Dolphins Fantasy Football Start/Sit: Week 15
The Dolphins ride their hot streak into Buffalo this week for a key division matchup. With the fantasy football playoffs going on, which Dolphins players can we trust starting in this cold weather game?
The Miami Dolphins offense has vastly improved since the team traded away Jay Ajayi after Week 8. Guys like Kenyan Drake have stepped up tremendously, and Jarvis Landry continues to have a career year. After their huge upset win over New England this past Monday, the Dolphins will have to travel to Buffalo this week to take on the Bills.
The weather conditions are sure to be unkind for the Dolphins, who are typically used to playing in warm temperatures. Last week, Buffalo hosted Indianapolis in one of the craziest snow games in recent memory. It is not expected to snow this week in Buffalo, but will still be very cold, in what is sure to have an impact on Miami. So which Dolphins players can we still feel safe about starting in our fantasy football leagues this deep in the playoffs?
Cutler and Tom Brady switched jerseys ahead of their Monday night matchup, and didn’t tell anyone. Okay, obviously, that wasn’t the case, but when looking at the final stats sheet, one would almost think that’s what happened. The three-touchdown, zero-turnover performance, was easily Cutler’s best as a Dolphin.
The strong performance plus season-ending injuries to Carson Wentz and Josh McCown surely has Cutler on the streaming radar this week. Consistency has never been Cutler’s friend, however, and when you factor in Buffalo’s better than average pass defense combined with the cold weather, instincts tell me that he’s likely to struggle in this one. It’s a good chance he’ll still play well enough to get the Dolphins the win, but probably not your fantasy team.
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Drake has been incredible as of late, and a real blessing for those who scooped him up in fantasy leagues. He’s really taken on the role of lead back, performing at a much better rate than Jay Ajayi did at any point this season in a Dolphins uniform. Damien Williams will likely return for Miami this week, but it should not damper Drake’s workload significantly.
In the cold weather, the Dolphins are expected to lean heavily on their run game against a Bills team that has struggled all season against opposing backs. Drake is an easy must-start this week, and a favorable option for DFS tournaments.
After a long offseason without a word of his future, we’re finally hearing reports that the Dolphins want to lockup their top receiver, and fan favorite, for the long-term. It’s being stated that Dolphins management wanted to see Landry do a few extra things first before talks began, and it’s clear that he’s delivered throughout this season.
This is honestly not a great matchup for Landry this week seeing as Buffalo’s pass defense is actually quite good. Factor in the cold weather as well, him and Cutler could find problems getting on the same page. Regardless, Landry is a strong part of why you’ve made it this far into the playoffs. Unless you have Antonio Brown, Julio Jones, and Keenan Allen on your team, Landry remains a WR1 this week.
Even though DeVante Parker woke up a bit on Monday with four receptions for 40 yards, it was his drop at the start of the game that told me all I needed to know about Parker’s future in Miami. He still remains far off the fantasy radar, and probably off the Dolphins roster sooner than later.
Stills, on the other hand, is locked in as Miami’s #2 receiver although he didn’t look like it on Monday. I thought that Stills had a great opportunity to shine at home against New England, but it was a relatively quiet night for the young veteran, finishing with two receptions for 18 yards. In fact, it was Jakeem Grant that surprisingly outshined Stills in this one, catching his first career touchdown pass. Stills remains Miami’s legitimate deep-threat, but the matchup makes this one an easy one to avoid.
Thomas was quiet in Miami’s win Monday as he has been relatively all season. The Bills defense ranks in the bottom 10 against tight ends, but Thomas is way more miss than hit to trust at this critical stage of the fantasy season.
Miami’s defense has resurged into a legitimate streaming option. After playing abysmal for five straight losses, the Dolphins defense has been solid the past couple weeks. They even did the unthinkable Monday, holding the Patriots to 0 for 11 on third-down conversions. They’re not my favorite option this week, particularly with Tyrod Taylor starting at QB for Buffalo, but they too could benefit in the cold weather conditions. The cold weather could keep this a low scoring game for both sides, and possibly increase the odds for turnovers. That makes Miami’s defense a respectable streaming option for this week.