Owen Daniels: Top Fantasy Waiver-Wire Pickups to Fill in for Injured Texans TE

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Owen Daniels: Top Fantasy Waiver-Wire Pickups to Fill in for Injured Texans TE
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Owen Daniels is a game-time decision for the Houston Texans’ Sunday night’s prime-time matchup against the Chicago Bears after being “very limited” in practice Friday.

He was very limited," Gary Kubiak, Texans' head coach, said, according to an AP report on ESPN.com on Friday. "He did some of the individual stuff early in practice, took a couple of reps, still very sore. We've got a little extra time, because we play Sunday night, so we'll continue to give him every opportunity to get there. I know it's very important to him, but we've got a ways to go.

Sunday night’s matchup is important to Daniels because he’s from the Chicago area and will likely have family and friends in attendance.

The Texans' star tight end and formidable fantasy football pass-catcher is too much of a risky play for fantasy owners because of his team's Sunday night game time. You don’t want to keep him in your lineup and risk losing him unless you’ve got his backup (whom I wouldn’t recommend against Chicago) or a tight end from Monday night’s matchup on your bench.

You need to roll with a contingency plan, and there are some solid options broken down for you below.

 

Dustin Keller, New York Jets (Owned in 33.8 percent of ESPN leagues)

Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Keller has had back-to-back seven-catch games against New England and Miami. The Jets are coming off their bye week and will have to work the ball to their tight end if they have any prayer of having success against the physical and dominant corners of the Seahawks defense.

Sure, this isn’t an ideal matchup, but Keller will get his looks and could surprise with a solid, if nothing else, performance at CenturyLink field.

 

Brandon Myers, Oakland Raiders (Owned in 15.2 percent of ESPN leagues)

Myers has been a popular add this week thanks to a 13-target, eight-catch and two-touchdown performance against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 9. Myers has had consistent production all year, so the fact that he got his first two touchdowns of the season shouldn’t deter you from taking a risk by going with this tight end.

This week in Baltimore, the Raiders will be playing without Darren McFadden and Mike Goodson in their backfield. That’s an encouraging sign for Carson Palmer and his reliable tight end.

 

Joel Dreessen, Denver Broncos (Owned in 7.6 percent of ESPN leagues)

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Dreessen is by far the preferred red-zone target of Peyton Manning when it comes to his tight ends. He’s in competition with Jacob Tamme for targets but is still getting his share. The added bonus of being sought out by Manning when near the end zone makes him a valuable play this week against an improved Carolina defense that is locking down wide receivers this season.

The Panthers are the third-stingiest in allowing fantasy points to receivers but just 20th in the league when it comes to giving up scores to tight ends.

 

Anthony Fasano, Miami Dolphins (Owned in 3.1 percent of ESPN leagues)

Fasano has had a quiet season as the go-to tight end for rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill. You’d think the rookie would be more reliant on his outlet option, but that hasn’t been the case for much of the season.

The biggest upside here is that, overall, the Tennessee Titans have allowed the most fantasy points to tight ends this season. That and the fact that Fasano is the primary red zone target for Tannehill (three TDs) this season make him a good spot start this week.

 

Mike Hoag Jr. is a Breaking News Team writer and NFL featured columnist for Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter:

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