The Waiver Wire “Playoff Edition” – Week 14
Playoff?!?!! Are we talking Playoffs?!? You made it! Take a breath, pat yourself on your back and I don’t blame you if you stand a little bit taller & smile a little bit more today because you deserve it. The fantasy season is a brutal 3-month journey that takes you on some serious twists and turns but once the dust settles and the ride came to a complete stop you my friend were able to navigate all the landmines and pitfall the season can throw at you. We have lost Gronk, AP, CJ, Lacy, Charles, Decker, and Allen for the year. AJ & Jordan Reed are still hurt. The running back position has been used and abused and we are left with the bottom of the barrel options on the waiver wire. And the cherry on top of it all is Alshon has one more game left on his 4 game suspension. To say 2016 has been a wild ride is an understatement.
Now the REAL season begins. Your league championship, prize money and all the gloating and trash talking material you will ever need are only a few games away. Now it’s time to lock your studs into your starting lineup and sure up your bench for a championship run! Let’s do this!! As for our week 17 championship league’s it’s business as usual. Put your waiver claims in, set the best lineup you can and just win babee.
Like always I will give 3 choices at each position (plus bonus’s from time to time). This is ranked in order of who I would target first to third. At the end of the day you control your waiver rankings, so go get the guy you want! Without further hesitation let’s dive right into this weeks The Waiver Wire.
- Andy Dalton (ESPN 59% / Yahoo 71%) – Big Red lit up the normally good Eagles secondary to the tune of 332 yards and 2 touchdowns. He is the clear #1 waiver wire QB as the Bengals get to feast on the winless Browns on the road. Cleveland is awful!
- Joe Flacco (ESPN 25% / Yahoo 23%) – Waka Flocka has been on and off the waiver wire list this year but it’s Patriots week and there is no quarterback not named Eli that Patriots fans fear more than Joe Flacco. Big Joe Cool is coming off his best game of the season throwing for 381 yards and 4 touchdowns in the beatdown of the Miami Dolphins. Joe is a must start in Primetime because you know he is going to come out to play.
- Colin Kaepernick (ESPN 49% / Yah00 49%) – WTF Colin! You completely screwed me last week in the snow. What the hell happened? Well, we are onto sunny San Francisco this week where there should be no snow and Kap has a great chance to bounce back against the terrible New York Jets who looked last night that they had given up on not only their season but also their coach. I understand if you want to punish Kaepernick by either dropping him or benching him after last weeks performance but he does have a great matchup coming to the Big Bell Bottom Sunday afternoon.
- Kenneth Dixon (ESPN 48% / Yahoo 46%) – Dixon and West are splitting time in the backfield and West outscored Dixon last week but in the hell that is the RB position this late Dixon is not a bad grab if you are in a pinch. Dixon will be a nice change of pace back for the Patriots to fear and even though he hasn’t found the end zone yet, Dixon has been a consistent start when you needed him.
- Charles Sims (ESPN 9% / Yahoo 13%) – Sims looks to be cleared and ready to roll this Sunday at home against a divisional opponent the New Orleans Saints. The timing couldn’t be any better as the Bucs are rolling, the Saints were just held scoreless and Martin is banged up. Sims might be worked in on a snap count but his fresh legs could be huge against a very beatable defense.
- Jerrick McKinnon (ESPN 51% / Yahoo 44%) – I told you the RB position was bad right now. I am forced to recommend Jerrick McKinnon. Ok, McKinnon isn’t that bad and in fact, he scored a touchdown Thursday night and hit the double-digit fantasy mark in standard scoring leagues for only the second time. I like McKinnon as a hail mary flex play and in the passing game this week in Jacksonville.
- Tyler Lockett (ESPN 25% / Yahoo 37%) – Holy fast Batman! Lockett is a screamer and now finally healthy he looks as good as we all expected at the start of the season. Lockett is dangerous any time he touches the ball and I love the way Seattle is using him. He caught 5 balls for 63 yards but his touchdown came on a beautiful end-around that went for 75 yards. Green Bay has been terrible against the pass and no QB and offense are hotter than Seattle right now. Lockett is a must own in all leagues and is a great WR3 / flex play this week.
- Malcolm Mitchell (ESPN 20% / Yahoo 30%) – Hello Malcolm Mitchell! This makes it two weeks in a row the OTHER Malcolm in New England has made it on the Waiver Wire and for good reason. Since Gronk went down Malcolm’s volume has increased and this past week he saw 10 targets, catching 8 for 83 yards. That gives Malcolm 17 catches for 222 yards and 3 touchdowns over the last three games. Baltimore is going to be tough but the volume keeps him the Flex conversation this week with easier matchups for a deep playoff run.
- Brandon LaFell (ESPN 17% / Yahoo 17%) – LaFell is the wide receiver to own in Cincy after AJ went down. Brandon has seen 16 targets since Green went down and has 133 yards and a touchdown over that same time frame. LaFell scored the last time he faced the Browns and he has a great shot of not only doing that again but also leading the team in targets in the process.
- Dontrelle Inman (ESPN 20% / Yahoo 20%) – Inman is on one of those touchdown streaks and sometimes it’s just smart to ride the hot hand until it cools off. Carolina’s secondary has been bad all season and I think it allows Inman to extend his touchdown streak to 3 games.
- Anquan Boldin (ESPN 38% / Yahoo 35%) – With Marvin Jones injured Boldin has the best potential to succeed from the increased playing time. Detroit is playing great football and gets to head home against their hated rival the Chicago Bears. I like Boldin to score this week.
- Ted Ginn Jr. (ESPN 12% / Yahoo 23%) – Like Inman, Ginn is on a touchdown heater and Cam is looking for him right now. The Carolina offense is in shambles but the one bright spot is Cam to Ginn which has produced 241 yards and 3 touchdowns over the past 3 games. The matchup is ideal but if you’re playing Ginn you are looking for a home run and understand the risk.
- Cameron Brate (ESPN 51% / Yahoo 73%) – Brate scored again last week bringing his season total to 6 and with an injury to Martin, Brate might be used more in the passing game. Brate has been one of the biggest surprises of the season and is a must-start the rest of the way.
- Ladarius Green (ESPN 12% / Yahoo 23%) – The timing was perfect for a blow-up game for Green Sunday. His snap counts had increased over each game since returning from injury and was able to have time to build repour with Big Ben during that same time. Green exploded Sunday finishing as the TE2 w/ 19 points in standard leagues. The Bills have been bad against the TE recently and make for a compelling matchup from a forgotten physical specimen. Green might just be the missing puzzle piece your championship team needs.
- Dennis Pitta (ESPN 47% / Yah00 33%) – Pitta ended a 17 game touchdown drought Sunday on his way to 2 touchdown catches and his best game of the season. Pitta is a great streaming option against New England a team that ranks just outside the top 10 in points per game allowed.
- Cincinnati Bengals (ESPN 51% / Yahoo 31%) – Umm they are playing the Browns, enough said.
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers (ESPN 14% / Yahoo 12%) – Buccaneers are one of the hottest teams in the NFL and their defense is a big reason for it. They have 8 sacks and 4 interceptions and one defensive touchdown over the past two games. New Orleans has an explosive offense but the Saints out of the dome are a different beast and could give up multiple sacks and a turnover or two Sunday.
- San Francisco 49ers (ESPN 6% / Yahoo 2%) – Long shot play but the Jets are awful, they have quit on their coach and they might come into Levi Stadium with Bryce Petty as their starting QB. A bigger risk than the other two but could be a big payoff if it works.
- Matt Prater (ESPN 73% / Yahoo 51%) – The guy is on fire and has kicked 10 FG’s since coming out of the bye week. At home against Chicago, I see Prater having another solid game and he cracks double-digits once again.
- Kai Forbath (ESPN 1% / Yahoo 3%) – He is facing the Jaguars, enough said! Always potential for a double-digit outing.
- Roberto Aguayo (ESPN 11% / Yahoo 8%) – Aguayo has accuracy issues but the coaching staff hasn’t lost faith in their 2nd round pick from FSU. NO’s just gave 5 FG’s to Matt Prater, I will take my chances with Aguayo!
Well there you have it, The Waiver Wire for this week is in the books. I will see you all next Tuesday for another edition! Remember to send us your lineup questions on Twitter @TFFGurus, @DaFantasyFather, and @TheFantasyBoys. Or if you want to go old school shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or check out our Facebook page called The Fantasy Football Gurus. We’re here to help you, and if you need more Guru help, be sure to listen to our weekly podcasts by checking out Trophy Time on Google Play, Stitcher Radio, and iTunes.