Waiver Wire Week 11: Rashaad Penny, Anthony Miller Highlight Pickups to Know

Chris Roling@@Chris_RolingFeatured ColumnistNovember 12, 2018

Seattle Seahawks running back Rashaad Penny celebrates after scoring during the first half in an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Rams Sunday, Nov. 11, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

NFL Week 11 is a great time for a fantasy owner to need a running back or wide receiver. 

Written another way, it's the perfect week for the waiver wire. It looks like a Matt Barkley purgatory of sorts at quarterback, but the most streamable position of all should have plenty of options for owners to consider. 

It isn't every week new possible matchup-proof starters emerge at the skill positions. 

Reasons vary, but the waiver-wire priority list for owners is stacked unlike most weeks this year, with plenty of room for contenders and those hoping to make a late push to make improvements. 


Week 11 Waiver-Wire Targets

Matt Barkley, QB, BUF (0 percent owned)

Baker Mayfield, QB, CLE (44 percent owned)

Rashaad Penny, RB, SEA (12 percent owned)

Jacquizz Rodgers, RB, TB (1 percent owned)

Elijah McGuire, RB, NYJ (18 percent owned)

Zay Jones, WR, BUF (1 percent owned)

Anthony Miller, WR, CHI (12 percent owned)

John Ross, WR, CIN  (17 percent owned)

Jonnu Smith, TE, TEN (1 percent owned)

Nick Vannett, TE, SEA (4 percent owned)

Ricky Seals-Jones, TE, ARI (17 percent owned)


Rashaad Penny, RB, SEA (12 percent owned)

Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

The Rashaad Penny breakout is finally happening. 

Owners who jumped the gun might pull their hair out over missing Penny now, but for whatever reason, the Seattle Seahawks decided they didn't want to prioritize their first-round pick until Week 10. 

There, Penny took a season-high 12 carries for 108 yards and a score, good for 16.8 points.

Given his play and the situation around him, the general consensus seems to be this is only the beginning for the rookie: 

Brad Evans @YahooNoise

Giddy watching Rashaad Penny’s breakout. Game seems to be slowing down for the rookie. Shown excellent patience, power and burst. With a short week and Chris Carson very iffy, good chance he spearheads split over Mike Davis Thursday vs. GB. Priority add.

Penny's breakout came courtesy of Chris Carson suffering an injury and Mike Davis being unable to carry the load on his own. A short turnaround to a Thursday game in Week 11 suggests Penny should workhorse it again, too. 

If Penny can be productive there again, it might not matter if and when Carson returns. At the least, owners have a short-burst window of solid usage here with upside for quite a bit more. 


Anthony Miller, WR, CHI (12 percent owned)

Nam Y. Huh/Associated Press

This is right around the time of year rookies destined to break out do so. 

Up next is Anthony Miller of the Chicago Bears, a second-round pick this year with huge No. 1 wideout upside. A combination of his playing better and quarterback Mitchell Trubisky coming around helped push Miller to five catches for 122 yards and a score in Week 10, giving him a career-high 20.7 points. 

As expected, Miller can be a yards-after-catch machine: 

Chicago Bears @ChicagoBears

@Mtrubisky10's next TD 🎯? @AnthonyMiller_3. #DETvsCHI | #DaBears https://t.co/SqJTThGtFf

Thanks to his surrounding elements, Miller won't be the most consistent producer for the rest of the year by any means. But it's encouraging he has six or more targets in four consecutive games. 

Also encouraging is the fact his Week 10 damage came against a Detroit Lions defense that entered allowing the ninth-fewest points to opposing wide outs on average. That's an important performance this late in the season in a cold environment while fighting a stingy division like the NFC North. 


John Ross, WR, CIN (17 percent owned)

Gary Landers/Associated Press

Even without A.J. Green playing, Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver John Ross was a major question mark in Week 10. 

Ross looked like a stereotypical bust as a rookie and this year suffered another injury setback while only hitting double digits once entering the weekend. But with Green out, Ross broke free for two catches, 39 yards and a score. 

When Ross is actually on the field, he's an elite usage threat for owners in need. He has all of eight receptions this year, but three of them have gone for touchdowns. With Green down multiple games with an injury, it's at least clear the Bengals offense will keep working the ball his way. 

Grabbing and playing Ross is rolling the dice on his body being able to handle the rigors of pro football consistently, but his ratio of targets to touchdowns is silly right now.

In a pass-happy attack with an offense missing guys like Green and Tyler Eifert, Ross is one of those high-upside gambles that could change the course of a fantasy season late in the year. 


Jonnu Smith, TE, TEN (1 percent owned)

James Kenney/Associated Press

Don't look now, but Tennessee Titans tight end Jonnu Smith has 10 or more points in two consecutive games. 

The Smith outbreak figured to happen a long time ago—right after Delanie Walker went down and to injured reserve—but better late than never. Smith has caught a touchdown in each of his last two outings, the first of his season so far. 

The opportunities are there for Smith now: 


#Titans offensive snap counts vs. #Patriots. Jonnu Smith got plenty of reps (60 out of 65) and it paid off. Once again a big gap between Dion Lewis (49) and Derrick Henry (16). Also notice Cameron Batson checks in with 36 snaps. https://t.co/6dSJZvjZ6l

Some will point out Smith's season-high target number remains three. But when the targets are designed scoring opportunities while he creates mismatches, it's hard to complain. 

In time, the Titans might be comfortable enough to give Smith targets all over the field. But he's one of a few players with huge upside because of the designed usage and worth a gamble at a position typically lacking in consistency anyway. 


All scoring info, points-against info and ownership stats courtesy of Yahoo standard leagues.