If you’re still reading weekly fantasy recaps at this point, you’ve done quite well for yourself in at least one league. That means you probably avoided the likes of Peyton Manning, Jeremy Hill or Dez Bryant this season.
But in Week 15, even some of fantasy’s most consistent players fell short of their projections. Let’s take a look at the most disappointing lineup you could have possibly set.
Notes: Each week’s entries are determined by calculating the difference between the projected Yahoo! point totals and the actual outputs of each player. PointAfter visualizations illustrate the players with the worst sums. Players who played less than a half due to injury were not considered.
QB: Aaron Rodgers, Packers
Projected points (position rank): 20.0 (9th)
Actual points (position rank): 11.1 (27th)
Though Green Bay has rebounded from its midseason slump to win four of five games, Aaron Rodgers hasn’t exactly been lighting up his opponents. The reigning MVP has failed to top 220 passing yards in all but one of those contests, and has a pedestrian 6-3 TD/INT ratio over his last four games.
The sudden regression has seen Rodgers, the NFL’s all-time leader in career passer rating, to post his worst marks in completion percentage (60.8%), yards per attempt (6.8) and passer rating (95.2) since his first year as a full-time starter in 2008.
RB1: Javorius Allen, Ravens
Projected points: 11.2 (15th)
Actual points: -0.2 (N/A)
Javorious Allen performed well enough early on this season to assume the lion’s share of carries in Baltimore once Justin Forsett broke his arm. But two consecutive weeks with a costly fumble might have cost the rookie his chance to hang onto that role.
Allen fumbled his fourth carry against Kansas City, and Chiefs safety Tyvon Branch returned it 73 yards for a touchdown. Ravens coach John Harbaugh was so furious about the turnover, which put Baltimore down 14-7 in an eventual 34-14 loss, Allen didn’t touch the ball again Sunday.
Terrance West took over as the featured back following Allen’s miscue. There’s no telling whether Allen will be back in Harbaugh’s good graces by Week 16, but he’s certainly been phased out the past couple weeks following his three-game reign as the No. 1 option.
RB2: Lamar Miller, Dolphins
Projected points: 11.4 (13th)
Actual points: 2.4 (57th)
Injuries usually preclude players from the All-Bust team, but Lamar Miller played through a quad injury he sustained during the second quarter against San Diego until it was obvious the Chargers were going to beat the dead-in-the-water Dolphins. If he was well enough to play for his team in meaningful game time, he’s well enough for the All-Bust team.
And he certainly merits a spot here after mustering just 12 yards on nine carries against San Diego’s dreadful run defense.
WR1: Calvin Johnson, Lions
Projected points: 13.0 (3rd)
Actual points: 1.9 (87th)
Megatron is here for the second straight week after recording consecutive one-catch outings. It was a major Monday Night Football letdown with Detroit playing New Orleans’ notoriously soft pass defense.
The former superstar has only one 100-yard game under his belt this season, and his average of 13.9 yards per catch is a career low.
WR2: Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals
Projected points: 13.1 (1st)
Actual points: 4.3 (57th)
After Carolina struggled to put away the Giants earlier Sunday, the Cardinals made their case as the NFC’s most dominant team on Sunday Night Football by thrashing an Eagles squad fresh off victories over the Patriots and Bills.
Larry Fitzgerald was largely uninvolved in the bloodbath, however, despite being pegged as Yahoo’s top-ranked receiver in Week 15. The usually consistent veteran was targeted a season-low five times, as both Michael Floyd and John Brown received more looks from Carson Palmer while David Johnson logged a career-high 29 carries and racked up three touchdowns in the 40-17 route.
Don’t expect Fitzgerald to be here again during fantasy’s unofficial Championship Week in Week 16. Arizona will need his services in a marquee matchup against the Packers in Glendale.
TE: Jacob Tamme, Falcons
Projected points: 5.7 (21st)
Actual points: 0.0 (N/A)
Tamme had carved himself out a decent role in Atlanta’s offense over the last couple months, and with Leonard Hankerson released mid-week, the 30-year-old seemed like a decent streaming option at tight end for Week 15.
Instead, the Falcons’ attack was more centered on Devonta Freeman (25 carries, 10 targets) and Julio Jones (nine receptions on 13 targets) than ever, as Tamme couldn’t haul in his lone target from Matt Ryan.
FLEX: Eddie Lacy, Packers
Projected points: 11.1 (16th)
Actual points: 2.3 (T-58th)
At this point, you’d have to be crazy to play Eddie Lacy in Week 16 when Green Bay faces off against the streaking Cardinals. The hulking Alabama product, looking more and more like Trent Richardson by the week, followed up his encouraging Week 14 showing (24-124-1) with an 11-carry, 23-yard stinker against the Raiders.
To compound matters, James Starks (9-51-0) had another good day on the gridiron, and is now averaging more yards per carry over the season than Lacy.
In fact, Lacy has as many fumbles as he does touchdowns this year – three. And his fourth All-Bust appearance this season ties him with Jeremy Hill for the most of any player.
D/ST: Carolina Panthers
Projected points: 8.3 (5th)
Actual points: 0.0 (28th)
The Panthers have now sandwiched two concerning outings around a dominant shutout of the Falcons. Rashad Jennings’ successful line (16-107-1) against Carolina’s stout defense was especially surprising, as the Panthers wasted a 35-7 lead and gave up four touchdowns to Eli Manning in a 38-35 nailbiter.
Kicker: Justin Tucker, Ravens
Projected points: 7.6 (28th)
Actual points: 2.0 (T-28th)
It’s always a bummer when your kicker ends up doing you in during the playoffs. Tucker is the third-most owned kicker in Yahoo leagues, so there’s a good chance his meager two-point output (two extra points, no field goal attempts), crushed some championship dreams in Week 15.
On the All-Bust team, Tucker is not alone.
Aaron Rodgers: 11.1
Javorius Allen: -0.2
Lamar Miller: 2.4
Calvin Johnson: 1.9
Larry Fitzgerald: 4.3
Jacob Tamme: 0.0
Eddie Lacy: 2.3
Carolina Panthers D/ST: 0.0
Justin Tucker: 2.0
Final Score: 23.8 points