4 NFL FanDuel Studs to Target in Week 15
Spending your available salary in any DFS lineup on a stud can make or break your lineup. These high-salaried players will take up the majority of your budget, so it’s critical to carefully consider which ones you’ll want for each slate. Whether it’s trying to capture a safe floor in a cash game or chasing a huge game to help you win a tournament, nailing the expensive players is one of the keys to making winning NFL lineups on FanDuel.
We're into Week 15 now, and whether or not you are still alive in season-long leagues, there's always DFS action to sink our teeth into.
Jalen Hurts, QB, Philadelphia Eagles
FanDuel Salary: $9,000
Projected Points: 26.1
This week at the top of the quarterback position, it's definitely a debate between Patrick Mahomes and Jalen Hurts. Hurts might have the slight edge this week -- although both are obviously great plays in good matchups.
Hurts has taken over as the overall QB1 in fantasy after having back-to-back 30-point weeks. There hasn't been a better dual-threat quarterback in the league this season than Hurts. There are certainly better passers in the league and a few QBs that are better rushers, but Hurts seems to pick and choose different ways to attack based on how the defense will play.
This has obviously been successful for him; he has only had two games below 20 FanDuel points this season. Only five QBs have more passing touchdowns than him, and only five players have more rushing touchdowns.
Hurts and the Philadelphia Eagles get a great matchup this week against the Chicago Bears. The Bears traded away a few of their better defensive players and, since then, have had trouble slowing down any offense. They rank 29th in adjusted fantasy points per drop back and rank 30th in numberFire's schedule-adjusted pass defense metric.
Philly has an implied team total of 28.75 points, the second-highest on the Week 15 main slate. Hurts tops our projections at the quarterback position by nearly two points over Mahomes and enters at a discount of $100. He's a good option in all formats this week.
Josh Jacobs, RB, Las Vegas Raiders
FanDuel Salary: $9,200
Projected Points: 19.5
Not many people saw this season from Josh Jacobs coming. Many people were down on him in season-long drafts after the Las Vegas Raiders decided not to pick up his fifth-year option, signaling they were not interested in him beyond this season. That decision looks horrible now -- as does the decision to not want him on fantasy teams this season.
Jacobs leads the league with 1402 rushing yards and is tied for third with 11 touchdowns. He's also been more involved in the passing game this season with a 12.4% target share this season and a pace for a career-high mark in receptions. The Raiders have really decided to commit him over recent weeks; he has seen at least 28 opportunities (carries plus targets) in five straight games. His volume has led to three monster performances this season, and he's exceeded 30 FanDuel points in those big games.
The Raiders play the New England Patriots in what looks like a tough matchup on paper. The Patriots have been one of the best teams at limiting running backs this season. However, if the Raiders have the same game plan of just feeding Jacobs as they did last week when he had 17 carries in the first half, he should still be able to have a good game in fantasy.
James Conner saw nearly every touch against the Patriots on Monday night and had a good game for fantasy, and Jacobs will likely see more than Conner's 15 carries.
People may shy away from Jacobs due to the matchup and the high salary, but he's shown he has as much upside as any back in the league, and shouldn't be ignored due to his matchup.
Ja'Marr Chase, WR, Cincinnati Bengals
FanDuel Salary: $9,000
Projected Points: 17.7
Ja'Marr Chase has not had any sophomore slump after a fantastic rookie season. He's averaging 17.2 half-PPR points this season, which is up from 15.5 last season. He's been great since returning from injury and is set up to do well again this week.
Chase dominated last week, seeing 15 targets. He caught 10 of them for 119 yards and a score. It was the fourth time this season he's gone over the century mark with double-digit targets and a touchdown, which is even more impressive considering he has only played nine games this season. His targets definitely increased due to the absences of Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd, who both practiced today but remain questionable. We already know that Hayden Hurst is unlikely to play, and if one of the receivers were to miss the game, Chase could see double-digit targets again.
The Cincinnati Bengals will face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on the road this week. Tampa's defense has been playing pretty well this season but did just allow 35 points to the San Francisco 49ers with Brock Purdy making his first career start. The Bucs rank close to the middle of the pack in terms of fantasy points per game allowed to wide receivers, and they likely won't be able to slow down an elite speedster like Chase.
The Bengals are road favorites against a struggling Bucs team. Cincy has been preferring to pass the ball of late and ranks 10th this season in pass-to-run ratio. If that's the way they attack again on Sunday, Chase should be in for a big game. He's projected for two points more than any other receiver on the slate, so he is an elite tournament option this weekend.
Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs
FanDuel Salary: $8,000
Projected Points: 15.5
Travis Kelce sits all alone at the top of tight end this week, projecting for nearly double the points of anyone else at the position. We are used to Kelce coming off some incredible game, but we actually haven't seen that in the past few weeks. He has just 12 catches in his past three games, and he's only found the end zone once.
Kelce will look to return to his dominant self this week. He's still easily dominating the tight end position, leading everyone else by at least six points per game. It might be better to compare Kelce to wide receivers, and if there was a receiver who saw 24.4% of Patrick Mahomes' targets, we would love to play them for $8,000. Kelce also leads all players at any position in red zone targets and has scored 11 touchdowns on those targets.
The Kansas City Chiefs are massive favorites once again this week. They're facing arguably the worst team in the league, the Houston Texans. They are 22nd against in our numbers and 18th in adjusted-fantasy points per target to tight ends. Kelce definitely should be able to have one of his monster games if it calls for it in this spot.
Kansas City has an implied team total nearly three points higher than any other team on the main slate this week. It would be no surprise to see Kelce add to his team-leading 12 touchdowns in this matchup, and he makes sense paired with Mahomes in tournament lineups this week.
Nicholas Vazquez is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Nicholas Vazquez also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username hbyanksman. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his/her personal views, he/she may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his/her personal account. The views expressed in his/her articles are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.