Sing along, you know the words. On the 5th day of IR my bad luck brought to me, Fiiivve Gol-den Arrmmss, 4 Running Backs, 3 Handcuffs, 2 Receivers and a Tight End named Gronkowski.
Black Friday is over, blue Tuesday begins. We already had all sorts of QBs, running backs and others hurt this season so it only seems natural that it was the TEs turn. By the time this weekend was over we had seen injuries from season ending to game ending take the likes of Rob Gronkowski, Jimmy Graham and Tyler Eifert. Nobody seems to be safe or immune this fantasy season.
Immunity would be nice to have as Week 13 is the last week of the regular season for most leagues and next week starts the first round of fantasy playoffs. With fresh injuries and fresh faces making big noises all over the league this week, let’s try to sort out who can help you get into your playoffs from those who can’t.
The quarterback carousel has been in full swing this season and this week is no different. Let’s start with the offensive generals and see who is still out there waiting to be put on a roster.
Matt Hasselbeck is available in 85% of leagues, he is still undefeated on the year, and Indianapolis will most likely be throwing a lot the next couple weeks as they will be in shootouts with Pittsburgh and Jacksonville in Weeks 13 and 14.
He threw for 315 yards and 2 TDs in Week 12 and looked in complete control. He has a bunch of great receiving options and a solid running back committee. For all intents and purposes this should make him a solid waiver wire pickup and potential starter, but I am not buying Hasselbeck.
Don’t get me wrong, if I am a Colts’ fan I am buying him all day. I would love him as my team’s backup, holding down the fort as my main QB Andrew Luck gets healthy. It would be great to have the option to give my starter, Luck, as much time as he needs because my backup does not lose.
However, none of this translates to fantasy points. Until this last week, Hasselbeck had not had more than 16 points in standard format scoring all year. He’s not bad in real life, but he’s not good in fantasy. He had a good week last week but do not go chasing that stat line because that is all you will end up doing, chasing a stat line. Hasselbeck will continue to win and continue to put up boring fantasy points. So, on second thought, you would be better off with the likes of…
Ryan Fitzpatrick, who is available in 74% of leagues and has been having a great year. I have mentioned him in this article off and on all season. It’s possible the lackluster Dolphins helped him out a little this past week, but you can’t deny that Fitz led his team with another solid outing. Throwing for 277 yards and 4 touchdowns this weekend made all who did start him very happy.
Fitzpatrick has a nice schedule in the coming week facing the Giants which should definitely lead to more great numbers. He’s a strong roster addition if you need to shore up your QB position heading into the playoffs.
Tyrod Taylor is also available in 55% of leagues. How is that possible? Yes, he has been battling injury off and on all year but for the most part when he does play he puts up great numbers, like this last week when he threw for 291 yards and 3 TDs and ran for another 46 yards.
His schedule is something out of a dream sequence. His next four games, and the last for the majority of us whose championship week is Week 16, are Houston, Philly, Washington and Dallas. You couldn’t ask for a tastier schedule than that.
Throw in the fact that something has gotten into Sammy Watkins lately, 20 catches, 379 yards and 3 touchdowns the last 4 weeks, and you have a QB who is primed to finish very strong this season. Don’t miss out, he could really help those of you that are still in the playoff hunt but hurting at the QB position.
The running back position is so sparse that I really only have a couple of players to tell you about this week. Let’s face it, if there is a RB that was worth anything at this point in the season he is most likely on a roster.
The exception to that rule may be Detroit Lions’ running backs. They have been utterly disappointing all season and if you were looking at Joique Bell‘s 25 yards rushing with a TD and 57 yards receiving and thinking that he is the answer to your problems, then I hate to tell you, but you have serious problems. Bell is available in 64% of leagues which is very close to the other Lions RB Theo Riddick who is available in 66% of leagues and just like Bell, he should be avoided on the waiver wire as an answer to any owners RB issues.
Riddick also had a productive Thanksgiving, with 62 receiving yards and a touchdown as he looks like a potential option for your roster and his value in PPR leagues makes him even that much better. But both Bell and Riddick and, well, any Lions’ running back for that fact, should be avoided if at all possible. They are just not that good this year. Detroit running backs are a simple no in my book, so on second thought, there just might be some help available in New England of all places.