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Antonio D'Arcangelis | Archive | Email |
Staff Writer


Through The Wire - Week 15
12/12/16; Update: 12/14/16

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Targeting weekly waiver picks is a completely subjective business, but this column hopes to point out some obvious and not-so-obvious selections to help your team from week to week while you strive to collect fantasy wins, reach your league playoffs and win the elusive title that your friends say is out of your grasp. While I’m a big proponent of making trades to bolster your roster, the waiver wire can be an almost limitless resource when it comes to discovering fantasy value in strange places. Each week, I’ll highlight some of the popular (and not-so-popular) players who can help your squad and may still be available in your league.

Feedback is always welcome, appreciated and encouraged. I’ll get to as many e-mails as I can.



Quarterbacks

Alex Smith, KC Its not my favorite thing in the world that Im recommending Alex Smith here, but hes got a great matchup at Tennessee and both Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce are looking better as they develop rapport with Smith. Trevor Siemian threw for 334 yards against the Titans in Week 14, and Smith could post excellent numbers as well.

Sam Bradford, MIN The WR corps seems much healthier and Bradford threw for 292-1-0 against a decent pass defense in Jacksonville on Sunday. Hes not a great option but hes startable in two-QB leagues and could be worth a DFS flier.

Matt Barkley, CHI Id be wary of starting Barkley against the Packers, who looked excellent shutting down Russell Wilson in Week 14. But John Fox is impressed with the journeyman QBs poise and the Bears could get Alshon Jeffrey back this week.

Updates

Joe Flacco, BAL UPDATE: Flacco had another strong fantasy week with 324-2-1 and he’s definitely a viable option against the struggling Eagles in Week 15. Flacco’s TD/INT numbers (17/12) leave much to be desired, but he’s already thrown for 3,582 passing yards and could reach 4,000 for the first time in his career.

Andy Dalton, CIN Dalton looked good on Sunday, even if it was against the Browns. He threw for 180-2-0 but once Jeremy Hill was running downhill against Cleveland, he didnt have to do much. Expect him to throw more against the Steelers.

Bryce Petty, NYJ The 257-0-1 line was about what most of us expected from Petty in his debut start, but he earned a victory in OT and gets a halfway decent matchup against the Dolphins (who will be without Ryan Tannehill) in Week 15.

Bilal Powell

Workhorse: Bilal Powell had 34 touches for the Jets yesterday after Matt Forte left with a knee injury.


Running Backs

Adrian Peterson, MIN - UPDATE: Peterson wants to practice this week and return for Week 16 against the Packers. He's available in about half of competitive redraft leagues and worth a speculative add if your bench is deep but even if he's able to play, it would be hard to trust him in a fantasy championship game.

Dwayne Washington, DET The Lions could be missing the rest of their RBs this week (see more below), so Washington could be in line for massive workload. Hes been relatively unimpressive so far this season (averaging just 3.1 YPC)), but he ran for 64 yards in 16 carries against the Bears and will get a few targets in the passing game as well.

Charles Sims, TB Sims has four carries for 17 yards and 3-33-0 receiving in a close game with the Saints. Theres a logjam at RB now in Tampa Bay, but Sims has the most PPR value.

UPDATE: Doug Martin is still the lead back but Sims could be a sneaky flex play against the Cowboys in deeper formats.

Bilal Powell, NYJ Matt Forte didnt see much action in Week 14 before leaving with a knee injury thats likely to sideline him again in week 15, so Powell will be the workhorse and target hog in the passing game. The veteran backup had a monster day Sunday with 145 rushing yards on 29 carries and 5-34-0 receiving.

UPDATE: Forte is still listed as day-to-day, but the RB’s statements that he felt his knee “cracking and popping” indicates he’s probably not going to suit up in a short week. Powell is probably the best add of the week in most formats.

Kenneth Farrow, SD Farrow rushed 16 times for 55 yards and caught 6-23-0 after Melvin Gordon (hip) got carted off the field Sunday. Gordons getting an MRI and Farrow would shoulder most of the load is the dynamic second-year back (thats Gordon Im talking about) missed Week 15.

UPDATE: Ronnie Hillman could also see action because Farrow struggled in pass protection Sunday. This might be a situation to avoid.

Updates

Jalen Richard, OAK Latavius Murray ran well, but Richards six carries for 29 yards and zero targets were a disappointment in a game where the Raiders offense was stymied by the Chiefs-D and could have used more passing down work from Richard.

Mike Gillislee, BUF Two carries, 34 yards. It was efficient, but after six rushing TDs in seven weeks, not what his owners were hoping for.

Jonathan Grimes, HOU The Texans backs played through their issues and actually ran the ball well, so Grimes took a back seat and didnt see much action. Hes a situational player without major upside.

Zach Zenner, DET Zenner ran for 36 yards on seven carries and caught 2-9-0 in Week 14, but was placed in the concussion protocol and could miss Week 15.

Justin Forsett, DEN The Broncos got Forsett involved, but he finished with just six carries for 17 yards, a fumble and 3-18-0 receiving. Denver actually put together some semblance of a passing game in Week 14, relegating Forsett and Booker to secondary roles.

UPDATE: The Cowboys are heavy favorites against the Bucs, so it’s possible Morris gets more touches this week later in the game.

Alfred Morris, DAL Darren McFadden will be activated this week, but Morris remains the primary handcuff to Ezekiel Elliott.

Wide Receivers / Tight Ends

Dontrelle Inman, SD Inman is still out there in way too many leagues. Philip Rivers throws a lot of INTs, but hes smitten with Inman and the WR caught a healthy 6-71-1 in the loss to Carolina Sunday. Inman now has 74 targets on the season, only 20 fewer than main SD target Tyrell Williams.

Sammy Watkins, BUF Watkins was also here a couple weeks ago, and finally found paydirt in his third game back from the foot injury. If hes healthy enough to play this week, expect 100 percent effort and solid numbers in the matchup with Cleveland.

UPDATE: Watkins says he wants to play the final there games even if the Bills are eliminated from the playoffs. He’s a gamer.

Taylor Gabriel, ATL Gabriel had three catches for 82 yards and a long touchdown on six targets Sunday and rushed once for no gain in the Falcons' Week 14 win over the Rams. Hes a solid option with Julio Jones battling a turf toe injury.

UPDATE: The Falcons are taking it slow with Jones and keeping him out of practice this week, so we could be looking at another big game from Gabriel.

TE Zach Ertz, PHI Even in competitive formats, hes still available in about 25-40 percent of leagues, making Ertz a solid pickup for Week 15. He snagged 10-112-0 on 13 targets from Carson Wentz in Week 14.

WR J.J. Nelson, ARI – UPDATE: I had Nelson as my third WR on my lone DraftKings entry ($27) in the Millionaire Maker last week, and he helped me (along with the efforts of Le’Veon Bell, Jeremy Hill, Lamar Miller, Odell Beckham Jr. and Taylor Gabriel) to a decent cash ($150) in 851st place. With Michael Floyd’s recent DUI arrest, Nelson (coming of a two-TD Sunday) should get even more work going forward.

Updates

Tyler Lockett, SEA The Seahawks got embarrassed in Green Bay, but Lockett was one of the bright spots, hauling in 4-41-0 on six targets and rushing for 15 yards on two carries.

Malcolm Mitchell, NE UPDATE: Mitchell had his third TD in four games en route to a 4-41-1 effort on Monday night against the Ravens. He’s starting to become an unavoidable fantasy option and worth consideration in all formats.

Adam Thielen, MIN Thielen had 4-101-0 and remains a big part of the Vikings offense going forward.

TE Dennis Pitta, BAL Update coming Tuesday.

Pierre Garcon, WAS Garcon came through big on Sunday with 5-59-1 and a solid fantasy day despite just six targets. He should be used quite a bit versus the Panthers in Week 15.