Chris Carson And The Lock Button Plays For Week 15

by Alex Johnson ·

Before we get into the week’s lock-button plays, we like to take a moment to reflect back on the previous week’s article. There were a few disappointments in Week 14, including Courtland Sutton reaching only 34 yards despite a 300-yard passing day from Drew Lock, and DeVante Parker exiting early with a first-half concussion. We also gave you Deshaun Watson, Derrick Henry and George Kittle, all of whom finished among the top-seven at their positions. We also declared it was the week to trust Devonta Freeman. He rewarded us with his second-highest point total of the season and an RB11 finish. Week 15 presents eight more lock-button players primed for success. These players should be in your lineups based on usage, opportunity, matchups, advanced stats and metrics. Let’s assume PPR scoring with four points per passing touchdown.

Deshaun Watson, QB, Texans

Matchup: Titans

We weren’t afraid to tout Deshaun Watson in a difficult matchup in Week 14 and he rewarded us with a QB4 finish. The Titans are a better matchup and Watson is still priced outside the top-five on DraftKings. Which means we are going back for a second round in Week 15. Tennessee has surrendered the eighth-most passing yards and is middle of the pack in fantasy points allowed to opposing quarterbacks. Watson is top-10 in pass attempts, passing yards and Attempt Distance. His 24 passing touchdowns and 21 Money Throws rank fifth among qualified quarterbacks.

Not only is he efficient through the air, he is one of the best quarterbacks at using his legs, as we saw on his two rushing touchdowns against Denver. He is now up to seven (No. 2) rushing scores on the season and is top-four among quarterbacks in carries, red zone carries and rushing yards. With Lamar Jackson playing on Thursday night and priced below Patrick Mahomes, despite averaging nearly two more fantasy points per game, Watson is the easy lock-button choice at quarterback.

Chris Carson, RB, Seahawks

Matchup: Panthers

Rashaad Penny was just starting to carve out a consistent and reliable role in the Seahawks offense before tearing his ACL in Week 14. That will push Chris Carson back to a 90-percent Opportunity Share in Seattle’s backfield-centric offense. Carson has finished among the top-24 running backs in every game since Week 3 and is 12th in Fantasy Points Per Game despite enduring fumble problems and splitting time with Penny.

Carson is third in rush attempts and Yards Created. He ranks third with 77 Evaded Tackles and his 27.4-percent Juke Rate is 13th. His increased Opportunity Share comes at a perfect time with the Carolina’s swiss cheese run defense next on the schedule. The Panthers have allowed the fourth-most rushing yards and the second-most fantasy points per game to running backs. No defense has allowed more rushing touchdowns (24). Carson is a steal at $7,400 (RB14) on FanDuel and $7,500 (RB8) on DraftKings. He will be the chalk play on both platforms.

Deebo Samuel, WR, 49ers

Matchup: Falcons

Deebo Samuel is somehow priced at just $5,800 (WR35) on DraftKings and $6,500 (WR32) on FanDuel despite finishing no worse than WR27 over the last five weeks. He has seen a Target Share of 19-percent or higher in five of his last six games. Samuel is 16th in Yards Per Target and top-12 with a 70.1-percent Catch Rate. He is No. 8 in Target Separation and top-17 in Fantasy Points Per Route Run and Fantasy Points Per Target. He is top-24 in red zone receptions and Yards Per Route, and ranks eighth among wide receivers in yards after the catch.

Check out Deebo Samuel on PlayerProfiler’s Updated Weekly Rankings and Projections:

Samuel draws a juicy matchup in Week 15 against the Falcons. Atlanta has allowed 38.5 fantasy points per game to wide receivers and just lost their top cornerback for the season. His cheap price on both platforms makes him the lock-button wide receiver play of the week.

Zach Ertz, TE, Eagles

Matchup: Washington

DeSean Jackson and Alshon Jeffery are on injured reserve, and Nelson Agholor will miss his second straight game with a knee injury. That leaves Greg Ward, J.J. Arcega-Whiteside and Robert Davis, who was promoted from the practice squad this week, as the only healthy wide receivers on the Eagles roster. It was so bad in Week 14, that Zach Ertz was playing wide receiver at the end of the Giants game and 38-year-old backup quarterback Josh McCown was preparing to take snaps out wide. Ertz, Dallas Goedert and the running backs will continue to be the featured targets for Carson Wentz against Washington.

Ertz has seen double-digit targets in four of the last five games. He has finished among the top-three tight ends in all four contests, and as the overall TE1 three times. Ertz leads all tight ends in targets and receptions and is top-three in yards, Target Distance, Completed Air Yards, and Fantasy Points Per Game. He is $600 cheaper than Travis Kelce and $500 less than George Kittle on FanDuel. It’s a bit closer on DraftKings ($500 and $300, respectively), but it’s enough to make him the easy top play at tight end in Week 15.

Other Locks:

Ryan Tannehill, QB, Titans vs Texans: Tannehill is the QB2 since taking over as the Titans starter. He draws a great matchup against the Texans, who have allowed the third-most fantasy points to quarterbacks and just allowed rookie Drew Lock to throw for 309 yards and three touchdowns.

Dalvin Cook, RB, Vikings at Chargers: Cook may see 30-plus touches with Alexander Mattison banged up.

Chris Godwin, WR, Buccaneers at Lions: Godwin will see all the targets with Mike Evans out for the season. His ability to play from the slot will help him avoid shadow coverage from Darius Slay and take advantage of a Lions team allowing 39.3 fantasy points per game to wide receivers.

Ian Thomas, TE, Panthers vs Seahawks: Only the Cardinals have allowed more fantasy points to tight ends than Seattle. Thomas saw 10 targets in Week 14 and he will again play a featured role with Greg Olsen remaining out.