Week 12 Pickups: Running Backs You Must Snag on the Waiver Wire

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistNovember 20, 2012

Nov 11, 2012; Charlotte, NC, USA  Denver Broncos running back Ronnie Hillman (21) runs the ball during the fourth quarter against the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium. The Broncos defeated the Panthers 36-14. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-US PRESSWIRE
Jeremy Brevard-US PRESSWIRE

As we get further in into the NFL season, finding solid running backs to plug into your lineup can become a very frustrating endeavor.  

Sure, there is always a back or two per week that everyone gets excited about, but they rarely live up to the hype and can be hard to land unless you sit atop the waiver wire in the first place.

But this week, there are some truly intriguing options. From two players who should slot in as starters for quite some time to a player trying to fill the shoes of an elite but injured fantasy option, you'll be glad you added one of these three backs on the waiver wire this week.


Ronnie Hillman, Denver Broncos

There isn't a more valuable running back to be had on the waiver wire right now than Hillman.

As Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen reported on Monday, Willis McGahee won't be playing any time soon:

New England not only team to take hit: @mortreport and I reporting Broncos RB Willis McGahee has a torn MCL, will miss six to eight weeks.

— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 19, 2012

While Lance Ball could also see touches, it was Hillman who saw the majority of the snaps when McGahee left the game against the San Diego Chargers. Hillman has better burst and has shown more big-play ability, so I would expect him to see most of the work.

And that means if you end up snagging him, you'll get a running back to slot into your flex for the next six to eight weeks. On the dangerous Denver offense, that's extremely valuable. Don't hesitate—add Hillman!


Bryce Brown, Philadelphia Eagles

With the possibility that LeSean McCoy won't suit up for the Eagles on Monday night due to a concussion, Brown could find himself as the primary back this week. 

That makes him a must-have player, namely for McCoy owners. Plus, the Eagles are playing the Carolina Panthers, a team allowing 20 points in standard-scoring leagues to opposing running backs, 23rd in the NFL. 

And Brown has looked very good in the limited touches he's gotten, running assertively and showing the ability to fight through tackles and earn tough yards. If he gets the start, he'll do good things for owners. I wouldn't count McCoy out this week just yet, but Brown is a good player to have just in case.


Beanie Wells, Arizona Cardinals

He's baaa-aaaaaccckkkkk!

Quite literally, as Darren Urban of AZCardinals.com reports:

RB Beanie Wells will be activated this week and Cards expect him to play.

— Darren Urban (@Cardschatter) November 19, 2012

A lot of folks went ahead and dropped Wells when he went down to injury, so there is a good chance he's available in your league. And facing a St. Louis Rams defense that has allowed 394 rushing yards and five touchdowns to opposing backs the past three games, he should do well for fantasy owners this week.


Hit me up on Twitter—my tweets predict crazy things like Baylor upsets. Seriously.

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