Fantasy Football 101: Week 11 Pickups and Other Quick Hits
Week 10 is in the books and the bye weeks are over, meaning your lineup choices will be about matchups and injuries. With some NFL teams' season virtually over, be sure to keep an eye out for young players teams will take a look at down the stretch.
With injuries mounting, depth becomes a key focus now that bye week fill-ins are no longer needed (although these players can be the same). Ultimately, your playoff prognosis will influence your roster moves.
Here is a look at this week's waiver wire options.
Please note, list excludes recommendations from the past two weeks.
Click here to view last week's article. (Note: last week included Mike Thomas)
Note: To qualify as a pickup, a player must be owned in less than 40 percent of Yahoo leagues as of this writing (11/14).
Tyler Thigpen, Miami (owned: 0 percent): Thigpen may be the team's third-stringer, but this year's Dolphins rely more on the pass than recent editions and Thigpen flashed fantasy potential during his first extended action back in 2008.
Jon Kitna, Dallas (owned: 17 percent): With Jason Garrett at the controls of the team, the offense appeared to play looser and flashed their elite skill players against the Giants this week. Kitna needed just 13 completions to accumulate 327 yards and three touchdowns, showcasing the team's big-play ability.
Bernard Scott, Cincinnati (owned 3 percent): Cedric Benson has struggled all season, and with an expiring contract the team may give Scott increased chances down the stretch to determine how big a role he can play in the future. He's primarily a Benson handcuff, but given the slim pickings below the 40 percent owned line, he has the upside to merit a look.
Darren Sproles, San Diego (owned 39 percent): With Ryan Mathews perpetually banged up, Spoles has played a bigger role than expected this season and it is likely to continue given a shaky defense, banged up receiving corp and must-win situation. Value is best in PPR formats.
Mike Williams, Seattle (owned 39 percent): A must-get if he is available. While the Seahawks are far from a consistent attack, he is the team's clear-cut No. 1 wideout and has a marshmallow-soft schedule down the stretch. He has 10-plus catches in three of the last five games.
James Jones, Green Bay (owned 18 percent): Like Williams (Seattle version), Jones lacks consistency but he is one guy I would love to have on my bench. Has 100-plus yards in two of his last three games.
Legedu Naanee (owned 5 percent): Naanee is scheduled to return next week and any Chargers receiver with a starting job is worth a roster spot (and perhaps spot starts until two of the following return: Antonio Gates, Malcom Floyd and Vincent Jackson).
Arrelious Benn (owned 4 percent): More of a keeper prospect, Benn has scored a touchdown in back-to-back weeks and appears to be adjusting to the pro game. Don't be surprised if his role increases down the stretch.\
Anthony Fasano (owned 17 percent): Exploded with a five-catch, 107-yard, one-touchdown effort this week, and while he won't likely duplicate those numbers, don't be surprised if his role continues to increase with Tyler Thigpen under center.
Ben Watson (owned 36 percent): His stock slid the past few weeks, but Watson remains the No. 1 receiving target in the Browns' modest passing attack. A capable fill-in for the multitude of tight end injuries.
Cincinnati (owned 24 percent): With the bye weeks over, teams are less likely to need a defense, but if you are looking for a matchup play this week, the Bengals are playing Buffalo and the defense has played much better the past two weeks even if the fantasy stats don't show it.
- Mike Thomas' Hail Mary touchdown may have been a fluke but the other seven catches for 99 yards weren't. He is a solid option in PPR leagues (and was a nfldraft101 pickup pick last week).
- Until OT Russell Okung comes back, forget about playing TE John Carlson (donut this week and just 9 catches in the last 6 games).
- Speaking of Seahawks disappointments, RB Marshawn Lynch has broken the 48-yard barrier just once since joining Seattle five games ago.
- After throwing for 316 yards on Sunday, Matt Ryan is on pace for a 4,000-yard season, exceeding expectations. He has three games with three touchdown passes on the season and has thrown at least one in all but one game.
- Lions RB Jahvid Best has not broken the 50-yard mark since Week 5 and has not scored a touchdown since Week 2.
- Jets RB LaDainian Tomlinson's descent continues as he has failed to break 57 yards since Week 5 and has not found the end zone since Week 6. He still has value in PPR leagues, though, as he has caught five or more balls each of the past three weeks.
- One of the most under-reported stories of the week is Bengals WR Terrell Owens giving up on his team in the fourth quarter, most notably walking back to the line of scrimmage on the team's final drive. This has absolutely nothing to do with fantasy, although he is not a guy I would feel comfortable trusting come playoff time.
- Bengals tight end Jermaine Gresham caught nine passes for 85 yards and a touchdown in the fourth quarter on Sunday. The big question is whether the team will ever learn to use the athletic rookie down the field (all but one catch was a dump-off underneath).
- It is amazing how fast Randy Moss has fallen: just two catches in his last two games. At least fantasy owners don't need to worry about him playing a 17-game schedule anymore.
- Buccaneers RB LaGarrette Blount has looked good the past month and is a player to watch as the Bucs head down the homestretch in need of a balanced offense.
- Panthers RB Mike Goodson exceeded expectations with a 23-carry, 100-yard effort. He is worth starting in deeper leagues until Stewart or Williams comes back.
- Chiefs WR Dwayne Bowe has eight touchdowns the past five games and a soft schedule down the stretch.
- Rams WR Brandon Gibson has 14 catches for 139 yards the past two games.
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