Welcome to our Fantasy Football Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em Running Back edition for Week 15 of the NFL season. In this column, we feature a player in San Francisco who appears to have taken majority ownership of the team’s backfield duties.
* Reminder: Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em is intended to present you with the non-obvious choices for your fantasy lineup. We dig deep into player matchups, scoring trends, and other factors to best help you with your fantasy decisions. Superstars such as Christian McCaffrey will not be found in this column. If you’re looking for players of that caliber check out our weekly fantasy football running back rankings.
Follow the Heavy on Fantasy & Betting for all the latest betting news, odds, and picks
RB: Start ‘Em
Start of the Week: Chris Carson at CAR
With Rashaad Penny done for the season, Chris Carson will reprise his role as Seattle’s workhorse back. Carson has carried the ball at least 15 times in all but one game this season. Running backs to carry the back 15+ times against the Panthers this season have averaged 91.3 rushing yards, 19.7 fantasy points, and each found the end zone.
Josh Jacobs/DeAndre Washington vs. JAC
Jon Gruden believes Josh Jacobs has a chance to return to the lineup this week. Whoever is leading the way in the Oakland backfield in Week 15 deserves a starting gig in your fantasy lineup. Jacksonville has allowed five 100-yard rushers over their last five games. Washington touched the ball 20 times in Week 14 with Jacobs out.
Saquon Barkley vs. MIA
Yes, it’s gotten to this point. However, if you’ve made it this far, despite your first-round pick being a major disappointment, no need to get cute now. Barkley has been held below double-digit fantasy points in three of his last four games. Yet, the reigning Rookie of the Year has averaged 20+ touches over the last three weeks. Starting RBs have averaged 19.2 fantasy points against the Dolphins over their last three games. Volume and a plus-matchup should reward Barkley owners this week.
Kareem Hunt at ARI
Is this even a question any more? Since returning from suspension, Hunt is the 12th-highest scoring back in fantasy. He’s also yet to produce less than 11.8 fantasy points this season, and has recorded 40+ receiving yards in three of his five games. Arizona has allowed an opposing running back to register 48+ yards receiving in four of their last six games.
Phillip Lindsay at KC
Since returning from his Week 10 bye, Lindsay has averaged 17.5 touches. The Chiefs allow the second-most fantasy points to running backs this season, including 21.1 fantasy points to players at the position who touch the ball at least 17 times against them.
Sleeper: Sony Michel at CIN
This is a hell of a risky play, but one that could end up rewarding you. Michel has gone six games without scoring in double-digit fantasy points, he’s also fresh off of a meager five rushing attempts a week ago. However, no team allows more rushing yards per game than the Cincinnati Bengals this season. With all the chatter of New England’s offensive struggles, it may be time to lean on the guy who they rode all the way to the Super Bowl a season ago.
RB: Sit ‘Em
Sit of the Week: Bo Scarbrough vs. TB
Scarbrough has touched the ball at least 18 times in three consecutive weeks. With that said, his fantasy ceiling is extremely hindered by his lack of involvement in the passing game (just one reception all season). Don’t expect Scarbrough to accumulate enough yards on the ground this week to be serviceable from a fantasy perspective. Tampa Bay allows the fewest rushing yards in football this season, including just 57.3 ypg over their last three contests.
Joe Mixon vs. NE
Mixon has reemerged over the last two weeks with Andy Dalton back under center in Cinci, coming in as the RB5 in fantasy over that period with an average of 22.3 fantasy ppg. However, the Patriots are the best unit in fantasy in terms of defending the RB position this season. They’ve also held three of their last four opponents at the position to an average of just 5.06 fantasy points.
Adrian Peterson vs. PHI
Don’t hop on the AP train simply because Derrius Guice is out of the picture. The Eagles have held opponents’ leading rushers to 66 yards rushing or fewer in five of their last six games. An opposing starting RB hasn’t found the end zone in a single game against the Eagles since Philly returned from their Week 10 bye.
Buyers Beware: Devin Singletary at PIT
Singletary has averaged 16.4 fantasy points over his last three contests. Still, he’ll have his hands full in Week 15 vs. the Steelers. Pittsburgh surrenders the sixth-fewest fantasy points to opposing running backs this season. They’ve also not allowed a rushing touchdown to a running back since Week 5.
Temper Expectations: Raheem Mostert vs. ATL
Mostert has been brilliant of late, and actually owns the best yards per carry average by a running back over the last two seasons. Still, he’s carried the ball 10 times or fewer in all but one game since Week 3. Atlanta has held their last five opponents’ starting running backs below 71-yards rushing while only one was able to hit pay dirt. That includes two games against Run CMC and two games against Alvin Kamara.
- *Check out our other Week 15 Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Ems to further optimize your lineups
- Start-Sit [QBs | RBs | WRs | TEs | DEF | Ks]
READ NEXT: Fantasy: Running Back Rankings Week 15