Saints Fantasy Football Week 15: Start 'Em or Sit 'Em (Playoff Edition)

Saints News Network's Fantasy Analyst Brendan Boylan gives his Start' Em or Sit 'Em for New Orleans Saints players in Fantasy Football playoff action.
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Reading this article should mean one of two things - either you qualified for the fantasy football playoffs or have advanced to Round 2 of your league's playoffs. Either way, congratulations! If you did not fall into either of those categories and you're still here just to read about the Saints' fantasy picks, thank you for joining us in Week 15!

The Saints' offense has an entirely different look under QB Taysom Hill. A flurry of questions are swirling around the possible return of starting quarterback Drew Brees and who should you start in Week 15's fantasy football games? Also, how individual players' value will be affected? I will answer all of those questions and more with my Week 15's installment of "Start 'Em and Sit 'Em" for the New Orleans Saints in Fantasy Football 2020.

Start 'Em

RB Alvin Kamara

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There was plenty of concern about Alvin Kamara's fantasy value headed into the playoffs, particularly in PPR leagues after a steady decline in receptions per week after Taysom Hill took over the quarterback duties. Despite the drop in receptions and consecutive weeks of playing less than 50% of the team's offensive snaps, Kamara has bounced back the last two weeks, posting over 17 points in standard PPR leagues.

Perhaps the most encouraging stat for AK was his 7 receptions last week, his most since Week 10 when Brees suffered his rib/lung injury. This week the Saints face the high-powered Kansas City Chiefs offense and hope to counter Patrick Mahomes one of two ways:

  1. Keep the ball out of his hands with long drives, or 
  2. Get into a shootout. 

Both scenarios benefit Kamara and make him a must-start against an average Kansas City defense.

QB Taysom Hill (If He is the Starting QB)

Taysom Hill scores first Touchdown as Saints Starter

It is hard to project players to start when we do not know whether they will begin to or not, but that is the beauty of Fantasy Football. Taysom Hill is coming off a career-high in passing yards, but arguably his worst performance as the Saints' starting quarterback. For New Orleans to defeat the Chiefs in Week 15, Hill has to put on his best performance yet.

The Kansas City defense is ranked 20th in points allowed over the previous 6 weeks. They have also allowed 24+ points in 4 of the last 5 weeks. With those numbers and a dual-threat quarterback on the other side, I would bet on Hill and the Saints' offense to bounce back after a subpar outing in Philly. The key will be to the ball well against the 26th ranked rush defense.

Remember Hill's value at quarterback does not rely strictly on his arm; yet, it's his legs and scrambling ability. Taysom Hill may not be at Top-5 option by any means, but he still serves as an intriguing play this week. He is averaging over 21 fantasy points a week since taking over as the Saints' starting quarterback and should come close to that number again this week.  

TE Jared Cook

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Welcome back to Fantasy Football relevance Jared Cook! After 4 consecutive weeks of failing to reach more than 3.0 fantasy points, Cook has back-to-back weeks of finding the end-zone and scoring 10+ points in PPR leagues. Emerging as a go-to red-zone threat for Taysom Hill, Cook battles a Chiefs defense surrendering an average of 5 receptions for 60 yards a game to Tight Ends this season along with a touchdown every other week on average.

The Pro-Bowl tight end found a hot streak at the end of 2019 and accounted for four touchdowns over the final five weeks. It appears Cook is "cooking" again this season with two touchdowns in the last five weeks. See a trend?

If you're looking to throw a jump ball into your lineup this week, look no further than Jared Cook, who is available in 45% of most leagues.

Sit 'Em

Saints D/ST

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The Saints D/ST were a staple start for me over the past month. Although, the last two weeks have seen a drastic drop in fantasy production for New Orleans. When you pair their struggles and battling the best offense in football with an MVP candidate, the Saints D/ST is easily on my Sit 'Em list.

New Orleans surrendered two 100-yard rushers last week after going 55-games without allowing such an effort in a single game. Nevertheless, the Saints defense has another streak on the line this week... 16 straight games without allowing a 300-yard passer. With Mahomes on the other side, it is safe to say that streak could easily be snapped in a Mercedes-Benz Superdome shootout.

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