Waiver Wire Week 5: Trey Lance, Damien Williams Highlight Pickups to Know
The injury bug bit some fantasy football managers again in Week 4, as there were several notable players who either went down with ailments or were held out of games. So it's that time of the week when you try to figure out how to replenish your roster entering Week 5.
As is always the case, injuries to standout players give bigger opportunities to backups. And often, these players who have been waiting for a chance will come through and deliver as legitimate fantasy options while you wait for the starters to return.
Here's a look at the players you should have at the top of your list for waiver-wire targets heading into Week 5.
Trey Lance, QB, San Francisco 49ers
Perhaps you've been stashing Trey Lance on your bench for the first four weeks, and if so, that move is about to pay off. For leagues where he's been left on the waiver wire, though, it's going to be a battle between managers to acquire the rookie quarterback this week.
On Sunday, Jimmy Garoppolo suffered a right calf injury and missed the second half of the 49ers' loss to the Seattle Seahawks. It's possible the 29-year-old is going to miss time, which means it will be Lance's time to get his first opportunity as an NFL starter.
The 21-year-old impressed when called upon against Seattle, as he went 9-for-18 for 157 yards and two touchdowns, while also picking up 41 yards on seven carries. With a week to prepare as the No. 1 quarterback, he's capable of recording even better numbers.
If you need a boost at QB, go all-in on trying to get the North Dakota State product this week, because there's a chance Garoppolo never gets his job back if Lance takes over.
Lance is rostered in 30 percent of Yahoo leagues and 19 percent of ESPN leagues, per FantasyPros.
Damien Williams, RB, Chicago Bears
David Montgomery was having a huge performance on Sunday. He had 23 carries for 106 yards and two touchdowns in the Bears' win over the Detroit Lions.
However, the standout running back's day came to a disappointing end when he needed to be helped off the field due to a left knee injury in the fourth quarter.
It's unclear what his status will be moving forward, but if he misses any time, it will be Williams serving as the lead back for Chicago. On Sunday, Williams had a strong showing on the ground, too, as he had eight carries for 55 yards and a touchdown.
Entering Week 4, the 29-year-old had only eight carries in his first season with the Bears, as Montgomery typically dominated the workload out of the backfield. So he likely will only have high fantasy value until Montgomery returns, assuming that he misses some time.
Williams is rostered in 8 percent of Yahoo leagues and 10 percent of ESPN leagues, per FantasyPros.
Jamison Crowder, WR, New York Jets
Jamison Crowder made his 2021 debut on Sunday after missing the first three games of the season due to a groin injury. And it didn't take long for him to provide a much-needed boost to the Jets' offense.
Targeted nine times by quarterback Zach Wilson, the 28-year-old turned those opportunities into seven catches for 61 yards and a touchdown and helped lead the Jets to a 27-24 overtime win, their first victory of the season. His score was a game-tying 3-yard TD catch with 11 minutes, 30 seconds to go in the fourth quarter.
In the past, Crowder has been a solid fantasy option, especially in matchups where he's facing a defense that has trouble stopping slot receivers. If you're desperate for WR help, he could be an immediate starting option, but he can provide depth on your bench at the least.
Crowder is rostered in 20 percent of Yahoo leagues and 14 percent of ESPN leagues, per FantasyPros.
Dawson Knox, TE, Buffalo Bills
If you missed out on adding Knox last week, you may have one more opportunity to do so. But this is likely to be your last chance, as the Bills tight end is likely to be scooped up in any league he's still available this week.
Knox has been a touchdown machine for Buffalo through the first four weeks of the season, after scoring four touchdowns and getting into the end zone each of the past three weeks. On Sunday, he had his best game yet, notching five receptions for 37 yards and two touchdowns in the Bills' blowout win over the Houston Texans.
Not only is Knox always a threat to score, but he's also a key part of Buffalo's offense, considering he was targeted eight times on Sunday. So it seems he's becoming a reliable fantasy option at tight end, which can always be difficult to find, especially on the waiver wire once the season has already started.
Knox is currently rostered in 47 percent of Yahoo leagues and 19 percent of ESPN leagues, per FantasyPros.