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Blog

Fanball FAAB – Week 5 Waiver Wire Advice

Words by Rob Willette, Scott Fish, and Paul Charchian. Spending recommendations by Paul Charchian.

QUARTERBACKS

Jacoby Brissett – Colts @ Chiefs – 36% owned
Surprise!  The NFL’s leading touchdown passer is…Jacoby Brissett, tied with Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson. The passing yardage isn’t always there for Brissett, but he has multiple touchdowns in every game and the game script against the Chiefs this week could lead to a lot of fantasy points for Brissett. The Chiefs are bottom 10 against fantasy quarterbacks, and much of that has been due to garbage time and teams trying to play catchup.  The likely/hopeful return of TY Hilton puts Brissett’s best weapon back on the field. 

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 10% in 1QB leagues; 35% in 2QB and QB Flex leagues

Gardner Minshew – Jaguars @ Panthers – 14% owned
The swaguar is winning games but hasn’t topped 215 yards in any of his 3 starts despite throwing for 275 yards playing catchup against the Chiefs in Week 1 after being thrust into the starting spot. He’s found the endzone twice in three of his four games, and has more touchdown passes than Aaron Rodgers, Jared Goff, and Baker Mayfield. The Jaguars aren’t allowing him to pass often (no more than 33 times in any game) but he’s been fantasy relevant. It’s a tough matchup this week in Carolina, but after that, the schedule opens up, and the Jaguars may even let Minshew throw a little more. .

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 3% in 1QB leagues; 15% in 2QB and QB Flex leagues

Chase Daniel – Bears @ Raiders – 0% owned
Down went Mitchell Trubisky, and with it, the Bears’ hopes…actually improved!  Chicago’s backup calmly and efficiently moved the football against a very tough division rival.  There were few fireworks; Daniel’s 6.5 yards per attempt and one lonely touchdown are not what fantasy dreams are made of.  It looks like Trubisky won’t miss an extended period of time, so you’ll treat Daniels as a week-to-week play depending on the opponent.  This is one of those weeks, as he faces the Raiders in London.  

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 1%

RUNNING BACKS

Ronald Jones – Bucs at Saints – 43% owned
Unlike 90% of fantasy football’s running backs, Ronald Jones has posted meaningful fantasy stats in three of four games.  Head coach Bruce Arians hasn’t made any declarations to suggest that his timeshare is over, but facts speak louder than words anyway. On the field for twice as many plays as Peyton Barber last week, Jones is surging into the lead-back role.  Jones is averaging a tasty 4.7 yards per carry, and Barber is wallowing at 3.4 yards per carry. Tampa’s next two opponents, New Orleans and Carolina, are both in the bottom half of the league in yards per carry allowed. 

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 25%

Jordan Howard – Eagles vs Jets – 56% owned
As desperately as we want Miles Sanders to take over the Eagles backfield, it hasn’t happened, and it probably won’t.  Worse, Sanders’ snap counts have dropped with each successive week. He’s not ready to be the feature back, and Jordan Howard seized the opportunity with 18 touches on Thursday Night Football in Green Bay  and scored thrice on the hallowed ground of Lambeau Field. We’re obviously not looking at multiple touchdowns each week, but Howard may be the preferred back near the goal line after Sanders fumbled twice in Week 3, an issue which plagued him at Penn State. 

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 25%

Dontrell Hilliard – Browns @ 49ers – 1% owned
Much like Cris Carter, all Dontrell Hilliard does is score touchdowns.  On only ten offensive touches, Hilliard has plunged into the paint twice, an impressive feat considering he was known mostly for his receiving prowess.  Hilliard has some juice in his legs, running a 4.47 forty yard dash at Tulane. The Browns’ best method of moving the football has been on the ground, and while Nick Chubb is the clear alpha here, Hilliard has earned an expanding role.

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 1%

Jonathan Hilliman – Giants vs Vikings – 0% owned
Jonathan Hilliman’s 10 carries for 33 yards is the most bland box score output from any single player who will grace this list, and his mundane 3.3 yards per carry is actually fairly close to the 3.5 YPC he posted during his career at Boston College.  This is all a fairly roundabout way to say Hilliman is not a very good player. But opportunity trumps talent in fantasy backfields and Hilliman is running as the clear number two behind Wayne Gallman with Saquon Barkley out. The Giants have been running the football effectively all season save for a game against the suddenly stingy Buccaneers, and Hilliman would be walking into 15 plus touches per week were anything to happen to Gallman.  

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation:  1%

WIDE RECEIVERS

A.J. Brown – Titans vs Bills – 10% owned
Before we get all weak in the knees for A.J. Brown, it is important to note he achieved fantasy dominance on three measly targets last week.  But production begets opportunity and Brown is demanding more looks after immolating numerous Falcon defenders on Sunday afternoon. Brown is carved from granite and has a unique size/speed combo. His ability to thrive in the intermediate passing game should be a welcome sight for an offense which has struggled to master the forward pass.  Production figures to be sporadic given the limitations of the passing game overall, but Brown is too strong a talent to languish on the wire.

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 5%

Dontrell Inman – Chargers vs Broncos – 9% owned
It has been ordained that for at least one week each season, we entertain the possibility of picking up Dontrell Inman.  Back with the Chargers after a quick sojourn in Indianapolis, Inman earned more opportunity with Mike Williams absent and responded with a cool 76 yards on 7 targets.  This was Miami, a team tanking harder than a Carlos Mencia stand-up special, but he made the best of it. An established veteran with at least a modicum of a rapport with Rivers, Inman is a plausible starter either of Los Angeles’ top two receivers are inactive again. A tricky matchup with Denver is next on the schedule.

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 1%

Zach Pascal – Colts @ Chiefs – 1% owned
We’re at the point of the season where you review a box score and question if you’ve accidentally clicked on a random MAC football game.  Zach Pascal is the latest obscure name to wiggle his way into the fantasy sphere’s consciousness, building off a productive game in Week 3 against Atlanta by pacing the Colts in receiving in Week 4.  Playing in comeback mode early against the Raiders, Pascal’s seven targets were a welcome sight. TY Hilton is expected back soon, but the depth chart is wide open behind him with nary an established player.  Jacoby Brissett has shown he can keep an offense afloat, making Pascal a priority add if he is poised to keep earning snaps.

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 1%

DeVante Parker – Dolphins BYE week – 9% owned
Every offseason, DeVante Parker looks like an  MVP and someone takes the bait. Now, Parker’s in-season price point is finally at a point we’re able to stomach: free.  The presence of Josh Rosen has elevated the Miami offense from awful to merely a regular grade of bad. Parker has responded with 7 grabs for 126 yards and a score over Miami’s last two games, far from difference-making numbers but enough to merit a roster spot.  Miami figures to get boat raced early and often this season, resulting in ample passing volume. Parker is the team’s most talented, if enigmatic, wideout. He’s on the bye this week, so you could probably wait a week to grab him if rosters spots are at a premium.

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 0.1%

TIGHT ENDS

Chris Herndon – Jets @ Eagles  – 19% owned
Due to the Week 4 bye, Chris Herndon’s four-game suspension still has another week to go, but he’s an add for any owners who have struggled to get production from the tight end position.  Herndon was surprisingly productive as a rookie in 2018 and built late season rapport with Sam Darnold. The Jets are simply bereft of weapons, and Jamison Crowder racked up 14 receptions in Week 1 as a safety valve option.  Many of those targets could flip to Herndon, a quality talent who could press to be the second option in New York’s passing game.

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 2%

Dawson Knox – Bills @ Titans – 14% owned
If his bailing out of Josh Allen in Week 3 and awesome beast mode style catch and run didn’t impress you, maybe his Week 4 sideline grab on the opposite shoulder did. His play on the field has looked amazing and in this tight end wasteland, guys who make plays like those start to become fantasy viable. Knox has seen his playing time increase each week for three consecutive weeks culminating in a season high of 65% of snaps played in Week 4. He also has back to back 50+ yard performances to go with that increased playing time.

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 3%

Tyler Eifert – Bengals vs Cardinals – 14% owned
Three words: He plays Arizona. The Cardinals are surrendering nearly twice the fantasy points as any other team in PPR scoring. Through four weeks, the Cardinals have allowed six touchdowns to tight ends and no other team has even allowed 4. They are even allowing 8 receptions per game to the position. This is much more about the soft defense than about Eifert, but Eifert isn’t a non-factor. He has at least five targets in three of four games and has four red zone targets on the season, including two last week.

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 3%

Ricky Seals-Jones – Browns @ 49ers – 1% Owned
Last week, the Cleveland tight end wheel landed on Demitrius Harris. This week, it’s on Ricky Seals-Jones.  In honesty, both guys should probably be avoided. You’ll remember Seals-Jones from that one game each year when he’d post a meaningful fantasy game, and you’d wonder why he wasn’t getting more looks. 

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 0.1%

Ben Watson – Patriots @ Washington – 3% Owned
Quietly, Ben Watson is coming off suspension and will likely see immediate action in the Patriots lineup.  He was in New Orleans last year, and didn’t do much. Obviously, you’re not going to get Gronkonian production from Watson, but he’ll be startable in select spots for those with bye week or injury issues. 

Charch Blind Bidding Recommendation: 1%

EMPIRE LEAGUE TRADE VALUE CHART – 2019

It’s really the one thing on Twitter that I get bugged about. “Bugged” is the wrong word. Harassed is more like it.

I kid. I kid. It means you like this thing. That means I like you.

The Empire League Trade Value Chart was born at a Five Guys several years ago when Christian Peterson and I wanted a ranking system specific to the Empire format. Something that could help us gauge value and make trades as well. So, after a double with cheese, bacon, fried mushrooms and onions, the ELTVC was born. CP took the mantle for a few years and now I’ve lovingly taken it over for a while now.

A few notes on the ELTVC.

First, this can be used for dynasty as well, but Empire has a certain element of “win-now” to it, as you have to hope to thwart the current emperor to keep the league alive. So, there’s still value to aging players here, it’s not a youth competition, but it’s still skewed that way. We’ve always put it as, “this is where we think the value will lie in 2-3 years.”

Second, the trade value portion is not a perfect science. Hand this printable PDF to two different people, they’ll likely have massively different opinions and values on several players. I handed it to 5-6 guys in my office after this year’s first iteration and it was marked with a ton of arrows up and down. The stud players are intentionally inflated this year, because it takes a butt-load to acquire a Saquon or a CMC.

Third, the trade value portion is not a perfect science. Is there an echo in here? While Saquon Barkley sits at a 120 trade value, I don’t think anyone in their right mind will trade him for four or even five 30s. You’re not getting Saquon for your combo of Mark Ingram, Alshon Jeffery, James White and Tyler Lockett. You just won’t. A good rule of thumb is that the trades can only feature one more player on the other side (so a 1-for-2 or a 2-for-3) which keeps you in the range of two good players for one great one. Plus it keeps you out of the range of insulting your trade partner.

Lastly, I do consider this ELTVC as a PPR scoring system and QB-Flex. If you’re playing Empire without QB-Flex, I feel sorry for you. It’s an absolute must in 12-teamers to keep the value of QBs vibrant. The TVC is supposed to get your trade juices flowing! We want to see great trades that spawn from this. If you make a trade and you’ve used this tool, please tweet me your trade at @ExplosiveOutput.

I will update this periodically throughout the year. Today’s version is from September 30, 2019.

Click here to view the EMPIRE LEAGUE TRADE VALUE CHART.