Isaiah Crowell leads Week 15 fantasy spot starts


Nothing is ever easy in fantasy football, and that's what makes it fun. Whether it be injuries, poor matchups or underperformance it's rare that we can count on starting the same players week-in-and-week-out. Sometimes we have to scrape the bottom of the barrel for options in good spots that given week for a desperation play.

Here we will look at five candidates each week, one or two from each of the four fantasy-relevant positions that make good spot starts in their upcoming games. With the fantasy playoffs at our doorstep, these players should hopefully be sitting on the end of your bench, but whether by newfound opportunity or a good matchup, they present sneaky value for the coming week or even into the fantasy postseason.

Jameis Winston, QB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Normally it is not advisable to use offensive skill position players against the Cowboys since they squeeze the opposition's time of possession. We're going to make an exception for Jameis Winston this week, mostly because his team may just be able to out keep-away Dallas. Over the last three weeks the Bucs rank third in the NFL in time of possession with a 32:51 average. Additionally, Next Gen Stats tells us that the Cowboys used Brandon Carr to shadow Odell Beckham on Sunday night in Week 14. The results were poor, as Carr gave up all 94 of Beckham's yards and his long touchdown. Should they use that same approach with Mike Evans, it could mean more trouble for Carr. A big game for Evans would go a long way in making Winston a Top-10 quarterback on the week.

Isaiah Crowell, RB, Cleveland Browns

The Browns starting running back finally got back on the board with over 100 yards on just 10 carries against the Bengals on Sunday. It feels a bit like chasing points to go back to Crowell, but he has a solid matchup against the Bills. Over the last four weeks Buffalo has allowed the most rushing yards in the NFL and six touchdowns on the ground. That's not just due to their demolishing courtesy of Le'Veon Bell in Week 14, as they gave up 135 rushing yards at 4.7 yards per carry to the duo of Jalen Richard and Latavius Murray. Even better the Bills are unlikely to play so fast that they will gain a big lead on the Browns and keep the game script right for Crowell.

Tajae Sharpe, WR, Tennessee Titans

The rookie wide receiver has recorded 65 percent of his targets and 77 percent of his yards when lined up at left wide receiver this season. We know that position has given the Chiefs trouble all season, outside of their dismantling of Oakland Thursday night. Sharpe is a desperation dart throw only, but if he runs routes against the non-Marcus Peters concerns in Kansas City, he should find some success.

Pierre Garcon, WR, Washington Redskins

Pierre Garcon has racked up 60 percent of his yards from the left wide receiver position this season, with 51 percent of his plays coming from that side of the field. That will put Garcon against Daryl Worley, who hasn't been the picture of perfection in coverage this year. With target totals of 10, seven, four, nine and six the last five games in one of the NFL's best offenses, Garcon has a great pathway to fantasy success regardless of matchup.

Ladarius Green, TE, Pittsburgh Steelers

Even if you got burned last week you can turn back to Ladarius Green this week. The Bengals allow the second most yards to tight ends this season. Additionally, the Steelers have shown a willingness to attack Cincinnati with the tight end positon. Heath Miller had 10 catches in both games against them last year and Jesse James recorded a touchdown against them in their first meeting. Green has a good shot at the end zone this week.

Matt Harmon is an associate fantasy writer/editor for, and the creator of #ReceptionPerception, who you can follow on Twitter @MattHarmon_BYB or like on Facebook.