Waiver Wire Week 11: Reviewing Top Pickups and Drops Likely Available

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorNovember 14, 2017

Los Angeles Chargers running back Austin Ekeler (30) runs in the end zone for a touchdown against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 12, 2017, in Jacksonville, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)
Phelan M. Ebenhack/Associated Press

The midway point of the NFL season is in the rearview mirror, and now fantasy leagues are entering the home stretch as teams fight and claw for playoff spots with the postseason looming in December.

It's imperative to keep an eye on the waiver wire, especially with the last bye week on the horizon.

Here's a look at the four most popular adds and drops around the league.

          

Top-Four Pickups

Green Bay Packers RB Jamaal Williams (Rostered in 7% of Yahoo Leagues; 26,854 Adds)

The Green Bay Packers are already down one running back on Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens. Per Adam Schefter of ESPN, Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones is out three to six weeks with a sprained MCL.

However, Ty Montgomery may also miss the game. He suffered a rib injury last Sunday, but head coach Mike McCarthy said there is a "chance" he plays.

If Montgomery sits, that leaves rookie Jamaal Williams as the starter. The former BYU Cougar has rushed for 101 yards on 31 carries this year. Although those numbers aren't impressive, it will be interesting to see what he can do with more consistent touches. He's worth a flyer this week against the Baltimore Ravens if you're looking for a back.

                                          

Los Angeles Chargers RB Austin Ekeler (4%; 14,468 Adds)

An interesting occurrence happened during the Los Angeles Chargers vs. Jacksonville Jaguars game on Sunday. Namely, Bolts backup running back Austin Ekeler had 15 touches after having just 29 over the first half of the season.

Ekeler was efficient with his chances, accumulating 119 yards from scrimmage and the team's only two touchdowns. Given his success on Sunday, will Ekeler be receiving more looks going forward even though starter Melvin Gordon is still in the mix?

The rookie is worth a shot, especially if he sees similar volume going forward.

                       

New England Patriots RB Rex Burkhead (11%; 13,750 Adds)

The New England Patriots' running back situation is almost impossible to evaluate on a weekly basis. At this point, it seems like Mike Gillislee, who was inactive on Sunday, is the odd man out. However, Rex Burkhead, James White and Dion Lewis will all see their fair share of touches. Good luck trying to figure out which one does the best in a given week.

The notable stat about Burkhead, though, is that he logged 13 touches against the Denver Broncos on Sunday, accruing 63 yards from scrimmage and a touchdown.

That being said, there are plenty of mouths to feed on that offense, so unless Burkhead is the clear No. 1 option on the waiver wire, other backs should provide more opportunity for fantasy success.

                          

Minnesota Vikings QB Case Keenum (17%; 8,038 Adds)

This is a tricky situation.

On one hand, Case Keenum just tossed four touchdown passes in a tough road matchup against a Washington Redskins pass defense that is normally stingy against wide receivers but got thoroughly outplayed on Sunday in a 38-30 loss.

On the other hand, he just tossed two interceptions, and former first-round pick Teddy Bridgewater, who just returned to the active roster after suffering horrible knee injuries prior to the 2016 season, looms in the background.

This is Bridgewater's team in the future, but for now it looks like Keenum is sticking as the starter for one more week at least, per Jason La Confora of CBS Sports.

The fact that there was a question about Keenum's Week 11 status despite throwing four touchdowns isn't a good future sign, however. It almost seems like he's on a short leash and will be sitting on the bench if he has one more bad performance.

But Keenum has done well this year, and it's conceivable that he keeps his streak of success up through the rest of the year.

                   

Top Four Drops

Dallas Cowboys RB Darren McFadden (28%; 7,037 Drops) and Rod Smith (26%; 6,384 Drops)

Alfred Morris looks to be the No. 1 option in the Dallas Cowboys backfield as Ezekiel Elliott serves his suspension. Morris had 11 carries for 53 yards in a 27-7 loss to the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday. Rod Smith was the clear No. 2 as he logged seven touches for 29 total yards, but Darren McFadden only carried the ball once.

Smith might be a decent option, especially in point-per-reception leagues (four of Smith's seven touches were receptions). However, McFadden should probably be kept on the waiver wire unless he sees more opportunities.

                

Seattle Seahawks RB Thomas Rawls (29%; 4,150 Drops)

Thomas Rawls had an opportunity to seize control of the Seattle Seahawks backfield last Thursday, but he only rushed for 27 yards on 10 carries against the Arizona Cardinals.

Rawls, who had a fantastic 2015 season before suffering a fibula injury that ended his year, has not been able to get it going on the ground in 2017. That's in part due to an offensive line that hasn't performed well, but Rawls has only rushed for 2.6 yards per carry.

Ultimately, the Seahawks are a pass-first team led by star signal-caller Russell Wilson, and the Seattle backfield will probably feature a rotating group of players for the foreseeable future. It's hard to roster any of them on fantasy teams.

                  

Buffalo Bills TE Charles Clay (43%; 4,115 Drops)

Yes, Charles Clay posted a disappointing two-catch, 13-yard stat line against the New Orleans Saints last Sunday, and the Buffalo Bills have been outscored 81-31 in their last two games, but it's too early to give up on the tight end just yet.

Clay was a favorite target of quarterback Tyrod Taylor early in the season, accumulating 25 targets in the first four games. Clay even managed to catch five passes for 112 yards against the Atlanta Falcons.

While new No. 1 wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin may steal a target or two going forward, look for Clay to see more action his way as the season progresses.

         

Writer's Note: The top four adds and drops listed above had to be rostered in fewer than 50 percent of leagues to be considered. Injured players were not included. All figures are as of 12:15 a.m. ET on Tuesday, November 14.

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