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  • The IDP Guys’ NFL Week 15 Start/Sit List: IDP

    Jersey Giveaway

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    On the verge of a fantasy championship and need some NFL Week 15 Start/Sit IDP advice? Look no further.


    Here’s the IDP Guys NFL Week 15 Start/Sit article. Every noteworthy defensive player on every NFL team, ranked by position, and delivered to you every Thursday morning by @FFIDP_Jase and @IDPGuys.

    Unfortunately, this week’s version does not include the same level of detail as usual. Start/sit tiers have been adjusted, but I’ve only managed to include notes on the first three games due to being unwell after picking up COVID this week. I’ll be back in full force next week.

    Given the proliferation of players added to the COVID list this week, and the fact I probably won’t be able to update the article later in the week, I’ve added a (C) designation to any player who was on the reserve/COVID-19 list at the time of writing.

    Make sure to keep a close eye on the status of those players ahead of games, before inserting them into your fantasy lineups.

    Very best of luck in your fantasy playoffs!

    Table of Contents

    Thursday Night Football
    Kansas City Chiefs (9-4) at Los Angeles Chargers (8-5)

    Saturday Mid-Afternoon Games
    Las Vegas Raiders (6-7) at Cleveland Browns (7-6)
    Saturday Late Games
    New England Patriots (9-4) at Indianapolis Colts (7-6)
    Sunday Early Games
    Dallas Cowboys (9-4) at New York Giants (4-9)

    Houston Texans (2-11) at Jacksonville Jaguars (2-11)
    Tennessee Titans (9-4) at Pittsburgh Steelers (6-6-1)
    New York Jets (3-10) at Miami Dolphins (6-7)
    Washington Football Team (6-7) at Philadelphia Eagles (6-7)
    Arizona Cardinals (10-3) at Detroit Lions (1-11-1)
    Carolina Panthers (5-8) at Buffalo Bills (7-6)
    Sunday Mid-Afternoon Games
    Cincinnati Bengals (7-6) at Denver Broncos (7-6)
    Atlanta Falcons (6-7) at San Francisco 49ers (7-6)
    Seattle Seahawks (5-8) at Los Angeles Rams (9-4)
    Green Bay Packers (10-3) at Baltimore Ravens (8-5)
    Sunday Night Football
    New Orleans Saints (6-7) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (10-3)
    Monday Night Football
    Minnesota Vikings (6-7) at Chicago Bears (4-9)

    Disclaimers

    In the first few weeks of the season, I had a list of disclaimers here that explained how my advice is only a suggestion, how your team is your responsibility, and that I will get things wrong. It got too wordy, and I think most reasonable people understand all of this by now. I’m not going to include all that in my NFL Week 15 Start/Sit IDP article.

    I’ll just say this. If you’re the sort of person who feels the need to complain when (not if) I get something wrong, and it costs you points, please read the disclaimers from those early weeks first. I encourage all feedback — even criticism when it’s constructive — but not mindless rants. I do this for fun. It’s a game. Let’s keep it light.

    Article Key

    Tier One Starts

    Based on their opportunity, past production, talent level, and matchup, these players have the best outlook. They usually have a solid floor and an excellent ceiling. These guys should be the nearest to guaranteed production you can find.

    Tier Two Starts

    These players should earn a reasonable amount of points. Their opportunity, talent, or matchup is typically not on a par with a tier-one player. Tier two players are usually a good option in deep leagues that start multiple players at each position.

    Tier Three Starts

    These players are a bit of a gamble. You should probably only start them in larger leagues and those which start many players at each position. Tier three players can be serviceable as either bye week or injury replacements, but the chances of scoring well are slim. This tier is as close to “sit” as you can get while still retaining some value as a starter.

    Sits

    As the name implies, sit these players. You should not start these players for any number of reasons. They aren’t necessarily bad players. I just don’t predict them to be scoring well this game week. In the case of rookies, for example, they may simply need time to earn more playing time and, therefore, our trust as fantasy starters.

    Any player not listed in any of these four categories should probably be considered a “sit.” If they become IDP relevant on a week-to-week basis, they will likely end up in one of the categories above.

    No Cornerbacks?

    Johnny writes a separate article for CBs that drops on Fridays, so keep an eye out for that tomorrow!

    True Position Designations

    In some IDP leagues, certain positions are grouped in a suboptimal way, primarily because of outdated interpretations of what players at each position do. Many IDP leagues are turning towards True Position to address that problem.

    In true position scoring, outside linebackers and defensive ends (ends who predominantly line up outside of the tackle) are grouped as ‘Edge’ (rushers). Defensive tackles and defensive ends who play on the interior are grouped as IDL (interior defensive linemen). This leaves all remaining linebackers as off-ball linebackers (I’ve called them ILBs in this NFL Week 15 Start/Sit IDP article to help with clarification).

    The result of these changes is that scoring can be more fairly distributed between groups of players who, in modern defenses, essentially perform near-identical roles.

    Players with EDGE designations in such leagues, and this article, can vary in value from leagues that still use traditional DE and OLB positions. The same is true of IDL vs. DT designations and is complicated further by platforms that simply use DL positions to lump all defensive linemen together (the worst!). There is no easy way I can cater to all of these leagues here. Whatever I choose to do, someone would be missing out.

    While there is no one-size-fits-all approach to value translation between these different designations, I can at least offer to help adjust the IDP start/sit advice mentioned here for your league’s scoring system. If you find yourself in need of help in that sense, or if you find all of this just too complicated, please send me a Twitter DM. I answer every question I receive.

    Without further ado, let’s get into the NFL Week 15 Start/Sit IDP article.

    Thursday Night Football

    Chiefs (9-4) at Chargers (8-5)

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    Chiefs
    Starts

    Tier One

    Chris Jones, DI (C).

    Jones was a disruptive menace in the Chiefs’ victory over the Raiders. The big defensive tackle only managed one sack but that doesn’t tell the story, his 10 pressures led the Chiefs and were second among all players in the league.

    Week 14 was the sixth consecutive week that Jones has at least four pressures. He’s firmly re-established himself as a premier player at the IDL position.

    Jones lines up opposite the right-side of the Chargers offensive line. That helps Jones as it’s the weaker side of the Bolts line in pass protection. Michael Schofield will play a huge part in trying to keep Jones quiet. Schofield has only surrendered one sack in nine games but Jones is one of the best players he’s faced.

    Tier Two

    Tyrann Mathieu, S.

    Mathieu recorded his third interception of the season in Week 14. He also tied for second on the Chiefs with five tackles and added a QB hurry.

    He played 47 of a possible 64 snaps. Mathieu spent 24 of those snaps in the box or on the defensive line.

    The dynamic safety hasn’t rewarded fantasy managers with huge tackle volume in 2021; he ranks 35th at the position in that category. However, he’s increased his fantasy worth with some big plays. Mathieu has a sack, three interceptions, and two pass breakups.

    I consider Honey Badger to be a low-end Safety2.

    Tier Three

    Frank Clark, EDGE.

    Clark played 36 snaps of a possible 64, and he was second on the team last week with eight pressures, including a sack.

    The 28-year-old edge rusher is projected to have one of his least productive seasons in some respects. He currently has only three sacks which pale in comparison to the 58 he has managed in the last five seasons. That doesn’t mean he hasn’t contributed. He’s only nine pressures shy of his 2021 numbers.

    Rashawn Slater was added to the reserve/COVID-19 list on Monday and may not suit up for the Thursday night contest with the Chiefs. If the talented rookie has to miss time, Trey Pipkins is the man most likely to replace him. Slater would represent a difficult matchup for Clark. Pipkins would not.

    Sits

    Willie Gay Jr. (C), ILB; Anthony Hitchens, ILB; Ben Niemann, ILB; Nick Bolton, ILB; Melvin Ingram, EDGE; Tershawn Wharton, EDGE; Alex Okafor, EDGE; Juan Thornhill, S; 

    The Chiefs continue to divide snap share between all four linebackers so heavily that it leaves us with no option but to sit them all in IDP leagues. It’s frustrating unless you’re a Chiefs fan, in which case you’re unlikely to be questioning anything about the Chiefs’ defense and their performances in recent weeks.

    Ingram still has a little juice left in the tank, but this is a deep position. He ranks 39th at the edge position with 32 pressures, and he has just three sacks. Still, the fact that he has a sack in consecutive games makes him worthy of low-end EDGE3 status if you need an injury or bye week replacement.

    Wharton and Okafor flashed with two sacks apiece. Don’t expect this on an ongoing basis. The two players combined for 424 pass rush attempts without a sack between Week 1 and Week 13.

    Thornhill rounds out a massive sit tier for the Chiefs. He’s a good player who plays a lot but who just doesn’t have much fantasy value. He missed his only tackle attempt last weekend.

    Chargers
    Starts

    Tier One

    Derwin James, S; Joey Bosa, EDGE; Kyzir White, ILB.

    James missed the Chargers showdown with the Giants. He experienced a hamstring injury and remains day-to-day. Hopefully, he makes it back on a short week in time for the Thursday night game.

    When healthy, James has arguably been the best safety in the league. Monitor updates on his health closely this week.

    Bosa bounced back from his Week 13 exit with a strong performance last weekend. He led the Chargers with five total pressures, had a sack, and forced a fumble.

    The accomplished edge rusher is tied for eighth among all edge rushers with 55 pressures. This, despite having fewer pass rush attempts than all but two players who rank ahead of him (Rashan Gary and Matthew Judon.)

    Lucas Niang was expected to return to the Chiefs lineup in Week 14 but missed the game with a rib injury. He was limited in practice on Monday. Andrew Wylie continued to replace him last weekend and surrendered four pressures and two sacks. Neither player is much of a match for Bosa.

    White led the Chargers linebackers in snaps with 56 of a possible 70. He also paced the team with 10 tackles.

    The young linebacker ranks ninth at the position with 108 tackles after recording at least seven tackles in each of his last eight games. White has a sack, two forced fumbles, and two interceptions too.

    Tier Two

    Nasir Adderley, S.

    I didn’t expect Adderley to become a low-end tier two safety but this placement is justified. The 2019 second-round pick ranks 21st among all safeties in tackles with 72 and has added a sack and four pass breakups.

    He played 68 of a possible 70 snaps against the Giants. He spent 21 of those snaps in a box role. The 24-year-old was second on the team with six tackles and had a pass breakup.

    Tier Three

    None.

    Sits

    Drue Tranquill, ILB; Kenneth Murray, ILB; Jerry Tillery, IDL; Linval Joseph, IDL; Uchenna Nwosu, EDGE.

    Tranquill continues to have enough opportunities but is failing to make them count. He played 53 snaps last weekend and only mustered four tackles. He has four or fewer tackles in four of his last six games.

    Murray is the forgotten man in this linebacker core. He missed his only two tackle attempts and allowed a touchdown the only time his assignment was targetted in coverage.

    Tillery played 39 of a possible 70 snaps. His snap share has diminished, largely due to his deficiencies in run defense.

    Joseph was reintroduced to the lineup slowly following his stint on the reserve/COVID-19 list. He only had nine snaps.

    Nwosu rushed the passer 22 times and managed only a single QB hurry. Fantasy managers expecting a repeat of last week’s performance should have read last week’s start/sit article!

    Saturday Mid-Afternoon Games

    Raiders (6-7) at Browns (7-6)

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    Raiders

    Starts

    Tier One

    Jonathan Abram, S.

    Abram played all 66 defensive snaps and spent 35 of those in a box role. He was second on the team with seven total tackles.

    The third-year safety ranks second at the position with 95 tackles. He’s also had a sack, an interception, and three pass breakups in the 2021 campaign.

    Tier Two

    Maxx Crosby, EDGE; Yannick Ngakoue, EDGE; Divine Deablo, ILB.

    I’ve dropped Crosby to this tier. It’s difficult to continue justifying him as a tier-one edge rusher when he hasn’t had a sack since Week 6. I still think he’s one of the better options at the position and I still believe he’ll turn this situation around. But he is running out of time to do so this season.

    Crosby should face James Hudson this weekend. Hudson is a fourth-round rookie. The youngster hasn’t been overwhelmed in limited time so far, but Crosby is a tough, tough test.

    Ngakoue is a high-end EDGE2. The 26-year-old edge rusher has had a productive year as a pass rusher, producing 51 pressures, including nine sacks. He offers very little as a run defender, managing only 16 tackles, but fantasy managers knew that would be the case heading into this season.

    The former third-round pick should go up against Jedrick Wills Jr. in Week 15. Wills Jr. has recently shown flashes of the type of form the Browns were hoping for from him earlier in the season. It won’t be easy for Ngakoue.

    Wills Jr. was added to the reserve/COVID-19 list on Tuesday so monitor his situation if you’re a Ngakoue manager.

    Deablo and Littleton swap tiers. In a week where Littleton could have capitalized on Perryman’s absence, he played only 19 snaps, conceding playing time to Divine Deablo and K.J. Wright who had 52 and 49 snaps, respectively.

    The rookie built on last week’s eight tackle effort by leading the team with another eight tackles against the Chiefs. Impressive stuff from the youngster.

    I was tempted to place Deablo in tier three but with Perryman out again I felt bold. I will warn that the youngster comes with more risk than other ILBs in this tier as he’s still relatively unproven.

    In some leagues, Deablo has safety eligibility. Check to see if that’s the case in yours and whether it’s a situation you can take advantage of.

    Tier Three

    Quinton Jefferson, IDL; K.J. Wright, ILB.

    Jefferson has not done a massive amount for fantasy managers lately. However, that’s how things go for IDLs in this tier. I regularly explain how there is a lack of depth in terms of fantasy contributors at this position, and Jefferson’s inclusion here is evidence of that.

    The sixth-year DT ranks 32nd with 36 tackles and is tied for 26th with 28 pressures.

    I’ve placed Wright here because Perryman is out, and because Wright out-snapped Littleton last week, playing 49 snaps to Littleton’s 19. I’m not 100% convinced it will stay the same way but it’s more likely than not.

    Sits

    Cory Littleton, ILB;  Denzel Perryman, ILB (injured.)

    Littleton played behind both Deablo and Wright in Week 14. It’s not a good sign for the veteran linebacker.

    Perryman missed last week’s game with an ankle injury. He lost ground in the battle with Bobby Wagner for the 2021 tackle leader.

    He has been declared out for this game for the same reason. 

    Browns

    Starts

    Tier One

    Myles Garrett, EDGE.

    Garrett had a sack, a forced fumble, and two solo tackles against the Ravens. The sack was his 17th in 13 games this season.

    The former Aggies star remains hopeful of breaking Michael Strahan‘s single-season sack record of 22.5. He’ll continue in that effort against Kolton Miller in Week 15. Miller followed up his best game of the season in Week 13 with his worst in Week 14, allowing eight pressures against the Raiders.

    Tier Two

    Jadeveon Clowney, EDGE; Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, ILB.

    Clowney had five pressures and led the Browns with two sacks last weekend. He also added two tackles and a batted pass.

    The sacks were Clowney’s first since Week 7, and his five pressures match his total from last week. The former first overall pick had started the season strongly only to falter down the stretch, so fantasy managers will enjoy seeing him return to form.

    He’ll face Brandon Parker in Week 14. Parker has proven to be a liability in pass protection lately, allowing 15 pressures and four sacks in his last three games. It’s a favorable matchup for Clowney.

    JOK had a decent game with five tackles, a QB hit, and a QB hurry, but I must admit I was hoping for a little more given Walker was absent.

    The rookie played 72 of 74 snaps and will likely continue to play a sizeable role when Walker returns. The youngster has been productive despite missing time for various reasons this season.

    Tier Three

    Malik McDowell, IDL (C).

    McDowell had three solo tackles and QB hurries. The youngster is inconsistent, and he needs to develop as a run defender, but I’m interested in seeing what he can become next season.

    He is a low-end IDL3 this week. Andre James has gradually improved in the middle of the offensive line. Rookie Alex Leatherwood has struggled.

    Sits

    Malik Jackson, IDL; John Johnson, S; Grant Delpit, S; Anthony Walker, ILB (C); Ronnie Harrison, S (injury); Takkarist McKinley, EDGE (C).

    Jackson played 39 snaps and failed to record any meaningful statistics.

    Johnson failed to record more than five tackles in a single game until Week 10 but has since earned six, seven, and six in consecutive games. He’s also had a sack, and an interception in that time.

    Nothing much has changed in how Johnson is used. He’s a lowly 51st among all safeties in tackles this season but has risen in my ranks in December. Ronnie Harrison‘s absence may have helped Johnson last week.

    There was no doubt about it, Delpit took full advantage of Ronnie Harrison‘s absence in Week 15. The rookie safety led the team with nine solo tackles. I’d love to see him remain in a starting role when all three safeties are available, but I’m not convinced that will be the case.

    Monitor the status of both Walker and Harrison this week. Harrison was estimated as a limited participant at the Browns’ walkthrough on Tuesday, per ESPN.

    Saturday Late Games

    Patriots (9-4) at Colts (7-6)

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    Patriots

    Starts

    Tier One

    Matt Judon, EDGE; Kyle Dugger, S.

    Judon has been on an absolute tear. He’s had at least a sack in six consecutive games dating back to Week 8. He’s tied for fifth in pressures and is tied for third in sacks.

    Both Braden Smith and Eric Fisher will be tested by Judon this weekend. Neither player has played with any sort of consistency. Judon is red-hot and is fresh off a bye week. The veteran edge rusher has the advantage.

    Dugger was on the reserve/COVID-19 list last week but returned to practice this week. When healthy, he’s been very, very good. He ranks 13th at the position in tackles despite missing time. He’s also recorded three interceptions. I love an underdog and the DII product is exactly that.

    Tier Two

    Adrian Phillips, S.

    Phillips played 57 of a possible 58 snaps in the Patriots’ last game against the Bills in Week 13. He had five solo tackles and two pass breakups.

    The veteran safety ranks 36th in tackles but bumps his value into this tier because of some big plays. Four interceptions, four pass breakups, and a forced fumble.

    Tier Three

    Ja’Whaun Bentley, ILB.

    Bentley has at least seven tackles in each of his last four games. Importantly, he’s seemingly earned a bigger snap share, playing 54/63 snaps in Week 12, and 54/58 in Week 13.

    The fourth-year ILB is tied for 31st at the position for tackles despite playing fewer snaps than the majority of his peers.

    Sits

    Christian Barmore, IDL; Davon Godchaux, IDL; Kyle Van Noy, ILB/EDGE.

    Barmore was quiet in the Patriots’ game against the Bills. He managed only two tackles and a QB hit. It’s concerning that he has been conceding snaps to Davon Godchaux and Lawrence Guy.

    Godchaux led the Patriots with an impressive 10 tackles in Week 13. He offers very little as a pass rusher but if your league is tackle-heavy then you could do far worse. The 27-year-old ranks seventh among all IDLs with 48 tackles.

    Colts

    Starts

    Tier One

    DeForest Buckner, IDL; Darius Leonard, ILB; Bobby Okereke, ILB.

    Buckner had a modest performance in the Colts’ last game. He managed two solo tackles, had a QB hit, and a QB hurry.

    However, he’s had a productive season and ranks eighth in pressures, is tied for fifth in sacks, and is currently 12th in tackles at the IDL position.

    The interior of the Patriots’ offensive line is solid in pass protection. Buckner won’t get an easy pass.

    Leonard had six tackles and a QB hurry against the Texans in Week 13. That’s probably his weekly floor. The dynamic linebacker hasn’t quite kept up with the truly elite’s at the ILB position in terms of tackles, but he records so many big plays. Five forced fumbles, two interceptions, and four pass breakups so far.

    Okereke led the Colts with seven solo tackles. He also added a QB hurry. The 25-year-old linebacker has been surprisingly productive this season, ranking 11th among all ILBs with 107 tackles.

    Tier Two

    None.

    Tier Three

    Kwity Paye, EDGE; Khari Willis, S.

    Paye had 16 pressures in two games from Week 9 to Week 10 but has had only three pressures in the two games since. He’s had two sacks in that same three-game span but it will be hard to maintain that output at his current rate.

    The rookie will go up against Isaiah Wynn this week. Wynn has been inconsistent at times but he’s generally a decent pass protector. Paye vs Wynn will be a good battle to watch.

    Willis only has 38 tackles this season, but he’s achieved that figure in only eight games and has left two of those games early. He plays a sufficient amount of snaps in the box, and he’s also added some big plays to help boost his value. Two sacks, two interceptions, and two pass breakups.

    Sits

    Al-Quadin Muhammad, EDGE; Kemoko Turay, EDGE.

    Muhammad and Turay each had two sacks in the last game. Neither player is without talent, Muhammad is a steady and reliable contributor, Turay is a tantalizing prospect whose career has been marred by injury so far.

    However, neither player is a reliable IDP starter unless you’re desperate for an injury replacement. Muhammad played only 29 of a possible 52 snaps, Turay, 17.

    Sunday Early Games

    Cowboys (9-4) at Giants (4-9)

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    Cowboys

    Starts

    Tier One

    Micah Parsons, ILB/EDGE; DeMarcus Lawrence, EDGE; Randy Gregory, EDGE; Jayron Kearse, S.

    Parsons of course is a STUD. Also, this defensive line is coming alive with the return of a healthy Randy Gregory. His presence helps DeMarcus Lawrence immensely. Kearse has been on fire, ride the wave.

    Tier Two

    None.

    Tier Three

    Osa Odighizuwa, IDL. Donovan Wilson, S (if active)

    Sits

    Leighton Vander Esch, ILB; Keanu Neal, ILB; Dorance Armstrong; EDGE; Tarell Basham, EDGE; Chauncey Golston, EDGE.

    Armstrong is making his bones with big splash impact plays. That’s hard to trust. 

    Giants

    Starts

    Tier One

    Leonard Williams, IDL; Logan Ryan, S.

    Monitor Williams’ status this week. He left the Chargers game early due to an elbow/arm injury and may miss time. However, if he plays, he should be in lineups. Especially where he is DT eligible (ESPN).

    Tier Two

    Dexter Lawrence, IDL; Xavier McKinney, S (C); Tae Crowder, ILB.

    Tier Three

    Azeez Ojulari, EDGE.

    Sits

    Julian Love, S.

    Texans (2-11) at Jaguars (2-11)

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    Texans

    Starts

    Tier One

    None.

    Tier Two

    Jonathan Greenard, EDGE; Christian Kirksey, ILB (C); Kamu Grugier-Hill, ILB (C).

    After a hot few weeks from Greenard, the injury bug bit him and appears to have slowed him down some. Grugier-Hill would move to tier one if he shakes out as healthy.

    Tier Three

    Jacob Martin, EDGE. Neville Hewitt, LB.

    Hewitt could take the Grugier-Hill role if he misses time.

    Sits

    Everyone else.

    Jaguars

    Starts

    Tier One

    None.

    Tier Two

    Josh Allen, EDGE; Rayshawn Jenkins, S; Dawuane Smoot, EDGE; Myles Jack, ILB.

    Hopefully, Josh Allen wakes up for the fantasy playoffs!

    Tier Three

    Damien Wilson, ILB; Roy Robertson-Harris, DI.

    Coming off of a monster game, Wilson is still inconsistent and hard to trust.

    Sits

    Everyone else.

    Titans (9-4) at Steelers (6-6-1)

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    Titans

    Starts

    Tier One

    Harold Landry, EDGE; Jeffery Simmons, IDL; Kevin Byard, S.

    Consider Byard a low-end Safety1. Boom or bust.

    Tier Two

    Denico Autry, EDGE.

    Tier Three

    Jayon Brown, ILB; Rashaan Evans, ILB.

    Sits

    Amani Hooker, S; David Long Jr., ILB; Monty Rice, ILB (injury – IR); Zach Cunningham, ILB.

    Monitor Long’s status this week. He’s listed as questionable. I would try to avoid starting any Titans ILBs this week until we see how things play out with Cunningham.

    Steelers

    Starts

    Tier One

    T.J. Watt, EDGE; Cam Heyward, IDL; Minkah Fitzpatrick, S.

    Tier Two

    Joe Schobert, ILB.

    Tier Three

    Devin Bush, ILB; Terrell Edmunds, S; Chris Wormley, IDL.

    Sits

    Alex Highsmith, EDGE.

    Jets (3-10) at Dolphins (6-7)

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    Jets

    Starts

    Tier One

    Quinnen Williams, IDL; C.J. Mosley, ILB.

    Mosley is heating up at the right time.

    Tier Two

    John Franklin-Myers, EDGE; Quincy Williams, ILB.

    Tier Three

    Ashtyn Davis, S; Elijah Riley, S.

    Sits

    Everyone else.

    Dolphins

    Starts

    Tier One

    Emmanuel Ogbah, EDGE.

    Tier Two

    Jaelan Phillips, EDGE; Christian Wilkins, IDL.

    Phillips is in incredible form. I wouldn’t argue with anyone who placed him above some of the tier one edge rushers in this article. He has eight sacks in his last five games.

    Tier Three

    Jerome Baker, ILB; Jevon Holland, S (C); Andrew Van Ginkel, EDGE; Eric Rowe, S.

    Really hope Holland can play. If so, move him up a tier.

    Sits

    Everyone else.

    Washington (6-7) at Eagles (6-7)

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    Washington

    Starts

    Tier One

    Jonathan Allen, IDL (C); Daron Payne, IDL; Cole Holcomb, ILB.

    Tier Two

    Kamren Curl, S; Landon Collins, S.

    Tier Three

    Jamin Davis, ILB.

    Davis is better suited as a bye or injury replacement now that Collins is back.

    Sits

    Everyone else.

    Eagles

    Starts

    Tier One

    Javon Hargrave, IDL.

    Tier Two

    T.J. Edwards, ILB; Alex Singleton, ILB.

    Consider Edwards a high-end ILB2 at this point.

    Tier Three

    Josh Sweat, EDGE.

    Sits

    Fletcher Cox, IDL; Derek Barnett, EDGE. The secondary. It’s hard to pick the guy who will hit each week. Anthony Harris is probably your safest bet if you’re in a pinch.

    Cardinals (10-3) at Lions (1-11-1)

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    Cardinals

    Starts

    Tier One

    Budda Baker, S; Jordan Hicks, ILB; Isaiah Simmons, ILB; Jalen Thompson, S.

    It feels wrong to admit it, but Baker is a low-end Safety1 and dangerously close to falling a tier. Thompson has been incredibly consistent and safer than Budda.

    Tier Two

    Markus Golden, EDGE; Chandler Jones, EDGE.

    Sack or bust here.

    Tier Three

    None.

    Sits

    Zaven Collins, ILB.

    Lions

    Starts

    Tier One

    None.

    Tier Two

    Josh Woods, ILB.

    22 tackles in his last two games. Incredible.

    Tier Three

    Charles Harris, EDGE; Derrick Barnes, ILB.

    Sits

    Alex Anzalone, ILB; Jalen Reeves-Maybin, ILB; Tracy Walker, S (C).

    Panthers (5-8) at Bills (7-6)

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    Panthers

    Starts

    Tier One

    Shaq Thompson, ILB; Brian Burns, EDGE; Haason Reddick, EDGE; Jeremy Chinn, S.

    Chinn finally giving us the production we’ve been craving all year. The slow start hurt.

    Tier Two

    None.

    Tier Three

    None.

    Sits

    Jermaine Carter, ILB.

    Bills

    Starts

    Tier One

    Jordan Poyer, S.

    Tier Two

    Tremaine Edmunds, ILB; Matt Milano, ILB.

    Edmunds gets closer to tier three every week.

    Tier Three

    None.

    Sits

    Jerry Hughes, EDGE; Gregory Rousseau, EDGE; Micah Hyde, S; Ed Oliver, IDL.

    Sunday Mid-Afternoon Games

    Bengals (7-6) at Broncos (7-6)

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    Bengals

    Starts

    Tier One

    Vonn Bell, S; Trey Hendrickson, EDGE.

    Monitor Hendrickson’s availability, he is banged up. 

    Tier Two

    Sam Hubbard, EDGE; Jessie Bates III, S; Larry Ogunjobi, IDL; Germaine Pratt, ILB.

    Pratt is in this tier because Logan Wilson remains out. He’s on the line between being a low-end ILB2 and a high-end ILB3.

    Hubbard might move up a tier if Hendrickson is out.

    Tier Three

    Cameron Sample, EDGE.

    If Hendrickson is out, Sample should get some opportunity.

    Sits

    Logan Wilson, ILB (injury).

    Broncos

    Starts

    Tier One

    Kareem Jackson, S.

    Tier Two

    Justin Simmons, S.

    Tier Three

    Baron Browning, ILB; Dre’Mont Jones, IDL; Bradley Chubb, EDGE; Malik Reed, EDGE (C).

    Sits

    Kenny Young, ILB; Shelby Harris, IDL; Jonathon Cooper, EDGE.

    Falcons (6-7) at 49ers (7-6)

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    Falcons

    Starts

    Tier One

    Deion Jones, ILB; Foyesade Oluokun, ILB.

    Tier Two

    Grady Jarrett, IDL.

    Tier Three

    Dante Fowler, EDGE.

    Sits

    Erik Harris, S (injury.)

    49ers

    Starts

    Tier One

    Nick Bosa, EDGE; Fred Warner, ILB.

    Tier Two

    Azeez Al-Shaair, ILB.

    He’s day-to-day with an elbow strain. Monitor his status closely.

    Tier Three

    Arik Armstead, IDL/EDGE; Jaquiski Tartt, S.

    Sits

    Dre Greenlaw, ILB (injury); Talanoa Hufanga, S; Arden Key, EDGE.

    Key will attract attention after earning his fifth sack in his last six games. He’s used almost exclusively as a pass rusher which makes his total snap count slightly less concerning. Even so, there are better options at a deep edge rusher position.

    Seahawks (5-8) at Rams (9-4)

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    Seahawks

    Starts

    Tier One

    Bobby Wagner, ILB; Jordyn Brooks, ILB.

    Tier Two

    Quandre Diggs, S.

    Tier Three

    Ryan Neal, S.

    Sits

    Jamal Adams, S (injury – IR); Darrell Taylor, EDGE.

    Rams

    Starts

    Tier One

    Aaron Donald, IDL; Leonard Floyd, EDGE; Jordan Fuller, S (C).

    Tier Two

    Von Miller, EDGE; Taylor Rapp, S; Ernest Jones, ILB; Greg Gaines, IDL.

    Tier Three

    None.

    Sits

    Troy Reeder, ILB.

    Packers (10-3) at Ravens (8-5)

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    Packers

    Starts

    Tier One

    Kenny Clark, IDL; Rashan Gary, EDGE; De’Vondre Campbell, ILB.

    Tier Two

    Adrian Amos, S; Preston Smith, EDGE.

    Smith is playing like an EDGE1 in the last four games. The difference between his performances before Week 9 and his productivity since is like night and day. If Za’Darius Smith doesn’t suit up, consider Smith a low-end EDGE1 or high-end EDGE2.

    Tier Three

    Dean Lowry, IDL.

    Sits

    Za’Darius Smith, EDGE (injury).

    Matt LaFleur said he was hopeful Smith could have been back last week, so he may be close. Monitor his status closely.

    Ravens

    Starts

    Tier One

    None.

    Tier Two

    Tyus Bowser, EDGE; Odafe Oweh, EDGE.

    Tier Three

    Patrick Queen, ILB; Josh Bynes, ILB; Brandon Stephens, S; Chuck Clark, S.

    Sits

     Justin Houston, EDGE; Calais Campbell, IDL.

    Sunday Night Football

    Saints (6-7) at Bucs (10-3)

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    Saints

    Starts

    Tier One

    None.

    Tier Two

    Demario Davis, ILB; Marcus Davenport, EDGE; Cameron Jordan, EDGE (C).

    Tier Three

    Malcolm Jenkins, S; Kwon Alexander, ILB.

    Kwon’s resurgence is encouraging, but he’s relied on impact plays. The safe tackle floor isn’t there yet.

    Sits

    Pete Werner, ILB; Marcus Williams, S.

    Bucs

    Starts

    Tier One

    Devin White, ILB; Shaq Barrett, EDGE; Lavonte David, ILB.

    Tier Two

    Antoine Winfield, S.

    Tier Three

    Vita Vea, IDL.

    Sits

    Jason Pierre-Paul, EDGE; Joe Tryon-Shoyinka, EDGE; Jordan Whitehead, S (injury.)

    Whitehead is a high-end Safety3 when healthy.

    Monday Night Football

    Vikings (6-7) at Bears (4-9)

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    Vikings

    Starts

    Tier One

    Eric Kendricks, ILB; Harrison Smith, S.

    Tier Two

    Xavier Woods, S; Anthony Barr, ILB.

    Barr is an ILB2/ILB3.

    Tier Three

    None.

    Sits

    Nick Vigil, ILB; Blake Lynch, ILB.

    Traps when the main LBs are healthy.

    Bears

    Starts

    Tier One

    Roquan Smith, ILB.

    Tier Two

    Robert Quinn, EDGE.

    Quinn is in great form at the moment. He had zero pressures in Week 13 but that was an anomaly. He has eight sacks in his last five games.

    Tier Three

    Eddie Jackson, S.

    Sits

    Trevis Gipson, EDGE.

    Final Reminder

    Please remember to check inactive players before submitting your final lineups on Thursdays, Sundays, and Mondays. Players can and will suddenly become inactive at the last moment.

    This NFL Week 15 Start/Sit IDP article was published days before kick-off. I will try to keep it updated with injury news if it affects start/sit recommendations. I will update it at least three times, once before the Thursday night game, once before the early games on Sunday, and again before the mid-afternoon games.

    Please check the IDPGuys IDP Injury Report article from @FF_Skinnychef for the latest injury news.


    Thanks for taking the time to read my NFL Week 15 Start/Sit article for IDP leagues! I hope you find it useful. You can find more of my work here at IDPguys.org, and you can follow me on Twitter @FFIDP_Jase. I will do my best to be available for questions or feedback. My DMs are always open.

    For start/sit advice for players on offense, please check out the article here from the IDPGuys @FantasyLadder.

    Jase Abbey

    I'm an IDP-obsessive and have been playing fantasy football for 20 years. I write the weekly IDP start/sit for IDP Guys in-season, redraft IDP content during the offseason, and appear on the odd podcast from time to time. I am a big, big believer in data-driven and evidence-based content. I'm UK-based, love most sports, and study sports journalism at university. My favorite two things in life are family and sarcasm.
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