Week 4 Waiver Wire September 25, 2012  |  gregsauce

We’re barely beyond the Golden Taint fiasco, but I’m here to talk about a different breed of replacements. The following players are Jimmy-McGinty-approved waiver wire options to replace the underachievers on your fake roster.


Christian Ponder, MIN – Ponder finished Week 3 in the top-5 at his position, largely thanks to 7 rushes for 33 yards and a touchdown. He also threw for 198 yards and 2 TDs against a stingy 49ers defense. He won’t finish in the top-5 (or even top-10) every week, but Ponder is drastically improved this season and should be even more productive going forward with the return of Jerome Simpson.

Jake Locker, TEN – Locker tied Ponder in Week 3 fantasy points, throwing for 378 yards and two scores. Take those lofty numbers with a grain of salt because Locker put them up against a relatively porous Lions defense. Still, if Chris Johnson remains ineffective, Locker is going to air it out and he will serve as a fine bye-week fill-in.

Shaun Hill, DET – Matthew Stafford pulled leg muscle against the Titans and if he can’t play in Week 4, Shaun Hill will square off against the Vikings. Hill has proven proficient filling in for Stafford in the past and should be added in 2-QB leagues as well as by Stafford-owners, on the chance that the Detroit starter misses extended time.

John Skelton, ARI – Skelton is another fine speculative add in deep or 2-QB leagues. The Cardinals have been winning in his absence, but more because of their defense and special teams than Kevin Kolb. There’s a decent chance Skelton regains the starting job when he gets healthy.

Matt Flynn, SEA – This is the last time I’ll mention Flynn in this space unless Russell Wilson gets hurt or the Seahawks announce a quarterback switch. I can only re-express my doubts in Russell Wilson so many times before my keyboard goes on strike and I’m forced to call on a replacement keyboard that can’t tell the difference between the letters “td” and “int”.


Mikel LeShoure, DET – Apparently it’s still impossible to lose one’s job to injury in the NFL, even if the injury occurred over a year ago and the player has since been suspended for violating the league’s drug-policy. LeShoure pounced on the Lions’ starting job in his NFL debut and poor Kevin Smith appears to be on the outs in Detroit. Starting running backs with talent don’t pop up in the free agent pool more than once or twice a year, so don’t be afraid to burn your top waiver priority or 90-100% of your FAAB budget to get LeShoure.

Ryan Williams, & LaRod Stephens-Howling; ARI – Beanie Wells left Sunday’s game with a toe injury. Williams stepped in, despite a lingering knee injury of his own, and ran for 83 yards on 18 carries. Williams is a nice consolation prize to Mikel LeShoure for the #2 waiver priority in leagues where both players are unowned.

Lamar Miller & Daniel Thomas, MIA – Reggie Bush injured his knee against the Jets, but the severity of that injury may have been overstated in initial reports. Bush will likely miss the Dolphins’ Week 4 game against the Cardinals, but could be back as soon as Week 5. In his absence, Miller and Thomas will tote the hand-egg for Miami. Thomas is the better short-term pickup – he had 19 carries to Miller’s 9 on Sunday – but Miller has more upside. Regardless, temper your expectations of both replacement rushers because the Dolphins face a tough Arizona defense in Week 4 and an equally tough 49ers team in Week 5.

Pierre Thomas, NO – He likely won’t set any fantasy records for your team, but stopgap options like Thomas become a necessity as injuries and bye weeks deplete our rosters. His touches are limited by the Saints’ depth at RB, but Mount Pierre occasionally erupts, spewing lava rich in fantasy minerals when he does, like he did in Week 2.

Tashard Choice, BUF – With C.J. Spiller doubtful and Fred Jackson questionable for Week 4, Tashard Choice may be the starter by default for Buffalo. Even if F-Jax isn’t ready this week, he should be good to go by Week 5, so don’t go crazy with your FAAB on Choice.

Bilal Powell, NYJ – Powell continues to win the Jets’ YPC battle, out-rushing Shonn Greene by five yards in Week 3 despite nine fewer carries.

Shaun Draughn, KC – With Peyton Hillis in a walking boot to start this week, Draughn is in line for an increased workload going forward. Furthermore, he’s a Jamaal Charles injury away from being the #1 RB in Kansas City.


Jerome Simpson, MIN – Simpson returns from his three-game suspension this week, just in time to start hauling in passes from the previously mentioned Christian Ponder. Simpson is still the Vikings’ #3 receiving option behind Percy Harvin and Kyle Rudolph, but he should be added in most formats.

Donnie Avery & T.Y. Hilton, IND – Any doubts you had about Avery’s involvement in the Indianapolis offense should be dispelled at this point, as Austin Collie was carted off the field yet again on Sunday. Still, it was T.Y. Hilton who benefited the most in that game, with 4 catches for 113 yards and a TD on 8 targets. Avery should be owned universally starting this week, but Hilton should only be coveted by deep-leaguers hoping for another aberration.

Ramses Barden, NYG – Barden had a nice game filling in for Hakeem Nicks on Thursday with 138 yards on 9 receptions. He’s not quite in Mario Manningham territory yet, but Barden could start to eat into the production of Nicks and Victor Cruz even when both of those starters are healthy.

Golden Tate, SEA – Say what you will about his touchception on Monday night, Tate has wrested the #2 WR job from Braylon Edwards and appears to have gained the trust of Russell Wilson. His Week 3 stat line would look a lot different without that controversial TD catch in the final seconds, but his first TD was no fluke.

Jon Baldwin & Steve Breaston, KC – Dexter McCluster injured his arm on Sunday. While neither Baldwin nor Breaston do what McCluster does, they should each see an uptick in targets if McCluster misses time. Baldwin is the better add of the two.

Rod Streater, OAK – Darrius Heyward-Bey suffered a concussion in Week 3 and had to be taken to the hospital, so don’t expect him back for Week 4. With DHB shelved, Rod Streater will work his way back into the Raiders offense.

Aldrick Robinson & Josh Morgan, WAS – Pierre Garcon appears poised to return to action, but with Leonard Hankerson questionable for Week 4, Robinson and Morgan should remain active in the Washington passing game.

Kevin Ogletree, DAL – Miles Austin left Sunday’s game with a rib injury, but returned eventually. If the injury lingers and gets worse, Ogletree may be able to deliver on some of the hype he garnered after his Week 1 breakout.

Justin Blackmon & Cecil Shorts, JAC – With Laurent Robinson questionable for Week 4, Blackmon and Shorts should pick up the receiving slack in Jacksonville. Neither player is a strong add, but someone has to catch passes from Blaine Gabbert.

Kendall Wright & Damian Williams, TEN – Britt’s knees held up in Week 3, but his ankle did not. If he misses time, Kendall Wright will be the main beneficiary, but Damian Williams will also see more targets.

Kevin Walter, HOU – Walter caught a long touchdown pass in Week 3, but don’t be fooled. The Texans are a running team and Walter’s production will be sporadic going forward. Still, you could do worse in deep leagues.

Jeremy Kerley, NYJ – Stephen Hill likely won’t play in Week 4, so Kerley should be The Sanchize’s #2 wideout against the 49ers.


Martellus Bennett, Dennis Pitta, Kyle Rudolph, & Heath Miller – This is your last chance to buy any of these tight ends, as each of them performed well yet again in Week 3. Add them in the order they are listed.

Fred Davis, WAS – After a disappointing first two games, Davis rebounded in Week 3, catching all seven of his targets for 90 yards. If you missed out on Bennett, Pitta, or Rudolph and someone else in your league gave up on Davis, punish their impatience and grab the Washington tight end.

Joel Dreesen, DEN – Dreesen’s Week 3 touchdown was a fluke reception that deflected off Eric Decker, so don’t read too much into his final stat line. Jacob Tamme is still the Broncos TE to own.

Craig Stevens, TEN – Jared Cook had a nice game against the Lions, but sprained the AC joint in his left shoulder. Stevens will assume the starting role in Tennessee if Cook misses any time.

45 Responses

  1. yishai says:

    i have foster, MJD, jackson and leshoure but only room for three. who do i try and trade jackson or leshoure?

  2. Mundo says:

    Would you drop Sidney Rice for Fred Davis in a PPR? I have Hernandez and Rudolph currently, and TE/WR are my weakest positions. Other WRs are Britt, Decker, Wayne, and S. Smith (CAR)

    • gregsauce says:

      With Hernandez and Rudolph, you are set at TE. I wouldn’t pick up Fred Davis unless you’re specifically trying to block a Week 4 opponent without a tight end. Even then, you’re better off holding Rice for future weeks.

  3. Chaz says:

    Are bernard scott and laurent robinson worth roster spots? 14 man league and i need a bye fill in for wayne with robinson questionable. Should i drop robinson or scott to pick up a weekly fill in?
    R mathews
    S jax
    D thomas
    Aj green
    Jaquizz rodgers

    Bench: b scott l robinson a luck b myers k smith

    I guess kevin smith could be throw in the grouo of dropable but id like to hold on to him atleast another week. Thanks

  4. DiRo says:

    I was offered Rivers, Ridley and Maclin for my Stafford and Lloyd. What do you guys think?

    This is a total points league, QB only gets 1 point every 50 yards but 6 for a TD, also with 3wr and 2rb with no flex. I already have McGahee, Sproles, Hillis and Mendenhall, while my wrs are Jennings, Lloyd, Boldin, Holmes and Wright, also have Gronk.

    Stafford hasnt been hot, but Rivers isnt much better. Lloyd and Maclin are a toss up, I like Ridley. I guess I could try to trade Sproles or McGahee?

    • gregsauce says:

      It looks like you could use the RB help with Ridley, but I don’t like the downgrade from Stafford to Rivers in a 6 point per passing TD league. (even with Stafford is hurt right now). What TEs are available in your league? Have you considered shopping Gronk for a running back and replacing him with a free agent TE?

    • DiRo says:

      I haven’t considered shopping Gronk but its a potential idea. I am really looking for more solid WRs, Jennings and Lloyd are great but on teams with many many other weapons.

    • gregsauce says:

      Yeah, those two can be frustrating to own at times.

  5. Mike says:

    Is Andre Brown legit? I was offered him +1 for Martin. Brown would be my flex if I made this trade. I am going to try to get the best +1 out of it if I feel that brown can produce constantly.

  6. stoopid says:

    I have the #1 WW pick. Ryan Williams is out there.

    My RB’s are: Lynch, McCoy, Mathews, Ingram, & Turbin.

    Drop Ingram or Turbin for Williams?

    • gregsauce says:

      I would definitely add Williams. In most cases, I’d drop Turbin before Ingram, but if you’re set on keeping Lynch’s handcuff, dropping Ingram is fine.

  7. jay says:

    im in a 2Qb league and looking to pick up Ponder to replace Cutler as my 2nd Qb. Everybody pretty much has 2 Qbs already but there is probably 2 or 3 guys aiming to pickup Ponder and Im wondering how much of a $100 budget would be a good bid to secure him.

    • jay says:

      75% for Ryan Williams?, thats crazy. Even if hes the starter for the rest of the year, Arizona doesnt run that much and both RBs combined have poor production so far this year. Beanie Wells isnt even owned in my league when he was starting. Sorry just have to disagree here.

    • gregsauce says:

      Re: 75% for Ryan Williams, I said “as high as”. I framed my response in that way because every league is different and I have no idea what his leaguemates are like when it comes to spending FAAB. While in most cases I wouldn’t spend 75% of my FAAB on Ryan Williams (30-50% is more realistic), I can imagine a scenario where pretty much all the viable fantasy options are already owned and I’d be inclined to overpay to get a potential starter like Williams. This isn’t fantasy baseball. Players don’t really get “called up” mid season and produce like starters in the NFL. Most of my FAAB advice is going to skew high because early in the season is when you can get the most return on your investment (more games still to play). Saving your FAAB may seem like a good idea in a vacuum, but most of the best waiver pickups are going to happen in Weeks 1-5.

    • gregsauce says:

      Re: Ponder, he’s not necessarily an upgrade over Cutler, but all passers are valuable in 2-QB leagues (assuming 10 teams), so I’d still be trying to add him. $15-20 might get it done, but $30-50 would likely seal the deal.

  8. Fabio says:

    How much of your FAAB would you allocate to Ryan Williams and Bilal Powell in a std scoring 12 team league?
    My Team is:

    QB: Rivers
    WR: Megatron, J. Jones, Bryant, T Smith, Wright
    RB: Spiller, LeShoure, SJax, Martin, Jennings
    TE: Rudoplh, Celek,

    Thinking of dropping Wright and Jennings to put in a bid for those 2.


    • gregsauce says:

      I’d hold onto Wright over Powell for now, but would absolutely make a bid for Williams dropping Jennings. You’re pretty set at RB with LeShoure, Martin, and Spiller/S-Jax (when they return), so you don’t need to go crazy with your FAAB bid. Still, adding another starting RB is valuable for you in the short term (filling in for Spiller/S-Jax) and in the long term as trade bait, so I’d go as high as 75% of your FAAB.

    • gregsauce says:

      Fabio, see my response to Jay below for more on why I would spend so much on Ryan Williams.

  9. mt says:

    Trade alf & dez for harvin…giving too much? Thoughts…does adding CJK to Harbin make anything better?

    • gregsauce says:

      It’s not giving up too much if you can use the extra roster spot to grab another decent player. I’m not sure if Chris Johnson qualifies as “decent” anymore, but he’s a nice buy-low candidate.

  10. Randy says:

    I need to drop a WR. Avery, Hawkins, Ogletree, LaFell
    Which one would you drop?

  11. BakedGhost says:

    Got offered Leshoure + Morris for Fitz or Green. Team is as follows

    QB- Brady
    WR- Green
    WR- Fitz
    WR- Steve Smith (car)
    WR – Britt
    RB- M.Bush
    RB- J-Stew
    RB- K. Smith
    RB- K.Hunter
    TE- Gronk Jr.
    TE- Hernandez

    pull the trigger on leshoure+morris for fitz or green? I need the RB’s badly….RB’s on his team Rice, Matthews, Charles, Leshoure, Morris, Hillis, Ryan Williams or target someone else?

    • gregsauce says:

      Adding depth at RB seems like a good idea for your team, but if you’re trading an elite WR like Larry Fitzgerald or A.J. Green, I would target an elite RB in return — either Rice, Mathews, or Charles.

    • BakedGhost says:

      so you think a 1 for 1 like fitz for charles or matthews is a better bet? I know damn well the guy wont give up Rice…and who would you rather give up Fitz or Green?

    • gregsauce says:

      I’d rather deal Fitzgerald because he currently has a worse QB than Green.

    • BakedGhost says:

      thanks for your advice! appreciate it! i countered him with an offer of either charles or matthews for fitz or if he really wants Green, Leshoure + Charles/Matthews for Green I think those are fair trades

  12. Oleg M says:

    Do i trade alfred morris for demaryuis thomas?

  13. Cheese says:

    How you would rank Miller, Davis and Gresham?

    Also, longer question…

    I’ve been offered the following deal in my 16 team league.

    I give: Ray Rice
    I get: Andre Johnson and BenJarvus Green-Ellis

    6 pts all TDs, 20 return yards per point

    QB – Tom Brady
    WR – Percy Harvin
    WR – Randall Cobb
    WR – Greg Little
    RB – Ray Rice
    RB – Mikel LeShoure
    TE – Jermaine Gresham
    W/R – Austin Collie
    Q/W/R/T – Sam Bradford
    BEN – LeGarrette Blount
    BEN – Roy Helu
    BEN – Stephen Hill

    I’m currently 0-3. I feel like I need the roster depth from this deal to make my team solid. I hate giving up the best player, but this may be something I need to do. In a 16 teamer, sometimes depth is more important. I get a top 5 WR and top 15 RB in return, so both are still RB1/WR1 in this league.

    Think this is something I can pull the trigger on?


    • gregsauce says:

      I’d rank those TEs Davis, Miller, then Gresham. Deals where you give up the best player are usually a bad idea, but when you’re 0-3 and rostering a bunch of liabilities like Cobb, Little, Collie, & your bench guys, that’s the perfect time to trade your best player for depth. I might shop Ray Rice to some other teams in your league to see if you can do better than AJ and BJGE, but I say do the deal in the hopes of saving your team.

  14. y4rivera says:

    In a standard ESPN would you trade Trent to get RG3? We start 2 rb and a flex. I currently have McFadden, Murray, Martin, Trent, and Leshoure. My QB is Stafford. Do the trade?

    • gregsauce says:

      You’re really deep at RB, so you can afford to make the trade. With that said, you’re buying a little high on RGIII, especially when you already have Stafford. I understand that Stafford is currently hurt, but would it make more sense to trade one of RBs for an upgrade at WR instead?

    • y4rivera says:

      I was offered Larry Fitz straight up for Trent. Should I have taken it? I was also offered the same for Martin.

    • gregsauce says:

      Either trade seems like a good deal if you can replace Stafford for a week or two while he gets healthy. I like Martin’s schedule a little more than Richardson’s, so I’d lean in that direction.

    • y4rivera says:

      The guy also has Steve Smith. Would it be better to trade Trent for Fitz or Smith?

    • y4rivera says:

      I ended up doing the RG3 deal. I probably should have waited and upgraded at WR but I was nervous about Stafford and I’m currently 1-2. I didn’t want to take the chance of falling behind too much in the standings. I felt RG3 would help me more now and later I can trade Stafford for a wr when his value rises.

      My Team after trade
      qb- RG3
      rb- McFadden
      rb- Murray
      wr- Jordy
      wr- Maclin
      te- Graham
      flx- Martin

      bn- Stafford, Hawkins, Leshoure, Simpson, Hartline, S.Rice, L.Miller

    • gregsauce says:

      Solid squad. RGIII will be a lot of fun to own.

  15. trick dad says:

    looking to trade for britt as a WR option. is giving benson too much? thanks in advance!
    starters: matt ryan, mcfadden, lynch, cruz, lloyd, rudolph, martin (flex)
    bn: benson, blackmon, bennett, k. smith, dwyer

    • gregsauce says:

      You can’t really rely on Kevin Smith or Jonathan Dwyer as backup RBs at this point, so I would hold onto Benson and seek WR help on the waiver wire.

  16. emceeperiod says:

    Which of the TE’s above would you take ROS over Greg Olsen?

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