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. I’ll
also provide a brief update on the players I covered the previous
Heinicke, WAS – Heinicke keeps getting
wins and had one of his best fantasy outings of the season in Week
11, throwing for 206-3-0 and rushing for 29 yards on six carries
in the win over Carolina. With Patrick Mahomes and Kyler Murray
(who say out Week 11) on bye, he’s one of the more interesting fringe
options available, as he’s only rostered in about 13-15% of leagues
and faces the beatable Seahawks, who Colt McCoy just ripped up for
Garoppolo, SF – Jimmy G (176-2-0
in the win over Jacksonville in Week 11) is another option, owned
in 10-15% of leagues and facing the Vikings and their swiss cheese
secondary, a unit that gave up 385 passing yards to Aaron
Rodgers and the Packers in Week 11.
NE – Jones (still about 25% owned) had another efficient
outing, completing 22 of 26 passes for 207-1-1 and adding 6 rushing
yards in the Patriots’ 25-0 win over the Falcons on Thursday night.
It’s still a run-first team and the next couple of matchups portend
more of the running attack than passing, but I could see teams
really stacking against the run in the hopes that Jones will be
forced to throw it more.
CAR – Newton (up to 35-40% ownership) looked decent in
his first start of 2021 – completing 21 of 27 passes for
189-2-0 and rushing 10 times for 46 yards and another score –
even if he came up short in the loss to Washington. His dual-threat
ability should be on display again in the Week 12 matchup versus
the Dolphins, a favorable matchup overall.
Freeman, BAL – Freeman (35% owned)
rushed 16 times for 49 yards and a touchdown and hauled in all six
of his targets for 31 yards in the Ravens’ 16-13 win over the Bears
on Sunday. Given his overall production Sunday and the secondary
role played by Latavius Murray in his return from an ankle injury,
Freeman should remain atop the depth chart during the team’s Week
12 matchup versus the Browns.
Hilliard, TEN – Hilliard was elevated
from the Titans' practice squad ahead of Sunday's game against
the Texans, responding with 35 rushing yards on seven carries
and a big PPR day with 8-47-0 on 10 targets. He’s worth adding
in 12-team leagues.
NYJ –UPDATE: Michael
Carter has an injury which could keep hm out a couple of weeks,
and that means Johnson will likely assume the bulk of touches
in the Jets backfield. He’s a fine replacement with a similar
skill set to Carter (though not as nimble a runner) and could
rack up a bunch of receptions in PPR leagues. Tevin Coleman is
also an option, but it’s hard to get inside the head of anyone
in the Jets organization.
Ingram, NO – Ingram rushed 16 times
for 88 yards and once again did well as a receiver with 6-25-0
on eight targets. He also lost a fumble and could lose relevancy
once Alvin Kamara returns.
GB – Dillon rushed 11 times for 53 yards and caught all
six targets for 44 more yards in Sunday's 34-31 loss to the Vikings.
The injury to Aaron Jones isn’t as bad as expected but Dillon
could make one or two more starts.
Mattison, MIN – Three carries for
5 rushing yards. He’s a glorified handcuff for now.
Wilson SF – Wilson failed to capitalize
on a big opportunity, and Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk and George
Kittle did all the scoring again this week. Wilson ran for 50
yards on 19 carries against Jacksonville. Elijah Mitchell (finger)
is the more explosive and productive back, but he could mis more
time and give Wilson another chance to start in Week 12 against
UPDATE: Mitchell is being called
“day-to-day” and that could mean he’s back for
Week 12, which greatly diminishes Wilson’s usefulness in
Breida, BUF – Breida did well again
in garbage time, rushing five times for 51 yards and catching
one of two targets for 16 yards in the loss to Indy.
Wide Receivers / Tight Ends
Moore, NYJ – Moore (still just about
40% rostered) caught eight of 11 targets for 141 yards and a TD
in the 24-17 loss to the Dolphins. He added 15 yards on one rushing
attempt, is one of the hottest receivers in football, and should
be owned in all formats.
Trautman, NO – Trautman (5-10% owned) brought in
five of eight targets for 58 yards and a touchdown in the Saints'
40-29 loss to the Eagles on Sunday. He’s a popular target and
should see plenty of looks in Week 12 facing the Bills in a Thanksgiving
Freiermuth, PIT –UPDATE:
I didn’t notice he was only about 60% owned in ESPN leagues still
because he’s taken in all my leagues, large and small. But as
a special shout-out to eagle-eyed reader “Jason” (who looks an
awful lot like Bill Murray). Freiermuth had 4-11-1 on seven targets
in Week 11 and made some enormous mistakes, but Eric Ebron is
injured and the Penn St. product could see more looks in Week
12 and beyond – as long as he doesn’t keep flubbing away opportunities.
He’s probably not available in your league, but if he is he’s
Valdes-Scantling, GB – Valdes-Scantling
(3-5% owned) finally had the breakthrough game we all anticipated
in a great matchup – with 4-123-1 on 10 targets. He’s not a the
most efficient WR, but he’s relevant in deeper leagues and could
have some more big games down the stretch as teams focus on stopping
Agholor, NE – Agholor (about 15% owned) had a productive
day on TNF, hauling in all five targets for 40 yards and a touchdown
in the win over the Falcons. Agholor’s week-to-week numbers are
tough to count on, but he’s got the speed to make a big impact
in the Pats’ Week 12 home matchup against the Titans on Sunday.
Mooney, CHI – Mooney (a little over
50% owned now) caught five passes for 121 yards and a touchdown
in the loss to the Ravens on Sunday. He led the team with 15 targets,
and while he seemed to have good rapport with Andy Dalton after
Justin Fields left the game, a couple missed connections prevented
him from having an even bigger day. A solid weekly fantasy starter,
Mooney should be owned in all formats after this week.
Bourne, NE – Bourne secured all
four of his targets for 42 yards in the Patriots' 25-0 win over
the Falcons on Thursday night. He also rushed once for seven yards
and remains a big pat of the game plan for New England – he’s
just a better option in deeper leagues.
Arnold, JAC – Ouch. No catches for the Jags TE, despite
being one of the most targeted tight ends in the league in the
five games prior to Sunday – a span in which he saw 38 looks as
we detailed in this column.
Edwards, LV – Also held without
a catch. We started out hot but are REALLY cooling off here!
Jefferson, LAR – He was on a bye
in Week 11, and could be a big part of the game plan against the
Packers in Week 12 if they don’t throw much at OBJ.
Smith, NO – Okay. Smith caught 5-64-0
on eight targets in loss to the Eagles on Sunday, but may have
a difficult time producing solid numbers in Week 12 against the
Bills on Thanksgiving.