Cover Photo: Justin K. Aller/Getty Images
Week 15 of the fantasy football season is what every year boils down to. One more win to finish in the money. One more win to make the last four months of draft prep, lineup setting, waiver pickups and free agent adds all worth it.
Some of this week's top waiver wire pickups are the result of injuries and others are mostly-available players that could be the difference between a win and a loss this weekend. And remember, Week 15 takes over four days this week -- Thursday Night Football, two Saturday games, a regular Sunday slate, and Monday Night Football.
This week, be sure to cover your bases with handcuffs too as an injury to a top player in the playoffs could end up sealing your fate. Here are the top 10 waiver wire pickups for Week 15.
10. Jeff Wilson Jr., RB, San Fransisco 49ers
Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images
This one is entirely based on the health of Matt Breida. The 49ers' starting running back is currently sitting with a questionable designation, making Jeff Wilson Jr. a potential RB2 in Week 15 against the Seattle Seahawks. Just two weeks ago, Wilson had 15 carries for 61 yards and eight catches for 73 yards against that same Seahawks team in Seattle. And last week, he rushed 23 times for 90 yards in the team's Week 14 win over the Broncos. If Wilson fills in as the 49ers' No. 1 back again this weekend, he has big upside taking on a Seattle team that gives up the 14th most fantasy points to the RB position this season.
9. Kenny Stills, WR, Miami Dolphins
Michael Reaves/Getty Images
Kenny Stills has had some big games this season with Ryan Tannehill under center. In the eight games Tannehill has started, Stills has scored five of his six touchdowns and has topped 11 points in four of those games. Coming off his best game of the season – 8 catches, 135 yards and a touchdown – Stills has a below-average matchup with the Vikings and All-Pro cornerback Xavier Rhodes. However, any time a player accounts for almost 70 percent of his team's passing yards (prior to the Miami Miracle) you have to take notice. Stills is a FLEX play with upside both this week and next.
8. Robert Foster, WR, Buffalo Bills
Brett Carlsen/Getty Images
Robert Foster really likes facing the New York Jets. In two games against them this season, Foster has totaled 10 catches for 209 yards on 12 targets. Sandwiched between those two big games, the Bills' deep threat had a mixed bag of results -- 2 for 94 and a touchdown and 1 for 27 on just two targets. With a game this week against a middle-of-the-road Lions defense, Foster is well worth a flier and a possible FLEX or WR3 start. With Zay Jones competing with him for targets, Foster is a boom-or-bust WR3 this week. And if you choose to pick him up, let's hope for a boom performance in the fantasy playoffs.
7. Derek Carr, QB, Oakland Raiders
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
Derek Carr could legitimately win you the week. He has a QB1 matchup against a Cincinnati Bengals team that gives up the second most fantasy points to the QB position. Carr has 285 or more yards and at least two touchdowns in each of the last two weeks, and has also thrown at least 30 passes in each of the last five games. Expect at least two touchdowns and 250-plus yards this Sunday in Cincy.
6. Randall Cobb, WR, Green Bay Packers
Joe Robbins/Getty Images
Randall Cobb has been quietly consistent this season. An injury-riddled season, during which he's missed six games, is what opens the door for savvy fantasy owners this week. Those injuries are likely the only reason he's available in more than 60 percent of leagues across the board, and with at least five targets in every game he has played in, Cobb is a high-upside WR3 as long as Aaron Rodgers keeps throwing him the ball. He scored last week for the first time since Week 1 and takes on a Bears secondary that gives up the 12th most fantasy points to the WR position this year.
5. Cameron Brate, TE, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images
That Cameron Brate is owned in between 65 and 70 percent of ESPN and Yahoo! leagues, respectively, I have to wonder what's going on in those other 30-35 percent of leagues. The big tight end from Harvard has eight catches on 14 targets for 74 yards and three TDs in the last three weeks, and he gets a quietly-good matchup against the Ravens this Sunday. While Baltimore allows a league-low 18.5 points per game, they give up the eighth most fantasy points to tight ends this season. Brate is a red-zone beast and remains a touchdown-dependent TE1 in Week 15.
4. Chris Ivory, RB, Buffalo Bills
Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images
Chris Ivory could get you to your fantasy championship. With LeSean McCoy highly questionable due to a hamstring injury, Ivory will likely see the bulk of the work in the Bills' backfield this weekend. A Week 15 matchup with the Lions, who rank in the top 10 when it comes to giving up points to the running back position, spells gold for Ivory owners. Ivory is the kind of back that thrives when he gets more carries, and this Sunday should be a ground-and-pound game for the Bills.
3. Damien Williams, RB, Kansas City Chiefs
Peter G. Aiken/Getty Images
These Thursday night games are tricky. Damien Williams rushed eight times for 14 yards and a touchdown while adding four catches for 16 yards and a second TD touchdown in the Chiefs' Week 14 win. While Spencer Ware dominated the team's touches, racking up 129 all-purpose yards, the now-starting running back is banged up and is questionable for Thursday's game with the Chargers. That Ware hasn't practiced yet this week is a bad sign for his owners and great sign for anyone that picks up Williams. If Ware sits, Williams is a must-start RB1.
2. Doug Martin, RB, Oakland Raiders
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
Raiders head coach Jon Gruden has made Doug Martin fantasy relevant again. With a rushing touchdown in three straight weeks and a matchup with the Cincinnati Bengals, a team that has given up the most fantasy points to running backs this season, Martin will go from waiver-wire darling to matchup-winning back this weekend. Operating as the Raiders' lead back, tallying 34 carries in the last two games, play Martin as a high-end RB2 in Week 15.
1. Justin Jackson, RB, Los Angeles Chargers
Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images
With Justin Jackson likely to lead the Chargers backfield on Thursday night, the rookie should be everyone's top waiver pickup this week. Facing a Kansas City team that has given up the second most fantasy points to the running back position this season, Jackson should be the Chargers bell cow on Thursday. With Austin Ekeler likely out and Melvin Gordon's status still up in the air, Jackson could have a huge game against the Chiefs at Arrowhead. Get him on your roster now, and wait and see how the team's injury report shakes out as it's do or die this week in your fantasy playoffs.
Join FanDuel Sportsbook Today. New users get a risk-free bet up to $500. Join Now.