01 Nov Week 9 Waiver Wire: BeWare of the West Side
Josh McCown vs. Cowboys- The DogPound fans have had to endure seemingly more quarterback changes than the whole league combined over the last decade. The changes at play-caller have continued on this season as we have witnessed this team have a receiver (Pryor) under center at times. While the epitome of the QB carousel may have taken place when rookie QB Kevin Hogan (not really a dual-threat option) actually lead the team in rushing for one game. Meanwhile, in the two games Josh McCown has started he has averaged 41 passing attempts, 0ver 300 yards, and two touchdowns in each contest. This week he will face a Cowboys team that is last in the league at pressuring QB, evident in their 20% hit-rate on QB drop-backs also coincided with the fact that they blitz at the league’s fifth-lowest rate. McCown could be in for another pass-happy afternoon in what may shape up to be a pretty soft match-up.
Ryan Fitzpatrick @ Dolphins– As bad as Fitz-Magic played against the aforementioned Browns in the first half of Week 8, he probably is among the best options floating on your waiver wire up to this point. He draws a matchup against the Dolphins, a team Fitzpatrick has excelled against recently. Last season, Fitzpatrick averaged 247.5 passing yards and 2.5 touchdowns per game against the Dolphins. Expecting Fitzpatrick to hit that mark again this week is completely reasonable, as the Dolphins have allowed 232 passing yards per game, despite playing two of their games against backup quarterbacks.
Charcandrick West vs. Jaguars– This selection really hinges on the health of Spencer Ware, and whether or not he progresses enough through the concussion protocol to suit up for a soft match-up versus the Jags. With the Chiefs putting Jamaal Charles on IR, this opens the door for the two young-guns to take over the backfield without having to look over their shoulders for Charles to take over. If Ware is indeed able to suit up this Sunday, West should still have a 8-10 touch opportunity in this run-heavy offense. He becomes an excellent pick-up obviously if Ware was forced to miss any time, and he becomes the feature back like we saw him take over last season.
Tim Hightower @ 49ers- After Mark Ingram was benched Sunday for a continued fumbling problem, recommending Hightower becomes a no-brainer. In relief of Ingram, Hightower ran for 102 yards against the Seahawks. On Sunday, Hightower’s Saints face the 49ers, the only team in the NFL that permits more than 5 yards per carry. It’s safe to project 10 or more carries for Hightower this week, and another fumble by Ingram could lead to a significantly expanded role. When Ingram went down with an injury last season, Hightower was a pick-up that ended up being many championship winning fantasy team’s saving grace, so it is clearly a move that should be made immediately to bolster your depth at the RB position.
James Starks vs. Colts- The Packers were in dire straits when they traded for fourth-string Chiefs’ RB Knile Davis, who was surpassed by the aforementioned Kansas City young running back duo. With Eddie Lacy going on IR, and James Starks suffering an injury that would sideline him for at least a month, the Packers were desperate for RB depth. They used Ty Montgomery (now peeing blood from some crushing blows carrying the ball) and Randall Cobb (also missed a week of time) as their de-facto running backs while Knile Davis got acclimated to the offense. Well, here we are a few weeks later and Green Bay has opted to cut the previously acquired Davis, which leaves only practice-squad promoted Don Jackson as their lone RB. Although, HC Mike McCarthy would not speak upon the status of injured James Starks, the laden roster move of cutting Davis has many to believe that he must be close to a return. With all of that being said, Starks would take on a full-time RB role in an offense that seems to be turning the corner and looking like it did two years ago with a healthy Jordy Nelson.
Brian Quick vs. Panthers- A.J Green, Cole Beasley, Mike Evans, and Quick are the only players in the NFL with at least 50 receiving yards in every game their teams have played since Week 3. The first three are owned in almost every league. Quick’s ownership is less than 6 percent. Coming off their bye, Quick’s Rams will host the Carolina Panthers, who, despite their reputation, rank dead last in receiving yardage permitted per game this season. Quick is a gift off the waiver wire; take advantage of it.
Kendall Wright @ Chargers- I don’t love the fact that Wright has played on just 38.1 percent of the team’s offensive snaps in the five games he’s played this season. However, I admire that Wright has led the team in target share over the past three weeks, with 22.2 percent of Mariota’s attempts the past three games. In two of the past three, Wright has delivered at least 15 fantasy points in standard leagues and enjoyed a healthy rate of 13.1 air yards per target. With a budding rapport developing with Mariota and the San Diego secondary depleted by injury, Wright is a fine streaming candidate to consider in a game that has a healthy implied point total. These two WR may act as better DFS plays, but if you are depleted by injuries and bye-weeks you could do worse.
J.J Nelson vs. BYE- Owning Michael Floyd and/or John Brown has been a rollercoaster ride thus far in 2016, one filled with turbulence riding on one of those old riggity wooden tracks. Floyd has yet to crack double-digit fantasy points in standard leagues and did so only once in half-PPR leagues. Brown had a 144-yard outing in Week 4, but that was a flash in the pan. He’s broken 55 yards just once outside of that explosion. They rank 187th and 201st, respectively, after being ranked 55th and 63rd overall before the season began. Floyd and Brown are two of the primary reasons that Arizona, which played in last year’s NFC title game, has stumbled out to a 3-4-1 record. According to head coach Bruce Arians, second-year speedster J.J. Nelson is sliding into a starting spot, via Mike Jurecki of Fox Sports 910. It does not seem to be coach-speak to give the young speedster motivation either, as he has seen his usage uptick over the last three weeks (Week 6: two targets, two catches, 16 yards, Week 7: seven targets, three catches, 84 yards, Week 8: 12 targets, eight catches, 79 yards, two touchdowns).
Austin Hooper @ Buccaneers- Jacob Tamme has been ruled out for Thursday’s tilt with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, a team that just ceded more than 500 passing yards to the Raiders in Week 8. Hooper is set to start for the league’s top offense; Atlanta leads the league in points per drive. Tamme has consumed 11.4 percent of Ryan’s attempts this season, while Hooper has accounted for 4 percent. With a real shot at consolidating this share and with the Bucs yielding 55.8 yards per game to tight ends, Hooper is an under-the-radar asset during a heavy bye at the position.
Eric Ebron @ Vikings- He returned from a three-game absence with a knee injury in Week 8 at Houston and had seven catches for 79 yards on 10 targets, which was the most targets he had all year. He faces the Vikings this week, and Minnesota just allowed Miller to have seven catches for 88 yards. Ebron should be started in PPR leagues this week, and he’s a low-end starting option in standard formats.
C.J Fiedorowicz vs. BYE- He is worth adding or even stashing this week on a bye based on his recent level of play. He’s scored in three of his past five games and has at least seven targets in four of those outings. Osweiler is leaning on him, and he has a favorable schedule after the bye with Jacksonville in Week 10 and Oakland in Week 11. Fiedorowicz could be a must-start tight end for the rest of the season.
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