Welcome to the Week 7 waiver wire. Before we get to this week’s options, let’s take a second to look at some of the fallout from Week 6, which is significant. There are a lot of nervous fantasy owners out there with Ben Roethlisberger going down. The ripple effects are many, and obviously go beyond the problems facing the Roethlisberger owner in your league. This negatively affects all of the skill talent on Pittsburgh and puts more stress on guys like Le’Veon Bell and Antonio Brown. As great as both players are, both rely on Roethlisberger’s tremendous skill set to open things up for them. Now it’s Bell and Brown who must find a way to make things easier for replacement starter Landry Jones. More on Jones later.
Pittsburgh is just one team to watch this week. There is major flux in Green Bay with James Starks having knee surgery and with Eddie Lacy nursing a sore ankle. There’s also some motion in the Packers’ receiving depth chart. Davante Adams suffered a head injury but apparently has passed concussion tests. Still, with the Packers playing Thursday this week, his status will be an issue. Ty Montgomery stepped up playing in a hybrid role. We also saw Jeff Janis making an impact for the first time this season.
In Washington, Jordon Reed’s status is up in the air, so Vernon Davis may have some appeal later in the week, but he is more of a preemptive move for Reed owners in free agency right now. Tampa Bay is not in as dire shape as Green Bay, but the Buccaneers’ backfield still is short-handed, and we could be in for another week of Jacquizz Rodgers if Doug Martin’s hamstring requires more time.
It looks as if Cody Kessler has taken over for good as the starting quarterback in Cleveland, but will he ever get any real receivers to throw to? Early signs point to Corey Coleman missing another week, and Terrelle Pryor has a sore hamstring. And, obviously, Josh Gordon still is in limbo, to put in kindly.
I’ll be breaking down Week 7 game film all morning, so If you play in a deep league, and you are looking for more options, head over to Rotobahn. My expanded waiver wire will be posted Tuesday afternoon. I’ll have more players at every position, and I will add some streaming defenses plus the waiver wire podcast for your commute home.
The ownership rate listed below were sourced from Yahoo!
Dak Prescott, Cowboys, 57 percent
I’m torn on what’s actually best for Prescott’s future, but the Cowboys winning at Lambeau Field on Sunday was a statement game of sorts, and it’s hard to see Dallas going away from the rookie at this point unless he begins to fall apart, and the remaining schedule makes that seem unlikely. Prescott will have a big ceiling once Dez Bryant is back on the field.
Marcus Mariota, Titans, 60 percent
He’s got 124 rushing yards over the last two weeks plus a rushing touchdown. It’s pretty simple, really. This guy is a QB1 when he runs enough to shake up the defense. Another big plus in Week 6 was the much-needed emergence of Kendall Wright, who could help Mariota achieve a measure of consistency going forward. His remaining schedule is outstanding, though you have a Week 13 bye to contend with and a Week 14 matchup with Denver. The rest is peaches and cream.
Joe Flacco, Ravens, 29 percent
His schedule is very good over the next five weeks with the exception of the Ravens’ Week 8 bye, so you could can add Flacco if you need a guy to get you through the Roethlisberger injury. I actually like the coordinator switch for Flacco, who was a mediocre fit for Marc Trestman’s scheme and perhaps more importantly didn’t seem to embrace it.
Colin Kaepernick, 49ers, 9 percent
Yeah, he’s not the most accurate guy out there, and yeah, he has a shortage in the weapons department, but he can help you in certain situations because they are going to let him run. Chip Kelly embraces Kaepernick’s skill set, and that could lead to some big weeks. It’s just a question of getting the young quarterback comfortable in a new scheme. I’m adding him in deep leagues and in 2QB formats.
Brian Hoyer, Bears, 19 percent
Save for the Vikings in Week 8 and a bye in Week 9, the Bears look pretty darn good in the schedule department. Their second matchup with Minnesota comes after the fantasy playoffs in Week 17. Perhaps more importantly, Hoyer looks like he will have to play himself out of the starting job as he’s been better than Jay Cutler to this point, and Cutler has scant support in the Bears locker room.
Landry Jones, Steelers, 0 percent
He’s got more talent than some folks realize, but he’s been very inconsistent so far in his young career. Jones is worth adding in deep leagues and in 2QB formats, but keep expectations reasonable. He has the weapons around him to be a viable option, but he is a huge step down from Roethlisberger.
Jay Ajayi, Dolphins, 31 percent
Only in Miami. The Dolphins bring in Arian Foster and flirt with every back on their roster before finally giving Ajayi a good look. Looks like the guy they were left with by the old regime was their best guy all along. Of course, Foster does complicate matters a bit, but you’d be nuts to pass on a chance to add Ajayi right now. Foster usually fails to suit up on Sundays anyway. Ajayi should be your top priority this week in all leagues.
James White, Patriots, 57 percent
His continuing value is tied to the health and future role of Dion Lewis, but in the here and now White has value, particularly in PPR scoring formats.
Jacquizz Rodgers, Buccaneers, 22 percent
It sounds as if Doug Martin may not return for Week 7, and that should mean one more week of high volume for Rodgers, who was effective as the lead back in his one start.
Dion Lewis, Patriots, 25 percent
He can begin practicing this week, and his name will be in the news more going forward. If you are inclined to add Lewis and stash him for the stretch run, the time is now. I like the move in PPR formats or in deeper standard leagues. The Patriots offense would be downright scary with a healthy Lewis in the backfield.
Chris Ivory, Jaguars, 43 percent
There’s nothing exciting about this one. The Jaguars have been awful and they have not blocked well for either of their running backs. That being said, Ivory has been dumped in many a league and he appears to have the role at the goal line. If this team picks it up, he could have some value.
Knile Davis, Packers, 0 percent
He was just dealt to Green Bay as I was wrapping up this article. Davis will have value in the near term while James Starks is recovering from knee surgery. He could start this week’s game if Eddie Lacy is not ready to go on the short week. If you own Lacy, adding Davis now is a no-brainer.
Michael Thomas, Saints, 67 percent
He’s been good all year, and we are now seeing steady results. Thomas is not really part of a rotation. He’s a near every-down player and has scored in three consecutive games. The rookie is developing into Drew Brees’ primary red zone weapon and should remain in that role for a long time.
Cameron Meredith, Bears, 52 percent
He’s been targeted 27 times in the last two games. He should be owned in all leagues at this point. Ride him while he is hot, especially in PPR formats. Meredith’s role is assured with Kevin White out and with Eddie Royal more of a slot weapon. Moreover, both Alshon Jeffery and Royal are dinged up more often than not. Meredith has a good chance at remaining productive through the end of 2016. I’m adding him in all leagues.
Corey Coleman, Browns, 39 percent
While his return could still be a week or two away, Coleman is about as good a stash as you can find at the receiver position. He already has shown multi-touchdown potential, and there is a target vacuum in Cleveland that he will fill upon his return, which, I think, will be in Week 8 or 9. Add Coleman now in all leagues and you’ll have a good chance at bolstering your offense down the stretch and in the playoffs.
Quincy Enunwa, Jets, 48 percent
The Jets have played a tough schedule to start the season, and being that they play with a backup quarterback for a starter, the results have been predictable so far. That being said, the schedule lightens up going forward save for a couple of games against the Patriots. The Jets probably will win about half of their second-half games, and Enunwa will be a big part of of it with Eric Decker done for the season.
Kenny Britt, Rams, 11 percent
As I said on the wire a few weeks back, he is running strong routes and looking healthy. He’s been a consistent producer but with no scores of 100-yard games. Both shortcomings were remedied in Week 6, and now Britt is a guy to add in all leagues.
Cameron Brate, Buccaneers, 19 percent
He is the guy now and he will see regular targets, including some solid red zone involvement. Brate has a good rapport with Jameis Winston, so I expect him to be in the weekly TE1 discussion going forward. He is now past his bye week and he has a very favorable closing schedule.
Hunter Henry, Chargers, 35 percent
It’s hard to tell for sure, but we may be witnessing a changing of the guard in San Diego. The question isn’t so much should you play Antonio Gates. At this point you should not unless he somehow gets fully healthy and starts producing. The question is, do the Chargers start giving Hunter full time reps — using Gates as the No. 2 tight end? If so, Hunter will be in the weekly TE1 discussion, because Rivers needs weapons and seems to know how to use the rookie.
Jack Doyle, Colts, 11 percent
Look for news on Dwayne Allen, because his ankle injury is the key to Doyle’s value. If Allen is out this week, Doyle is a very nice option in all leagues, but he’s only a deep league flier if Allen is starting.
C.J. Fiedorowicz, Texans, 1 percent
He had been splitting time with Ryan Griffin early in the season, but he’s opened up a lead the last few weeks. Fiedorowicz has received 15 targets the last two games and he could take over this gig soon if his strong play continues. He’s a nice add in deeper leagues and he can help as a streamer in smaller ones.
Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Jets, 3 percent
This is a guy to go after if you need upside at the position. Are there risks? Oh yeah. Of course there are, but the risks are mitigated by the fact that he’s a free pickup. Seferian-Jenkins has burned those who drafted him in August and he’s most certainly burned the Buccaneers, but he still can be your fantasy buddy. Here’s the crux of it: He’s hugely talented and he plays for a team with an abject disaster on its hands at the position. The Jets also lost Eric Decker, so you have a fresh target vacuum within the offense as a whole. There’s no doubt that Seferian-Jenkins is a gas-head, but gas-heads score touchdowns every week in the NFL. If he can stay on the field, he has a chance to post significant numbers.
Ladarius Green, Steelers, 9 percent
The Roethlisberger injury hurts his upside for sure and could delay his takeoff, which was only theoretical in the first place. The emergence of Jesse James is another potential stumbling block for Green. He’s obviously got serious durability concerns. Still, he is worth a stash in deeper leagues for his ceiling alone.