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Antonio D'Arcangelis | Archive | Email |
Staff Writer


Through The Wire - Week 12
11/20/17; Updated: 11/21/17

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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

Ryan Fitzpatrick, TB The veteran is starting to click with his receivers and threw for 275-2-0 in the win over Miami. Hes owned in just 25-35 percent of leagues and makes for a decent QB2 facing the Falcons in Week 12. Hes not an exciting option, but were seeing some of the darlings of the early season struggle (Dak Prescott, Alex Smith) and Fitz is an adequate fill-in while Jameis Winston remains out for the next couple of weeks.

Tyrod Taylor, BUF – UPDATE: If “The Nathan Peterman Experiment” sounds like a low-budget horror movie to you, that’s because it was, for scads of Buffalo Bills fans who were led to believe that a rookie QB could provide a better chance at winning than a mobile veteran with a low turnover rate. Just typing that makes me shake my head. Sean McDermott is going back to Taylor (40-50 percent owned) and I hope you didn’t drop him last week just because I said it was safe to do so. What a mess.

Brock Osweiler/Paxton Lynch, DEN Its getting quite difficult to find QBs who are both available in most fantasy leagues and have exploitable matchups over the next few weeks, but Osweiler fits the bill: Hes owned in just 5-10 percent of fantasy leagues and his remaining matchups (not counting Week 17) are @OAK, @MIA, NYJ, @IND, @WAS. Of course, we must be cognizant of the fact that Osweiler is not the long-term answer for the Broncos and they could choose to have a look at what Lynch could do in his stead, especially with Mike McCoy out as OC and QBs coach Bill Musgrave promoted to head up the Denver offense. Stay tuned.

UPDATE: Head coach Vance Joseph said that Lynch could get the start against the Raiders but there hasn’t been confirmation yet. The Raiders defense is atrocious, so whomever is under center for Denver could put up useable fantasy numbers.

DeShone Kizer, CLE Hes been awful this season, but the matchup in Cincinnati is more in line with what he faced in Week 10 @ DET than the frigid, brutal conditions he dealt with in Week 11 against the Jags. As the QB options dwindle on the waiver wire, Kizer could put up adequate QB2 numbers in the right matchup, and hes available in almost 90 percent of leagues.

UPDATE: Hue Jackson is really looking forward to getting Josh Gordon up to speed and involved in the offense (he’s eligible to play Dec. 3 @LAC), so Kizer’s rollercoaster season could make one final upswing before difficult matchups in weeks 16 & 17.

Other QBs to consider: Blake Bortles (JAC), Brett Hundley (GB), Jacoby Brissett (IND)

UPDATES:

Case Keenum, MIN Keenum continued his solid play with 280-1-0, adding 20 rushing yards in a decisive victory over the Rams. Hes silencing his critics and making the case that he should be the Vikings QB moving forward.

UPDATE: Mike Zimmer confirmed that Keenum will start on Thanksgiving in what could end up being a high-scoring game. The Lions have plenty of offensive weapons and so do the Vikings. Keenum is boasting a 65.7 completion rate this season and looks like a low-end QB1 based on this matchup. It’s going to be a fun day of football and turkey!

Eli Manning, NYG The game conditions (windy and cold) didnt help the offensive flow of this game, and Manning was never forced to push the ball down the field resulting in a lackluster stat line 205-0-0. Next week hell be forced into more of an up-tempo game at Washington.

UPDATE: If Sterling Shepard (migraines) can suit up this Thursday, it greatly increases Manning’s chances of serviceable fantasy numbers. If not, Washington will likely key on Evan Engram and shut down the passing game until they jump out to a big lead and don’t need to play tight coverage.

Joe Flacco, BAL Flacco managed the game well but only finished with 183-1-1, as the Ravens defense did most of the damage against the Packers. Hes still looking for his first 300-yard passing game of 2017.

Corey Clement

The Eagles rushing attack now includes Corey Clement who's scored three times in his last two games.

Running Backs

Tarik Cohen, CHI Cohen has been quiet the past few weeks, but he busted out for 44 rushing yards and a TD on nine carries in Week 11, adding 4-15-0 on four targets. He played about half of the Bears offensive snaps (31-of-63 for 49%) on Sunday and needs to be on the flex radar for Week 12 against the Eagles.

Chris Ivory/T.J. Yeldon, JAC Leonard Fournette ended up playing on his injured ankle, but he concedes the only thing that will help him get 100 percent is rest which could clear the way for more opportunities down the stretch for Ivory and Yeldon. Youll have to monitor how the Jas handle this situation, but both backs should be owned in 12-team leagues on such a run-heavy Jacksonville offense.

UPDATE: Yeldon seems to be the consensus play over Ivory if Fournette suits up this week and plays through his ankle issues. He’s 20-30 percent owned.

Devontae Booker, DEN Booker tallied 44 rushing yards on 14 carries and added 5-54-0 on six targets in the passing game. Now well see if that gets him more looks with Musgrave in charge of the Broncos offensive playcalling. Booker is about 30-40 percent owned and could be a difference maker at flex in PPR leagues down the stretch.

UPDATE: Still no word on how Booker will be used, but he and C.J. Anderson could easily see a more even workload this week against Oakland.

Damien Williams, MIA The Dolphins RB situation is a timeshare between Williams and Kenyon Drake, though Williams should have more PPR value down the stretch. Hes available in about 40-50 percent of fantasy leagues and is coming off his most productive game in terms of yardage thus far (102 total: 78 rushing yards on 10 carries, 1-24-0 receiving).

Corey Clement, PHI With the Eagles offense rolling the past few games, Clement has been getting regular second-half carries. He had 50 yards and a TD on six carries Sunday night and has at least 50 rushing yards in three straight games.

Other RBs to consider: Marlon Mack (IND), Alfred Blue (HOU), Matt Breida (SF)

UPDATES:

Jamaal Williams, GB Despite a 23-0 drubbing at the hands of the Ravens, Williams had 57 rushing yards on 18 carries and added 4-38-0 on six targets. Hes a viable RB3/flex as along as the Packers are without Ty Montgomery, who plays just about every snap when hes healthy.

Samaje Perine, WAS We finally got to see a little bit of what Perine is capable of with a full workload, as he ran for 117 yards and a TD on 23 carries in the loss to New Orleans. Hell be a high-upside RB2 in a feature role against the Giants in Week 12 and is still available in about 30-40 percent of fantasy leagues.

UPDATE: With Chris Thompson out for the season, Perine should see 20-25 touches against the Giants. He’s worth owning in all formats.

Elijah McGuire, NYJ McGuire was on a Week 11 bye, but will likely split carries with Bilal Powell in Week 12 and is available in over 70 percent of fantasy leagues.

UPDATE: Keep an eye on Matt Forte’s status heading into this weekend – that could drastically impact McGuire’s workload.

Austin Ekeler, SD Melvin Gordon was a lot more effective this week, and Ekeler got most of his touches after the game was out of hand, but he finished with a respectable 40 rushing yards and a TD on six carries and had 2-18-0 receiving. Hes probably just a handcuff moving forward but could have some flex value if Gordon struggles.

Rex Burkhead, NE Burkhead had 16 rushing yards and added 4-21-0 receiving on six targets in the win over Oakland. He was a huge disappointment in daily fantasy leagues and didnt get quite the volume owners expected after a fumble in the first half that moved some of the touches back to Dion Lewis and James White. Hes definitely worth a flex play against the Dolphins in Week 12 and has more value in PPR leagues.

Wide Receivers / Tight Ends

Kenny Stills, MIA Stills (50-65 percent owned) has dealt with a back injury these past few weeks but had his best game of 2017 with 7-180-1 in the loss to Tampa Bay. Hes got a more difficult matchup next week against the Patriots, but could get plenty of looks even if Matt Moore is under center for Miami. Consider him a WR3 with upside, as he now has 40-588-5 on the season and has seen 39 targets over his past five games.

Jamison Crowder, WAS After a slow start in 2017, Crowder is starting to get consistent looks and is coming off another productive game (7-72-0). There will be a bit of frustration since hes not all that active in the Washington red zone offense, but he now has 20-271-0 on 32 targets over his last three games (he was inactive with a hamstring injury in Week 9 @SEA). The Giants will have difficulty containing him between the 20s, and he still available in 20-30 percent of leagues.

Josh Doctson, WAS – UPDATE: Lackluster numbers in some prime spots this season may keep some owners from picking up Doctson, but he’s a big physical WR who could dominate the Giants DBs and he’s coming off a career game versus the Saints (4-81-0). In the three games where he caught a TD this season, it was his only catch of the game – but that could change this week.

Corey Coleman, CLE As expected, Coleman (50-60 percent owned) was involved in the offensive game plan despite a difficult matchup and tough conditions. He had 6-80-0 on 11 targets in his first game back since breaking his hand and will build on that performance in Week 12 against the Bengals. He should be viewed as a high-upside WR3 and owned in all formats moving forward.

TE O.J. Howard, TB Howard hauled in 3-52-1 on four targets in Week 11 and remains a fringe fantasy option though he could see more looks in favorable matchups the next couple of weeks. Hes a TD-dependent red zone option and risky play in shallow leagues, but he does have some value in DFS and deeper formats.

TE Ricky Seals-Jones, ARI An undrafted rookie out of Texas A&M, Seals-Jones is a converted receiver who exploded on the NFL scene in Week 11 by logging his first career catch in the second quarter, his first career TD just before halftime, and his second career score in the third on a highlight reel play. He seems to have great rapport with Blaine Gabbert and could be a difference maker down the stretch, though is Week 12 matchup with Jacksonville is a difficult one.

Mike Wallace, BAL Wallace remains a risky fantasy option because the Ravens just dont throw the ball that much, but hes coming off another decent game (4-56-1) where he caught all the balls thrown his way. Hes a risk/reward WR3/flex option facing the Texans in Week 12 and is owned in just 25-35 percent of fantasy leagues.

Other WRs/TEs to consider: TE Tyler Kroft (CIN), Danny Amendola (NE), Ryan Grant (WAS), Bruce Ellington (HOU), Roger Lewis & Tavarres King (NYG), TE Adam Shaheen (CHI), Dede Westbrook (JAC)

UPDATES:

Corey Davis, TEN Davis and Mariota are having some trouble finding their connection, as the rookie receiver hauled in just 3-27-0 on seven targets Thursday night. The 22 targets over the last three games in encouraging, but 9-103-0 is not a great return for that level of volume.

Chester Rogers, IND On a bye in Week 11, Rogers could be worth an addition in deeper formats and could get another 5-7 targets against the Titans in Week 12 in a favorable matchup.

Dontrelle Inman & Josh Bellamy, CHI Inman had 3-43-0 on five targets and Bellamy left the game early after being placed in the concussion protocol. The Bears passing game is a mess.

Cole Beasley, DAL Beasley had just 2-7-0 on four targets in Week 11, as the Cowboys offense slowed to a grinding halt with left tackle Tyron Smith out for a second straight game. This is getting ugly for the Cowboys, and the decline from juggernaut offense to a putrid unit has been a steep decline.

TE Jermaine Gresham, ARI Seals-Jones seemed to be the TE of consequence for the Cards in Week 11, and he may take a back seat to RSJ in the coming weeks. In any event, the two TDs by an undrafted rookie can’t help his fantasy outlook.