As I write this, Kevin Faulk is the fifth most added offensive player on Yahoo! for the day. Yes, that Kevin Faulk, the 97-year-old New England running back that just never quite fades out of the league entirely. If you are to the point of adding Kevin Faulk, it might be time to consider throwing in the towel for this season to start spending time with your family, return to exercising proper personal hygiene, join the Colts/Dolphins in the quest for the number one pick next year, etc.
Regardless, this is symptomatic of a very poor week for the waiver wire. I thought a few previous weeks had gotten pretty sparse, but none have been quite this bad.
One notable exception to the generally abysmal waiver wire is Javon Ringer, Chris Johnson’s backup in Tennessee. Ringer showed great promise in Johnson’s absence in the pre-season. While I would have thought that Johnson would surely have recovered from his holdout by now, he clearly has not. Accordingly, Ringer is a solid buy-and-hold type pickup. He had a great college career and is an athletic back with considerable potential. If you really want to take a chance for some playoff help, consider picking up Ringer and seeing if Chris Johnson’s owner is willing to trade him on the cheap. While there are no guarantees, there is a reasonable chance that one of these two backs will emerge as a viable option when Tennessee faces some beatable rushing defenses to close the season (including a stretch of BUF, NOR, and IND Weeks 13-15).
Carson Palmer, Oakland, QB – This is clearly a very, very risky play and should only be considered as a desperate measure. Unfortunately, not much is very attractive at QB this week. Palmer faces Denver, currently the softest fantasy defense in the league for QBs. Palmer was terrible in his first outing, but he has had a bye week to prepare this time around and has numerous big play targets in Oakland. If you want to go a bit more conservative, Matt Cassel faces a beatable Miami defense that allowed Colt McCoy and Mark Sanchez to have decent games.
Michael Bush, Oakland, RB – Bush is also a long shot at RB for this week but could see significant playing time if Oakland’s cryptic treatment of Darren McFadden’s ankle means his injury is more serious than expected. Bush is one of the better handcuff options in the league and could also be a good trading chip going forward, given McFadden’s history of injuries.
Javon Ringer, Tennessee, RB – As discussed above, I see Ringer as more of a long-term option. However, as bad as the other options are this week, you could take a chance on him as an emergency starter.
Chris Ogbonnaya, Cleveland, RB – The RB injuries abound in Cleveland. With Peyton Hillis and Montario Hardesty both nursing injuries, Ogbonnaya might get more playing time this week. He was serviceable in relief this past Sunday. If you don’t have other options, I would grab him and keep an eye on the news out of Cleveland as the week progresses. He’s also caught five passes in each of the last two weeks, making him particularly useful in PPR leagues.
Brent Celek, Philadelphia, TE – Celek’s big game on Sunday (94 yards and one TD) couldn’t have come at a better time, as he now faces a Chicago defense that has given up the most TE fantasy points this season. Celek has shown flashes in the past but really needs to show more consistency before becoming more than an emergency spot-start option.
Wide Receivers – Quite frankly, I do not particularly see any WR that is widely available that I would want to start if I had any other reasonable option available. Victor Cruz is solid with a very good matchup and still available in a few leagues, so he would be my first pick by far if available. Laurent Robinson is coming off a big game, but this seems more like a flukish case of Romo hitting the WR that happened to be open. Jabar Gaffney may now be the best WR option in Washington, but he is still not very good and does not have a particularly good matchup. Antonio Brown is available in some leagues, but has a bad matchup with Baltimore. I guess, if I absolutely needed to get some points out of a WR, I would take Gaffney, since he is a primary target for his team and likely to put up 5-10 points. If you are already going for broke and swinging for the fences, you could take a shot at Robinson catching another deep ball for Dallas.
Apart from Ringer, there are not many folks that merit long-term consideration this week.
Jonathan Baldwin, Kansas City, WR – As I am writing this, Jonathan Baldwin appears to be having a solid game for Kansas City. He was only activated for the first time this season last week, but he is a first round talent. I would not get too carried away based on one game, but he merits watching if Kansas City continues to improve. If you are particularly thin at WR, he might merit a flyer now.
Marshall has over ten years fantasy football experience and maintains a fantasy football blog over at Sunday Morning Legend (In My Own Mind).
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