Another Rams game, another monster Cooper Kupp performance (9-136-2). It’s truly absurd what he’s doing this year:
The Rams handled the Seahawks 20-10 last night and the other big news from the game is Sony Michel appearing to have flipped Darrell Henderson as the lead back.
In the other Tuesday night tilt, Miles Sanders (18-131; 2-15) and Dallas Goedert (7-135) had big games as the Eagles beat Washington 27-17.
And with that, Week 15 has finally and mercifully come to a close.
Read on for the biggest signals and noise from Week 15, Waz’s early Week 16 ranks, and some notes on current COVID situations.
💥 SIGNALS & NOISE
Ben Gretch (@YardsPerGretch) writes the terrific Stealing Signals newsletter where he does a weekly deep dive into the previous week and shares his biggest signals (players who could sustain their production) and biggest noise (performances that were likely fluky). Here are some of his observations from Week 15…
Justin Jackson — 52% routes while Austin Ekeler was limited to 33% (Jackson is a strong start if Ekeler misses Week 16 on the reserve/COVID-19 list)
James Conner, Chase Edmonds — snaps nearly 50/50, but Conner led slightly in snaps and also routes, as Edmonds’ 26% routes were only his second healthy game under 50% (if it sticks, Conner should maintain solid HVT upside with his green zone role)
Rashod Bateman — 93% snaps and routes on 96% of dropbacks, well above previous season highs (worth noting Sammy Watkins was out, but Devin Duvernay also lost a lot of work to create room for this Bateman role)
Tyler Johnson, Scott Miller — Johnson led the way, followed by Miller, in terms of routes and involvement with the WRs injured, but Antonio Brown could be back as well and would presumably command a lot of targets
D’Onta Foreman — 39% snap share (got banged up early and missed some snaps, plus it was a passing script, but Foreman was lead early-down guy again with 24 touches, while Dontrell Hilliard ran the most routes and Jeremy McNichols also played more than Foreman on passing downs, despite also getting banged up)
Duke Johnson — 23 touches, lead back role (could be big and well worth a waiver add, but calling it Noise because there’s risk here it was related to Myles Gaskin’s stint on the reserve/COVID-19 list last week, and the Dolphins are tough to trust for RB usage)
Cordarrelle Patterson — floor game (still got three green zone touches, including a touchdown overturned on replay, and snaps were actually up, to 62%)
Mike Williams — inefficient 9-3-49 receiving line (dropped a TD, got multiple other end zone shots, also had a wide open opportunity on a trick play where Keenan Allen threw poorly)
To see all of Gretch’s biggest signals and biggest noise analysis from Week 15, subscribe to his substack.
🥇WAZ'S .5 PPR RANKS
Here are the early Week 16 rankings from Rob Waziak aka "Waz" along with notes on the Thursday guys:
A.J. Brown (WR11) is expected to return to the field after missing the last three games with a chest injury. It’s a welcomed return for a Titans team that is unlikely to have Julio Jones back from his hamstring injury. Brown hasn’t had a full week of practice since Week 12, but he’s a grown ass man and will be facing a 49ers pass defense that ranks 28th in DVOA against team WR1s.
Elijah Mitchell is still nursing a knee injury and is considered a GTD tomorrow. With Deebo Samuel (WR5) and Jeff Wilson Jr. (RB28) playing well in Mitchell’s absence, I am pessimistic that he suits up tomorrow. If he does, I am not expecting him to lead his peers in snaps or carries.
Tyreek Hill (WR2), Travis Kelce (TE4), Michael Carter (RB25), and Marquez Valdes-Scantling (WR54) were all placed on the COVID-19/Reserve List yesterday and, assuming all are vaccinated, will have the the week to produce two negative tests. Due to the fluidity of rankings with more players testing positive and the opportunity for rescheduled games, have a couple of contingency plans in your pocket for a worst-case scenario.
Waz is a fantasy football analyst who competes in draft and season-long expert rankings competitions. He's consistently been at or near the top of all industry-wide leaderboards since 2017. He’ll be back on Saturday with an update.