Fantasy Football Sleepers Week 15: Jerick McKinnon, Tucker Kraft, Antonio Gibson among top breakouts

Just because you’ve made it to the fantasy playoffs doesn’t mean your roster is ready for a championship run. Chances are, you’ll still need to rely on sleepers to round out your starting lineup, and our Week 15 sleeper list, which includes Jerick McKinnon, Antonio Gibson, Tucker Kraft, and Odell Beckham Jr., could be the key to advancing in your playoff bracket.

We always stress that any of our sleeper picks could disappoint in Week 15. We like to take some chances with our sleeper picks because recommending a bunch of “must-starts” simply isn’t needed. You shouldn’t start our sleeper picks over proven, early-round studs, but if your roster is already loaded with stars, then you don’t need our advice anyway. If nothing else, our sleeper picks can help you find DFS values, as the prices of these players should be affordable.

Jake Browning, Desmond Ridder, Tyjae Spears, Isaiah Likely, Cade Otton, and Dolphins D/ST all went off for us last week, and while our other sleeper picks didn’t pop off nearly as much, it was still a decent week. We’ll be looking to improve this time around to help with your must-win matchup.

Lean on this week’s crop of sleepers to keep your championship hopes alive.

WEEK 15 FANTASY ADVICE: Busts | Projections | Start-sit

Fantasy RB Sleepers Week 15

Jerick McKinnon, Chiefs @ Patriots (Nick Musial). Despite playing two fewer snaps than fellow RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire, McKinnon outscored Helaire thanks to a seven-yard TD run. Although Edwards-Helaire dominated the early-down workload, McKinnon is the preferred goal-line and two-minute back, which gives him a higher ceiling in PPR formats. McKinnon has low-end RB2/flex value in a projected one-sided matchup.

D’Andre Swift, Eagles vs. Seahawks (Vinnie Iyer). He’s been very unreliable in tough matchups and negative game scripts of late, but he can explode for a big night with some chunk runs in this favorable matchup.

Antonio Gibson, Commanders @ Rams (Matt Lutovsky). Brian Robinson Jr. exited early because of a hamstring injury in Washington’s last game. If Robinson is out, Gibson becomes a must-start, but even if Robinson Jr. plays, Gibson should see around 50 percent of snaps and has a chance to put up good overall numbers in a sneaky shootout.

QBs | RBs | WRs | TEs | D/STs | Kickers

Fantasy QB Sleepers Week 15

Jake Browning, Bengals vs. Vikings (Musial). It’s hard to tell whether it’s Joe Burrow or Browning running Zac Taylor’s offense right now, as Cincinnati’s QB2 is executing the scheme to a tee. Aside from his rather unlucky pick-six in Week 14, Browning maintained his efficient play following his Week 13 breakout. Generating consistent offense against the Vikings defense figures to be more difficult than in the past two weeks, but a top-16 finish is well within reach for Browning.

Will Levis, Titans vs. Texans (Iyer). He gained a ton of confidence ripping the Dolphins in comeback mode last week, and there are enough holes here to exploit with intermediate to deep passes set up by strong power running.

Joe Flacco, Browns vs. Bears (Lutovsky). Flacco has posted 565 yards and five TDs in his first two starts, and even though the completion percentage hasn’t been great (55.1), Flacco has still shown an ability to get the ball to his talented playmakers. Against the Bears’ 23rd-ranked pass defense, Flacco should have another solid game.

QBs | RBs | WRs | TEs | D/STs | Kickers

Fantasy WR Sleepers Week 15

JuJu Smith-Schuster, Patriots vs. Chiefs (Musial). Smith-Schuster is in his second straight revenge game, this time against the team he won Super Bowl LVII with. New England’s passing attack showed some life in the first half last week, and in what’s likely a negative game script, a second straight day with six or more targets is well within reach for one of the only healthy Patriots WRs.

Odell Beckham Jr., Ravens at Jaguars (Iyer). OBJ has brought it as a big-play threat over the past month, and he especially saves his best flair for revenge and prime-time games. This matchup also is great for field stretching.

John Metchie III, Texans @ Titans (Lutovsky). Tank Dell (fibula) is out, and Nico Collins (calf) is once again hurting. That opens the door for someone like Noah Brown, Robert Woods, or Metchie to step up. We like Metchie, who tied for the team lead with five targets while playing a career-high 50 percent of snaps last week. The Titans’ pass defense has been unraveling lately, so even though it’s tough to trust someone like Metchie in the fantasy playoffs, the upside is there.

Fantasy TE Sleepers Week 15

Logan Thomas, Commanders @ Rams (Musial). The pass-happy Commanders should look to get their TE involved plenty against a Rams defense allowing the third-most fantasy points per game (FPPG) to TEs. Thomas has been held under double-digit PPR points over his past five games, but if there’s a matchup where Thomas can end that streak, it’s this one.

Tucker Kraft, Packers vs. Buccaneers (Iyer). He’s getting locked in more with Jordan Love, who continues to spread it around to all of his pass-catchers. The Bucs are vulnerable to tight ends with their linebacker injuries, and he can score at home.

Chig Okonkwo, Titans vs. Texans (Lutovsky). Okonkwo was “overdue” about a month ago, so imagine how “due” he is now! Here’s some actual analysis: Houston allows the fifth-most FPPG to TEs, and Okonkwo should be able to pile up a decent number of catches and yards thanks to his big-play ability. A touchdown would be the icing on the cake, and like we said – he’s due.

Fantasy Defense Sleepers Week 15

Cincinnati Bengals vs. Minnesota Vikings (Musial). Nick Mullens is undoubtedly an upgrade over the struggling Josh Dobbs, but Mullens’ inability to escape the pocket should lead to a few sacks for Trey Hendrickson and company. It’s hard to envision the Vikings putting up 20-plus points, especially fresh off a 3-0 yawner.

Los Angeles Rams vs. Commanders (Iyer). Aaron Donald can lead the charge in getting pressure on Sam Howell, who should be throwing often and likely committing at least a couple of turnovers.

Atlanta Falcons @ Panthers (Lutovsky). The Panthers have been giving to D/STs all season, but they’ve really been hemorrhaging points over the past six games (11.7 offensive points per game, at least four sacks allowed in every game, nine total turnovers, four D/ST TDs allowed). Even on the road, Atlanta is a no-brainer.


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