Waiver Wire Dumpster Diving Week 10
Now that the bulk of bye weeks are over, we have a few more teams’ depth charts to dig deep on. But with so many key injuries popping up, a lot of fantasy assets have become considerably less valuable (I am looking at you Tampa Bay). So if you suddenly need to replace Mike Evans, any of the injured Dallas receivers, or just need a secret weapon addition to your team, Dumpster Dives has you covered even in the deepest of leagues.
Each week, I look for candidates owned in 10 percent or less of ESPN leagues
REX BURKHEAD (81% OWNED)
I still believe Dion Lewis is the back to own for fantasy purposes in New England, but I am very excited about the value Burkhead brings for the next few weeks. When you check the upcoming schedule for the Patriots, it looks like somewhat of a mixed bag. They have a couple of favorable matchups sandwiched with some tough matchups against Denver in Week 10 and Miami Week 12. Those tough matchups have me excited about Burkhead.
In the first two weeks after coming back from injury, Burkhead’s snap count has increased dramatically, going from 13 to 27. His target count followed suit, increasing from just one in his first week back to seven targets in Week 8 against the Chargers. That involvement in the passing game makes me believe Burkhead is a crucial flex play in those tough matchups. Denver and Miami can get at the quarterback. One of the best ways to combat that is quick passes, especially to your running backs, who can get behind the defensive line as they overpursue.
When you also consider that the Patriots receiving corps is perpetually banged up, I expect to see a lot of targets going Burkhead’s way. You could even see him line up in the slot as well.
A.J. DERBY (3.1% OWNED)
With Brock Osweiler under center, I don’t have high expectations for anyone in this Denver offense. I can see one player coming out on top, however, that being the young tight end out of Arkansas.
Remember how Osweiler made C.J. Fiedorowicz fantasy relevant in 2016 when he got peppered for a career-high 89 targets? That more than doubled both his target and reception numbers from the year before as Osweiler single-handedly willed Fiedorowicz out of obscurity to a top-16 fantasy finish.
Derby is currently only averaging 3.75 targets per game, but we have seen flashes of his athleticism with some impressive catches, as well as an ability to make plays after the catch. When you consider he has one of the best TE schedules for the remainder of the season, he could be a great late-season pickup.
MARQUISE GOODWIN (9.3% OWNED)
Pierre Garcon was placed on IR. Trent Taylor has a broken rib. George Kittle is already ruled out for Week 10 with an ankle injury.1 Goodwin jumps into the No.1 receiver role and all of the volume that comes with that.
You might discount anyone in that offense not named Carlos Hyde, but with the San Francisco defense giving up the second-most points per game in the league, that means a lot of pass-heavy game scripts. Shanahan, as a first-year head coach, with a new young quarterback he just gave up an early second-round pick for, isn’t just going to be throwing in the towel on 2017. I expect them to at least try to get that offense moving in the right direction to end the season.
In Week 10, Goodwin will get to go up against the New York Giants, who just got roasted by every pass catcher in Los Angeles. In Weeks 14 and 15 he can help in the fantasy playoffs as well, with plus matchups against Houston and Tennessee. If for some reason you can’t get Goodwin…
ALDRICK ROBINSON (0.5% OWNED)
Let’s face it, with all of the injuries, coupled with a new QB and an offensive-minded head coach, I could have made this week’s entire column out of 49ers. But I had to include the two new top pass catchers at least, as Garcon’s team-leading 8.4 targets per game are up for grabs. Robinson stands to inherit a lot of that work.
The six-year veteran’s fate seems to be tied to head coach Shanahan, having followed him from Washington to Atlanta and now San Francisco. That familiarity with the offense has done him well so far in the season, as he is playing 60 percent of the snaps and has already eclipsed his target total for the entire 2016 season.
Robinson has had a hard time doing as much with those targets this year. However, we’re hoping we see Garoppolo sooner rather than later, and I’m banking on the change under center being a positive one for all the reasons I detailed last week. With Robinson stepping into the No.2 receiver role now and having four years in a Shanahan offense, it stands to reason Robinson will know where and what he is supposed to be doing every route. Eight targets last week against Arizona should be the new norm for Robinson, and he shares the same juicy matchups as Goodwin.
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