Fantasy Football IDP Waiver Wire Pickups: Week 15
One of the most important and oft-overlooked factors in working the IDP waiver wire during the playoffs is to play the matchups and don’t get caught chasing big stat lines. For example, Falcons defensive end Vic Beasley put up two sacks as well as two forced fumbles last week, making him seem like a shiny Week 15 option who’s owned in just six percent of leagues.
However, a closer look reveals that the matchup last week against the Panthers’ offense was a very positive one (more on that later) and in Week 15 he faces San Francisco. In their past four games, the 49ers’ offense has allowed just 1.5 sacks to the defensive line position. Do not fall into the trap of chasing a player’s big week, only to see him cost your team the chance to win now
That’s enough strategy talk. It’s time to get down to business. With championship weekend approaching quickly, let’s take a look at some of the top IDP waiver wire options heading into Week 15.
Jason Pierre-Paul (DE – TB): 26% owned (6% FAAB)
It feels like a bit of an IDP miracle that the veteran defensive end is just 26% owned as we head into Week 15. The matchup makes him a must-add and start. He is coming off a down game last week that saw him post just a single solo tackle, but he has been getting to the quarterback lately. In his past three games, he has five solo tackles, two sacks, and a forced fumble.
This week he heads to Detroit to face a struggling Lions offense. Last week, they allowed five sacks to defensive linemen and have given up 10.5 to the position in their last four games. Pierre-Paul has played 76% or more of the defensive snaps in the past six games and is among the top must-add IDP players this week.
Jarran Reed (DL – SEA): 4% owned (2% FAAB)
Despite the fact that he’s had a pair of goose eggs in the last four games, there are very good reasons to pick up Reed and get him into starting lineups. He faces the aforementioned Panthers offense in a matchup that is simply too good to pass on. In the past four games, Carolina has struggled mightily in pass protection, allowing 33 quarterback hits and 21 sacks. Even more importantly, defensive linemen have been credited with 16 of those sacks.
A closer look at his recent performances reveals that in the past four games, even with the goose eggs, Reed has been credited with five quarterback hits and has posted 1.5 sacks. He’s a great add and start this week.
Donald Payne (LB – JAC): 4% owned (5% FAAB)
With Myles Jack being placed on IR due to a knee injury, it has been Payne that has stepped up in a big way. Last week, he put up his second consecutive double-digit tackles performance by racking up 16 against the Chargers. He now has 29 total tackles, a tackle for a loss, and a sack in the past two games. He has been an every-down linebacker, playing 99% and 100% of the snaps over the past two weeks, respectively. He’s a must-add and start against a Raiders offense that has allowed 200 solo tackles to the linebacker position through 13 games.
Nick Kwiatkoski (LB – CHI): 8% owned (4% FAAB) | Kevin Pierre-Louis (LB – CHI): 0% owned (1% FAAB)
It’s a twofer! With Roquan Smith (pectoral) placed on IR and Danny Trevathan (elbow) still missing time, it’s basically down to this pair at the linebacker position in Chicago. Go ahead and spend more on Kwiatkoski since he has more of a proven track record and is coming off of a 10-tackle performance.
If he is gone then feel free to grab the veteran, Pierre-Louis, on the cheap since he will have an expanded role after playing a season-high 63% of the snaps last week. He put up a solid game replacing the injured Smith, finishing with five total tackles, a tackle for a loss, a pass defended, and a quarterback hit.
The Packers’ offense is a middle of the road matchup, but they did allow nine total tackles to Redskins linebacker Cole Holcomb last week and they run the ball an average of 25 times per game. Every-down linebackers are coveted at this crucial point of the season and this fits the bill.
James Burgess (LB – NYJ): 10% owned (5% FAAB)
This is the short-and-sweet special. We suggested picking Burgess up last week at six percent ownership and he’s still available at just a 10% rate. In Week 14, he put up 13 total tackles, a forced fumble, a tackle for loss, and a pass defended. On Thursday night, he faces a Ravens offense that is a top-10 unit in allowing production to opposing linebackers. Go get this man and put him in the starting lineup.
Tavon Wilson (DB – DET): 6% owned (4% FAAB)
Wilson made this list back in Week 10 when he was just one percent owned and is still readily available at just a six percent ownership rate. Let’s take a look at what he’s done since Week 10. He has put up 25 solo and 36 total tackles, a sack, and a fumble recovery. Those are top-15 defensive back totals in balanced scoring formats. This week, he has an excellent matchup to help IDP teams advance in the playoffs. Last week, the Buccaneers’ offense allowed the Colts’ trio of safeties, George Odum, Khari Willis, and Malik Hooker to post 26 total tackles, a sack, and a forced fumble.
Quandre Diggs (DB – SEA): 2% owned (2% FAAB)
As a general rule, IDP owners love free safeties who are more than willing tacklers and bring big-play potential on a consistent basis. That is exactly the role that Diggs has been filling since joining the Seahawks’ secondary. He had a particularly strong game last week with five total tackles and a pair of interceptions, with one being returned 55 yards for a touchdown. He has been a big-play producing machine in the four games since being traded to Seattle, with three interceptions, a forced fumble, and a recovered fumble.
The matchup this week is a strong one against a struggling Panthers offense. In his last four games, Carolina quarterback Kyle Allen has been sacked 21 times and has thrown seven interceptions. Three of the interceptions were made by Falcons safety Damontae Kazee. That is just one more reason to grab Diggs off the waiver wire this week.