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Through The Wire - Week 7
10/19/10 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 an almost limitless resource when it comes to discovering fantasy value in strange places. 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 still 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 30-40 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

Kevin Kolb, PHI (@TEN, BYE, IND, @WAS) – What a roller coaster ride, huh? There’s no guarantee Kolb will hold onto the job when Vick is healthy, but he’s playing at such a high level right now you can’t ignore his value. The probable (and hopefully temporary) loss of DeSean Jackson hurts a bit, which should further temper your enthusiasm.

Digging Deeper

Matt Cassel, KC (JAC, BUF, @OAK, @DEN) – I can’t think of a QB with better matchups in the coming weeks, although that’s not a formula that always spells success for second and third tier guys. Still, Cassel tossed three TD passes last week and looks sharp leading the Chiefs offense.

Scouring The Barrel

Matt Moore, CAR (SF, @STL, NO, @TB) – Moore was named the starter for Carolina again while Jimmy Clausen matures on the bench. What? That doesn’t make sense, but it does increase the value of Steve Smith once he returns. The offense is about 50-100 yards more potent and should generate about 3-7 more points a game with Moore at the helm. Of course, none of this means he’s anything but a third QB addition in two QB leagues.


Vince Young, TEN (PHI, SD, BYE, @MIA) – Young was injured on the game’s second drive after an impressive start in the win over the Jaguars on Monday night. Kerry Collins did an excellent job after taking over and could be a sneaky QB2 the next couple weeks if Young is forced to miss any time. The early prognosis is a sprained knee, and test results are due later today (Tuesday). I’ve got my fingers crossed.

Chad Henne, MIA (PIT, @CIN, @BAL, TEN) – Henne wasn’t magnificent Sunday, but 231-2-1 and an OT win over Green Bay keeps the critics at bay. He’ll have a tougher time in Week 7 against the Steelers.

Alex Smith, SF (@CAR, DEN, BYE, STL) – The Niners earned their first win of 2010 (albeit over the Jason Campbell-led Raiders) due to a relatively error-free effort by Smith, who threw two second-half TD and earned an 87.4 QB rating for the day. I still like him as a QB2, based on his trio of offensive weapons (Frank Gore, Vernon Davis and Michael Crabtree).

Running Backs

Off The Top

Justin Forsett, SEA (ARI, @OAK, NYG, @ARI) – Okay – looks like this guy isn’t going to be a five-carry backup. Paired with his former college backfield mate, the oft-dropped Forsett ran for 67 yards on 10 carries with a touchdown in Sunday’s win at Chicago, outproducing starter Marshawn Lynch. Expect a time-share going forward.

Reggie Bush, NO (CLE, PIT, @CAR, BYE) – Bush was inactive for the fourth straight game because of a fractured right fibula. While his return is not known, it’s clear the Saints are not a Super Bowl team without him. Chris Ivory filled in admirably for Pierre Thomas (likely out 2-3 more weeks), but that doesn’t man you should wait too long to scoop up Reggie if he’s on your waiver wire.

Digging Deeper

Cadillac Williams, TB (STL, @ARI, @ATL, CAR) – With Kareem Huggins out for the rest of the year with a torn ACL, a lot of the heat is off Williams, who’s seeing most of the action because of his importance on passing downs. Fullback Earnest Graham hasn’t been the answer, and LeGarrette Blount is still quite raw. Looks like their might be a few miles left on the Cadillac after all.

Danny Woodhead, NE (@SD, MIN, @CLE, @PIT) – Woodhead was the best out of Belichick’s backfield on Sunday, but it could all change once Fred Taylor is healthy. This ain’t our first New England rodeo, folks. Take a deep breath, and consider all options before reaching for Woodhead, who’s has RB3 value at the moment, but could be an RB5 before the season’s over.

Scouring The Barrel

Mike Hart, IND (BYE, HOU, @PHI, CIN) – With Joseph Addai (neck, shoulder) injured, the Colts added Andre Brown off waivers for depth, but Hart and Donald Brown (fighting a hamstring injury), appear to be the immediate beneficiaries. The Colts have been mum on the Addai injury, which looked serious – like a separated shoulder or something in the neck area. Hart is still out there in plenty of formats, but keeping an eye on Brown’s progress is a must.

Derrick Ward, HOU (BYE, IND, SD, @JAC) – Ward has been getting occasional looks as Arian Foster’s backup and making the most of his opportunities, rushing for two TDs and 59 yards on four carries over the last two weeks. Still – he’s only worth something as a handcuff to Foster at this point.


Felix Jones, DAL (NYG, JAC, @GB, @NYG) – There’s some speculation that Marion Barber will be traded sometime before the deadline today because of the emergence of Jones. That would solidify Jones as a solid RB2 with upside, and increase Tashard Choice’s value tremendously. Add Choice in deeper formats if they move Barber.

Donald Brown, IND (BYE, HOU, @PHI, CIN) – Inactive in Week 6, status for Week 7 uncertain.

Fred Taylor, NE (@SD, MIN, CLE, @PIT) – Woodhead looked good on Sunday, but Belichick loves Taylor, who was still out with a toe injury.

Wide Receivers/Tight Ends

Off The Top

WR Robert Meachem, NO (CLE, PIT, @R, BYE) – Meachem has established himself as the No. 2 WR in New Orleans, although he’ll never be a consistent producer unless something happens to Marques Colston. Still, the perennial breakout candidate’s potential is unlimited, and he had his best game of the season Week 6 with 4-71-1.

WR Lee Evans, BUF (@BAL, @KC, CHI, DET) – Both Evans and Steve Johnson should se plenty of work over the next four weeks. The Bills will be playing from behind or getting in shootouts, and the bye could have only helped the offense think of new ways to get them both the ball. I guess I’m bullish on the Bills offense – especially from a fantasy perspective.

Digging Deeper

WR Mike Williams, SEA (ARI, @OAK, NYG, @ARI) – Williams set career highs with 10 catches and 123 yards in a 23-20 victory over the Bears on Sunday. With Deion Branch back in New England, Williams won’t have to fight for looks. Pete Carroll loves him (and apparently Matt Hasselbeck does too) so he’ll be a frequent red zone target down the stretch.

TE Tony Moeaki, KC (JAC, BUF, @OAK, @DEN) – He fizzled last week in a big matchup against the Texans, but from what I’ve seen he’s still capable of big numbers. If you’re TE is on a bye or inured, Moeaki is an excellent option.

Scouring The Barrel

WR Patrick Crayton, SD (NE, TEN, @HOU, BYE) – Crayton had a season-best 117 yards on six receptions in the Chargers' 20-17 loss to the Rams on Sunday. If Malcom Floyd or Antonio ate miss additional time, he’ll see most of Rivers’ targets.

WR Michael Jenkins, ATL (CIN, BYE, TB, BAL) – Jenkins made his 2010 debut and had five catches for a career-high 99 yard, including a 42-yard reception. Jenkins missed the first five games with a shoulder injury but is an effective complement to Roddy White and Tony Gonzalez. But he’s probably just a WR5 in deeper, three-WR formats until we see some consistency.


WR Michael Crabtree, SF (@CAR, DEN, BYE, STL) – Crabtree caught another Td and had his second straight productive game. He’s worth starting in all 12-team three-WR formats.

WR Mike Williams, TB (STL, @ARI, @ATL, CAR) – He played through a foot injury and posted 4-45-0 but didn’t find the end zone for only the second time this year. Stay tuned.

TE Marcedes Lewis, JAC (@KC, DAL, BYE, HOU) – Lewis had 4-39-0 on Monday night but with David Garrard out (concussion) and Trent Edwards (crappy) in, the Jags didn’t spend enough time in the red zone for him to find paydirt.

WR Danny Amendola, STL (@TB, CAR, BYE, @SF) – Amendola wasn’t of much value on Sunday (3-19-0) but should get more looks in the coming weeks.

WR Deion Branch, NE (@SD, MIN, @CLE, @PIT) – Reunited with his boy Tom Brady, Branch blew up for 9-98-1, his highest yardage total since 2007 and highest reception total since 2004. He’s worth adding in all 12-team formats.

WR Anthony Armstrong, WAS (@CHI, @DET, BYE, PHI) – Armstrong caught five passes for 46 yards in Week 6, solidifying him as the No. 2 receiving option in D.C. If Chris Cooley (concussion) misses any time, Armstrong and Fred Davis should see more targets.


Off The Top

DB Kerry Rhodes, ARI (@SEA, TB, @MIN, SEA) – IDP veterans know about his contributions over the years, but Rhodes is having perhaps his best season yet with 30 tackles, 5 PD, an INT, a fumble recovery and two TDs. He’s got some prime matchups on the way and he’s now past his bye week.

LB Paris Lenon, ARI (@SEA, TB, @MIN, SEA) – Lenon, like Rhodes, is having a career year and will no longer disturb your roster space with bye week issues. If somebody dropped him last week, scoop him up AAAP.

Digging Deeper

LB Zach Diles, HOU (BYE, WAS, NYJ, @BUF) – If you’ve got the roster room for a guy on a bye this week, grab Diles, who takes over at MLB after the season-ending Achilles injury to DeMeco Ryans.

LB Stewart Bradley, PHI (@TEN, BYE, IND, @WAS) – Bradley is coming off his best game of 2010; he can’t be ignored any longer and makes an excellent LB3 in deeper formats.

Scouring The Barrel

DL Kendall Langford, MIA (PIT, @CIN, @BAL, TEN) – He’s a really deep sleeper, but I like his tackle numbers and upcoming matchups given the chances that the next few games will be won and lost in the trenches.

DB Tramon Williams, GB (MIN, @NYJ, DAL, BYE) – Williams is producing for the injury-depleted Packers defense. He’ll be busy the next few weeks against the Vikings and Cowboys as receivers cross the middle and runners slip into the secondary.


DB O.J. Atogwe, STL (@TB, CAR, BYE, @SF) – Atogwe’s best game of the season – Five solos, INT, PD. He’s baaaack!

DB Louis Delmas, DET (BYE, WAS, NYJ, @BUF) – Eight total tackles, but no junk points. Delmas is still a quality DB2.

LB Clint Session, IND (BYE, HOU, @PHI, CIN) – 10 total tackles, though the best numbers were posted by fill-in Pat Angerer (11 tackles, sack, 2 PD). Still – this was a good call. Session is on a bye in Week 7.

LB Scott Fujita, CLE (@NO, BYE, NE, NYJ) – Six total tackles; Fujita is a poor man’s Brian Urlacher.

LB Rob Ninkovich, NE (@SD, MIN, @CLE, @PIT) – Eight solos! What a gme from the DE/LB tweener. Ninkovich has more good matchups on the way, and if he’s DL-eligible in your league, all the better.

DL Chris Clemons, SEA (ARI, @OAK, NYG, @ARI) – Two tackles, half-sack. Not great, not bad. Continue deploying him as a DL2.