Week 10 Waiver Wire Pickups: Jake Ballard and More Players You Must Add Now

Mike ChiariFeatured ColumnistNovember 9, 2011

FOXBORO, MA - NOVEMBER 6:   Jake Ballard #85 of the New York Giants catches a pass in the second half against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on November 6, 2011 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. The Giants won 24-20. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

For whatever reason, Week 10 of the NFL season doesn't feature any bye weeks, but that doesn't mean you should stop scouring the waiver wire. There should be plenty of players available in your league that can help you not only this week, but down the stretch as well.

Even if you have a fully healthy lineup this week, you shouldn't wait to pick these players up, because you very well may need them when injuries strike. Here are three players possibly available in your league that you should pounce on immediately.


Chris Ogbonnaya - Cleveland Browns

Cleveland Browns running back Chris Ogbonnaya was a waiver-wire darling last week when it was determined neither Peyton Hillis nor Montario Hardesty would be able to play. While Ogbonnaya didn't play too well, he should get another crack at the starting job this week.

Ogbonnaya drew a deceptively tough matchup in Week 9 against the Houston Texans' defense, but yardage should be much easier to come by on Sunday. The Browns will host the St. Louis Rams, who happen to have the worst run defense in the the entire league.

The Browns aren't a team that is going to beat you with explosive plays, and they need to hold the ball on offense to be successful. Because of that and an easy matchup, Ogbonnaya should get plenty of carries and put up much better results in Week 10.


Roy Helu - Washington Redskins

The Washington Redskins' running back situation is normally one I would avoid like the plague, but with Tim Hightower on injured reserve and Ryan Torain seemingly in head coach Mike Shanahan's doghouse, rookie Roy Helu seems likely to get the bulk of the touches moving forward.

Helu turned in a virtuoso performance in terms of receiving last week with 14 grabs for 105 yards. While it would be silly to expect that type of output every week, it is clear John Beck is a conservative quarterback who trusts Helu as a pass catcher.

He should also have a fairly advantageous matchup this week against the Miami Dolphins. With so many receivers out or banged up, the 'Skins may not be able to pass on the Dolphins like other teams can. Because of that, expect Helu to get plenty of carries and screens throughout the game.


Jake Ballard - New York Giants

While few had heard of him prior to the season, New York Giants tight end Jake Ballard is becoming a hot name in fantasy circles. Ballard started the year off slowly, but he began to form a rapport with quarterback Eli Manning. Now, over the past month or so, Ballard has become one of Manning's most trusted targets.

Not only does Manning look to Ballard in the red zone, as he did on the game-winning touchdown against New England last week, but he also uses him in between the 20s. The Giants have so many weapons at receiver that it often allows Ballard to find room in the middle of the field.

While a game against the San Francisco 49ers may look tough on the surface, the Niners have been beatable through the air. The Giants figure to throw it plenty, and with Ballard's rapid improvement as a receiver, he could have yet another great game.