Only a few fantasy football owners were lucky enough to start Derrick Henry, George Kittle, or Amari Cooper in the playoffs this past week, and the majority of fans are simply looking for a capable contributor on the waiver wire in Week 15.
Derrick Henry showed his prodigious talent to the world in a 30-9 Thursday Night Football win over the Jacksonville Jaguars, with his four rushing touchdowns, including a historically great 99-yard earthquake, keeping the Tennessee Titans playoff hopes alive. Amari Cooper had a similarly playoff-quality performance in the Dallas Cowboys win over the Philadelphia Eagles, which put Dallas one step closer to claiming the NFC East.
While familiar names like George Kittle, JuJu Smith-Schuster, and Ezekiel Elliott rounded out the top-scoring fantasy football players for Week 14, there were a few other big performances thrown in.
Josh Johnson and Dede Westbrook both had more than 20 fantasy points in Week 14, basically supported by garbage-time statistics. Though the likes of Kenny Stills, Cooper, Smith-Schuster, and Henry stepped up in close games with playoff ramifications, garbage-time stats have to be accounted for when choosing waiver wire options, specifically quarterback streaming options, in Week 15.
Here’s a look at 10 players fantasy owners should consider targeting on the waiver wire this week.
Ian Thomas, TE, Carolina Panthers
Expect Ian Thomas to remain a key part of the Carolina Panthers offense moving forward, as he looks like a comfortable chain-moving option for superstar quarterback Cam Newton.
Thomas became the Panthers starting tight end last week after Greg Olsen went down with a season-ending injury, and the drop-off from Olsen to Thomas hasn’t been as steep as some would have expected.
After catching five passes for 46 yards against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 13, Thomas turned it up a notch as an every-down starter in Week 14. He caught a career-high nine passes for 77 yards in a close loss to the Cleveland Browns, providing Newton with plenty of support against a young and tough Gregg Williams defense.
With Devin Funchess struggling mightily and essentially invisible in the Panthers offense – he caught zero passes on three targets last week – Thomas has to be seen as a key part of the Carolina gameplan for the remainder of the season. He’s a valuable commodity at the tight end position, even if he’s a rookie who has yet to haul in a touchdown pass this season.
Thomas looks like the real deal for fantasy owners looking for a stable starting tight end.