The Waiver Wire 12/6
Final update at 7pm
Welcome to the Rotobahn waiver wire, and props to all those who just qualified for the postseason. It’s Week 14, and in the vast majority of leagues that means half of the teams now are toast. So, while most waiver wires have been picked pretty clean over the last 13 weeks, there will be fewer GMs to compete with when making bids or claims this week. There are some relative values out there in case you have a need or if you want to bolster your bench a bit. The quarterback market is pretty light, but most of you probably are in good shape there. Based on ownership rates, Joe Flacco is the guy to add this week for depth or if you need a Week 14 option. The pickings at the other positions are a little better, as you will see. The plum of this week’s crop probably is Ladarius Green, who busted out against the Giants in Week 13.
As always, I will be doing updates to the article throughout the day with the final update coming at 7pm tonight. I've added a few defenses at the bottom.
If you have tough lineup decisions this week, look for my starts and sits article, which will be posted on WEEI this Friday as always. My lineup rankings, posted at Rotobahn, will go up on Thursday and will have a final update on Saturday.
Good luck to all this week!
The ownership rates listed for each player were sourced from Yahoo!
Joe Flacco, Ravens, 23 percent
He’s a stable weekly option who happens to be hot right now. The Ravens play a solid playoff schedule, and Flacco is a decent-to-good play each week going forward. Stable. Solid. Decent. I know it’s not exciting, but he can keep you competitive.
Tyrod Taylor, Bills, 63 percent
Taylor has nice playoff matchups, and he has Sammy Watkins back, too. Watkins gives him an actual weapon defenses must respect. Taylor can start for you over the next three weeks, though his play has been erratic the last few games. The bottom line is that he is a dynamic running threat and that gives him a decent weekly floor. The schedule and Watkins’ return give him some ceiling to go with it.
Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins, 26 percent
He’s not an option I like this week, but you can consider adding him for his matchup in Week 15 when the Dolphins travel to play the Jets. The Jets are barely playing football right now and look ready to fold up like a cheap tent. They made Dwayne Allen look like Kellen Winslow Sr. on Monday night.
Justin Forsett, Broncos, 6 percent
He could potentially be lightning in a bottle. Then again, players switch teams multiple times per season for a reason and Forsett is near his expiration date. The question is, might he have a few good games in his legs? He is returning to the scheme that he’s had the most success in. With Kapri Bibbs done for the year and with Devontae Booker struggling, Forsett could get a good run at some point over the next few weeks. He’s a very strong speculative add in a pretty well-drained free agent market.
Jerick McKinnon, Vikings, 44 percent
He’s not the goal-line back, but he has been more involved in the red zone and scored last week. His targets have been up the last few weeks and he appears to be past the ankle problems that slowed him throughout the middle of the season. McKinnon is a solid flex play in 12-team leagues this week with the Vikings visiting the Jaguars, and things get even better next week when the Vikings host the Colts.
T.J. Yeldon, Jaguars, 55 percent
With Denard Robinson (ankle) now hurt and with Chris Ivory (hamstring) dinged up, Yeldon could be in for some significant workloads the next few weeks. Of course, Yeldon hasn’t been a picture of health himself, and if his ankle is an issue this week then Corey Grant becomes a name to know. Grant is a seriously fast back who has plenty of potential if he is getting the carries.
Dion Lewis, Patriots, 58 percent
He wasn’t used much in the second half of what was a one-sided game from the get go. This week’s game should be more competitive, and the Patriots need wins to secure home field. To me, Lewis makes a solid flex play or even RB2 in 12-team PPR leagues this week.
Kenneth Dixon, Ravens, 46 percent
He’s now in a clear timeshare with Terrance West, but Dixon’s game has really been rounding into shape. He has some appeal in PPR leagues as an RB2 option, albeit a light one. If West gets dinged up, Dixon’s value would skyrocket. The Ravens' remaining schedule is neither good nor bad.
Wendell Smallwood, Eagles, 37 percent
In Week 13 he was small for sure, but he was a victim of a blowout in the wrong direction. Things might get better this week with Washington visiting the Eagles, but watch out for Ryan Mathews, who could return from his knee injury. If Mathews sits again, Smallwood retains flex appeal. Week 15 value will be scant as the Eagles travel to Baltimore.
Mike Gillislee, Bills, 23 percent
He’s back healthy and posting solid numbers again as the first back up behind LeSean McCoy. He’s a great handcuff for McCoy owners, but he also has some flex appeal in bigger leagues, so he’s a stand-alone option, too.
Charles Sims, Buccaneers, 13 percent
He’s been out a long while so there’s no way to tell just how good he will be when he first comes back. Still, he’s talented enough to make for a nice stash in deeper PPR leagues. He could be startable as a flex by Week 15.
Rex Burkhead, Bengals, 5 percent
In deeper leagues Burkhead could help in desperate situations because he is in a good matchup against the Browns and looks like a good bet to get around 10 touches.
DeAngelo Williams, Steelers, 21 percent
He is one of the most valuable handcuff options out there, and he is healthy again. If you are a Le’Veon Bell owner, you really ought to roster him to cover your posterior. If Bell is out, then Williams starts and is an RB1. He’s a viable handcuff in all leagues now that it’s playoff time.
Derrick Henry, Titans, 45 percent
This is just a reminder that DeMarco Murray owners still have a shot at getting their handcuff in some leagues. Henry is a high-quality backup.
Alfred Morris, Cowboys, 12 percent
Speaking of quality backups, Morris is a great handcuff options for Zeke Elliott owners. You lose the passing game chops but you retain plenty of yards and most of the touchdowns.
Tyler Lockett, Seahawks, 37 percent
I’m a big believer in Lockett, and he finally is looking like himself after suffering from a PCL injury through much of 2016. He gets a sweet matchup with Green Bay’s secondary in Week 14, so he has immediate appeal in 12-team leagues. If you are looking for good matchups in Weeks 15 and 16, then Lockett is less appealing as he faces the Rams and Cardinals, respectively.
Malcolm Mitchell, Patriots, 30 percent
He played 85 percent of the offensive snaps, and that’s huge. Mitchell is a very nice add right now, especially in deeper leagues where he has some WR3 appeal. It’s pretty clear that he’s a playmaker and that Tom Brady has an idea of how to use him. Danny Amendola’s high-ankle sprain should keep him out for a few weeks, so Mitchell is pretty well locked in for now.
Corey Coleman, Browns, 46 percent
He is not a great play this week but he certainly has potential and he did score in his last game. The move to RGIII at quarterback is probably not a great thing, but Griffin can get the football downfield and that’s where Coleman really shines. I am starting Coleman this week in one league. I’m not thrilled with it, but I feel like I have a chance at a big play or two.
Dontrelle Inman, Chargers, 20 percent
He’s been consistently productive over the second half of the season, and he’s put a few nice fantasy games together the last two weeks. With Travis Benjamin struggling to regain his pre-injury form, Inman has filled the void. He’s a viable flex this week and can be a WR3 if you need him.
Brandon LaFell, Bengals, 17 percent
The Bengals aren’t going anywhere in 2016. I think that’s a factor as to when or even if A.J. Green returns this season. The odds of Green returning this week are low, in my estimation, and LaFell is coming off a very good game against the Eagles. He should be able to keep it going this week against the Browns, so if you are looking for a WR3 this week, LaFell fits the bill.
Tyler Boyd, Bengals, 53 percent
He gets a very nice matchup with the Browns this week, and he will not see much of Joe Haden in coverage because Boyd usually is deployed as a slot receiver. He can help you this week if you need a WR3 -- particularly in PPR leagues.
Pierre Garcon, Washington, 32 percent
He’s been solid for the last few weeks, and that coincides with Jordan Reed’s absence, which obviously opens up targets for other receivers. If Reed sits this week, and I think he will, then Garcon is a viable flex or WR3 in 12-team leagues when Washington travels to Philadelphia.
Ted Ginn, Panthers, 23 percent
Ginn has caught fire the last three weeks after being relatively quiet for 10 games. You can try to ride the wave this week if you have a need at receiver. The matchup is not great, as the Chargers have been relatively tough on receivers. Ginn has been targeted 16 times over the last two games, so the ball is coming his way.
Adam Thielen, Vikings, 16 percent
He’s led the Vikings receivers in snaps the last four weeks. Granted, part of that is due to Stefon Diggs’ sore knee, but Thielen is getting targeted and giving owners consistent flex value in PPR formats. He’s been targeted 20 times over the last two games and has an average matchup this week when the Vikings travel to Jacksonville.
Breshad Perriman, Ravens, 2 percent
He’s a big-time talent and has scored in three straight games. In deeper leagues, he can really be a factor as a WR3. His targets are steady at about four per week, but they are getting him good matchups and you have to think his role is going to grow with the plays he’s been making. He’s a great stash option who you can absolutely play if you have to.
Ladarius Green, Steelers, 23 percent
He is no longer a stash option, as I have been saying for the last few weeks. Hopefully you already own Green, but if you do not, you still have a chance. He has a big weekly ceiling and is the best player available in most leagues this week. If you are a dazed Rob Gronkowski owner, Green could potentially save your bacon. Go get him -- even if it’s to keep him off of your competition’s roster.
Vernon Davis, Washington, 37 percent
The key to his TE1 appeal obviously is the status of Jordan Reed, and there’s no way to know now whether Reed will suit up for Week 14 or even Week 15, for that matter. Davis has looked very good lately and absolutely will see the ball if he’s the starter. He’s shown good rapport with quarterback Kirk Cousins.
Dennis Pitta, Ravens, 33 percent
He’s baaaack. After weeks of futility and low usage, Pitta busted out in Week 13 and dropped nine receptions, 90 yards and two touchdowns on the unsuspecting Dolphins. That type of performance will earn him looks this week when the Ravens travel to Foxboro.
CJ Fiedorowicz, Texans, 40 percent
Still getting snaps (46 last week) and targets (9 in Week 13), but the touchdowns haven’t been there. I think CJ gets back in the zone eventually. maybe even this week, so he can help you if you have a need. He has a nice matchup with the Colts this week.
Lance Kendricks, Rams, 15 percent
He did not have a great day against the Patriots, but he gets a very nice matchup this week against the Falcons. He can help you in a deeper league this week if you are in need.
Cincinnati Bengals, 33 percent
They play the Browns this week. What else do you need to know? The Browns are switching quarterbacks yet again so the lack of continuity remains. If you need an option for this week, the Bengals have to be near the top of what’s available on most league wires.
San Francisco 49ers, 2 percent
They will play the Jets and that means they get a crack at Bryce Petty, who has the look of a turnover machine. If they can knock Petty out, they would presumably get a crack at … wait for it … Christian Hackenberg. The way the Jets are protecting lately, that could actually happen. The word is that Fitzpatrick has been benched. The 49ers are in the right spot this week.
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