Wow, week 11 already? It doesn’t seem possible! And as bare as one would think the waiver wire would be this late in the season…it isn’t! Come on in and see who’s filling the holes left by this year’s bumper-crop of star player injuries.
Samkon Gado RB Green Bay Packers
Congratulations, young Samkon…you’re our first two-time Smokin’ Hot selection of the season! For those of you who could have snagged him last week and didn’t, I hope he’s still out there for ya! Gado had a career game against the Falcons with 101 rushing yards, 4 catches, and a huge 3 TDs for the Pack. Yeah, I know his career is only two games old, but Curtis Enis wishes he had a day like this, believe me. As mentioned last week, this guy’s football career prior to the season consists of two starts for the Liberty College football team, so consider him one of the biggest sleepers to hit the fantasy scene…ever! If he had any competition for the running back job at all, it would be easy to expect this big performance to be his last. But with the Green Bay ball-carrying cupboard as bare as a backstage groupie at a Def Leppard concert, Gado may strike again this week against a Minnesota defense that was torched by Tiki Barber last week. The Pack is done and this ultimate underdog might be the lone bright spot in a lost season. If you can make him a bright spot on your fantasy roster, do it!
Heath Evans RB New England Patriots
Much like Gado, Evans came from nowhere to have a pretty solid game against the Fins, rushing for 84 yards and also catching three balls. Not content with being named after a well-above-average candy bar, Evans showed some good burst and filled in well after Corey Dillon injured his leg very early in the game. One can only think that Dillon is hurt worse than Bellichick is letting on, and with Kevin Faulk and Patrick Pass also hurt, Evans could become the producer down the stretch that Nick Goings was last year for the Pathers…very startable! The Pats have a doughboy-soft schedule from here on, so stash Evans and watch the injury report on Dillon.
Bobby Engram WR Seattle Seahawks
Engram had been a solid performer for the Hawks this year before a Week 4 injury knocked him out of action…but now he’s back. He’s clearly a favorite of Hasselbeck and contibuted 6 catches for 70 yards against the Rams this week. He’s yet to score a TD this year, but if you’re looking for a consistent week-to-week performer, consider Engram, particularlly in point-per-catch leagues.
Adrian Peterson RB Chicago Bears
Adrian…I did it!!! Oh, Rocky!! With Thomas Jones on the bench nursing sore ribs and first-rounder Cedric Benson badly spraining his knee in the second quarter, Peterson made the best of his opportunity and posted a very solid 24 rush, 120 yard and a TD game against the 49ers in the Wind Bowl last week. Adrian isn’t a great talent but with Benson looking to miss several weeks and Jones not known as a quick healer, the Bears dedication to the run could benefit Petersen greatly should TJ not be able to play against Carolina this weekend. Once again, the injury report is your friend on this one.
Kurt Warner QB Arizona Cardinals
Make no mistake, this Kurt Warner isn’t the 2-time league MVP anymore. But he’s still taking snaps, his wife still digs the Susan Powter hairstyle, and he’s still putting up some respectable fantasy numbers. Kurt torched the Lions secondary for 359 yards and a TD this week and the hits may keep on coming. The Cards next six opponents are the Rams, Texans (twice), Niners, Vikings, and Texans. Do they scare you? Me neither. With the Cardinals running less than concrete pantyhose, look for Warner to huck the rock often and with success down the stretch.
Greg Jones RB Jacksonville Jaguars
While ‘Fragile Fred’ Taylor hasn’t been quite as fragile the last couple of years, he missed last week’s game with an ankle injury and Jones filled in quite well in his absense, rushing 25 times for 106 yards and a TD. Should Taylor miss another game, look for a similar performance from Jones against the Titans next week.
Jonathan Wells RB Tennessee Titans
Ditto Greg Jones…if Domanick Davis misses another game, look for Wells to follow up on his 58 yard and a TD performance against a tough Colts defense with a similar game against the Chiefs.
On the Radar
J.P. Losman QB Buffalo Bills
Holcomb knocks his noggin, Losman comes in and leads the team to victory. Losman was horrible earlier this year, but the Bills are playing well…can J.P. reverse his fortunes? Stay tuned…
Frank Gore RB San Francisco 49ers
As the Niners season has long since been over as far as the playoffs go, look for them to give Gore more and more carries as the year winds down. He’s looked pretty good in limited carries, but the jury is out whether he can handle 20 touches a game. If you’re really hard-up for RB help, or are in a dynasty league, Gore could see increased numbers from here on in. It’s hard to believe this guy invented the Internet, isn’t it?