The Waiver Wire Matinée: Volume Five
By John Kerwin
The season seems to be flying back as each week passes, and we are just getting started, my friends. Welcome to Volume Five of The Waiver Wire Matinée. I hope I can help some individuals who are perusing through waiver wires as we speak. Last week I mentioned the likes of Alshon Jeffery and Robert Woods and that seemed to pay off mightily for any fantasy owners who had them in their lineups. I warned anyone buying into Rashad Jennings making a splash Sunday night for the Raiders and I hope majority of you listened. Let's take a look at what I have in store for this week along with the names you should start paying attention to.
Next to each name you will find a rating from 0-5 stars, and the rating exemplifies the priority you should place on these pickups during the respective week.
- Five Stars: Must own player.
- Four Stars: Strong acquisition, and room should be made if possible.
- Three Stars: On the radar, and worth consideration.
- Two Stars: Borderline droppable players, rostered in deep leagues.
- One Star: Barely worth calling a roster filler.
- Zero Stars: Drop immediately.
Drama/Suspense: Stay On The Edge Of Your Seats
Nick Foles (Two Stars) – We all knew it was only a matter of time before Michael Vick succumbed to injury. Foles quickly showed that he is capable up commanding the Eagles high-powered offense. Anyone can look legitimate handing the ball off to LeSean McCoy, but Foles showed great poise leading the Eagles to victory and finishing with two touchdown passes and no interceptions. I don't think he has the most favorable match up in Week Six against the Buccaneers, but Foles could be a solid backup in deep leagues if Vick misses time. I wouldn't label Foles any more than a low-end QB2 at best in most formats.
Thriller: Big Play Potential
Terrance Williams (Four Stars) – I was a big fan of Williams when he was coming out of college and was quite pleased with his landing spot in Dallas. It didn’t take long for the injury bug to catch up to Miles Austin and open the door for the talented youngster. Williams posted an impressive stat line last week, but was quickly forgotten when he fumbled reaching out for the goal line in the fourth quarter. All of that seems like a distant memory after the monster game he just had on Sunday. Williams was able to score on a long touchdown and finish the day with over 150 yards receiving. Miles Austin could be out for multiple weeks and it looks like Williams will be a great replacement in your lineups for Austin or bye week players. I see Williams as a strong WR3 with major upside as long as he is in the Cowboys starting lineup.
Mystery: Will The Success Continue?
Zac Stacy (Three Stars) – We all knew the Rams backfield situation was going to be a mess heading into the season, but we at least expected some type of clarity by this point. The Rams finally decided to give a workload to Stacy and it looks like it paid off. Even though they were up against a soft Jaguars defense, Stacy was able to put together the most successful rushing performance the Rams have had all season. The only problem was that he left the game due to a rib injury and was unable to return. Hopefully this isn’t an issue moving forward and fantasy owners can add a bit of depth to their roster with the addition of Stacy. If he is healthy, I see Stacy as a RB3/Flex with upside if he controls the starting job. My best suggestion would be to roster him and hope for enough value to merit trade bait in the immediate future. The Rams backfield is not anything I want to worry about in my starting lineup and I'd be much happier manipulating the situation, if possible.
Action: The Workload Will Be There
Charles Clay (Three Stars) – Heading into the season, many experts had Dustin Keller tagged as a sleeper tight end for the Dolphins. The Dolphins revamped offense was ready for fantasy relevance once again with the addition of Mike Wallace and the potential of Lamar Miller in the backfield. Unfortunately, a season-ending injury cut Keller’s 2013 season short before it even began and that opened the door for Clay. Clay has been consistently putting together a respectable season so far and I think it is time we start considering him as a TE2. The Dolphins have played very competitive football up to this point in the year and Clay has been a big part of that the past five weeks. He looks to be a steady threat in the red zone for Ryan Tannehill. Clay has been able to post 40-plus yards in five straight games and has been productive not only in the passing game, but in the running game as well. I would make room for Clay as your TE2 if you have the roster space or are in need of an upgrade.
Horror: Be Afraid
Daryl Richardson (Two Stars) – Richardson received his opportunity to take control of the Rams backfield and he simply couldn't manage to hold it down. There will be a lot of mystery in the air if Stacy has any ongoing issues with his rib injury, but don't buy into giving Richardson another opportunity, because his team isn't going to. Best-case scenario for him is a share in carries with Stacy and Benny Cunningham occasionally sprinkled in. Like I said above, I would do my best to avoid this entire situation unless you are capable of manipulating it. Stacy is the only back really even worth rostering in majority of leagues. I see Richardson as nothing more than a very low-end flex play as the season progresses.
Donald Brown (One Star) – The Colts backfield is either going to be Trent Richardson or bust and that is even if Richardson continues to be a bust. We have seen Brown with the opportunity before and he was never able to separate himself from Delone Carter. It is going to be much more difficult gaining control of a backfield over a guy that the organization just invested a first-round draft pick on. Brown may look explosive compared to the surprisingly plodding Richardson, but don't let your eyes deceive you. He is nothing more than a filler on a 14 or 16-team roster.
Independent Stream: Not The Big Name, But Worth The Look This Week
Cincinnati Bengals Defense (Three Stars): The Bengals had a very lucrative defense heading into the season and were highly-ranked in many expert outlooks, but that quickly changed when they started the season in lackluster fashion. With a depleted secondary, they have found themselves being targeted heavily in the passing game, but their performance against the Patriots this past weekend showed some promise. I'm not saying I'm all-in on this squad, but they looked stout enough to do some damage against a vulnerable Bills offense. EJ Manuel will miss this week, C.J. Spiller won't be fully healthy, and the status of Steve Johnson is questionable. I would be licking my chops at the opportunity to start the Bengals defense this upcoming week. This is a guaranteed Top 10 Week Six.
Box Office Bomb: Hopes Were High, But The Points Were Low
Rashad Jennings (One Stars) – Don’t say that I didn’t warn you about this guy last week. Many seemed to have high hopes for Jennings last season when Maurice Jones-Drew went down with the lisfranc injury and we all know how that turned out. The false sense of hope that was instilled last week with Matt Flynn at quarterback led everyone to believe the receptions would be there. It was a rude awakening for anyone expecting big numbers from Jennings, because he posted a measly 41 yards rushing and nothing in the receiving game. I will repeat it again, don’t expect Jennings to be worthy of a roster spot as the season progresses.
Blockbuster Of The Week: Must-See And Own
Justin Blackmon (Five Stars) – It didn’t take long for Blackmon to make a splash returning from his four-game suspension. On his first catch of the season, Blackmon burned the Rams defense for a 67-yard touchdown. Regardless of the quarterback, Blackmon needs to be owned in every league. If you stashed him and waited it out for his return, then congrats to your fortune. If he is still lingering on the wire, then go and get him immediately. Blackmon will get the opportunity to be a Top 30 wide receiver moving forward and I expect him to be nothing less than a solid WR3 in all formats. The Jaguars are a struggling team who will find themselves behind in nearly every game and Blackmon will be a garbage time hero for your fantasy team during plenty of games this season.