Waiver Wire Madness: Week 16
December 15, 2014 | Jeff
Before we dig in and cover the most notable names waiver wire hounds need to know for Week 16, I would like to reiterate the fact that waiver additions in the fake football playoffs are not strictly limited to the additions that help your team. If your opponent is looking for a defense to stream, or just had their top running back go down (DeMarco Murray, wink wink), it would be a very wise move to make a few key pickups to block your opponent before you square off for all the marbles, fantasy football glory, cash, prizes, and eternal fame. Now, let’s get busy!
The quarterback position essentially boils down to possible streamers for Week 16, as long term upside stashes accomplish nothing at this point in the season. If you are in the market for a quarterback to stream in Week 16, check out Alex Smith (Owned: 36% Yahoo, 19% ESPN). Smith could quite possibly be the most boring NFL quarterback each Sunday, but he has a decent run going right now and gets a nice matchup with Pittsburgh in Week 16. Smith has thrown seven touchdowns over his last four games and is averaging 244.3 passing yards per game over that span. I could see Smith continuing the trend against the Steelers.
With news of DeMarco Murray undergoing hand surgery surfacing on Monday, Joseph Randle (Owned: 7% Yahoo, 4% ESPN) has shot to the top of the waiver wire target list. Murray’s Week 16 status is unknown at this point, but Randle is likely to take over the bulk of the running work for Dallas if Murray does miss time. Randle has averaged a very healthy 7.0 yards per carry on 34 chances this season and would likely be startable if Murray is labeled inactive. Lance Dunbar will probably be involved in some fashion as well, but Randle is the priority add for Murray owners and owners facing Murray as well.
Doug Martin (Owned: 51% Yahoo, 45% ESPN) and Latavius Murray (Owned: 56% Yahoo, 37% ESPN) are still unowned in far too many leagues. Murray is the top add of these two but make sure they aren’t lounging around on the wire in your league if other folks are scrounging for running back help this week.
Carlos Hyde (Owned: 35% Yahoo, 12% ESPN) is worth a look this week with Frank Gore sustaining a concussion in Week 15. Hyde is also uncertain for Week 16 along with Gore due to back and ankle issues, but there is a chance he may get the start if he heals quickly and Gore sits out. This is a long shot, but Gore owners should at least snag Hyde if he is available as an insurance policy and wait to see what news surfaces out of San Francisco this week.
Kerwynn Williams (Owned: 18% Yahoo, 28% ESPN) is still widely available but faces Seattle in Week 16. Leave this guy, as well as teammate Stepfan Taylor, on the wire. Leave the bait in the bear trap for one of your leaguemates.
Toby Gerhart (Owned: 33% Yahoo, 8% ESPN) received the bulk of Jacksonville’s running game work on Sunday and is available in plenty of leagues. Despite a nice matchup with Tennessee, I wouldn’t throw my title game fate in Gerhart’s hands, but deep league folks might want to check and see if this Jaguar is available.
The “Atlanta Life Preserver” came through again on Sunday, as Harry Douglas (Owned: 26% Yahoo, 14% ESPN) produced another solid outing with Julio Jones inactive. Douglas has proved to be a reliable source of fantasy production as long as either Roddy White or Julio Jones is out, and fake footballers can expect that to continue if Julio misses Week 16. Add Douglas if he is still available.
Jarvis Landry (Owned: 45% Yahoo, 31% ESPN) is a name that is on far too many waiver wires, but has been a consistent producer. While the Miami rookie hasn’t topped the 100 yard mark in a game this season, he has been a PPR beast, averaging 6.8 catches and 61.8 yards per game over the last six weeks. Those are startable numbers in most PPR leagues, so snag Landry if you have a wide receiver need.
Charles Johnson (Owned: 32% Yahoo, 17% ESPN) has been covered extensively since he slid into Minnesota’s starting lineup and he continues to help fantasy owners who acquired his talents. Chuck J. hauled in five passes for 72 yards in Week 15, and has been a solid fantasy option for a month now. If your team is struggling with the loss of Brandon Marshall or Julio Jones types, Johnson is worth a look as a plug-in option.
We discuss Mychal Rivera (Owned: 26% Yahoo, 20% ESPN) each week, and although his Week 15 production (39 yards) wasn’t stellar, he did receive 12 targets from Derek Carr. Rivera is a nice reliable option for targets (averaging 9/gm over the last three weeks) and provides a decent floor for fantasy owners looking to stream tight ends.
Kyle Rudolph (Owned: 51% Yahoo, 15% ESPN) may have turned a corner in Week 15, as he caught seven passes for 69 yards. Rudy has tanked since his return from hernia surgery, but is now on the tight end streamer map for Week 16.