Playing the Waiver Wire for Week 11
We went into Monday night's game between Miami and Tampa Bay talking more about the Jonathan Martin-Richie Incognito bullying saga and Greg Schiano's coaching future than the action on the field.
But when the game ended, we had some much needed waiver wire options.
No one wanted to see Buccaneers running back Mike James (ankle) get hurt, especially since he did well filling in for Doug Martin (shoulder), who is out for the season. But he's expected to miss a few weeks, and now Tampa Bay will turn to Brian Leonard and Bobby Rainey .
|1.||Eli Manning , QB, Giants||87|
|2.||Charles Clay , TE, Dolphins||85|
|3.||Jay Cutler , QB, Bears||82|
|4.||BenJarvus Green-Ellis , RB, Bengals||81|
|5.||Eddie Royal , WR, Chargers||72|
|6.||Brian Hartline , WR, Dolphins||70|
|7.||DeAndre Hopkins , WR, Texans||68|
|8.||Terrelle Pryor , QB, Raiders||68|
|9.||Greg Jennings , WR, Vikings||67|
|10.||Peyton Hillis , RB, Giants||63|
|11.||Roy Helu , RB, Redskins||58|
|12.||Darrius Heyward-Bey , WR, Colts||53|
Leonard, who is owned in 5 percent of leagues on CBSSports.com, had 20 carries for 57 yards and two catches for 16 yards against the Dolphins. Rainey, who is not owned, had eight carries for 45 yards and a touchdown and one catch for 11 yards.
Neither is expected to become a must-start Fantasy option, but Rainey will likely handle early-down rushing duties, with Leonard playing on passing downs and as a change-of-pace runner. Owners in standard leagues might want to put a claim in for Rainey first and then Leonard, and in PPR leagues you should go after Leonard first.
Rishard Matthews also emerged Monday night as a go-to weapon for Ryan Tannehill with 11 catches for 120 yards and two touchdowns on 14 targets. That is the most catches for a Dolphins receiver this season, and it was the third-most targets for a Miami receiver behind Mike Wallace 16 in Week 5 or Brian Hartline 15 in Week 1.
Matthews had done nothing to this point in the season, but we have him as a must add because the Dolphins have been missing a possession receiver since Brandon Gibson (knee) got hurt in Week 8. Matthews will fill that role, and owners in PPR leagues should gamble on him now.
It's not a great week for waiver wire additions. The top free agents currently being viewed on CBSSports.com along with Matthews, Leonard and Rainey include Houston quarterback Case Keenum (58 percent ownership), Indianapolis running back Donald Brown (50 percent), St. Louis receiver Tavon Austin (37 percent) and New Orleans running back Mark Ingram (18 percent).
I would prioritize that group of free agents in this order, regardless of position: Keenum, Brown, Rainey, Leonard, Matthews, Ingram and Austin. Keenum is the only one worth consideration as a must-start Fantasy option this week, and we'll get into detail on all of these players below.
Editor's note: Must add is for players worth adding in all leagues. Maybe add is for players worth adding in 14-team leagues or larger. Desperation add is for players worth adding only if you're, well, desperate. The ownership percentage listed is how many leagues that player was owned in the previous week for CBSSports.com.
Maybe add: Ryan Tannehill , Dolphins (44 percent), Carson Palmer , Cardinals (39 percent), Geno Smith , Jets (27 percent), Mike Glennon , Buccaneers (21 percent), Josh McCown , Bears (21 percent), Jason Campbell , Browns (18 percent)
Desperation add: Ryan Fitzpatrick , Titans (2 percent), Scott Tolzien , Packers (0 percent)
The order for quarterbacks to add this week is Keenum, Glennon, Campbell, Palmer, Tannehill, Smith and McCown. ... Keenum has done a nice job since taking over for the injured Matt Schaub (ankle), especially in his past two starts against Indianapolis and Arizona with a combined 59 Fantasy points in a standard league. He has a favorable matchup this week against Oakland at home, and he's a great replacement option for the injured Aaron Rodgers (shoulder) or Tony Romo on a bye. ... Glennon struggled Monday night against the Dolphins, but it was a tough matchup for him. He should rebound against the Falcons, and he had 21 Fantasy points against Atlanta in Week 7. Every quarterback to face the Falcons this season has scored multiple touchdowns. ... Campbell looked great in his first two starts at Kansas City in Week 8 and against Baltimore in Week 9 before last week's bye with a combined 54 Fantasy points. He faces a Bengals defense that Brian Hoyer scored 22 points against in Week 4, and hopefully the off week won't slow Campbell down. ... Palmer only has one game this season with more than 20 Fantasy points, which was Week 1, but he does have a favorable matchup at Jacksonville this week. Maybe Palmer can reach the 20-point threshold again this week since six quarterbacks have scored more than 20 points against the Jaguars this year. ... Like Palmer, Tannehill has struggled to score 20 Fantasy points, but Tannehill hasn't even done it once. But he's facing a Chargers defense that has allowed six quarterbacks to hit that mark, and Tannehill can be a useful option in two-quarterback leagues. ... We hope good Smith shows up this week for the Jets, and it's a great matchup against the Bills. Smith had 28 Fantasy points against Buffalo in Week 3. ... McCown will start for the injured Jay Cutler (ankle), and he's done a nice job in relief when called upon this season. But he has a tough matchup this week against the Ravens, who have only allowed two quarterbacks to score more than 18 Fantasy points. ... I wouldn't bother with Fitzpatrick even though he's replacing Jake Locker (foot) for the rest of the season. The Titans will likely rely even more on their running game moving forward. ... You can also take a wait and see approach with Tolzien to see how he does in place of Rodgers and the injured Seneca Wallace (groin) this week at the Giants.
Maybe add: Jonathan Stewart , Panthers (49 percent), Shonn Greene , Titans (40 percent), Bernard Pierce , Ravens (36 percent), Dennis Johnson , Texans (27 percent), Mark Ingram , Saints (18 percent)
Desperation add: Jordan Todman , Jaguars (1 percent), Benny Cunningham , Rams (0 percent)
The order for running backs to add this week is Brown, Rainey, Leonard, Johnson, Greene, Stewart, Pierce and Ingram. ... Since Week 4, which was Indianapolis' first game without Ahmad Bradshaw (neck), Brown has had more Fantasy points than Trent Richardson in four of six games. The Colts plan to be more run heavy after getting beat up in Week 10 by St. Louis, and that could mean more Brown with Richardson continuing to struggle. He's worth gambling on as a flex option this week against the Titans, who have allowed a running back to reach double digits in Fantasy points in each of their past six games. ... Leonard might have more success than Rainey this week against Atlanta, but the Buccaneers will probably keep Leonard in the same role he had with James as a receiver and change of pace rusher and lean more on Rainey to replace James. Rainey has more value long-term in standard leagues, but Leonard will do more as a receiver for owners in PPR formats. ... Greene struggled against Jacksonville in Week 10 with just three Fantasy points after scoring 11 in Week 9 at St. Louis. We expect a rebound game this week against the Colts, and Greene is a good flex option in deeper standard leagues. ... Stewart has a long way to go before Fantasy owners can trust him since he plays in a three-headed backfield with DeAngelo Williams and Mike Tolbert . But in two games back from a season-long ankle injury, he already has 25 touches compared to 23 for Williams and 15 for Tolbert over that span. The only difference is Williams and Tolbert each scored the past two weeks, but Stewart could continue to improve as he gets more work. ... Ingram was a star Sunday night against Dallas with 14 carries for 145 yards and a touchdown and two catches for 15 yards. Be careful chasing the box score here because it was the first 100-yard game of his career in a blowout victory, and Pierre Thomas and Darren Sproles are both healthy. It's likely this will be Ingram's best game of the season by a lot based on what we've seen from him for two-plus years. ... Johnson is worth a flier in all leagues with the news that Arian Foster (back) could miss the rest of the season. Ben Tate is now elevated to the starter, and Johnson will be No. 2 on the depth chart. He's a good lottery ticket in case Tate, who is dealing with four broken ribs, gets hurt and has to miss any action. ... The Ravens might start using the hot hand between Ray Rice and Pierce, and we know Rice has been cold of late. It's not bad to speculate on Pierce if you have an open roster spot.
|Giants DST||vs. GB||62|
|Saints DST||vs. SF||59|
|Jets DST||at BUF||19|
|Nick Folk , K, NYJ||at BUF||41|
|Shaun Suisham , K, PIT||vs. DET||21|
|Rian Lindell , K, Buccaneers||vs. ATL||4|
Packers (68 percent),
Dolphins (1 percent)
Maybe add: Michael Crabtree , 49ers (47 percent), Tavon Austin , Rams (37 percent), Jerricho Cotchery , Steelers (36 percent), Doug Baldwin , Seahawks (33 percent), Nate Burleson , Lions (16 percent), Santonio Holmes , Jets (12 percent)
Desperation add: Kris Durham , Lions (16 percent), Cordarrelle Patterson , Vikings (12 percent), Jermaine Kearse , Seahawks (4 percent), Andre Roberts , Cardinals (4 percent)
The order for wide receivers to add this week is Boykin, Matthews, Holmes, Burleson, Crabtree, Austin, Baldwin and Cotchery. ... For all the owners who dropped Boykin following the loss of Rodgers and return of James Jones , he proved he can still be reliable with eight catches for 112 yards on 13 targets against the Eagles. We hope Tolzien will continue to get Boykin the ball moving forward. ... As we said with Matthews, he's not going to become a must-start Fantasy option right away, but he could be a significant contributor for the Dolphins down the stretch in place of Gibson, which is something of note for owners in PPR leagues. ... Burleson could return this week from his broken arm, and we hope he picks up where he left off in Week 3. He had at least seven Fantasy points in two of his first three games, and he should immediately resume his role as the No. 2 receiver opposite Calvin Johnson . He's a great stash candidate in deeper leagues, especially PPR formats, since he had 19 catches to start the season. ... Crabtree (Achilles) started practicing last week, and he could return to action any week now. Our guess is he'll be active for Week 13 against the Rams at home, but add him now if you want to stay ahead of the rest of your league. ... Austin was amazing in Week 10 at the Colts with two catches for 138 yards and two touchdowns, and he also added a 98-yard punt return for a score. But don't go chasing the box score here since he only had three targets in the game and played on just 15 offensive snaps. I have no problem speculating on him in deeper leagues, but it will be hard for him to duplicate this production unless he starts seeing more work. ... It will be interesting to see what the Seahawks do with Baldwin this week if Percy Harvin (hip) returns as expected against the Vikings. But it's not a bad idea to stash Baldwin in case A) Harvin remains out or B) he suffers a setback. Baldwin has 18 targets since Sidney Rice (ACL) went down, and he's responded with 11 catches for 151 yards and a touchdown the past two games. We hope the Seahawks keep him involved because he's been able to produce. ... The Steelers will eventually start to look at rookie Markus Wheaton more as the season goes on, which should come at Cotchery's expense, but he's been playing well the past two weeks with nine catches for 127 yards and four touchdowns against the Patriots and Bills. He's worth the gamble in deeper leagues if Ben Roethlisberger continues to rely on him as a red-zone threat. ... Holmes is expected to return from a five-game absence with a hamstring injury, and he could easily be the No. 1 receiver for the Jets with Jeremy Kerley (elbow) likely out. Holmes had 21 Fantasy points against Buffalo in Week 3.
Must add: None
Maybe add: Brandon Pettigrew , Lions (27 percent), Delanie Walker , Titans (23 percent), Rob Housler , Cardinals (6 percent), Dennis Pitta , Ravens (4 percent), John Carlson , Vikings (1 percent)
Desperation add: Brandon Bostick , Packers (1 percent), Chris Gragg , Bills (0 percent), Levine Toilolo , Falcons (0 percent)
The order for tight ends to add this week is Walker, Carlson, Pitta, Pettigrew and Housler. ... Walker scored in Week 10 against Jacksonville and now has a touchdown in two of his past three games. He could be a good bye-week replacement for Jason Witten , and hopefully he can start to produce on a more consistent basis moving forward. ... Carlson was great in his first game for the injured Kyle Rudolph (foot) in Week 10 against Washington with seven catches for 98 yards and a touchdown on seven targets. Christian Ponder favorite target is the tight end, so keep an eye on Carlson as long as Rudolph remains out. ... Pitta (hip) is getting close to a return, and he could emerge as a playoff option for owners in deeper leagues. If you want to plan ahead, add him now and hope he comes back at 100 percent soon. ... Pettigrew has at least five targets in his past three games with at least six Fantasy points in two of those outings. In a desperate situation in PPR leagues, he could be a fill-in option. ... Housler just caught his first NFL touchdown in Week 10 against Houston, and we hope he can build off this performance. He would benefit if Michael Floyd (shoulder) is out in Week 11 at Jacksonville, and that's a favorable matchup. He's worth a flier in deeper leagues as a potential Witten replacement.