With the fantasy season well into the playoffs, this was a tough scoring week as defenses around the NFL stiffened up and the fantasy scoring for many players was well below average. Usually the weather late in the season has something to do with it, but that was not the case this week. Dallas and the New York Giants were shut out, and many of the other high-flying offenses were grounded. Case in point, this article being finished up right now as I watch Carolina return a “pick two” for 99 yards to make the score of the game New Orleans 12, Carolina 9.
For those able to pluck players off waivers, there are a handful of running backs likely available that are going to have a fantasy impact down the stretch. We still like several of the players we listed last week, Damien Williams in Kansas City and Robby Anderson of the New York Jets in particular, but we won’t talk about them here this week. If they are available, then they are certainly worth picking up. We close out the bottom with some fodder for those dynasty owners who can pick up players to consider keeping for next year. Something for everyone this week! On to the wonders.
RB Jamaal Williams, Green Bay
Green Bay has lost Aaron Jones for the season, opening the door for Williams to be the sole ball carrier in Green Bay. Against Chicago this week, that was good for 55 yards and a touchdown on the ground to go along with 42 yards on four catches. Williams will be a solid fantasy play down the stretch.
RB Kalen Ballage, Miami
When Frank Gore left last week’s game, it was not Kenyon Drake who took over as the lead back for Miami, it was Kalen Ballage (who?). He toted the rock 12 times to the tune of 123 yards, one of those carries ending up in the end zone. Early reports are that Gore will miss the rest of the season, and Miami has not been interested in using Drake regardless of his injury status. Ballage looks to be in line for a big role in the last few games this season.
RB Keith Ford, Buffalo
Buffalo is losing running backs at an alarming rate, and this week against Detroit it was Ford who was the last remaining healthy back able to take the field. LeSean McCoy has been battling injury and Chris Ivory has not been healthy, so Buffalo may need Ford to carry the ball in the last two contests of the season.
On the Radar
RB Mike Davis, Seattle
The Seattle backfield has been a minefield all season for the fantasy owner, as no one of many has been able to step forward as the lead back. Davis got heavily involved in the passing game, hauling in eight passes good for 63 yards in the loss at San Francisco. This is a speculative add as we are unsure the playing status of Rashaad Penny for next week.
RB Zach Zenner, Detroit
Detroit has been playing musical starters while Kerryon Johnson has been on the shelf, and the latest hot hand they have been using is Zach Zenner. Only 45 yards on 10 carries, but more importantly, Detroit is using him at the goal line and he hit paydirt in Buffalo last week.
RB John Kelly, Los Angeles Rams
Todd Gurley owners held their breath while he sat out the beginning of the third quarter of last week’s game against Philadelphia. He did return, but reports are that he is nursing a knee injury. John Kelly is next up for the Rams, a speculative add at this point in the season for Gurley owners.
The Buffalo passing game is enjoying a resurgence, and with games against New England and Miami on tap, the good times are likely to roll. Robert Foster put in his second strong week in a row. He lit up the New York Jets two weeks ago, hauling in seven passes good for 104 yards. He backed that up with another 100-yard performance, going for 108 yards on four catches and a touchdown against Detroit. While we are here, we’ll also mention Isaiah McKenzie. He was also hot last week, corralling six passes which were good for 53 yards. After leaving for an ankle injury, he did return and should be OK this week. We like Foster as the better of the two, but those in deep leagues in need can jump on the Buffalo wagon and pick up McKenzie.
Deep and/or Dynasty Only
WR Trent Sherfield, Arizona
With not a ton to talk about at wideout, we dig deep for the dynasty owners out there. For the second week in a row, Sherfield was active for Arizona. This week he caught three passes for 15 yards and a touchdown against Atlanta, which backed up a five-catch, 77-yard performance the week prior against Detroit. He has a bright future.
WR DaeSean Hamilton, Denver
Another youngster making some noise out in Denver, Hamilton also has put in a second good week in a row. Two weeks ago in San Francisco, he found the endzone on a day that he caught seven passes and went for 47 yards. This week against Cleveland, he was again there to haul in seven catches, good for 46 yards. Denver is going to keep using him in these final two games.
RB Kapri Bibbs, Green Bay
With little else on their roster, Green Bay has signed Bibbs to be the backup to Jamaal Williams. With Aaron Jones likely gone for the season, Bibbs is one injury away from being the primary rusher for Green Bay.