Fantasy Football Week 4: Waiver Wire Pickups Who Will Score Big

Adam WellsFeatured ColumnistSeptember 25, 2012

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - SEPTEMBER 23:   Christian Ponder #7 of the Minnesota Vikings against the San Francisco 49ers at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome on September 23, 2012 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  (Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images)
Adam Bettcher/Getty Images

As the NFL season moves along, your fantasy football roster constantly changes. It is an ever-evolving thing over the course of 17 weeks during the regular season, with different strategies needed each week and new players waiting to be called upon. 

Enter the waiver wire. 

Everyone's favorite player, at least at one point during the season, is sitting on the waiver wire. You hear about the running back who ran for 150 yards, the quarterback who had three touchdowns in a half or the tight end who had 11 receptions, and you instantly check waivers to make sure you get him. 

Even if you don't need any help at that particular position, you need to prevent an opponent from grabbing him and stealing your Shiva trophy. 

Here are the players on the waiver wire for Week 4 who will get big points for your team if you are lucky enough to get them before they are gone. 


Christian Ponder, QB, Minnesota Vikings

If you weren't paying attention, Ponder scored the fourth-most fantasy points of any quarterback in Week 3 against San Francisco, according to ESPN's scoring system

But if you just think that Ponder was a one-week wonder, be aware that he has looked very good in and out of the pocket this season without turning the ball over. 

Couple Ponder's efficiency and strong stats overall (713 yards passing, five total touchdowns, 70.1 completion percentage) with the fact that he is going up against a Lions defense that just gave up 378 yards to Jake Locker, and you have a great combination for fantasy stats. 

The Lions defense has given up 94 points in three games and only forced three turnovers. They don't create pressure on the quarterback despite having tremendous talent on the defensive line, so Ponder should be able to create plays with his arm and legs with ease in this game. 


Daniel Thomas, RB, Miami Dolphins

Reggie Bush's misfortune is Daniel Thomas' gain, which means that fantasy owners have a lot of stats to go over in such a short amount of time. 

Depending on whom you believe, Bush is either out for this game or still has a chance to go when the Dolphins play Arizona. 

According to Adam Schefter of, Bush did not suffer any structural damage to his knee and could play on Sunday. 

However, Ben Volin of the Palm Beach Post reported that the team did fear he could miss some time. 

Since there is nothing certain right now, look for a Plan B with the Dolphins running back. Thomas had a solid effort against the Jets, with 69 yards and a touchdown on 19 carries. 

Arizona's defense has looked impressive so far this season, though the front four is not the strength of the unit. The Cardinals rank 17th in the league in rush yards allowed, so they can be attacked if you have the right system in place. 

Given that the Dolphins need to run the ball in order to have success, I don't think anyone should be surprised to see Thomas get 15-18 carries in this game. 


Ramses Barden, WR, New York Giants

If you were to name five receivers on the Giants who were going to go for over 100 yards against Carolina, I guarantee that Barden would not have made the list. 

Since Eli Manning and the Giants are always going to throw the ball, you might as well gamble with a player who was a one-week success story until he proves he isn't worth the risk. 

Barden's opportunity came because Hakeem Nicks and Domenik Hixon were not playing on Thursday. We won't have the official status for Nicks and Hixon until Wednesday, so Barden still has a chance to shine. 

Why not give Barden a chance just to see if the Giants will let him capitalize on his success against the Panthers?

I do feel less confident about Barden than the other two players on this list, but he did show enough to warrant a roster spot.