It’s an insanely target-rich environment this week on most league waiver wires. There is high-quality talent breaking out all over the place. This is a week to act and I’ve got you covered. Even in most big leagues there is quality talent available this week. Unless you play in a league where Bryce Brown was already rostered, you have some nice options. Players like Jerick McKinnon, Tre Mason and Odell Beckham, Jr. simply have to be owned and they are available in a great many leagues based on Yahoo’s statistics.
As always, the ownership percentages are listed for each player. These rates of ownership are based on Yahoo! leagues, which tend to be smaller and more representative of the 10-team leagues most of us play in. Obviously, these numbers are mostly for perspective. What really matters is which players are available in your particular league, and you’ll need to do the legwork on that.
If you play in really big leagues, as I tend to do, you should head on over to Rotobahn this afternoon and check out my expanded waiver wire. The expanded edition gives you about twice as many options. To keep pace with all WEEI and Rotobahn fantasy football content, including Sunday chats and The Fantasy Football Hour with my good buddy Jim Hackett, follow me on Twitter.
Carson Palmer, Cardinals — 42 percent
He’s not a weekly QB1 — even in big leagues, but Palmer is a fine matchup option and he makes a very good QB2 in all formats. Rarely will he lay an egg in a solid matchup. His weapons are too good, and Bruce Arians’ offense is a great platform for a quarterback.
Joe Flacco, Ravens — 63 percent
He has a Week 11 bye, so be mindful of that. Apart from the bye, most of Flacco’s arrows are pointing decidedly up. I like the schedule for the most part, and Gary Kubiak‘s scheme seems to be taking hold at the right time. Flacco can help you in all leagues.
Robert Griffin III, Washington — 31 percent
Do you feel lucky, punk? Griffin’s stock is at an all-time low. I added him in a few leagues last week and I am glad I did. Once he gets back, probably in Week 10, he could be a weekly option as his weapons in Washington are quite strong. He’s the best QB stash out there right now.
Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins — 36 percent
He is past his bye week, so he can help you get through your starter’s bye no matter who that starter is. Tannehill is also playing better football as are his receivers — namely Mike Wallace and rookie Jarvis Landry. The Dolphins starter makes a nice QB2 if you need one.
Eli Manning, Giants — 60 percent
Manning is down the list a bit this week because the Giants are on their bye in Week 8. Still, he has some value after the bye because the Giants have some good remaining matchups and a developing star in Odell Beckham Jr. They also have a few solid tight ends now, and we like the direction that Reuben Randle is heading in as well. Manning can help you as a matchup play in all leagues.
Jerick McKinnon, Vikings — 58 percent
If you’ve been reading this space all year, you should already have McKinnon. Having said that, go get him if you can. He’s getting a tighter grip on the lead role every week. McKinnon brings a rare skill set to the table. He can overpower defensive backs and outquick linebackers. He’s also more effective than most would think while running inside. This is a player to own in all formats. Find a cut and add him.
Tre Mason, Rams — 17 percent
I hope you already added him after I had him on last week’s wire. If you have to go after Mason now, it’ll cost you. That being said, pay what you need to get him. Mason’s going to take this job and he could be an RB2 on a weekly basis going forward. HC Jeff Fisher is talking up a four-man backfield, but actions speak louder than words. Mason’s been taking over the last two weeks and he’s outperformed the other backs on the roster.
Ronnie Hillman, Broncos – 58 percent
He may not be a solution for the rest of the year, but he’s a nice option for this week and perhaps next. At some point Montee Ball will return, but Hillman has played well enough where he could retain some of the job — making Denver an RBBC situation.
Chris Ivory, Jets — 66 percent
Ivory may not last now that the Jets are upping his weekly workload, but he’s a solid play for now, especially in non-PPR formats. The addition of Percy Harvin could actually open up some lanes for the big back. Ivory can help you during the bye week crunch that starts in earnest next week and stays ugly until Week 12.
Bryce Brown, Bills — 7 percent
Brown is a lottery ticket who could pay off big and pay off fast. While Brown’s been inactive all season long — playing behind Fred Jackson (groin, four weeks) and C.J. Spiller (season-ending clavicle injury), the ex-Eagle may now be the starter. The gig could last four weeks or four years. It will depend on how Brown performs. In the near term, he will be competing with Anthony Dixon, who took the reigns last week after both Jackson and Spiller went down. Dixon is a big back with some ability, but he’s not the runaway train that Brown is when he’s at his best. The reason Dixon has been dressing on game days over Brown has to do with his role as a special teamer. I’m adding Bryce Brown in all leagues because of his high ceiling. Spiller is a free agent at the end of the year and Jackson is going to be 34 years old. This has the potential to be a changing of the guard if Brown takes the job and runs with it.
Denard Robinson, Jaguars — 10 percent
If you read Rotobahn, you know we like Robinson’s game. We’ve always expected him to get the gig in Jacksonville at some point. You saw his upside last week with a 100-plus-yard effort and his first NFL touchdown. He posted the only good RB performance that the Jaguars have seen all year and HC Gus Bradley gave indications that Robinson now will be given a chance to carry the load. The only thing that keeps me from going all in is the Jaguars’ below-average offensive line, which will hurt Robinson in tougher matchups. This week’s game with Miami is a perfect example. Robinson’s just a deep league flex option in a matchup like this — even as the clear-cut starter. Having said that, there are some very good matchups left on Jacksonville’s schedule, so he is certainly a player to add in all leagues.
Odell Beckham Jr., Giants — 50 percent
I hear a lot of people trying to cover their tails on Beckham. His breakout has nothing to do with Victor Cruz‘s injury. The Giants use a ton of three receiver sets and they drafted Beckham at 12 overall for a reason. We’ve seen that reason now and if you ignored me last week, I suggest you go get this guy while you still have a chance. He’s already a weekly starter in my book. Read my pre-draft scouting report on the LSU star if you aren’t familiar with his abilities.
Josh Gordon, Browns — 60 percent
As I have been saying, he gets more valuable every week as we near his Week 12 return. Roster Gordon if you can spare the roster spot. This goes doubly if you have a weakness at receiver or if your team is out ahead of the pack. Adding a monster like Gordon could be the move that ultimately puts your squad over the top. Add him in all leagues.
Brian Quick, Rams — 65 percent
I laid off of Quick as an option the last few weeks, but he still is available in too many leagues and he is almost a weekly starter at this point in 12-team formats. The schedule gets better going forward, so pick up Quick as a very strong WR4 option who you can play when you need to.
Brandon LaFell, Patriots — 27 percent
He may be a bit boom or bust because the Patriots spread the ball and like to play matchups. LaFell’s stats reflect this. Still, he makes a nice WR3 when you need him in most formats and he’s largely available.
Doug Baldwin, Seahawks – 23 percent
He’s more of a possession guy to me, but he saw plenty of targets in Seattle’s first post-Harvin game. I expect rookie Paul Richardson to emerge and steal targets as the year rolls on, but Baldwin can help you right now if you need a receiver.
Jordan Matthews, Eagles — 20 percent
This is a stash move as Matthews has yet to find consistency on a week-to-week basis. That being said, of all the pieces in the Eagles passing game, Matthews has the most upside. He’s that talented and his role could increase with the Eagles coming off of their bye week. I like the idea of adding Matthews now because he’ll be harder to acquire once he breaks out.
Denard Robinson, Jaguars — 10 percent
What? Robinson again? Yes, because on some sites, like Yahoo!, he is listed as a WR rather than an RB. Why that is the case is for Yahoo! to answer as “Shoelace” clearly is a running back at this point. The bottom line is that he’s worth something either way now that he is playing major snaps.
Allen Robinson, Jaguars — 15 percent
They are making him a big part of the offense every game. Robinson has been the one constant in Jacksonville’s attack this season and that continued in Week 7 as Robinson scored his first NFL touchdown. The ex-Nittany Lion was one of Rotobahn’s favorite rookies and he’s still getting better. Add him in most formats and all large leagues.
Davante Adams, Packers — 13 percent
He’s not seeing the ball as often as we’d like, but that should change because when they do throw him the football, he’s producing. In Week 7, Adam’s sole target went for a 22-yard score. He’s a high-quality stash and he’s probably passed Jarrett Boykin permanently on Green Bay’s depth chart.
Dwayne Allen, Colts — 63 percent
His ownership rate is still low enough to put him here. It shouldn’t be, but it is. Allen is one of Andrew Luck‘s most trusted options and he needs to be owned in all formats.
Owen Daniels, Ravens — 49 percent
After a few light weeks, Daniels had his most active game of the season — seeing nine targets and catching six balls and one score. He can help you in all formats if a tight end is what you need.
Jermaine Gresham, Bengals — 4 percent
He finally is starting to produce a bit and that should continue for a few more weeks as the Bengals struggle to find targets in the passing game due to injuries.
Jace Amaro, Jets — 7 percent
The Jets have been making a big effort to get the rookie involved and he generally is used as a receiver versus an in-line tight end. He can help you, especially in bigger leagues, but he is a player to know in all leagues because he has a lot of unexplored ceiling.
Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Buccaneers — 2 percent
Like the Jets, the Bucs are in developmental mode … obviously. Seferian-Jenkins is a major talent. He has size and significant athleticism. He can be a big part of the offense going forward. I expect him to be healthier than we’ve seen so far this season after a week of rest. Stash him if you are trying to develop at the position, and you can play him if you need him. He has TE1 potential before the year is out.