Fantasy Football Today - fantasy football rankings, cheatsheets, and information
A Fantasy Football Community!

Create An Account  |  Advertise  |  Contact      

Antonio D'Arcangelis | Archive | Email |
Staff Writer

Through The Wire - Week 11
11/12/13 Users...
Check out the most popular waiver wire pickups this week across thousands of MFL leagues. Also, quickly see who's available on your waiver wire this week by using the MFL Power feature at FF Today. Just input your league's 5-digit ID number away you go!
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 a limitless resource when it comes to discovering fantasy value. Each week, I’ll target both offensive and defensive players — sometimes breakout stars that eluded your team’s draft — as well as players who can help your squad that may be lurking in deeper leagues.

Off the Top - Includes my premier recommendations. These are sometimes players available only in more shallow leagues, and occasionally guys who are more readily but are thrust into the fantasy spotlight because of opportunity or exceptional production.

Digging Deeper - Covers the next tier of quality waiver wire specimens, usually players available in a majority of online leagues. There are a lot of gems in this range who can be plucked rather easily.

Scouring the Barrel - Chronicles the deepest of fantasy adds — and sometimes highlights players being tacked onto fantasy squads who I don’t have much confidence in. Make sure you read the fine print.

Each week, I’ll also provide a brief update on the 20-30 players I covered the previous week. It’s the most accurate, comprehensive one-stop waiver-wire column available on the Internet, and it’s only available here at

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

Note: Each player’s next four matchups are listed in parentheses ()


Off The Top

Alex Smith, KC (@DEN, SD, DEN, @WAS) – The matchup in Denver is Smith’s most important game this season (so far), and he’s coming off a helpful bye. Smith will probably have to throw the ball to keep up with the Broncos offense, assuming Peyton Manning plays through his injuries and suits up in this AFC West showdown.

UPDATE: Manning appears to be ready to play after MRI revealed no new damage to what he keeps vaguely referring to his “lower body.” Deploy Smith in what could be the first real shootout of the year for the Chiefs.

Digging Deeper

Carson Palmer, ARI (@JAC, IND, @PHI, STL) – Palmer hasn’t been great this season (2,154-12-15), but the matchup with the Jags is a favorable one. Give him a shot as a bye-week fill-in if you’re a Tony Romo owner looking for a viable option.

Scouring The Barrel

Mike Glennon, TB (ATL, @DET, @CAR, BUF) – I’ll update again after Monday night’s game, but Glennon has been decent for fantasy owners this season since taking over for Josh Freeman. He’s got seven TD passes in his last four games.

UPDATE: Glennon threw his first pick since Week 6 and only had one TD pass. He’ll do better against Atlanta.


Eli Manning, NYG (GB, DAL, @WAS, @SD) – Since Week 1, Manning has just seven TD passes in eight games. He had 140-1-1 on Sunday but has more favorable matchups on the way. Still, he looked awful against the Raiders.

Nick Foles, PHI (WAS, BYE, ARI, DET) – Foles now has 16 TDs this season and no INTs, though he did lose a fumble Sunday during his 228-3-0 day. He also added 38 rushing yards and is playing like a low-end QB1 right now.

Case Keenum, HOU (OAK, JAC, NE, @JAC) – Keenum has proved he’s capable of running the Texans offense, connecting on short TD passes to finish with 201-3-0 and a lost fumble. He’s still the starter and has a few favorable matchups on the docket.

Seneca Wallace, GB (@NYG, MIN, @DET, ATL) – Wallace left the game early with a groin injury after a decent start (5-5, 25 passing yards) and was replaced by Scott Tolzien, who proved Wallace could have been on pace for a big day by posting 280-1-2 (19 rushing yards) in the loss. Tolzien will start in Week 11.

UPDATE: The Packers have signed Matt Flynn to back up Tolzien, who is getting the start in Week 11. Wallace is supposed to go on IR with the groin injury. So much for that experiment!

Running Backs

Off The Top

Andre Brown, NYG (GB, DAL, @WAS, @SD) – Despite breaking his leg in the preseason and being in his first game back, Brown (50-75 percent owned) was a Top 10 Fantasy RB on Sunday. If he’s still available, this workhorse is worth adding and plugging in versus the Packers as a low-end RB2, high end RB3/flex.

Digging Deeper

Mark Ingram, NO (SF, @ATL, @SEA, CAR) – Ingram finally got his shot after weeks of inactivity, but it was in a blowout win over the depleted Cowboys defense, which was without both DL Jason Hatcher and LB Sean Lee, who left early in the game with a hamstring injury. Ingram is a hard runner and boom-or-bust guy depending on his use, but there might be a few matchups where he’s worthy of a flex play.

Scouring The Barrel

Dennis Johnson, HOU (OAK, JAC, NE, @JAC) – The Texans running game is in shambles, but Johnson is the obvious handcuff for Ben Tate owners and Tate is nursing a painful rib issue.

Brian Leonard/Bobby Rainey, TB (ATL, @DET, @CAR, BUF) – The injury to Mike James means some type of timeshare between Leonard and Rainey. I’m expecting early down work split between both backs, with Leonard on passing downs and Rainey getting goal line and short yardage conversions. I liked Rainey as a possible sleeper when the Browns signed him, but now he might get a real chance.


Ben Tate, HOU (OAK, JAC, NE, @JAC) – Tate rushed for 56yards on 15 carries, adding 3-8-0 on five targets. With Arian Foster done for the season, he’s the clear No. 1 RB for the Texans. See Johnson above for a handcuff.

Mike James, TB (ATL, @DET, @CAR, BUF) – Update coming Tuesday.

UPDATE: James is out indefinitely after breaking his ankle early in Monday night’s action.

Chris Ivory, NYJ (@BUF, @BAL, MIA, OAK) – Ivory was on a Week 10 bye and returns this week to face the Bills – a run defense that’s gotten much better this season. I have a feeling it might be a Bilal Powell type of day in Buffalo.

Rashad Jennings, OAK (@HOU, TEN, @DAL, @NYJ) – Jennings shouldered the load capably (88 rushing yards, 2-19-0) in Darren McFadden’s stead, and will probably get another start as RUN-DMC is likely a couple weeks away from returning from a re-aggravated hamstring injury.

Wide Receivers/Tight Ends

Off The Top

Jarrett Boykin, GB (@NYG, MIN, @DET, ATL) – Regardless of who’s under center for the Packers, Boykin will get looks because of the coverage on deep threats Jordy Nelson and James Jones. He’s still out there in about 40-50 percent of leagues.

Tavon Austin, STL (BYE, CHI, @SF, @ARI) – Austin’s three monster TDs, including a 98-yard punt return and two bonus TD receptions (57, 81) paced the Rams en route to a 38-8 drubbing of the Colts. If this is a sign that Austin is starting to figure things out or that the Rams know how to get him in space), he’s worth adding in all formats. You can’t play him in Week 11 (bye), but on Sunday he looked like the player the Rams traded up to snag in the draft.

Digging Deeper

Kenny Stills, NO (SF, @ATL, @SEA, CAR) – Stills got loose again for along TD against the Cowboys, giving him 12-303-4 in his last four games. There are much better options in PPR leagues, but Stills makes a decent boom-or-bust flex play in scoring-dependent leagues.

Rishard Matthews, MIA (SD, CAR, @NYJ, @PIT) – UPDATE: Matthews exploited the matchup out of the slot to the tune of 11-120-2 on Monday night. While a lot of this was due to the Bucs tough CBs (Darrelle Revis and Dashon Goldson) shutting down Mike Wallace and Brian Hartline, the young receiver should continue to get targets, including in the red zone. He could be a viable WR3 if this trend continues.

TE Brandon Pettigrew, DET (@PIT, TB, GB, @PHI) – Pettigrew has been consistent if not great this season, making him a low-end TE2 in PPR leagues. The Lions’ next few opponents have some shutdown cornerbacks who could get Matthew Stafford looking off Calvin Johnson. Just an idea, folks.

Scouring The Barrel

Jermaine Kearse, SEA (MIN, BYE, NO, @SF) – Kearse (2-5 percent owned) is a deep-league add with some upside (3-75-1 on Sunday), but don’t get too excited here – Percy Harvin is on his way back and Golden Tate and Doug Baldwin are the top two targets in Seattle right now.

TE John Carlson, MIN (@SEA, @GB, CHI, @BAL) – The veteran Carlson (2-5 percent owned) takes over for Kyle Rudolph as the Minnesota TE and one of a few Christian Ponder check-down options. He’ll get his fair share of targets going forward and is worth a pickup in two-TE leagues.


Emmanuel Sanders, PIT (DET, @CLE, @BAL, MIA) – Sanders couldn’t get much going against the Bills finishing with just 4-13-0 and 25 rushing yards.

Marlon Brown, BAL (@CHI, NYJ, PIT, MIN) – Brown had just one catch for 10 yards and Joe Flacco targeted him just three times.

Riley Cooper, PHI (WAS, BYE, ARI, DET) – Cooper followed up his career game with another excellent fantasy performance, hauling in 3-102-2, courtesy of a couple long TDs (45, 32). Because of his amazing rapport with Foles, Cooper’s playing like a viable WR2 right now.

Jerricho Cotchery, PIT (DET, @CLE, @BAL, MIA) – Cotchery caught another TD this week (2-31-1) and now has six TDs on the season. Nobody saw this coming from the veteran wideout.


Off The Top

LB DeMeco Ryans, PHI (WAS, BYE, ARI, DET) – I pegged Ryans as an undervalued LB in an IDP piece I did for in a preseason fantasy mag, and so far, it’s been a good call. Ryans (40-60 percent owned in IDP leagues) now has 90 total tackles (72 solos) this season as well as 2.0 sacks, two INTs and four PD. He’s a high-end LB2 with lots of upside.

DB Eric Berry, KC (@DEN, SD, DEN, @WAS) – Berry’s numbers have been pedestrian since Week 3, but I expect a big game against the Broncos, when he’ll get a lot more field time. If he can stay away from the actual horses, he’ll be fine.

Digging Deeper

DB Tramon Williams, GB (@NYG, MIN, @DET, ATL) – Williams had his best fantasy performance of the year on Sunday (7 tackles, 0.5 sacks, FR) and faces the Giants next week. He could be this week’s Tracy Porter.

DL Sheldon Richardson, NYJ (@BUF, @BAL, MIA, OAK) – Richardson is coming off his bye week and should be ready to take on the Bills and their dynamic running game. He’s been relatively quiet for a few weeks, and is more readily available off waiver wires than fellow Jets lineman Muhammed Wilkerson – who also has a great matchup.

Scouring The Barrel

LB Vincent Rey, CIN (CLE, BYE, @SD, IND) – Rey had 15 total tackles (10 solos), 3.0 sacks and an INT versus the Ravens playing for the injured Rey Maualuga. You can’t ignore IDP performances like this, because they rarely mean players go right back into obscurity. The Bengals linebackers are banged up and Rey could be a monster in the second half of 2013.

DL Cedric Thornton, PHI (WAS, BYE, ARI, DET) – He’s worth looking at for Week 11 in deep IDP leagues as a DL3 and has another good matchup in Week 13. Thornton already has 40 tackles this season – pretty good for a DL.


DL Calais Campbell, ARI (@JAC, IND, @PHI, STL) – Campbell had four assists and a PD, making him a middle-of-the-road DL start in Week 10. He should be able to eat a little more against the Jags.

DB Morgan Burnett, GB (@NYG, MIN, @DET, ATL) – I’m not sure if Burnett’s hamstring is acting up again, but he only tallied three solos in Sunday’s loss to Philly. Not exactly a Tier 1 DB performance.

DB Tracy Porter, OAK (HOU, TEN, @DAL, @NYJ) – I predicted Porter would get a pick against the Giants. Not only did he snag a Manning pass, he took it 43 yards for a TD. Porter added three solos tackles and a PD.

LB Nick Roach, OAK (@HOU, TEN, @DAL, @NYJ) – Roach finished with six solos and an assists against the Giants. He’s shown to be a consistent LB3 – ranging from 6-12 tackles in every game except Week 2.

DL Sen’Derrick Marks, JAC (ARI, @HOU, @CLE, HOU) – Marks had a tackle and a PD in the Jags first win of the season.

LB Paul Worrilow, ATL (@TB, NO, @BUF, @GB) – For the second straight week, Worrilow finished with 19 total tackles (10 solos this time around). Everything seems to be flowing his way in that Atlanta defense.