The Green Bay Packers may have to turn to backup tight end D.J. Williams this Sunday against the Houston Texans after a shoulder injury to starter Jermichael Finley, but fantasy football owners still should not pick up Williams.
Tyler Dunne of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reported via Twitter that head coach Mike McCarthy believes that Finley's ability to play this weekend is still up in the air.
McCarthy: Raji "has a chance" this week with ankle. Benson also in a boot and is "out." Finley (shoulder) "has a chance."— Tyler Dunne (@TyDunne) October 8, 2012
Even if the talented TE does not make it onto the field, it is still unlikely that Williams will have a productive day in the passing game.
Williams was a fifth-round pick out of Arkansas in the 2011 draft who saw little action in the passing game last season. He was targeted four times and caught two passes for 13 yards.
This year, he has already seen an increased role, catching four of the seven passes thrown to him while racking up 37 receiving yards. He has been the most productive pass-catching tight end on the Packers behind Finley, but has still been a minor part of the offense.
He is a speedy tight end with soft hands, but he does not have the same size and athleticism as Finley.
While the Packers may have had their struggles on offense this season, there is still no shortage of talent on the wide receiving corps. If Finley is unable to play, the targets that usually go to him will likely be distributed among Jordy Nelson, James Jones, Randall Cobb and Greg Jennings (if he is able to play).
If Williams starts, his targets and production will certainly increase, but he will still largely be a peripheral part of the passing game.
Considering that Finley’s shoulder injury does not appear to be long-term and may not cause him to miss any time at all, fantasy owners would be wise not to waste a waiver-wire pickup on Williams.
Those looking for the next hidden fantasy football star are not going to find him among the Packers' backup tight ends.