Buying or Selling Fantasy Value for Tavon Austin, Andre Brown, Jarrett Boykin?

Tim KeeneyContributor INovember 11, 2013

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - NOVEMBER 10:  Tavon Austin #11 of the St. Louis Rams runs with the ball during the game against the  Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium on November 10, 2013 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Late-season fantasy pickups win championships. 

Granted, if you're planning on contending for a title, most of your roster should probably already be set in stone. If you're looking for a quarterback, two running backs and a wide receiver every week, it's going to be tough to churn out wins. 

But whether it be a bye-week replacement, an injury fill-in or a simple flex player, waiver-wire pickups at this juncture in the season can give you the tiny separation you need to win a championship.  

Let's take a look to see if any of Week 10's breakout players can play that role. 


Tavon Austin, WR, St. Louis Rams

Sell like he's an Xbox One or PlayStation 4 and the people in your league are desperate parents who need to appease their snotty kids and it's the day before Christmas.

Or something like that. 

It's not as though Austin isn't valuable. He was a first-round draft pick for a reason, as his unbelievable speed and elusiveness had everyone believing that days like Sunday were going to be the norm.

Moreover, with the galvanizing performance, Austin joined some exclusive company, per ESPN Stats & Info:

This is probably the point in the show where you're rattling off obscenities at me for suggesting to sell. But let me explain.

If Austin was dropped by a frustrated owner (he's owned in 72.8 percent of ESPN leagues as of Sunday afternoon), then you should absolutely put in a waiver claim for him. He has far too much potential not to at least be sitting on your bench.

However, his value this season is never going to be higher. 

If you already own Austin, now would be the time to attempt to ship him to a league-mate who is still wiping up the drool after watching his 69 yards per reception on Sunday.

The 22-year-old rookie is all kinds of dynamic, yes, but his role still isn't big enough—even during Sunday's breakout game, he received just three targets and one carry—to expect him to produce consistently on a week-to-week basis. 

Austin has a tantalizing future, but other owners are going to go all Arnold Schwarzenegger in Jingle All the Way to get him. Take advantage of that. 


Andre Brown, RB, New York Giants

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - NOVEMBER 10:  Andre Brown #35 of the New York Giants celebrates his fourth quarter touchdown with  Brandon Jacobs against the Oakland Raiders during their game at MetLife Stadium on November 10, 2013 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
Al Bello/Getty Images

Buy like he's an Illustrator Pokemon card being sold for cheap by an unknowing mom cleaning out her son's closet.

If you're in a league with savvy owners, chances are Brown might not be available. His return to a depleted Giants backfield was always on the horizon, and those who like to plan ahead probably already nabbed him.

But his ownership in ESPN leagues was at just 24.9 percent on Sunday, so there's still a good opportunity for you pick him up. 

At 6'0" and 224 pounds, Brown isn't the most explosive player in the league. But he's a strong downhill runner who fights for extra yards, has the utmost trust from head coach Tom Coughlin and will get as much work as he can handle down the stretch. 

David Wilson is done for the season, and if you're worried about Peyton Hillis or the health of Brown, who returned on Sunday for his first game since November (with two leg breaks in between), Sunday should have put to rest any of those doubts. He carried the ball a whopping 30 times for 115 yards and a touchdown.

According to Bleacher Report's medical analyst Dave Siebert, the nature of Brown's injury made his impressive return unsurprising: 

The Giants are clearly committed to running the football. Even with Brandon Jacobs, Hillis and Michael Cox in the backfield over the past three weeks, they averaged nearly 30 carries per game. 

Combine that workload with Brown's effectiveness (he averaged 5.3 yards per carry last season), and you've got a surefire RB2 moving forward.


Jarrett Boykin, WR, Green Bay Packers

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - OCTOBER 27:  Jarrett Boykin #11 of the Green Bay Packers advances the ball against the Minnesota Vikings on October 27, 2013 at Mall of America Field at the Hubert Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Adam Bettcher/Get
Adam Bettcher/Getty Images

Hold him like he's a cute, cuddly kitten. 

Getting a read on Boykin right now is impossible. With Randall Cobb sidelined, it looked like he was rising to fantasy stardom with Aaron Rodgers at the helm, pulling in over 200 yards and a score in Weeks 7 and 8. But after Seneca Wallace replaced A-Rod, Boykin's value was flattened, as he secured just one grab for 15 yards in Week 9. 

Continuing the roller-coaster ride on Sunday, Boykin had a busy game with Scott Tolzien coming in at QB for Wallace, pulling down eight receptions on 13 targets for 112 yards. 

On the one hand, it's hard to trust anyone in that passing offense with Tolzien, who was a practice-squad player a week ago, under center. He will reportedly start in Week 11, per Mike McCarthy, via Pro Football Talk's Josh Alper

On the other hand, Tolzien played admirably on Sunday (certainly better than Wallace in Week 9), and he clearly has a nice rapport with Boykin, who was really impressive. 

Moreover, he has arguably the best Twitter handle in all of sports (BoyKinHeCatch), so he probably deserves credit for that as well. 

Put it all together, and I'm not budging on Boykin. It's hard to trust the Packers offense, but this is a talented dude who plays the New York Giants, Minnesota Vikings and Atlanta Falcons in three of the next four weeks. 

Don't drop him. Don't trade him. Don't trade for him. Pick him up if he's available, but other than that, just play the wait-and-see game.