“It’s your tomorrow
Catch a magic moment, do it
Right here and now
It means everything”
–“Right Now” Van Halen
That pretty much sums it up for this point of the season. One magic moment on the wire could be the difference.
I put the video here since it got stuck in my head and it’s good imagery too.
We’re near the end of it all. The regular season in some leagues will end this week and most others will end next week. With the way things shook out in week 12, this edition of the waiver wire could be one of the most important ones of the season. If you’re trying to get that final piece of the puzzle to give you the depth you want to win it all, this can help. Or if you need one more move to try and sneak in, this will help too.
The waiver wire becomes even more important now that the trade deadline has passed in standard leagues and is likely gone in custom leagues as well. That being said, let’s get it started.
Availability is based on ESPN.com leagues and FAAB values are based off of $100 in the budget.
San Francisco QB Colin Kaepernick ( 73.4%, $5) looked like the real deal in the win over the Bears and followed it up with a great performance against New Orleans. This week, the 49ers take on a 4-6-1 St. Louis team and Kapernick could be a remedy if you have a weak quarterbacking situation on your team. He could also make a nice stash for the playoffs too.
This will be an interesting week for him as the Rams are usually tough through the air and weak against the rush. Kapernick can make plays with his feet so he could pick up a good chunk of rushing yards. I don’t know how well he’d do passing even though the Rams gave up 312 yards to Arizona rookie Ryan Lindley last week.
Denver RB Knowshon Moreno (95.8%; $5) has come back from nowhere to be the apparent starting running back in Denver. He looked good in carving up the Chiefs for 85 yards on 20 carries in his first action since week 2. Moreno got the bulk of the carries last week while Ronnie Hillman had three and Lance Ball got one. Moreno looks to be the back to stash for the rest of the way.
The Broncos have one of the easiest schedules down the stretch but this week’s matchup with Tampa will be tough. When it comes to the ground game, opposing runners stop at the Bucs. Tampa has the best run defense in the league so consider that when getting him in this week’s lineup.
Jacksonville WR Cecil Shorts (48.9%; $5) is shocking still available in almost half of ESPN leagues. I find this puzzling. Since the week 6 bye, Shorts has put up 28 catches, 542 yards and four touchdowns. Three of those games were more than 100 yards receiving. And this is was despite having Blaine Gabbert at quarterback for most of it. It’s time look past the fact he has a Jaguar on his helmet and recognize the talent he has. I, for one, will be saluting these Shorts the rest of the season.
Indianapolis WR T.Y. Hilton (74.5%; $3) had a great game last week with a receiving touchdown and a punt return touchdown as well. Hilton is worth picking up if your league gives you bonus points for return yardage. He’s found the end zone in five times in his last four games, including the return score. Hilton also has a pair of 100-yard receiving games in that run as well.
Detroit WR Ryan Broyles (98.7%; $2) burst onto the scene on Thanksgiving with a 126-yard game against Houston. He took advantage of the team-driven suspension of Titus Young and racked up six catches opposite Calvin Johnson. It’s hard to say how Broyles will be used going forward as Young was suspended for just the one game.
Cincinnati WR Mohamed Sanu (98.9%; $2) has quietly put up some good games opposite A.J. Green in the last three weeks. Sanu has four touchdowns in his last three games including a pair last week against the lowly Raiders. If you play in a TD-only format, he’s a hot add right now. Otherwise, you have to be concerned with the fact he has never made more than five catches nor broken the 50-yard barrier this season.
The Carolina DST (91.2%, $3) gets the nod here since they are playing Kansas City this week. Yeah, it’s a matchup play but it works just the same if you’ve been streaming all season long in your DST slot. Carolina has held opponents under 20 points just four times this season but the KC offense hasn’t been able to get much going. It was also refreshing to see Cam Newton finally get the offense on in gear last night. Newton had 306 yards passing and two touchdowns. He rushed for two more and, gasp, didn’t turn the ball over. The Chiefs might be in trouble this week if this version of Newton shows up.
Keep an eye out for…
Green Bay WR Greg Jennings, The Baltimore DST and Oakland RB Darren McFadden are all worth a quick check of the waiver wire. The Ravens are available in about 10% of leagues and have been hot since the bye. They’ve held their last four opponents to a combined 58 points and have scored a couple touchdowns as well. Baltimore takes on a depleted and embarrassed Pittsburgh team this week at home.
Jennings is available in about 1-of-7 leagues and could be back this week for the Packers. He’d be an instant boost to any team and has been forgotten about since he hasn’t played since week four. A week 16 matchup with the Titans adds to the reasons why you scour the wire for him.
McFadden would be almost like finding a winning Powerball ticket in the street but he’s out there in about 1% of leagues. His last three games against KC, Carolina and San Diego are favorable matchups and he would reward fantasy owners with seeing him play in December for the first time since…well…ever.
Say no to…
Arizona RB Beanie Wells (42% available) is going to be this week’s sucker pick. Don’t get fooled by the fact that Wells scored twice this week against the Rams in his first game back since an extended bout with turf toe that put him on the DTR-IR. Wells had 17 carries but only racked up 48 yards; 12 of them came on a touchdown run. This was the same Rams team that he tore up last season for 228 yards in the game in St. Louis.
LaRod Stephens-Howling is the better running back for the Cardinals. LSH put up three touchdowns in the four games prior to this one and ran for 288 yards in that span. Yet he got the ball exactly once and ran it for one yard against St. Louis.
It seems Arizona has no idea how to use its running backs properly and the concept of riding the hot hand is beyond them. I was expecting a better split of carries between Wells and LSH and that didn’t happen. Wells, when healthy this season, didn’t exactly blow the doors off of anyone either. His stat lines: 7-14 against Seattle, 14-44 against New England, and 8-18 against Philly before going on DTR-IR.
A running back who can’t even get three yards per carry is not worth picking up on my opinion. Wells has an awful offensive line to run behind and it got even worse yesterday. Starting center Lyle Sendlein tore his MCL and is out for the season. Scott Wedige will take his place. Sendlein was a decent blocker but this loss only makes the Cardinals’ offensive line look more and more like Swiss cheese.
Jacksonville RB Jalen Parmele and Rashad Jennings both are going to be in Buffalo and have plus matchup with the Bills this week. Parmele left the game hurt, came back and got hurt again. Jennings had fewer touches but scored the lone rushing touchdown in the win over the Titans. It’s a tough situation to deal with as a fantasy owner, especially if you’re waiting on Maurice Jones-Drew to come back. He likely won’t this week, so the head-scratching continues.
Thankfully, I’ll solve it for you in two equation. Here goes:
Leave your questions below and let me know how your team’s doing. Good luck in week 13.