The Waiver Wire – Week 7
Yesterday, I was scrolling through Twitter and I came across a tweet that made me pause for a second. I’m sure it had been written by someone else but the tweet I read was from Matt Harmon (@MattHarmon_BYB) and it said: “we have lost The Best RB, The Best WR, The Best DL, & The best QB this year”. It took me a minute to wrap my head around that tweet and just how big a ripple effect each one of these injuries has had on fantasy owners around the globe. In what might be the biggest blow to fantasy & real football, Aaron Rodgers who is most likely done for the season after needing surgery to fix a broken collarbone and Rodgers is just the latest casualty in this injury-riddled 2017 season. GB & many fantasy owners dream of a championship run came crashing down on that one hit.
Rodgers wasn’t the only big name that got hurt in week 6 unfortunately. Golden Tate looks like he may miss a week if not two with a bad shoulder, Emmanuel Sanders has an ankle sprain and will miss at least week 7, Jameis Winston who was knocked out of Tampa Bay’s week 6 matchup looks to be day to day with a shoulder sprain, Trevor Siemian also has a minor shoulder injury but should be able to play in week 7, and Leonard Fournette escaped from what looked like a terrible knee injury to only suffer a minor ankle sprain. Then to put the icing on top of the cake for week 6 being the worst week of the season so far, news dropped Friday afternoon that Ezekiel Elliott’s injunction had been vacated and his suspension had been reinstated. If no new legal action takes place fantasy owners are going to be without Zeke for six weeks, which means he is not able to return until week 13 vs the Redskins.
I said week 6’s waiver wire might have been the most important of the season, well week 7 said: “hold my beer”. Week 6 was the week of the shoulder & ankle injury as well as Zeke getting suspended for the second time. Just a reminder the Lions & Texans are on bye this week.
Let’s not waste any more time and dive right into this week’s top waiver adds!
As a disclaimer, all players must be owned in less than 60% of ESPN or Yahoo leagues. Ownership percentages are in parenthesizes. Below I have ranked the top 3 adds at each position with a bonus player or two sprinkled in throughout.
Tyrod Taylor (ESPN 39% & Yahoo 37%) – With the Stafford and Watson on the bye and Aaron Rodgers likely done for the year Tyrod vaults into the top QB target this week. Don’t get me wrong TyGod hasn’t been lighting the world on fire but he has great matchups coming out of the bye as the Bills face TB, Oak, and the NYJ over the next 3 weeks. Tyrod hopes to get Matthews back as well and we all know how dangerous Shady is in the passing game. Not many better options out their then Taylor.
Jared Goff (ESPN 20% & Yahoo 38%) – Goff has struggled the last two weeks & during that stretch has not been able to score double-digits but nothing makes a quarterback happier than being able to head home and get to face the Arizona Cardinals secondary. The Cardinals are giving up the 7th most fantasy points to quarterbacks on the season and gave up 20.60 points to Ryan Fitzpatrick who filled in for the injured Jamies Winston last week. Goff is a great streaming option this week.
Andy Dalton (ESPN 30% & Yahoo 47%) – The Bengals are coming out of the bye week on a 2 game winning streak and looking like a completely different team since they made the OC switch. Dalton has a tough matchup right out of the gate as Pittsburgh has been one of the hardest teams to throw on. I think Dalton on the road is still a decent start and gets a beautiful matchup if he can survive against Indy in week 8.
Darren McFadden (ESPN 49% / Yahoo 52%) – With Zeke’s suspension beginning immediately McFadden looks to get the first crack at the starting job in Big D. McFadden was a healthy scratch back in week 5 so grabbing Alfred Morris as well if you can isn’t a bad idea. Basically, you want to invest in this rushing attack any way you can.
Orleans Darkwa (ESPN 4% & Yahoo 10%) – There is hope in New York after a shocking win on the road over the Broncos. A big reason for that is the play of Orleans Darkwa who on 21 carries was able to run for 117 yards against the leagues best run stopping unit. With back to back RB 11 finishes, Darkwa is the clear #1 RB in New York and looks to be the only Giant not named Evan Engram worth starting right now.
Chris Ivory (ESPN 5% & Yahoo 4%) – We still don’t know the severity of the ankle injury Fournette suffered Sunday but Ivory still has value even if Fournette is able to go in Week 7. On Sunday Ivory lead the Jaguars in targets (10) and caught 9 passes for 74 yards and a touchdown. If Fournette is unable to play in week 7, Ivory will get a big spike in usage and with the way this season is going it might not be a bad idea to stash him just in case.
Bonus: Devontae Booker (ESPN 2% & Yahoo 1%) – In Booker’s second game back he looked explosive hauling in 4 of his 6 targets for 78 yards and added a 2-yard run. Overall the volume wasn’t jaw-dropping but Bookers ability to be a threat out of the backfield gives him flex appeal in plus matchups as well as with the lengthy injury history to both C.J. Anderson and Jamaal Charles, Booker could see an increased workload very soon.
Nelson Agholor (ESPN 36% & Yahoo 55%) – Agholor continues his breakout season and once again was able to find the end zone Thursday night. Agholor has 12 targets over the last two weeks and has been able to convert those 12 targets into 148 yards & 2 touchdowns. With Washington, San Fran, and Denver on deck before the Eagles week 10 bye, Agholor has a great chance to continue his scoring streak.
Marvin Jones Jr. (ESPN 63% & Yahoo 55%) – With Golden Tate sidelined for potentially multiple weeks Marvin Jones Jr. is inline to take on a bigger role in the Lions passing attack. With Kenny Golladay inactive and Golden Tate out, Jones Jr. saw 9 of his 14 targets in the 2nd half and was able to secure a beautiful one-handed catch to cap off his big day. This pickup is a short-term one and strictly a volume play. Even when Golladay comes back Jones Jr. Should see an increase in targets with Tate potentially sidelined. Don’t spend too much FAB or waist a high waiver claim but if you are thin at WR, Jones Jr. might be a good fill in once the Lions get back on the field Week 8 vs the Steelers.
John Brown (ESPN 47% / Yahoo 44%) – Smokey Brown scored again! That marks back to back weeks the original Brown has found the end zone and has shown over that time that he is the clear cut #2 WR in the Cardinals passing attack. With a new offensive identity, the Cardinals only threw the ball 22 times which was over half of what Palmer had been throwing before Adrian Peterson had arrived. If Brown can just stay off the injury report I think he has WR2 upside wrapped in a WR3 / WR4 frame. Still, only a plus matchup start at the moment Brown is worth stashing for the long Bye week run.
Great Streaming Option: Taylor Gabriel (ESPN 22% & Yahoo 29%) – The Super Bowl rematch is finally here and with no Mohammed Sanu potentially for this game, Taylor Gabriel is going to be licking his chops to attack the terrible New England Secondary. This is the same secondary that just gave up 354 passing yards to Josh McCown and 76 receiving yards to Robbie Anderson. If Sanu sits, Gabriel is my top WR streaming option this week.
Austin Hooper (ESPN 37% & Yahoo 50%) – After a 7 target performance back in week 4, the Falcons came out of the bye week and continued to pepper Hooper with looks. Hooper was only able to gain 48 yards on 7 catches but the volume (16 targets over the past two weeks) has me excited. With New England’s swiss cheese secondary on deck, an Austin Hooper breakout party is very likely to happen. Hooper is worth streaming this week and owning the rest of the way. He seems poised for a second-half breakout.
Jack Doyle (ESPN 34% & Yahoo 40%) – O’ Doyle Rules! DOYLE got lose in the first half for a big touchdown and looks great after having to miss week 5 due to a concussion. Doyle is once again a fantasy relevant name but this time without Andrew Luck behind center. Brissett has been serviceable in relief of Luck and with each week that passes, Luck is that much closer to returning. I like Doyle for the remainder of the season but tough tests against Jacksonville in week 7, Cinncinatti week 8, Houston week 9 and Pittsburgh week 10 have me looking elsewhere for streaming options. Luck could be back week 11 and just in time for a playoff run!
George Kittle (ESPN 9% & Yahoo 8%) – Like Hooper Kittle has seen a spike in target volume (17) over the past two weeks and has 11 catches for 129 yards and a touchdown over that same 2 game span. With Dallas on deck Kittle seems to have a very safe floor based on volume and consistent receiving yardage the Cowboys are giving up and Kittle like Engram is an extremely athletic TE who may be in for a big day if Sean Lee is unable to play. Trust in the target volume, C.J. Beathard and buy into Kittle for the rest of the way as a plus matchup plug and play rotational TE.
Defenses to Stream
Carolina Panthers (ESPN 63% & Yahoo 52%) vs Chi
New Orleans Saints (ESPN 2% & Yahoo 4%) vs GB
Los Angeles Rams (ESPN 47% & Yahoo 54%) vs Ari
Tennessee Titans (ESPN 46% & Yahoo 30%) vs Cle
Miami Dolphins (ESPN 9% & Yahoo 5%) vs NYJ
Kickers to Stream
Dan Bailey (ESPN 61% & Yahoo 60%) vs SF
Harrison Butker (ESPN 30% & Yahoo 44%) vs Oak
Graham Gano (ESPN 38% & Yahoo 52%) vs Chi
Jake Elliott (ESPN 62% & Yahoo 47%) vs Was
Blair Walsh (ESPN 15% & Yahoo 12%) vs NYG
That will do it for Week 7 of The Waiver Wire. Do you need EVEN more fantasy advice? You can find us on Twitter @TFFGurus or feel free to email us at TrophyTime@TFFGurus.com. I will see you all next Tuesday for another edition of The Waiver Wire. Best of luck this week and remember championships are won on the waiver wire!