Week 15 of the NFL is here: See top player prop plays and matchups to watch

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Miami Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel, center, talks to quarterback Tua Tagovailoa during the second half of an NFL football game Los Angeles Chargers Sunday, Dec. 11, 2022, in Inglewood, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

There are only four weeks to go in the NFL regular season, and with that is a full 16-game slate each week until the end of the season. That makes finding player props and DFS values slightly easier with more options available, but it remains a challenge with the NFL being so unpredictable every week.

We had a strong week picking player props last week, so we’ll look to keep that going, as well as highlight the matchups to watch for fantasy purposes.

TOP PROP PLAYS

Player prop odds courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook.

Passing top play

Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa UNDER 241.5 yards (-131) at Bills

Tagovailoa and the Dolphins’ passing game has fallen off somewhat after starting the season on a roll, and that downward spiral could continue this week against a stingy Bills defense. The game will be played in the cold confines of Buffalo, so we’re fading Tagovailoa since the conditions will likely make it tough to pass on top of the fact that the Dolphins’ offense isn’t clicking like it was.

Passing honorable mention

Colts QB Matt Ryan OVER 255.5 yards (-117) at Vikings

The Colts’ offense has been a disappointment this season, especially the passing game, but we’re anticipating a bounce-back outing from Ryan this week against a weak Vikings pass defense. The Colts will likely be chasing points in this matchup against the explosive Vikings, so the game script should allow Ryan to throw enough to go over yards.

Rushing top play

Bengals RB Joe Mixon OVER 58.5 yards (-115) at Buccaneers

The Buccaneers’ run defense has taken a step back this season and was gashed last week by the 49ers, and they could be in for another rough week against the Bengals and Mixon. The Bengals’ passing game might not be at full strength with Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd banged up, so expect them to lean on their workhorse in Mixon a little more than usual.

Rushing honorable mention

Falcons RB Cordarrelle Patterson OVER 51.5 yards (-119) at Saints

Patterson ran wild against the Saints in Week 1, and while a lot has changed since then, he has been a problem for the Saints’ defense ever since he became a Falcon last season. The Falcons will likely lean on the run as they ease in rookie quarterback Desmond Ridder, so Patterson should have plenty of opportunities to shine against the Saints once again.

Receiving top play

Chargers WR Mike Williams OVER 63.5 yards (-131) vs. Titans

The Titans’ pass defense is horrid, as we saw Trevor Lawrence and the Jaguars torch them last week, so Justin Herbert should have a field day with his top downfield threat in Williams leading the way. Williams shined in his return from injury last week and should pick up right where he left off considering the Titans have arguably the worst outside cornerback play in the NFL.

Receiving honorable mention

Colts WR Michael Pittman OVER 69.5 yards (-129) at Vikings

We’ll go ahead and play another matchup here with Pittman, as the Vikings have been consistently torched by opposing No. 1 receivers. Pittman’s still the clear-cut top target for a Colts passing attack that should be able to find its footing, making the over an appealing play.

TOP MATCHUPS TO WATCH

Player prices via DraftKings

Shootout of the Week: Cowboys at Jaguars

There weren’t any obvious shootout of the week candidates as evidenced by the fact that not a single matchup had a total of over 50 points at Caesars Sportsbook, but this Cowboys-Jaguars matchup could do the trick. The Cowboys have been stingy on defense this season, but they project to have some trouble against the surging Trevor Lawrence-led Jags offense, and the Cowboys’ offense should be able to do plenty of damage against an inconsistent Jags defense.

DFS values: Cowboys QB Dak Prescott ($6200), Jaguars RB Travis Etienne ($6000), Jaguars WR Zay Jones ($4900), Cowboys WR Michael Gallup ($4500), Cowboys TE Dalton Schultz ($4400)

Low-key shootout: Falcons at Saints

The Falcons and Saints duked it out in their first matchup back in Week 1, and while both teams are much different this week as far as who will be taking the field, the game script could end up similar. The Saints project to put up plenty of passing production with Andy Dalton and company against a struggling Falcons pass defense, and the Falcons should be able to counter that with their strong running game despite turning to rookie quarterback Desmond Ridder.

DFS values: Saints QB Andy Dalton ($5200), Falcons RB Cordarrelle Patterson ($5900), Saints WR Chris Olave ($6500), Saints WR Rashid Shaheed ($3200), Saints TE Juwan Johnson ($3400)

Stay away: Cardinals at Broncos

There are several ugly matchups in this Week 15 slate, but this one takes the cake considering just how down-bad both the Cardinals and Broncos are at quarterback. Colt McCoy will start for the Cardinals in place of Kyler Murray and looked like a deer in the headlights while filling in last week, and the Broncos will likely have to turn to backup Brett Rypien with Russell Wilson in concussion protocol.

SEASON PROP RECORD

Passing: 13-13 (top play 5-8, HM 8-5)

Rushing: 13-13 (top play 8-5, HM 5-8)

Receiving: 17-9 (top play 8-5, HM 9-4)

Spencer ‘the Guru’ Urquhart (@spencertheguru) has been a fantasy football analyst since 2014, founding a community of over 6,000 followers

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