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Fanball FAAB – Week 13 Waiver Wire Advice

by • November 27, 2018

Welcome to Fanball FAAB, our weekly analysis of players who may be available on your league’s waiver wire.

Words by Rob Willette. Rankings and blind bid recommendations by Paul Charchian.

QUARTERBACKS

Josh Allen, Bills

Week 12: 8/19, 160 yards and 1 touchdown passing; 13-99 yards and 1 touchdown rushing
Ownership: 2%
Week 13: at Dolphins

Fantasy football makes for strange bedfellows.  Fantasy owners who rode the immortal Billy Volek-Drew Bennett connection to 2004 fantasy titles can attest, as can those who have shamelessly plugged in Samkon Gado and Kenton Keith for short-term glory.  Josh Allen is not going to transition into a precision passer overnight, but we’re not concerned with aesthetics: we want points.  Allen ran the ball 13 times on Sunday, and we’ve learned over the years running quarterbacks are fantasy goldmines.  If the Bills simply let Allen play some backyard football, this could be a fun finish with a favorable closing schedule for Buffalo: @ MIA/NYJ/DET/@NE.  Given his bottomless floor, you’re likely not streaming him consistently , but beating your opponent with Josh Allen as your QB is trash talk fodder for generations.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 10%.  In QB-heavy leagues, 25%.

Jeff Driskel, Bengals

Week 12: 17/29, 155 yards passing, 1 TD; 3-9 yards rushing, 1TD
Ownership: 0%
Week 13: vs. Broncos

Jeff Driskel took over the Cincinnati offense following Andy Dalton’s thumb injury, looking strangely competent in the process.  While the Browns appeared checked-out for the entire second half, Driskel and company made the outcome interesting.  The return of A.J. Green would at least give Driskel weapons to work with, and we’ve seen Dalton have fantasy value when the Bengals provide a full contingent of talent around him.  I am certainly not rushing out to add Driskel outside of the deepest of formats but anytime a player is thrust into a starting role, they’re worth mentioning. He has a tough matchup this week, but will get several weeks to show what he’s got with Dalton headed to IR.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 1%.  In QB-heavy leagues, 2%.

 

RUNNING BACKS

Austin Ekeler, Chargers

Week 12: 5-35, 1 TD rushing; 10-68 receiving
Ownership: 55%
Week 13: at Steelers

Although his ownership on ESPN is 55%, It’s 70-95% on every other site. Just in case your league is asleep at the wheel, push your chips in for Ekeler. He’s likely to be the starter for the Chargers throughout the fantasy playoffs. His one game without Gordon earlier this year was a bit of a dud, but the Chargers only had 44 offensive snaps, of which Ekeler played 42. A super weird game script killed him in that game, which won’t happen again.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 70%.

Justin Jackson, Chargers

Week 12: 7-57 rushing
Ownership: 0%
Week 13: at Steelers

The injury to Melvin Gordon has sunk the spirits of many fantasy owners, yet it provides opportunity to look past the heartbreak and find value in the Chargers’ backfield.  Austin Ekeler figures to step into a larger role as Gordon sits, but we have yet to see him perform as the weekly feature back.  Justin Jackson was incredibly productive during his four year run at Northwestern, and the Chargers offense is strong enough overall to prop up anyone getting consistent touches in the backfield.  While Ekeler is not going away, Jackson could push for double-digit touches in Gordon’s absence, making him a priority add for teams seeking additional playoff depth or flex options. Plus, Jackson is far better built for goal line use than Ekeler.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 20%.

Rex Burkhead, Patriots

Week 12: IR
Ownership: 7%
Week 13: vs. Vikings

Rex Burkhead is eligible to return from IR this week, and we know he can produce.  Burkhead scored eight times in 2017, operating as the Patriots goal-line back, and proved to be efficient in the passing game, eclipsing 7 yards per target.  Sony Michel is the lead back here, but he had yet another injury scare on Sunday, and we’ve seen multiple backs find success in this offense.  Burkhead’s cost is going to be minimal, and he is the ideal bench stash as fantasy owners gear up for postseason play.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 15%.

Kapri Bibbs, Washington

Week 12: 3-17 and one touchdown rushing, 3-19 receiving
Ownership: 5%
Week 13: vs. Eagles

Adrian Peterson has been the focal point for the Washington offense this season.  Whenever they’ve been on the winning side of the ledger, it has generally been with Peterson grinding out tough yards and racking up 20 plus carries.  Post-Alex Smith, however, game scripts figure to turn negative more often than not.  That’s just not Peterson’s game, as his limitations ultimately result in him becoming an afterthought if Washington falls behind.  With Chris Thompson dealing with a multitude of injuries this season, the best back to fill the roles needed in the passing game is Kapri Bibbs.  We’ve yet to see him really capture the volume Thompson had, but Jay Gruden’s hand may be forced if Colt McCoy proves too limited to keep his team playing from ahead.  Bibbs is merely speculative for now, but you’d rather be a week early then a week late.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 5%.

One-Week Starters: Frank Gore, Dolphins; Nyheim Hines, Colts; Carlos Hyde, Jags

Ownerships: 30-39%

These guys all have potential to claim more prominent roles for this week, before returning to backup status. Kenyan Drake injured his shoulder, which may give Gore more work. Leonard Fournette was is suspended next week, giving Carlos Hyde a starting opportunity. Nyheim Hines may be thrust back into a starting spot if Marlon Mack doesn’t clear concussion protocol by next week’s game.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 5%.

WIDE RECEIVERS

Antonio Callaway, Browns

Week 12: 4-62, 1 TD receiving
Ownership: 8%
Week 13: at Texans

Much like the entire Cleveland Browns organization, Antonio Callaway has been rejuvenated by the dismissal of Hue Jackson.  An absurdly inefficient player over the first half of his rookie season, Callaway has turned 18 targets into 14 receptions over his past four games, proving to be ascending player on an offense which is all of a sudden performing at a high-level.  Baker Mayfield is simply en fuego, and you want to own pieces of this offense down the stretch given their playoff schedule is CAR/@DEN/CIN.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 15%.

Dante Pettis, 49ers

Week 12: 4-77 receiving
Ownership: 1%
Week 13: at Seahawks

Taking advantage of the absence of both Pierre Garcon and Marquise Goodwin, Dante Pettis tallied a career-high 77 yards with a touchdown on Sunday on 7 targets.  Long on talent, the 2018 2nd rounder figures to be a big part of San Francisco’s future, and in a lost season, Kyle Shanahan may want to see what the future holds.  Garcon has been a major health question mark all year, and the 49ers need a reliable target outside of George Kittle.  There’s no better time for the 49ers to unleash Pettis to see what he can provide in the passing game. He’s also an elite stash in dynasty/empire leagues.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 5%.

 

David Moore, Seahawks

Week 12: 4-10, 1 TD receiving
Ownership: 7%
Week 13: 49ers

Following a two game stretch in which Moore posted 3 receptions for 32 yards on a pedestrian 10 targets, it looked as though the fun ride may have been over for David Moore.  But he has slammed the door on those notions, earning 13 targets over the past two weeks and catching a pivotal touchdown against the Panthers last Sunday. While fantasy football does not reward extra points for clutch catches, it is important to note Moore was on the field in a big situation.  With Doug Baldwin ailing once again and Tyler Lockett proving an explosive (if low volume) weapon, there is fun to be had in this Seattle passing game.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 5%.

Curtis Samuel, Panthers

Week 12: 2-17, 1 TD receiving; 1-25 rushing
Ownership: 6%
Week 13: at Bucs

While it took a few injuries to accomplish it, there appears to be a changing of the guard in the Carolina passing game hierarchy.  Samuel was only targeted twice on Sunday, but he secured one of those targets in the endzone and drew a pass interference flag on another endzone target.  Samuel’s low weekly floor makes him a true boom-or-bust option, but the Panthers offense operates at a higher-level when they inject playmakers such as Samuel into the offense.  He’s a worthy add given his explosive talent and Carolina’s expansion of snaps for their talented young wideouts.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 3%.

Robert Foster, Bills

Week 12: 2-94, 1 TD receiving
Ownership: 0%
Week 13: at Dolphins

Multiple Bills as waiver wire options?  It’s crazy, but it just mi…well, it’s just crazy.  But you can’t ignore the opportunity Foster has, given that Kelvin Benjamin is working his way out of the league and Buffalo’s only other receiver to show anything is Zay Jones.  Foster was a mega-recruit who never clicked at Alabama, though he has less target competition in Buffalo than he did for the Crimson Tide.  With big plays in the past two weeks, it is worth seeing what Foster can do in the waning weeks of the season with Josh Allen willing to take chances down the field. Foster has posted statlines of 2-94-1 and 3-105 in the 2 games both he and Josh Allen have been healthy. Allen leads the NFL with 18% of his passes going 20+ yards. Foster and his 4.4 speed has  47 yard and 75 yard receptions in the last two weeks. They are a pair made for each other.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 2%.

TIGHT ENDS

Jonnu Smith, Titans

Week 12: 7-57 receiving
Ownership: 5%
Week 13: vs. Jets

With three touchdowns in the last four games, Jonnu Smith is the fourth-highest scoring tight end over the last month.  Yet he’s owned in just five percent of ESPN leagues, which is baffling considering the dearth of talent at the position.  In the rare moments when Marcus Mariota is at full health, like right now, he’s been consistently good, and Smith is his second-best target.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 5%.

Chris Herndon, Jets

Week 12: 2-63 receiving, 1 touchdown
Ownership: 10%
Week 13: at Titans

The Jets have become arguably the least appealing fantasy offense in all of football, but don’t blame Chris Herndon for that.  The rookie has been remarkably consistent, posting at least 57 yards or a touchdown in five of his last six games.  Those are less than sexy numbers but less than sexy is about as good as it gets at tight end this year, making Herndon a quality add for teams with a hole at the position.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 5%.

Dan Arnold, Saints

Week 12: 4-45, 1 TD receiving
Ownership: 0%
Week 13: at Cowboys

Fantasy football is fun.  Dan Arnold irritated many fantasy owners with a touchdown Thursday Night, but don’t hold it against him.  Instead, recognize the opportunity to pounce on someone who could have value late in the season.  A long-term project out of UW-Platteville, Arnold has flashed some of the traits which portend a breakout at the Tight End position.  The Saints have been desperate for playmakers in the passing game beyond Michael Thomas and Alvin Kamara, and they’ve finally found a few.  At fantasy’s thinnest position, Arnold’s got appeal.

Charch’s Blind Bidding Recommendation: 1%.