Week Five has come and gone, and pending the results of the Falcons-Jets game, I’m not sure that there is a whole lot of work to be done on the waiver wire this week. Unless you are completely desperate at several positions, the best use of the waiver period in week 6 should be preemptively acquiring defenses, quarterbacks and streaming tight ends. Freely available QB’s with favorable matchups, tight ends in pass happy offenses with high week 6 WW over/unders and any defense playing the Bills, Cardinals, Jaguars or Browns are all solid additions.
It goes without saying that if Alshon Jeffery is on your wire, spend whatever amount of FAAB you need in order to acquire him. I don’t care if it’s all of it, do what needs to be done. I’m going to add Rueben Randle to the obvious list as well. The Giants defense is playing some of the most offensive football I have ever seen and Eli is hucking the ball at a career long pace. Even the third option in a voluminous offense with Randle’s talent is worth owning. This list consists of some freely available guys who may deserve a spot on the end of your roster.
UPDATE: News just broke that the Falcons wide out Julio Jones will likely miss the rest of the season with a foot injury. This will catapult Harry Douglas near the top of this list. I still think Zac Stacy is the best add this week on the waiver wire, but with the state of the Falcons defense and the general ineffectiveness of the Atlanta ground game, Matt Ryan will still be forced to throw the ball at least 35 times a game. With Julio gone, Roddy White hobbled ( and rehobbled with a hamstring injury suffered in Monday night’s game), and Tony Gonzalez getting literally bracketed on many snaps, Douglas will have the opportunity to produce in a high volume offense. If you really need a WR3 and you’re okay at running back, Douglas should be a priority add.
|Stacy, Zac RB STL||Stacy provides a pretty interesting case of sticking to one’s guns in terms of player evaluation. Most of the metric scouting community, including some of the writers at Rotoviz believed that he was the best talent in the St. Louis backfield (with a healthy amount of support for Benny Cunningham). Mr. Matthew Freedman wrote a magnum opus over the offseason on the Rams backfield and before the draft, actually predicted Stacy to the Rams. Once he landed there, many were enthused about his prospects of gaining a starting job, however I jumped on the Daryl Richardson bandwagon. That was, to put it lightly, not the right decision. It’s still somewhat of a committee approach in St. Louis, The Rams still don’t have a rushing touchdown or good run blocking, but for a player that we called the perfect running back prospect, this is an early opportunity to see a return on investment. Stacy is likely the last running back widely available on the waiver wire with a chance of holding a starting running back job, and I’m fine with spending all of your remaining FAAB to get him.||1-HIgh|
|Allen, Keenan WR SDC||Was most of his production in garbage time? Yeah, it was; but the Chargers are going to be a team that consistently find themselves trailing by a ton because of their porous pass defense. Allen is likely the most talented Chargers wide receiver and played like it last night. Allen’s senior year included a Dominator Rating of .43, which puts him in elite company. His combine numbers are skewed due to an injury, but in Sunday night’s late game, he showed very desirable attributes, including 2 endzone targets from Phillip Rivers. This is right about the time when rookies start to “get it” and Allen should be a priority add for teams needing a WR3.||1-HIgh|
|Williams, Terrance WR DAL||Despite only have 4 targets, I really like Williams prospects going forward. His athletic profile clearly fits well with Romo’s game and in Sunday’s game versus the Bronco’s, he ran 41 pass routes, only 2 less than Dez Bryant. Miles Austin has a permanently damaged hamstring and even when he returns, he will be on the field. He is going to be a boom bust play on a week to week basis because Dez Bryant is clearly the #1, #2 and #3 option in the redzone. When Williams scores it will be on long balls, and with Romo playing out of his mind, that will be a relatively frequent occurrence. He isn’t quite on Allen’s level, because of the presence of Dez, but he is still worth owning.||1-HIgh|
|Ellington, Andre RB ARI||Rashard Mendenhall got the touchdown but both Arizona backs played 30 snaps versus the Panthers. Going forward, I think it becomes readily more apparent that Ellington is the most talented back for the Cardinals. His bunk 40 time, caused by a hamstring injury, caused him to free fall in the NFL draft, but he is ready to pay dividends in fantasy leagues. His upside will be limited because Carson Palmer is playing terribad and so is the Cards o-line, but this will likely be the last time Ellington is available on any waiver wires.||1-HIgh|
|Foles, Nick QB PHI||I think that this is probably the most underrated waiver add of the week. Most will assume that because Foles doesn’t have the ability to run the way that Vick does that his upside is limited, but I’m not so sure. Chip Kelly’s system promotes the hell out of fantasy points with it’s simple decision making process and breakneck pace. In only a half of football, Foles threw 25 passes for 197 yards and 2 touchdowns. Desean Jackson would never be my first choice as a #1 WR in an NFL context, but he is excelling in Kelly’s system. As long as Vick is out, Foles will be pretty close to top-12 territory and if you’re currently suffering from “Kaepernick-kinda-sucks-for-fantasy” syndrome, Foles is a nice streaming option.||1-HIgh|
|Brown, Vincent WR SDC||Ugh. I knew I was going to have to do this at some point in the season. I still believe everything that I wrote about Brown in the offseason: he’s too slow and too short to ever become a consistently startable option for fantasy, but even I can overcome my own bias to admit when something I didn’t expect is happening. Brown was very bad for the Chargers first game of the season (heading into week 5, he was the 127th wide receiver in yards per pass route run) but with the Chargers defense playing so terribly and Philip Rivers playing so well, versus the Raiders, he was involved on short and intermediate routes and even had a touchdown called back after burning ex-Cowboy Mike Jenkins on a double move go route. Brown’s production is going to be there on an inconsistent basis. I think Sigmund Bloom of Football Guys said it best on twitter, stating “Vincent Brown could string together multiple 70/850/5 years bc of Rivers renaissance, but never really be a player you’re excited to start.” I think that hits the nail on the head; he will occasionally post startable games, but with Antonio Gates, Eddie Royal and Keenan Allen above him in the pecking order, I’m not sure he becomes a consistent WR3.||2-Medium|
|Cunningham, Benny RB STL||Zac Stacy has the Rams starting job for now, but as we’ve seen, that doesn’t really mean it’s locked up for good. Cunningham was a Rotoviz preseason favorite and has been decent with the touches he’s received. As of now, he’s nothing but a speculative add, but if you have the depth to do it, there are worse roster holds.||2-Medium|
|Reece, Marcel RB OAK||Darren McFadden passed his injured hamstring woes on to Rashad Jennings, who left Sunday’s late game at halftime with an injured hamstring. This left Reece as the only back capable of running the ball on the Oakland roster. We’ve seen Reece be a PPR RB1 in the past and with Pryor at the helm, Oakland is full of viable fantasy options. If Jennings and McFadden continue to be injured, Reece moves up to the Zac Stacy all-of-your-FAAB status.||2-Medium|
|Streater, Rod WR OAK||Way too many Raiders and Chargers on this list. It’s mostly a function of Rivers and Pryor elevating the point scoring potential of their respective offenses, and Streater has been a primary beneficiary of Pryor’s play. He doesn’t have the physical talent to ever be even a consistent WR2, but in deeper leagues, I really like Streater as a WR3/4.||2-Medium|
|Lafell, Brandon WR CAR||Adding Lafell assumes a couple things: that eventually Mike Shula learns how to be competent and that the Carolina Panthers aren’t going down a Tampa Bay Buccaneers hell hole sometime soon. He has 7 catches over the last several games and seems to be filling in a niche as the 3rd option behind Steve Smith and Greg Olsen. This week features a lot of unexciting WR3 types and that’s exactly what Lafell is.||3-Low|
|Jacobs, Brandon RB NYG||David Wilson left versus the Eagles with some sort of neck injury, which left Brandon Jacobs to plod his way to 37 yards on 11 carries. He has nothing left, but if Wilson’s tweet about returning next week turns out to be a lie, then Jacobs will probably have some Willis McGahee-esque plodder value, needing a touchdown to be in the top-30 of running backs in any given week.||3-Low|