Every league should now be in the fantasy playoff mode, unless you play in a points only league. There are always means and ways to tinker with your lineup going into a playoff game, and the IDP world allows for you to swap in and out players based on matchup and recent production. I know I will be modifying my rosters all week long as injury information and practice time details become available. Plus, here are my recommendations for those players to pick up for Week 15, and those to put on the bench or cut.

Good luck if your team is still in the playoff hunt. And if your playoffs begin this week, and run through Week 17, you seriously need to consider leaving that league or getting the commissioner (and the rest of the league) to agree that in 2017 your playoffs begin in Week 14. You do not need the headache of trying to figure out who will be on the field in Week 17. Expect this rant to continue until the season is done. By the way, I will publish up through Week 17, just because of my dedication to the IDP way of life, so do not fret if you need to pick someone up for the final week of the regular football season.

Elevator Going Up


Bud Dupree PIT -- Gotta love a guy on the defensive side of the ball who goes by the moniker of "Bud." Plus, he put up seven total tackles in Week 14 against the Bills in a blowout win (five solo, three for a loss) with a pair of QH (QB hits) tossed in for good measure. If you can grab him off the wire, do so now. He was a first round pick by the Steelers in the 2015 draft.

Mike Hull MIA -- Hull has been tagged to play in place of Kiko Alonso who is injured, and against the Cardinals, he had eight total tackles (only two solos), with a PD (pass deflection) and an INT. So long as Alonso is on the shelf, Hull provides a nice fill-in LB option.

Sean Lee DAL -- Lee is a perennial stud on defense, and it is good to see him back in action. Against the Giants in Week 14, he collected a massive 18 total tackles, with 11 of those being of the solo variety. He also had a TFL (tackle for a loss of yards), a QH and a fumble recovery. If by some chance he is available in your league, you should rush to add him…RIGHT NOW!

DeAndre Levy DET -- Levy did not see a full complement of snaps against the Bears, but still acquitted himself well in his return to the field in Week 14, picking up four total tackles (three solo). He will be worked back into action, and should be available to pick up as his injury has kept him out of action all season until this recent activity.

Defensive Linemen

DeForest Buckner DE SF -- Buckner was a Week 7 pickup suggestion. If you have been rolling with him, you do not need me to tell you that he is providing great IDP production. His Week 14 stat line: 11 total tackles (10 solo, two TFL), two sacks and four QH. If you play in a dynasty or keeper league, he is a must add to your roster.

Romeo Okwara DE NYG -- Okwara is taking over while Jason Pierre-Paul deals with his injury, and he saw a big uptick in production with the additional playing time. He collected eight total tackles against the Cowboys on Sunday night, (three solo, one TFL), to complement his sack, pass deflection and three QH. If you had Pierre-Paul on your roster, he is one to target on the waiver wire (or even if you didn't have JPP).

Kawaan Short DT CAR -- I looked back through my articles and was amazed that I never profiled Short before now. He is coming off a two sack effort against the Chargers, with three solo tackles (two TFL), two QH and a forced fumble. Those numbers are extremely useful in IDP leagues, obviously and superb for a DT even in non-DT mandatory leagues.

Defensive Backs

Keith Tandy S TB -- Defensive back is where the wealth is in Week 15, and opens with Tandy. Tandy has been playing in place of the injured Chris Conte, and putting up good numbers. In Week 14 against the Saints, he collected nine total tackles (eight solo, one TFL), together with three PD and an INT. Be careful when adding him, as his Week 15 opponent, the Cowboys, are stingy with opposing safeties, ranking 28th in the league.

Sean Davis S PIT -- Davis has shown good cover skills and is also putting up big plays on defense. He is coming off a game against the Bills on the road, where he put up seven total tackles (six solo, one TFL), three QH and 1.5 sacks. His ownership numbers indicate that you should be able to snap him up off the waiver wire in your league, and I would urge you to do so, although as with Tandy, his Week 15 opponent, the Bengals, are ranked low with regard to allowing fantasy points to safeties (27th in the league, just above Dallas).

Cre'von LeBlanc CB CHI -- LeBlanc almost won the game for Chicago in Detroit with his late interception in Week 14, but then the comeback kids, the Lions, went and spoiled his celebration by winning the game with another come from behind 4th quarter victory. Nevertheless, he also had four PDs to go with his pick six, and four total tackles (two solo). The Packers head to Chicago in Week 15, and have the seventh highest fantasy point total for opposing CBs through Week 14. You cannot expect LeBlanc to put up huge point totals every week, and playing outdoors in the winter could slow his production, so do not go crazy and add him over a proven commodity, but if you are thin at DB, he is a decent option.

Valentino Blake CB TEN -- Blake saw better than 90% of the defensive snaps in Week 14, stepping in to replace the departed (via waiver, nothing terminal) Perrish Cox. He had six solo tackles and a PD against the Broncos last week, and can be counted on for similar results going forward so long as he is seeing a large number of snaps.

Jimmie Ward CB SF -- Ward filled up the stat sheet in Week 14: 11 total tackles (eight solo, one TFL), a sack, a QH, an INT and three PD. His ability to play inside allows for more tackle opportunities, making him seem like a S/CB hybrid, extremely useful in leagues that require a CB position.

Damarious Randall CB GB -- Randall is finally looking close to 100%, as evidenced by his numbers against the Seahawks: five total tackles (three solo), and a pair of INT and PD both. He has been dealing with a groin injury, but is not listed on the injury report as of the writing of this article. He did have 58 tackles as a rookie in 2015, and led the team with 14 PD during that season, so if he is back in form, he is a sneaky option as the fantasy playoffs move forward.

Daryl Worley CB CAR -- Worley, as with many rookie corners, is being targeted by every QB he faces. That is a great thing for IDP point production purposes, naturally, but he is also acquitting himself well. In Week 14, he tallied 10 total tackles (eight solo) and also picked off a pass and added a PD for good measure. He does not have the greatest Week 15 matchup against Kirk Cousins and the Washington offense (ranked 24th in the league as allowing points to opposing CBs), but as noted above, you can expect the opponent to test his mettle and thus, he should be able to post useful stats for his owners. Speaking of which, I would be surprised if he is not available in your league as he is owned in virtually no leagues on ESPN and only 8% on Yahoo.

Lamarcus Joyner CB LA -- Joyner winds up the cornerback profiles this edition of the IDP Report. Joyner gets to face off against the Seahawks, and while I do not expect Russell Wilson to be intercepted five times, a PD or two could be in future for a starting CB on the Rams (Joyner has 5 on the season). I am not rushing out to add him to my teams, but if injuries are limiting your options, he is someone to consider adding for a week or two and praying for some fantasy production.



Escalator Going Down


Jerry Hughes BUF -- Hughes suffered a benching in Week 14 in favor of rookie linebacker Shaq Lawson. If he is not starting, there is obviously no reason to keep him in your lineup, and he should be cut in redraft leagues at this point.

De'Vondre Campbell ATL -- Campbell is a big play potential IDP at linebacker, but his tackling numbers are nothing to write home about. You can take a flier on him if you need PD numbers, but the steady production from tackles will not be there. He is a risky play going forward.

Defensive Linemen

No players except those listed on the injury list below.

Defensive Backs

Kenny Vacaro S NO -- Vacaro is starting his four game suspension, so his season for fantasy purposes is done. The Saints turned to Roman Harper to take his place in Week 14, and while I do not like him as a stud IDP option, he could put up decent numbers going forward if you are desperate for a safety.

Matchups to Exploit

Remember, the first team listed is the one to use your IDPs against. Do not go crazy, and play a LB5 against the Colts on the Viking squad (or vice versa this week), but certainly you will do well if you own a top LB on the Vikings or Colts that you can plug in against the Colts or Vikings, as the case may be, for the most part.


Indianapolis @ Minnesota

Minnesota vs Indianapolis

Philadelphia @ Baltimore

New England @ Denver

Cincinnati vs Pittsburgh

Defensive Ends

Arizona @ New Orleans

San Diego vs Oakland

Buffalo vs Cleveland

Defensive Tackles

Arizona @ New Orleans

Los Angeles @ Seattle

Cleveland @ Buffalo


New Orleans @ Arizona

Philadelphia @ Baltimore

San Diego vs Oakland


Arizona vs New Orleans

Jacksonville @ Houston

New York Jets vs Miami



Waiver Wire Targets

All these players are spotlighted above, and you can read my comments about them in the "Elevator Going Up" section of this article. Not all the players I comment on are here, however, as I am not going to waste your time searching for players that are heavily owned. This group consists of those that you may have a chance of locating on your league's waiver wire in that they are owned in significantly less than 50% of leagues. Happy claiming for your weekly matchups.


Bud Dupree PIT

Mike Hull MIA

DeAndre Levy DET

Defensive Linesmen

DeForest Buckner DE SF

Romeo Okwara DE NYG (owned in 30.3% of ESPN leagues, only 20% of Yahoo leagues)

Kawann Short DT CAR (owned in 37.4% of ESPN leagues, just 5% of Yahoo leagues)

Defensive Backs

Keith Tandy S TB

Sean Davis S PIT

Cre'Von LeBlanc CB CHI

Valentino Blake CB TEN

Jimmie Ward CB SF

Damarious Randall CB GB

Daryl Worley CB CAR

Lamarcus Joyner CB LA

Ouch (My Aching Roster)

All the injury reports below need evaluation prior to kickoff.  Teams are notoriously sketchy about injury reports, and we often do not know a player's status until just before game time. Consider the list below as a "heads up" as to what is going on early in the week, and should not be considered definitive.


Jamari Lattimore BUF nose

Lerentee McCray BUF concussion

Luke Kuechly CAR concussion

David Mayo CAR concussion

Jackson Jeffcoat CLE hamstring

Brandon Marshall DEN hamstring

Todd Davis DEN oblique

Nick Perry GB hand

Kyler Fackrell GB hamstring

Blake Martinez GB knee (MCL)

John Simon HOU chest

Robert Mathis IND biceps

Derrick Johnson KC Achilles (out for the season)

Kiko Alonso MIA knee

Jelani Jenkins MIA knee

Edmond Robinson MIN hamstring

Craig Robertson NO shoulder

Mark Herzlich NYG concussion

Lorenzo Mauldin NYJ ankle

Shilique Calhoun OAK knee

Brock Coyle SEA foot

Sean Spence TEN ankle

Will Compton WAS knee (PCL)

Su'a Cravens WAS elbow

Defensive Linemen


Robert Nkemdiche ARI elbow

Adrian Clayborn AT knee (meniscus)

Kyle Williams BUF back

Charles Johnson CAR hamstring

Wallace Gilberry CIN calf

Ezekiel Ansah DET shoulder

Zach Kerr IND concussion

Matt Longacre LA heel

Mario Williams MIA ankle

Jason Pierre-Paul NYG groin

Owa Odighizuwa NYG knee

Stacy McGee OAK ankle

Joey Bosa SD neck

Damontre Moore SEA foot

Noah Spence TB ankle

Jurrell Casey TEN foot

Karl Klug TEN Achilles


Eddie Goldman CHI ankle

Rakeem Nunez-Roches KC back

Steve McLendon NYJ hamstring

Darius Latham OAK ankle

Javon Hargrave PIT head

Quinton Dial SF elbow

Defensive Backs


Tyrann Mathieu ARI shoulder

Kemal Ishmael ATL shoulder

Robenson Therezie ATL ankle

Derron Smith CIN thigh

J.J. Wilcox DAL thigh

Peyton Thompson JAX ankle

Maurice Alexander LA concussion

Harrison Smith MIN ankle

Jordan Richards NE knee

Shiloh Keo NO hamstring

Nat Berhe NYG concussion

Karl Joseph OAK toe

Mike Mitchell PIT knee

Shamarko Thomas PIT concussion

Chris Conte TB chest

Kyshoen Jarrett WAS shoulder

Will Blackmon WAS concussion


Tharold Simon ARI ankle

Marcus Cooper ARI back

Jalen Collins ATL knee

Jerraud Powers BAL concussion

Jimmy Smith BAL ankle

Tracy Porter CHI illness

Johnthan Banks CH ankle

Morris Claiborne DAL sports hernia

Ladarius Gunter GB general soreness (that's a new one)

Johnathan Joseph HOU ribs

Tevin Mitchel IND hamstring

E.J. Gaines LA thigh

Chimdi Chekwa MIA hamstring

Xavien Howard MIA knee (meniscus)

Marcus Sherels MIN ribs

Trae Waynes MIN concussion

Eric Rowe NE hamstring

Delvin Breaux NO shoulder

Buster Skrine NYJ concussion

Brandon Flowers SD concussion

Craig Mager SD elbow

Keith Reaser SF head

As ever, good luck and Godspeed in your fantasy efforts. Make sure to read all of our great articles to help you win your fantasy match ups every week and ultimately bask in championship glory. If you have any fantasy football questions, especially about IDP leagues, I can be reached at ia@fantasyalarm.com.