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2017 Fantasy Football Strategy

Week 15 Target Watch: Greg Olsen Is Back

week 7 start_sit
Photo Credit: Leticia Samuels

While 23 different players had double-digit targets in Week 14, the Week 15 target watch showed almost as many players seeing passes. Twenty different pass-catchers saw double-digit targets, an impressive feat given the time of year.

Out of those 20 players, only seven of them were repeated from the previous week. Plenty of teams are spreading the ball around, and while sometimes this is a result of injury, it may also be a result of players stepping up.

In Week 16, it is not the time to change up a line-up or take chances with your team. What has worked so far is what will likely lead your team to victory in the Fantasy Super Bowl. However, if you have any start/sit decisions, looking at targets may provide some guidance.

This is the biggest week of the Fantasy year. Check the match-ups, check the injuries, and check the targets.

Please note none of the charts below show total receptions, total fantasy points or touchdowns. The sole purpose of this analysis is to look at targets.

Week 15 Target Watch

Each week I will be reviewing the targets for the past week, the season and even digging deeper by running back and tight end. I will also be analyzing any trends I find along the way.

Week 15 Double-Digit Targets

Player Team Targets
Michael Crabtree * Oakland Raiders 17
Sterling Shepard New York Giants 16
Randall Cobb Green Bay Packers 14
Kendall Wright * Chicago Bears 13
Marquise Goodwin * San Francisco 49ers 13
Jarvis Landry Miami Dolphins 13
Evan Engram New York Giants 13
Rob Gronkowski New England Patriots 13
DeAndre Hopkins * Houston Texans 13
DeVante Parker Miami Dolphins 12
Greg Olsen Carolina Panthers 12
Robby Anderson New York Jets 12
Michael Thomas * New Orleans Saints 11
Josh Gordon Cleveland Browns 11
Kenyan Drake Miami Dolphins 11
Delanie Walker Denver Broncos 10
Alshon Jeffrey * Philadelphia Eagles 10
Roger Lewis * New York Giants 10
Mike Wallace Baltimore Ravens 10
Larry Fitzgerald Arizona Cardinals 10


Out of the seven pass-catchers that had double-digit targets two weeks in a row, the names are not the ones that Fantasy owners would expect. Michael Crabtree, Kendall Wright, Roger Lewis and Marquise Goodwin were barely on fantasy radars at the beginning of the season. While Wright and Lewis may have been a fluke (for two weeks), Crabtree and Goodwin are solid WR2s.

The rest of the pass-catchers, DeAndre Hopkins, Michael Thomas, and Alshon Jeffrey are solid WR1s week to week despite match-ups. T.J. Yates and Nick Foles are two of the quarterbacks throwing the ball to these players, but it doesn’t seem to matter. When a new quarterback takes over, they seem to find the best pass catcher on the team and just keep throwing them the ball. It seems to work.


Top 10 Target Leaders

Player Week 9 Week 10 Week 11 Week 12 Week 13 Week 14 Week 15 Total
DeAndre Hopkins, HOU 16 14 9 10 14 16 13 168
Antonio Brown, PIT BYE 7 13 12 16 18 3 163
Jarvis Landry, MIA 7 10 11 9 6 8 13 144
Keenan Allen, LAC BYE 7 13 14 14 8 8 137
Michael Thomas, NE 11 10 11 8 9 14 11 136
Larry Fitzgerald, ARI 9 14 10 8 10 7 10 133
Adam Thielen, MIN BYE 12 9 11 5 13 5 129
Julio Jones, ATL 12 8 10 15 6 11 8 126
Demaryius Thomas, DEN 12 8 9 8 10 12 8 126
A.J. Green, CIN 2 7 9 8 16 12 4 122


The Top 10 list is still at 10 with no more movement. Antonio Brown fell below DeAndre Hopkins. He’ll continue to drop as he will be out in Week 16. The rest of the players on this list are no surprise. Even though the touchdowns haven’t been there for players like Julio Jones, the targets are.

In PPR formats, these guys are still likely at the top of the list (in terms of fantasy points). However, Davante Adams and Tyreek Hill will sneak onto the top point list (as a result of touchdowns). Adams is out for Week 16, but Hill, with only 98 targets on the year, is in the Top 10 in terms of fantasy points.

Top Tight End Targets In Week 15

Rob Gronkowski New England Patriots 13
Evan Engram * New York Giants 13
Greg Olsen Carolina Panthers 12
Delanie Walker * Tennessee Titans 10
Charles Clay Buffalo Bills 9
Zach Ertz Philadelphia Eagles 9


Greg Olsen finally made the list! After what has been a disappointing season, he had a great Week 15 (although many Fantasy owners had been reluctant to start him). Olsen faces the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 16, who have been stingy against tight ends. The Bucs allow the fourth-fewest Fantasy points to opposing tight ends. However, if Fantasy owners still are alive in the playoffs, and Greg Olsen is on the roster, start him.

Top Running Back Targets In Week 15

Kenyan Drake Miami Dolphins 11
D.J. Foster Arizona Cardinals 9
Kareem Hunt Kansas City Chiefs 9
Alex Collins Baltimore Ravens 8
Jerick McKinnon Minnesota Vikings 8
Melvin Gordon Los Angeles Chargers 8


The running backs have fluctuated this season in terms of who is seeing a lot of targets. Drake is likely going to continue to see plenty of targets. D.J. Foster will also have a role with Adrian Peterson out and Kerwynn Williams banged up. For truly desperate fantasy owners, he’s a PPR flex option.

Jerick McKinnon should be in line to have another good game against the Green Bay Packers in Week 16. While he has been involved in the passing game, Latavius Murray is still a factor in the running game. Both backs are RB2/3, but McKinnon gets the edge in PPR.


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