Fantasy football is a game of stats and numbers, but in reality, those numbers are based on very real outputs from very real players on the field. PFN’s own stat, Offensive Share Metric, is one way that real football players can be measured on a weekly and yearly basis and can help fantasy players determine who is worth stashing and who isn’t. For one thing, OSM numbers rely on a minimum threshold for calculation, meaning each player who qualifies has to have enough opportunity to do so. We all know fantasy is one part opportunity and one part skill, so OSM seems like a great way to help us filter through the noise and find guys that can help us in with our fantasy teams. With that being said, here are some Week 15 waiver wire finds to look for based on Week 14 OSM scores.
By this time of year, most fantasy teams already have their stud QB locked and loaded for the fantasy football playoffs. However, you could be facing a dilemma if you have been relying on Jameis Winston or Daniel Jones to get you this far and are looking for some new blood to help invigorate your team. Look no further than these QBs who put up solid #PFNOSM numbers for Week 14.
Drew Lock – Week 14 OSM = 29.22 (QB8) – 6% Owned
Drew Lock far outperformed his projected rankings in his second start in Week 14 and first on the road. He put up 309 yards, three touchdowns, one interception and ran three times for 15 yards as well. He distributed the ball to multiple players and looked like a calm veteran in that backfield, which definitely showed in his OSM score for the week. Lock should also be a boost to your lineup in the playoffs for Week 15 and beyond.
Mitchell Trubisky – Week 14 OSM = 27.79 (QB12) – 25% Owned
Mitchell Trubisky also looked different in a positive way this week, putting up 244 yards passing and 63 more on the ground while throwing for three touchdowns and rushing for a fourth against a porous Dallas defense. It definitely looked like he’s turned the corner and could be started this week against a struggling Green Bay squad, even at Lambeau. He was top 12 in OSM and top three in fantasy scoring, meaning he should at least be rostered in every league going forward.
Running back has been an enigma for most of the season, and not due to the injuries we expected. Players like Dalvin Cook and Adrian Peterson are still suiting up every week while younger players like Derrius Guice and Josh Jacobs have been sidelined instead. This means that your studs are likely still starting for you, but you might be looking for a solid flex option as we head into Week 15.
Bilal Powell – Week 14 OSM = 9.93 (RB23) – 23% Owned
Bilal Powell did the most with the opportunity he was given after Le’Veon Bell was benched due to an illness, putting up a borderline RB2 performance for the Jets behind 19 carries for 74 yards and two catches for 14 yards. He definitely got the volume but that offense just couldn’t get anything done against a normally bad Dolphins defense. With a top 24 OSM score for the week, Powell is worth adding in case Bell’s illness keeps him sidelined another week. Whether you’re the Bell owner or not it could be hard to start him in a win-or-go-home matchup this week, so tread lightly.
DeAndre Washington – Week 14 OSM = 7.65 (RB26) = 4% Owned
Josh Jacobs was a late scratch due to his shoulder injury, which thrust the duo of DeAndre Washington and Jalen Richard into the mix as a so-starters. Washington did more with his opportunity, getting 53 yards and a touchdown on his 14 carries along with six catches for 43 yards. If Jacobs sits again, which is possible since the Raiders are officially eliminated from the post-season, look for Washington to do it again this week at home against a bad Jacksonville defense and put up another week of promising OSM numbers.
Wide receiver has been very tough to predict in fantasy football this year. Perennial studs like Odell Beckham Jr. and Devante Adams have been struggling thus far, and now it looks like Mike Evans is out for the year. There’s a very real chance that you need a WR3 to start or are looking for a spark at your flex spot, and wide receiver is the best option to do that, especially in PPR leagues.
Diontae Johnson – Week 14 OSM = 42.89 (WR7) – 27% Owned
Pittsburgh hasn’t been the same all year, and I mean that literally. They’re starting Devlin Hodges, Jaylen Samuels, and James Washington on a regular basis, who saw that coming?
However, one bright spot has been rookie wide receiver, Diontae Johnson. His OSM score this last week puts him in the elite territory even though his stats look a little mediocre. His 60 yards and a touchdown on six catches may not wow most people, but the OSM numbers show that he’s responsible for almost half of that production himself, which is a rare feat for rookie wide receivers in this league. He’s a worthy flex option most weeks, so pick him up if he’s still available somehow.
Alex Erickson – Week 14 OSM = 38.89 (WR14) – 3% Owned
Alex Erickson is worth a flier mainly because he’s getting targets in the Bengals offense and because Auden Tate suffered a knee injury last week. Erickson caught five of seven targets for 45 yards, which isn’t a ton, but it’s very possible that his opportunity increases down the stretch. Add to that an OSM score close to 40 and it’s clear that he’s the one getting separation himself, giving QB Andy Dalton plenty of space to find him down the field.
Isaiah McKenzie – Week 14 OSM = 38.58 (WR15) – 0% Owned
Isaiah Ford – Week 14 OSM = 36.02 (WR21) – 0% Owned
When it comes to tight end this late in the season we usually see a few random names become weekly starters in the fantasy playoffs, and this year is no different. Ageing veterans Greg Olsen and Jared Cook both left the field on Sunday with injuries that could keep them out for a while, and there are more than a few younger players ready and able to replace them in your fantasy lineups this week.
Nick O’Leary – Week 14 OSM = 44.05 (TE3) – 0% Owned
Nick O’Leary may not sound like a player you want to start, but last week he caught 4 of 5 targets for 30 yards and a touchdown which puts him in starting tight end territory. Given the brutal landscape of tight end in fantasy, and the inevitable reliability on touchdowns for scoring, you could do a lot worse than Jacksonville’s current starting tight end for your playoffs.
O’Leary posted the third-highest OSM for qualifying tight ends, only behind Darren Waller and Travis Kelce, and finished just ahead of George Kittle. This is great company to be around! Easily worth a spot start if you’re scrambling because he was responsible for a lot of his own production last week and he’s definitely available on the Week 15 waiver wire.
O.J. Howard – Week 14 OSM = 41.01 (TE5) – 37% Owned
Ah, O.J. Howard, a candidate for the biggest bust of 2019. So why is he an option to roster now? A few reasons, but not the least of which is that starting wide receiver Mike Evans went down this week with an injury and his targets will have to go somewhere. On top of that, Howard has looked like a different player in the last few weeks, putting up 73 yards on four catches in Week 14. Clearly, quarterback Jameis Winston and coach Bruce Arians will be throwing the ball, someone has to catch it, right?
Howard’s Week 14 OSM score shows that he was able to perform like the stud tight end that everyone expected him to be back in August. As long as he doesn’t fumble the ball or miss a block he should still see plenty of snaps and should help your fantasy team in a pinch. Yes, he’s owned in a lot of leagues, but that stat is a little misleading this time of year anyway. Go see if he’s on your waiver wire for Week 15 and thank me later.
Tyler Higbee – Week 14 OSM = 35.07 (TE7) – 37% Owned
Blake Jarwin – Week 14 OSM = 34.78 (TE9) – 2% Owned
Ian Thomas – Week 14 OSM = 31.63 (TE12) – 2% Owned
Hit us up on Twitter @PFNFantasy with who you’re looking at on waivers this week. Also, continue to visit the Pro Football Network for NFL news and in-depth analysis like the #PFNOSM data while also visiting our Fantasy Football section for more coverage.
Andrew Hall is a writer for PFN covering Fantasy Football. You can follow him @AndrewHallFF on Twitter.