The Fantasy Football waiver wire is where leagues are won and lost. Last season guys like Ryan Torain, Peyton Hillis and Stevie Johnson helped carry teams to the fantasy promise land.
However, with fantasy football growing in popularity and the constant media coverage it is garnering, it is difficult to pick up on a guy before your competition.
These five guys are available in almost every league and they each provide tremendous upside. There ARE better waiver wire options available this week like Ryan Torain and Isaac Redman, but these guys are great consolation if you don’t have a high wavier.
In a few weeks they’ll be discussed on national media outlets, and everyone will know about them. Don’t miss out while they’re still available.
Malcolm Floyd seems to be falling off the map in San Diego and Antonio Gates seems to be losing Phillip Rivers’ trust. Even with Ryan Mathews emerging as an elite back, the Chargers will remain a pass-first team.
The Chargers’ third-round pick out of San Diego State could be Rivers’ next best option after Vincent Jackson.
He looks small on the field and was one of the slower receivers coming out of the combine. However, he has excellent route running ability and continuously finds a way to stay open against even the most elite coverage.
If you need help at wide out, Brown is worth the flier. If Floyd continues to struggle and Gates doesn’t get healthy, the rookie will see a lot of targets, especially on third down as a possession receiver.
The Vikings can’t win with Donovan McNabb at quarterback. They find themselves sitting on an ugly 0-4. McNabb will continue to hold the reigns until the Vikings are mathematically out of it.
Once this happens, Christian Ponder will be ready. Coming out of a pro-style offense at Florida State, his transition to the NFL will be smoother than most rookie QBs.
Adrian Peterson makes life for any QB easier, and this will continue once Ponder is finally in the mix. Percy Harvin is a great receiver and Ponder could put up great numbers as the Vikings get to play indoors through the cold months late in the season.
If you are in a league that starts two QBs, Ponder might be worth scooping now. If not, keep a close eye on him and be ready to grab him when the Vikings finally pull the plug on the Donovan McNabb experiment.
Shonn Greene looks terrible, Ladanian Tomlinson is too old, and Joe McKnight just isn’t built to be a full-time running back. In steps Bilal Powell, a rookie out of Lousville with excellent speed and awareness running the football.
During Powell’s senior year at Louisville, he averaged over 6 yards per carry behind a mediocre offensive line. He found the end zone 11 times and could be a steal for New York out of the fourth round.
Powell has been a healthy scratch for the Jets in each of the first four weeks. He has had hamstring trouble in college, but if he can stay healthy he’s the most complete back on the roster.
Once the Jets start rostering Powell on Sundays, do the same if you can afford the roster spot. His upside is huge.
Brian Leonard currently sits behind Cedric Benson and Bernard Scott on the Bengals depth chart. Benson could be out for three weeks and Scott could be on a short leash. If Scott doesn’t perform when/if Benson is suspended, expect Leonard to take over the bulk of the carries.
Leonard is extremely elusive for his size and should see the bulk of the goal-line work even if Bernard Scott is effective.
If you’re hurting at running back, a lot of teams are, take a flier on Leonard and hope that everything falls into place. I like Bernard Scott a little more if he’s there, but he’s flying off the waiver wires at a ridiculous pace. Either way, Leonard is a high ceiling guy.
He could be 2011’s Peyton Hillis and steal Benson’s job if given ample opportunity.
Broncos fans can’t wait to see him back on the field and neither should fantasy owners. Tim Tebow was a fantasy playoff hero in 2010. In each of his three starts in the NFL, Tebow scored both rushing and through the air.
When plays break down, he has shown excellent ability by cutting through defenses with his feet. While he is certainly no Michael Vick, Tebow accumulates both rushing and passing statistics, a fantasy owner's dream.
Kyle Orton will continue to lose football games. If the Broncos want to fill seats in Denver, Tebow could be vaulted into the starting position sooner rather than later.
He’s worth the speculative add as he immediately becomes a top-10 fantasy QB when he’s in the lineup. If you have the extra spot and need help at QB, bring him on board.
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