Brock Purdy’s schedule is more favorable than Tua Tagovailoa’s
Chuba Hubbard - RB, Panthers
While it doesn’t appear that Hubbard has completely taken over the Panthers’ backfield (D’Onta Foreman had 21 carries for 74 yards), he’s at least getting a bigger piece of the pie. Hubbard has now had two straight games with at least 17 touches and 65 yards alongside Foreman. In Week 14, he had a season-high 99 yards from scrimmage to go along with a touchdown. He was vital in the Panthers’ running game and used as their pass catcher out of the backfield, too. Ironically, the Panthers control their own destiny to become NFC South champions. Hubbard could be used as a viable FLEX with the fantasy football playoffs on the horizon. The Panthers have two straight home games which includes a matchup with the Steelers who allowed a 28/186/1 combined line to Gus Edwards and J.K. Dobbins. The next will be against the Lions. Hubbard could be a fantasy playoff hero.
Evan Engram - TE, Jaguars
I could be wrong, but Engram is trending up at the right time for fantasy managers who are starved for tight end production. Engram had a career day, finishing with a 11/162/1 line. In Week 13, he turned seven targets into 5/30/1. He’s been hot, but faces the Cowboys (second-best against tight ends in fantasy) in Week 15. He’ll follow that up in a matchup with another top-ten team against tight ends in the Jets in what should be a cold-weather game. If you don’t have a solid option at TE, it’ll be hard to fade a guy coming off a game where he saw 15 targets. It’s not every day you see that outside of Travis Kelce. Nonetheless, a player who’s scored three times in his past two games should be noticed and Engram is starting to thrive in Duval.
Brock Purdy - QB, 49ers
I’m doing it, I’m telling it like it is. Purdy should not only be rostered in super-flex leagues (which is obvious at this point), but he should be considered as a starting option in one-quarterback leagues depending on who you have and their matchups. I say this even with the severity of Deebo Samuel‘s injury pending. Purdy had about as good of a first start as you could have hoped for, defeating Tom Brady on the other side in dominating fashion. He now has two straight games with at least two touchdown passes and the 49ers offense hasn’t missed a beat. Purdy finished as QB8 in Week 14 (Monday Night Football pending) and has a decent remaining schedule. The 49ers will go to Seattle, come back home against the Commanders and then go on the road to face the Raiders. Purdy will play within the confines of Kyle Shanahan‘s system and that’ll be enough to provide value for fantasy managers.
Tua Tagovailoa - QB, Dolphins
Can we trust Tua in the fantasy playoffs? Based on what we’ve seen the past two weeks and what’s on the horizon for Week 15, I’d say you need to worry. He’s faced stiffer competition in his last two games and has finished as QB17 in each of the last two weeks. It’s the NFL and anything can happen, but the Dolphins will hit the road for the third straight week to face the Bills. This won’t be a regular away game, as it will be cold and Buffalo is expecting 1-3 inches of snow. Furthermore, the game will be played on Saturday, giving Tyreek Hill (who battled an ankle injury in Week 14) less time to get ready. If you can make it past Week 15, there’s some light at the end of the tunnel with matchups against the Packers at home and then the Patriots, who Tua has never lost to. If you’ve rode with him this long it’ll be hard to bench him, but you should seek options with better matchups (see above) for at least Week 15.
Jaylen Waddle - WR, Dolphins
You’re not sitting Waddle, but what’s happened over his last two games and what lies ahead is worrisome. For some of the same reasons above with Tua Tagovailoa, Waddle hasn’t been hitting on all cylinders like Tyreek Hill. In his last two games, Waddle has 10 targets, three receptions and 40 yards ... not good. This is a result of dropped passes, miss-timing balls or Tua just being off the mark. While the Bills haven’t been as good against receivers in recent weeks, they’re still middle of the pack. The weather in Buffalo won’t do the Dolphins passing game any favors either. Regardless, Waddle hasn’t had a 100-yard game since Week 8 or scored a touchdown since Week 9. They’ll need him in a major way, but can he be trusted in the first round of the fantasy playoffs?
Mark Andrews - TE, Ravens
This is another guy you can’t sit, but it may be worth tempering expectations. With the quarterback situation unsettled in Baltimore for Week 15, Andrews’ production could have a wide range of outcomes. Regardless of who’s been at quarterback for the Ravens, Andrews has been TE9 over the past four weeks. He’s had less than five receptions (with no touchdowns) in his past three games and he’s coming off of a dismal 17-yard performance. Andrews was successful last season with Tyler Huntley under center, but the two couldn’t get it going in Week 14 against the Steelers. After Huntley left the game with a concussion, rookie Anthony Brown came in as the Ravens held on for dear life. Obviously we’d like to see Lamar Jackson back, which makes Andrews a top-three option, but he may still be a couple of weeks away. You have to be real with yourself if you’re starting Andrews in your fantasy playoff matchup.