Every year seems like the year of the waiver wire wonder, so that should teach us that this is just something that is going to happen. But this year does seem odd that both the quarterback and wide receiver positions were topped by a waiver wire pickup. Let’s take a look see —
Michael Vick: It’s not every year that you can pick up the #1 fantasy quarterback off of free agency. Coming into the season Kevin Kolb was the no doubt #1 and Vick was just waiting until he became a free agent, but of course that changed and quick. Kolb was hurt and Vick Wally Pipped him. In ESPN Standard leagues Vick finished with 300 fantasy points and missed 5 games. He won many fantasy leagues for ya’ll that grabbed him to back up Kolb.
Runner up: Josh Freeman: His numbers weren’t spectacular, but he was one of the most consistent quarterbacks in the league. He only had a fantasy day under 11 points once and that was early in the season. His consistency made him the 7th best fantasy QB for the year. I can’t say he won you your league, but he tried very hard not to lose you any games.
Peyton Hillis: Coming into the season Hillis was an afterthought. He was really an afterthought to Josh McDaniels as well, who traded him for a bag of rocks name Brady Quinn. Hillis ran through the defense like Hercules swinging a bag of Brady Quinns in a flailing manner. He started to wear down a bit with that style, but was a consistent stud most of the year, leading him to the #4 fantasy running back. He will probably be a little over valued next season because he’ll be primed to break down earlier next season and Montario Hardesty will press him for playing time.
BenJarvus Green Ellis: If you can find a consistent goal line back in Belichick’s system it can be a good thing. Of course he’ll often screw you around royally. Thankfully this season The Firm was consistent and only had a few clunkers. If Ronnie Brown doesn’t end up in New England on an old folk’s tour, BJGE could have another productive season.
Runner up: LaGarrette Blount: It took coach Morris a while to let Punchy loose, but when he did, it was good times for his owners. He didn’t get over 10 carries until week 7 and still ended with 1,007 yards rushing. He has a lot of upside on a young rising team.
Runner up: Mike Tolbert: Ryan Mathews was an early 2nd rounder and was poised to be the main guy all season, but the best laid plans of mice and Chargers don’t always turn out like we hope. It was hard to decipher when to start Tolbert, but in TD heavy leagues he crossed the goal line consistently totaling 11 touchdowns.
Brandon Lloyd: He doubled his career year numbers from 2005. I just wouldn’t let myself believe it. This is something I try to work on every season, but it’s really difficult to go all in on a guy with such a poor track record. This instance is even more painful since I was a Lloyd supporter during his craptasticness, which I believe made me even more skeptical of his breakout. But he did, and was the #1 fantasy receiver! Jerk nozzle.
Steve Johnson: He kind of crapped out toward the end of the season, but had an awesome stretch from week 3-11 and if you got on him early enough, he really helped you out. His QB sitch is a bit of a bitch, but he has the ability to be a fantasy starter.
Runner up: Danny Woodhead: In many leagues he was listed as a RB/WR and his value was as a receiver in fantasy. He totaled over 900 yards and 6 TDs and didn’t play in the first 3 games of the season. Not too bad for a scraptastic type.
Jacob Tamme: This was close between Tamme and The Gronkster, but Tamme did all his work in the last 9 games of the season and was a bit more consistent than Gronk during that stretch. For a whole season Tamme would have easily had 100 receptions and close to 1000 yards. Sadly Mr. Tamme will go back to backup duty next season.
Runner up: Rob Gronkowski: He was a TD machine, but Aaron Hernandez took away a lot of his possible yardage an made it hard to know the right time to start him. With AHer out the last two weeks he of course went off. Next season is still going to be difficult to decipher who will break out and when. I am not going to risk an early pick on Gronk unless AHer switches to defense or becomes a monk.
There are plenty of Kickers and Defenses that had good numbers from the waiver wire and that is why you draft them last or not at all.