Before we dive into the abyss of waiver wire and free agent insanity, did you find yourself a few times either looking at the box score or seeing the scrolling scoring updates and say to yourself “Now who in the hell is that?!” after a touchdown? Yes, the delight of seeing a touchdown on the board, frantically searching for who tallied, only to see (scrolling) “Titans 34 Yard Touchdown.. Justin Hunter…. “ (scrolling)…
Now aside from Mr. and Mrs. Hunter, who were no doubt beaming with pride that their son caught an NFL touchdown, most fantasy owners were like HUH???? Well probably worse, but I digress.
Yes, it was the week of the relative unknown. In addition to the aforementioned Hunter, you had two from Dallas that very well left you scratching your fantasy noggin in TE Gavin Escobar and WR Dwayne Harris, both hauling in 24 yard scores for the Cowboys this past week.
Well fear not, neither will be suggested waiver wire selections, it just goes to show how insanely unpredictable this hobby truly is.
That said, another week in the books and maybe you have some roster holes to fill. Let’s take a look at some options that may be on the wire in your league, shall we?
Ryan TanneHill. Miami Dolphins – His team is 3-0 and the forgotten man from the memorable quarterback class of 2012 is making quite a case for himself as a field general behind center. While he may not warrant QB1 status at the present time, he is certainly a rock solid backup and/or bye week fill in candidate.
Brian Hoyer, Cleveland Browns – Who saw this coming? Most didn’t but the performance warrants you monitoring his continued progression as we could very well turn into a solid backup option should he retain the starting gig. After this past week’s audition, where he threw for 321 yards and three touchdowns, I’d say Hoyer deserves to hang onto the job.. for now.
RB Bilal Powell, New York Jets – With RB Chris Ivory missing from the lineup this past week and now out indefinitely, it’s Powell’s time to shine. He most definitely turned some heads this past week with over 150 yards of total offense. He’s the main guy for the foreseeable future and when you can nab a starting option off the wire in week four, you jump at the chance.
RB Willis McGahee, Cleveland Browns – He may be off the radar just a bit, but don’t be fooled, McGahee will wear the starting hat for the Browns, and if the passing game continues to flourish, he’ll be a marginal steal off the wire. The week to settle in, get himself into game shape and digest more of the offense will do the former Bronco a world of good. Don’t kid yourself, the guy can still play.
Brandon Bolden, New England Patriots – It is awfully hard to suggest any of the Patriots running backs but of any of the players behind starting RB Stevan Ridley, Bolden brings the most to the table. Of course it’s only a limited body of work, but his pass catching ability gives him quite an edge over RB Legarrette Blount.
Bryce Brown, Philadelphia Eagles – If the injury scare this past Thursday night wasn’t enough, if for some ungodly reason Brown is available, I ask this – was that holding your breath sensation enjoyable when a grimacing RB LeSean McCoy limped off the field clutching his knee?
Jason Snelling / Jacquizz Rodgers, Atlanta Falcons – It is hard to predict who will do what, but the bottom line is both are relatively productive and are worth a roster spot as long as starting RB Steven Jackson is out of the lineup. Together they combined for 204 combined yards and a touchdown with both tallying solid fantasy numbers. If one is gone, confidently add the other to your squad.
RB Khiry Robinson, New Orleans Saints – Put this guy on your radar and if you have the roster space, pluck him off the wire and play the wait and see. This kid has some skills, and is probably one of the best fits in this offense and will hopefully get more of an opportunity to showcase his talents. This past week he carried the ball four times for 38 yards. Not excited? That’s almost 10 yards per carry folks. Robinson is well worth monitoring moving forward.
WR Josh Gordon, Cleveland Browns – In many leagues, Gordon was ignored on draft day due to his NFL mandated two game suspension to open the season. His performance and overall involvement in the Cleveland offense upon his return tells you ignoring him was a big mistake. Gordon grabbed 10 passes for 146 and a touchdown, and was targeted by Browns QB Brian Hoyer an insane 19 times. Provided he can keep his nose clean, he is an awesome addition.
WR Jason Avant, Philadelphia Eagles – Easily the most disrespected of the Eagles wide receivers in fantasy circles. There is no reason why Avant should not have usurped WR Riley Cooper on the depth chart. Aside from his solid performance against the Chiefs this past Thursday night, he runs better routes, has better hands, and is certainly less of a distraction. Hope that the Eagles realize this sooner as opposed to later and look to Avant more and more.
WR Ryan Broyles, Detroit Lions – It was expected that the Lions would bring Broyles along slowly as he again is recovering from an ACL injury. That said, look for the time clock to be sped up with the loss of WR Nate Burleson to an arm injury. There is no denying Broyles is a talented slot receiver and can make quite an impact in this offense, without question. Let’s just hope the knee is up to the task.
WR Donnie Avery, Kansas City Chiefs – While WR Dwayne Bowe owners were fretting for four quarters against the Philadelphia Eagles, Avery was making a case as to why he is probably the best fantasy receiving option in the Kansas City offense. The speedy ex-Colt plays to the strengths of QB Alex Smith, who finds him on shorter routes, where Avery can use his speed for significant yards after the catch. At some point the Chiefs will get Bowe and his 56 million into the mix, but for now, look for Avery to capitalize.
WR Ted Ginn Jr. Carolina Panthers – Carving out quite a career as a return man in the NFL for years, Ginn is starting to make some waves as a deep threat option for the Panthers this season. He’ll likely be hit or miss as the season progresses, but with two consecutive trips to the end zone and 60+ yards receiving in each of the past two weeks, he deserves some consideration for sure.
WR Mohamed Sanu, Cincinnati Bengals – Sanu is worth considering for a few different reasons. First and foremost, he runs opposite one of the most dominant talents in the game today, WR A.J. Green. The attention paid to Green alone most certainly opens Sanu up to single coverage against beatable corners. Second and probably directly related to the first is the fact that each week Sanu is becoming more and more involved in the offense. That in itself warrants fantasy roster consideration.
WR Sydney Rice, Seattle Seahawks – Granted the Seahawks are a pass first team, but it is clear that Rice is their most talented downfield option and when given the opportunity to make plays, he’ll deliver. Fantasy owners have to be delighted with last week’s two touchdown performance. Again, of all the Seattle receivers not named WR Percy Harvin, Rice is the top of the heap and the guy to zero in on.
WR Santonio Holmes, New York Jets – As rookie QB Geno Smith matures in the NFL, he’ll develop a strong rapport with his receivers. While performances like last week’s against the Buffalo Bill from Holmes can’t be expected week in and week out, it is encouraging to see Smith warming up to both Holmes and WR Stephen Hill, slowly making both wide receivers fantasy relevant.
TE Heath Miller, Pittsburgh Steelers – With all the talent that the Steelers keep losing each week, it is a blessing for them to finally get to add some. He is a sure handed quality option that QB Ben Roethlisberger will lean on heavily as the season progresses. He can offer fantasy owners quality right off the wire if needed.
TE Scott Chandler, Buffalo Bills – Every young quarterback needs a rock solid option downfield to act as a security blanket. It was finally nice to see rookie QB EJ Manuel embrace that concept and get Chandler involved this past week. Chandler is a huge target with great hands who if he is utilized properly can not only benefit Manuel, but to any fantasy owners in dire need at tight end.
D/ST Kansas City Chiefs – It is not often I mention defensive units here, but while they are not the greatest defensive unit available, they are incredibly opportunistic and have play makers on the line and in the secondary. Their fantasy numbers are rock solid and are definitely worth considering.
Good luck heading into the week! Check me out here, on Google+ #ffcentral hangouts every thursday at 10est with the rest of the FP911 crew, and on twitter @djleason
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