Yesterday morning, I was wearing this T-shirt proudly. Now what? Is there a specific rule about what to do with your sports wardrobe when your team plays to a tie while you’re wearing it? I’m taking a wait-and-see approach for now, in the hopes that the aberrant third number in the NFC West standings turns out to be some sort of tiebreaker blessing at the end of the season and my “lucky” shirt actually was lucky on that fateful Sunday when the 49ers couldn’t muster a field goal in overtime against the lowly Rams.
Fortunately, ties in fake football are even more rare than they are in real football thanks to fractional points (in a related story, you should be using fractional points). Furthermore, in the event of a fantasy tie, there’s always a chance that a late scoring change will swing the match-up and provide closure. I suppose a scoring change could also lead to a tie, but—la-la-la-la-la-la-la-I’m-not-listening-la-la-la—let’s talk about the waiver wire!
Nick Foles, PHI – Michael Vick was knocked out of Sunday’s contest against the Cowboys with a concussion. Foles took over and played reasonably well, passing for 219 yards and a touchdown while committing two turnovers. Disembodied “sources” are saying that Vick will be “rested” for the balance of the season while Foles starts, but Andy Reid hasn’t even ruled Vick out for Week 11 yet. Based solely on Vick’s injury, I bet Foles starts this week and holds the job as long as he plays relatively well.
Colin Kaepernick, SF – The concussion bug bit Alex Smith as well on Sunday, allowing Kaepernick to enter the game and lead the Niners to the aforementioned thrilling overtime tie. Kaep only threw for 117 yards, but he ran eight times for 66 yards and a score. Kaepernick has more short-term upside than Foles thanks to his running ability, but he’ll lose the starting gig as soon as Smith is healthy and ready to return.
Jason Campbell, CHI – Broken record alert! Jay Cutler was also concussed yesterday. Campbell came on for the Bears and posted 96 passing yards against a stingy Texans defense. Based on an equally tough Week 11 match-up against the 49ers and the fact that Cutler should be back by Week 12, only the most desperate QB-seekers should add Campbell.
Daniel Thomas, MIA – Reggie Bush was benched against the Titans for fumbling in the first half. Thomas wasn’t especially impressive in relief, but in fake football terms, he has been performing well recently for a back-up running back. The fantasy schedule for Miami isn’t especially enticing after Week 11, but the ‘Phins face Jacksonville and Buffalo in the playoffs (Weeks 15 & 16), so stash Thomas now if you can.
Chris Ivory, NO – Ivory rushed for 72 yards and a TD on 7 carries against the Falcons. As long as Darren Sproles remains sidelined, Ivory is the Saints RB to own.
Danny Woodhead, NE – Woodhead continues to be an asset for PPR owners. Over his past four games, he’s averaging 4.5 receptions and 59.25 total yards per game. When he finds the end zone, like he did twice on Sunday, Woodhead vaults from flex-play to starter in PPR leagues.
Ronnie Hillman, DEN – Hillman was lackluster on Sunday, but he did score a touchdown late in the fourth quarter. He isn’t fantasy relevant on a week-to-week basis yet, but Hillman is an important handcuff for McGahee owners.
Danny Amendola, STL – Danny Amendola picked up right where he left off before his injury, catching 11 passes for 102 yards against a tough San Francisco defense. It’s not typical for a WR1 to be available this late in the season, so run-don’t-walk to the waiver wire and see if a short-sighted owner in your league might have dropped Amendola while the wideout was hurt.
Cecil Shorts & Laurent Robinson, JAC – Here lies Justin Blackmon’s fantasy value. The first wide receiver selected in the 2012 NFL draft, Blackmon irrevocably damaged countless keeper teams this season. His fantasy value is survived by those of Cecil Shorts and Laurent Robinson, as Shorts and Robinson each had more than double the targets of Blackmon in Week 10.
Danario Alexander, SD – In a move I’ve been anticipating since the preseason, the Chargers removed Robert Meachem from the starting lineup. The beneficiary of this move was Alexander, who responded to his promotion with a very un-Meachem-like 5 catches for 134 yards and a TD.
Donald Jones, BUF – I recommended Jones last week, but his Week 10 performance actually makes for three nice games in a row. He’s averaging 5.3 catches, 62.0 yards, and 0.7 TDs per game in that span. Meanwhile, his upcoming schedule is basically an all-you-can-eat fantasy buffet: vs. MIA, @IND, vs. JAC, vs. STL. I like Amendola, Shorts, Robinson, and Alexander slightly more, but Jones is a nice consolation if you lack a high waiver claim.
Calvin Johnson & Titus Young, DET – Wait, Johnson is owned in 100% of leagues? Well, despite Megatron’s impressive return to form (12 catches/207 yards/1 TD), Young was also productive on Sunday (4/35/1). After a shaky start to the season, young Titus has proven to be a solid second banana for the Lions. Go ahead and add him if you are in need of potassium or another wide receiver.
Brandon LaFell, CAR – LaFell only had 29 yards receiving on Sunday, but his 8 targets led all Panthers except Greg Olsen (10). Wise owners will look past LaFell’s poor two-game stretch and see the potential for value.
Kyle Rudolph (MIN) & Dennis Pitta (BAL) – Rudolph and Pitta each bounced back from a recent run of fantasy irrelevance and posted 12 fantasy points in Week 10. One or both may have been dropped during that disappointing stretch and could be available if you need a tight end.