Week 15 MNF Fantasy Preview

  • Rams (+7) @ Packers (-315), O/U: 39.5

     

    Coming into the season, a mid-December primetime matchup between the defending Super Bowl champions and a team led by the defending back-to-back MVP would have made total sense for a top billing. Oh how much things can change over the course of a season, as this will be just the third game this week with a projected sub-40 point total. However, that doesn’t mean that there can’t be some intriguing viewing for fantasy purposes for the final game on the schedule for the first round of the fantasy playoffs. Even in a lost season, the Rams have put out a decent product in their defense that still ranks above-average (13th-best) in terms of opponent yards per game. They could be without All-Pro DT Aaron Donald (ankle) for the third straight game, which would be a boon to the Packers skill players. 

     

    Even though the quarterback controversy going into the Packers’ Week 14 bye was whether Jordan Love would supplant Aaron Rodgers the rest of the way (doesn’t appear likely unless an injury prevents Rodgers from taking the field), the newest star of the show in LA is newcomer Baker Mayfield. The defending NFC Offensive Player of the Week led a TNF comeback for the ages and now has had 11 days to prepare for his next primetime opportunity.

     

    Rams

    QB

    You’ve heard of the change-of-scenery effect reviving many quarterback careers (ie. Ryan Tannehill, Geno Smith), but multiple changes within the same season? Hey, stranger things have happened than Mayfield’s potential Undertaker back-from-the-dead moment. It’s worth taking a step back and acknowledging first that for much of the game against the Raiders, Mayfield was mediocre at best. How much did the game-winning drive in the two-minute drill boost his overall numbers? Well, his 91.4 QBR at the end of that game was his 2nd-best mark in eight starts this season. The Rams are just trying to play out the rest of this lost season, but those in the most dire of situations in superflex/2QB leagues in their final superflex spot could roll with the momentum and give Mayfield a shot against a Packers defense that ranks just outside of the top-10 in pass defense.

     

    RB

    If you somehow have Cam Akers and aren’t fiddling with a consolation bracket lineup this week, congratulations — you’re likely in the smallest of minorities. Akers is just two weeks removed from a surprising top-5 finish (12-42-1 rushing, 1-1-1 receiving, one target) against the putrid Seahawks run defense in Week 13, and now draws a matchup against a similarly bad Packers run-stopping unit (8th-most fantasy points allowed to running backs). The Packers have actually allowed the 3rd-most rushing yards per game on the season but have been especially porous of late, allowing a league-worst 202.0 rushing yards per game to teams over their last three. It may be a little too little too late for Akers, but he’s still a solid RB2 play in this cakewalk matchup.

     

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