can use to mix and match for your team.

Thaddeus Kline

Author Thaddeus Kline

SoCal student with degrees in Creative Writing and Literature, hoping to one day make a little dent in history my own way.

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