Fantasy Football Believe it or Not: Trusting Jarvis Landry and Doug Martin?

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Jarvis Landry is back as a must-start receiver.

It wasn't easy to get to the Fantasy playoffs with Landry in your lineup. But if you were able to weather the storm, he's rewarded you the past two weeks. He's caught nine of 13 targets for 160 yards and scored two touchdowns, including one on the ground. Landry's catch percentage and yards per reception had both been terrible early in the year, but they've bounced back as well lately. He's caught 69 percent of his targets and averaged 12.3 yards per reception in his past two games.

Feel confident starting him in Week 15 against the Broncos. They aren't the same without Chris Harris, as we just saw. 

Verdict: Don't believe it.

Baker Mayfield only threw the ball 22 times in this game and Landry saw just four targets. I think we can all agree we can't count on Landry to produce 54 yards and a touchdown on the ground. So let's just take a look at his involvement in the passing game since Freddie Kitchens took over. 

In five games since Kitchens took over, Landry has a 19.9 percent target share. He's topped 60 receiving yards just once. He's averaging four catches per game. 

I'm not saying you can't start Landry in Week 15, but I wouldn't feel great about it.

Doug Martin is a starting running back for Week 15.

Martin had a wildly inefficient game in Week 14 but salvaged it with his third touchdown in as many games. He now has 34 carries in his past two games and at least nine points in non-PPR in three straight games. It was his first game without a catch since Marshawn Lynch went down, but it was also a terribly difficult matchup against a good Steelers run defense. Martin gets the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 15 and you should absolutely start him.

Verdict: Believe it.

The Bengals are absolutely terrible right now. That isn't exclusive to their run defense, but certainly includes it. Here are the lead running backs they've faced over the last eight games:

  • Austin Ekeler: 17 touches, 94 yards and a touchdown
  • Phillip Lindsay: 20 touches, 158 yards, two touchdowns
  • Nick Chubb 31 touches, 128 yards, two touchdowns
  • Gus Edwards 17 touches, 115 yards and a touchdown
  • Mark Ingram 16 touches, 162 yards and a touchdown
  • Alvin Kamara 16 touches, 102 yards, two touchdowns
  • Peyton Barber: 19 touches, 85 yards and a touchdown
  • Kareem Hunt 20 touches, 141 yards, three touchdowns
  • James Conner: 23 touches, 129 yards, two touchdowns

The very worst running back scored 14 Fantasy points. Six running backs in eight games scored at least 20 non-PPR Fantasy points. Start Martin with confidence.

You can't trust the Week 14 waiver wire running backs. 

Well that was a bit anti-climatic. Jeff Wilson, Jaylen Samuels and Justin Jackson combined for a grand total of zero touchdowns and none of them reached double-digit points in non-PPR. Wilson did see a ton of work (23 carries) but was left out of the passing game. Samuels caught a bunch of passes (seven) but only had 28 yards on the ground and lost a goal-line carry to Stevan Ridley. Jackson was just flat-out bad against the very matchup we were just talking about. 

If you were luck enough to start one of these backs in Week 14 and advance, you'd do well to choose a better option in Week 15.

Verdict: Don't believe it.

The truth is, their status will still depend on the status of the backs in front of them.

Wilson faces the Seahawks, which was the team he just broke out against in Week 13. If Matt Breida is out again, I'll trust Wilson's heavy workload pays off against a defense allowing more than 5 yards per carry.

Samuels involvement in the passing game is all you need as long as James Conner remains out. Frank Gore just ran through the Patriots defense, and Samuels was in later in the game inside the 5, so I don't think Ridley will get all of the touchdowns.

Jackson's status will depend on two backs. We still don't know Melvin Gordon's status, and Austin Ekeler suffered a stinger late in Week 14. If Jackson is the only healthy back for the Chargers against a Chiefs defense on a short week, you'll absolutely want him in your starting lineup.

There's no one in Washington you can count on.

Washington is now on their fourth starting quarterback of the year. Their offensive line has been completely decimated. Jordan Reed suffered another injury. They were down 40-0 to the New York Giants before scoring a couple of garbage-time touchdowns. It was a good run for Adrian Peterson, but you won't be able to use him again this year, or anyone else from Washington for that matter.

Verdict: Believe it.

Peterson just has no chance behind this offensive line with no passing game to speak of. He ran 10 times for 16 yards on Sunday against a great matchup. Now he gets the Jacksonville Jaguars. Hard pass. 

Josh Doctson is the only other healthy player on the team you might consider, but I don't want to trust him even if there are questions about Jacksonville's effort level right now. If you're fortunate enough to be one of the four teams left in your league, you've got to have better options than anyone on this roster.

So who should you sit and start? And what shocking quarterback could win you Week 15? Visit SportsLine now to get Fantasy football rankings for every single position, and see which shocking QB finishes in the top 10 this week, all from the model that out-performed experts big time last season.

Senior Fantasy Writer

Heath Cummings is a Senior Fantasy Writer that covers Daily Fantasy Sports of all types. Before coming to CBS Sports he was a staff writer for Footballguys and the host of The Fantasy Football Show on... Full Bio

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