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Through The Wire - Week 15

By Antonio D'Arcangelis | 12/15/20 |

Targeting weekly waiver picks is a completely subjective business, but this column hopes to point out some obvious and not-so-obvious selections to help your team from week to week while you strive to collect fantasy wins, reach your league playoffs, and win the elusive title that your friends say is out of your grasp. While I’m a big proponent of making trades to bolster your roster, the waiver wire can be an almost limitless resource when it comes to discovering fantasy value in strange places. Each week, I’ll highlight some of the popular (and not-so-popular) players who can help your squad and may still be available in your league. I’ll also provide a brief update on the players I covered the previous week.

Feedback is always welcome, appreciated and encouraged. I’ll get to as many e-mails as I can.


Jalen Hurts, PHI – It’s always nice to see a QB change pay off, and Hurts (15-25 percent owned) is already providing dividends in the form of wins for the Eagles. He was dynamic in Sunday’s dramatic 24-21 upset win over the Saints, rushing for 106 yards and adding a 167-1-0 passing line – solid numbers for a rookie thrust into a starting job. HC Doug Pederson has already committed to the rookie for a Week 15 matchup with the Cards, and he’ll likely be an interesting fantasy option for the Eagles’ final three games.

Mitchell Trubisky, CHI – Trubisky (25-30 percent owned) was sharp on Sunday, completing 24 of his 33 passes for 267-3-0 and adding four rushes for 23 yards in the Bears’ 36-7 victory over the Texans. The beleaguered QB has now thrown for at least 240 yards in each of his last three games while racking up seven touchdowns during that span. His favorable schedule over the next couple weeks boosts him into QB2 territory and a possible spot start in deeper formats.

Other QBs to consider: Teddy Bridgewater, Tua Tagovailoa, Gardner Minshew


Jared Goff, LAR – We didn’t include Goff last week for the Week 14 game (137-1-1, rushing TD) against the Patriots on Thursday night, but for what’s next: a Week 15 matchup versus the Jets on Sunday. Giddyup.

Philip Rivers, IND – Rivers dialed back the clock with a 244-2-0 performance on Sunday in the 44-27 win over the Raiders and seems to have found some excellent rapport with T.Y. Hilton. The veteran is in another great spot against a putrid Texans defense in Week 15.

Taysom Hill, NO – Drew Brees (ribs) still doesn't have a clear timetable for his return, so we could see Hill again in Week 15 in a big matchup (and possible shootout) with the Chiefs. He completed 28 of 38 passes for 291-2-1 in the Sunday loss to Philly, adding 33 rushing yards.

Jeff Wilson

Running Backs

Cam Akers, LAR – Akers has finally broken through as the lead back in Ram town, shedding the shoulder injury on Thursday night and rushing 29 times for 171 yards (and adding 2-23-0 receiving) in the Rams’ 24-3 win over the Patriots. He’s still available in about a third of ESPN leagues and could have another monster stat line in a smash spot against the hapless Jets in Week 15.

Jeff Wilson, SF – Raheem Mostert (ankle) is injured again and probably won’t play in Week 15, likely giving Wilson the starting job against a bad Cowboys run defense. The early-down pounder and occasional passing down back rushed 11 times for 31 yards and a TD this past Sunday, adding 13 more yards on one reception in the 23-15 loss to Washington. We could also see a few runs by the 49ers WRs and more work for Tevin Coleman and Jerick McKinnon.

James White, NE – If the Pats are going to beat the Dolphins in Week 15, it’ll have something to do with White – a versatile back who excels in passing downs. I expect the playcallers to draw up more Xs and Os that include JW as the Pats try anything to get their team out of this offensive funk. White is owned in about 55-65 percent of leagues but could be a huge part of the game plan against Miami.

Other RBs to consider: Jerick McKinnon or Tevin Coleman, Phillip Lindsay, Salvon Ahmed or DeAndre Washington, Gus Edwards


Adrian Peterson, DET – With D’Andre Swift back in action, Peterson rushed just four times for 7 yards and caught one pass for 23 yards in Sunday’s 31-24 loss to Green Bay. Although the veteran back should continue to see some playing time, Swift's role will only increase as he further recovers from injury.

Ty Johnson, NYJ – Johnson split carries with Frank Gore and Josh Adams, rushing for 16 yards on eight carries. With Gore healthy and Adam Gase professing his undying love for the warhorse back, Johnson won’t have a huge impact in a Week 15 road matchup against the Rams.

J.D. McKissic, WAS – McKissic carried 11 times for 68 yards and caught two of four targets for 18 yards during Sunday’s 23-15 win over the 49ers. He wasn’t the PPR darling from Week 13 who had 10 catches, but he seems to have a handle on the RB1 role in Washington.

Wide Receivers / Tight Ends

Russell Gage, ATL – With Julio Jones out (hamstring) for Week 14, Gage (15-20 percent owned) hauled in five of seven targets for 82 yards, adding a 39-yard touchdown pass to fellow WR Calvin Ridley during Sunday’s 20-17 loss to the Chargers. He’s a solid option against the Bucs if Jones misses another game.

Kendrick Bourne, SF – Deebo Samuel (hamstring) is injured again, elevating Bourne to WR3-4/flex status for Week 15. Bourne caught just three of seven targets for 42 yards during the loss to Washington, but a date with Dallas for this red zone maven is much more favorable.

Rashard Higgins, CLE – Higgins (10-20 percent owned) has great rapport with Baker Mayfield, and he caught 6-68-1 on 10 targets from his QB during Monday night’s wild 47-42 loss to the Ravens. With at least 65 receiving yards in three of his last four games, Higgins is becoming a reliable fantasy option, something he hopes to continue in Week 15 against the Giants.

TE Jared Cook, NO – He disappeared for a while, but Cook (50-60 percent owned) has now scored in consecutive games (giving him six receiving TDs in 2020) and could be a red zone factor again in Week 15 as the Saints hosts the Chiefs in what could be a high-scoring affair. Give him a look in 12-team leagues.

Chad Hansen, HOU – The former practice squad player hauled in 7-56-0 on seven targets in Week 14, which followed up a 5-101-0 effort in Week 13. I’d say it’s time they keep Hansen (5-10 percent owned) on the roster – and he gets a look in DFS and deeper formats.

Other WRs/TEs to consider: Nelson Agholor, Jakobi Meyers, Michael Gallup, TE Cole Kmet, TE Tyler Higbee, TE Harrison Bryant, Willie Snead, KJ Hamler


Corey Davis, TEN – Davis was a bust on Sunday with just three receptions on three targets for 34 yards against the Jaguars. Week 15 against Detroit promises to be another Derrick Henry game, but you never know when Davis is going to go off.

Cole Beasley, BUF – Beasley came back down to earth but still caught five of 10 targets for 41 yards in the win over Pittsburgh. The Broncos are next.

Keke Coutee, HOU – Coutee fought through a knee injury and hauled in all three targets for 24 yards and a TD in the brutal loss to the Bears on Sunday. A Week 15 divisional matchup versus the Colts offers another chance for more catches and a possible score.

Tim Patrick, DEN – Patrick was overshadowed by Hamler’s big day but did finish with three catches (on five targets) for 36 yards and a touchdown during Sunday’s 32-27 win over Carolina. They could beat up on Houston as well.

TE Logan Thomas, WAS – Thomas is a solid low-end TE1 and he had a decent Week 14 with 6-43-0 on seven targets. I love the upcoming matchup against the Seahawks, though he’s now owned in about 60-70 percent of leagues.

TE Dan Arnold, ARI – Arnold really has a nice thing going with Kyler Murray, and the pickup paid off for fantasy owners in Week 14 as caught two of four targets for 27 yards and a TD during Sunday’s road win over the Giants.