2010 Fantasy Football: Last Minute Pickups with Value

Mark SaintContributor ISeptember 9, 2010

Kyle Orton, a system man in an excellent system.
Kyle Orton, a system man in an excellent system.Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

As most fantasy league drafts are done and dusted awaiting the start of the season, many leagues allow for waiver or free agent pickups up until the coin toss of the first game.

If you find yourself still looking for available fantasy value, here are some players who may still be available that will help you win.

The Potentials:

Kyle Orton

Kyle is an accurate quarterback with moderate arm strength who is in his second year of Josh McDaniel's offensive system. Playing well in his first season, having a year under his belt should benefit him greatly in year two. 

McDaniel's has been compared to the likes of New Orleans Saints' coach, Sean Payton and Philadelphia Eagles' coach, Andy Reid, in regards to his understanding defenses. His offensive system works, and in that system, Kyle should perform well.

If you need a good backup quarterback for your fantasy team, or a safe option for the quarterback position, Kyle will be a good pickup.

Fred Taylor

In New England's system, using multiple running backs in a game is the norm, but that doesn't mean that selecting one is a bad thing. A decade ago, most teams used primarily a featured back for most of the team's carries, only spelling the running back for a few plays a game. Kansas City's two-back attack scheme in the form of Christian Okoye and Marcus Allen was few and far between. In today's game multiple running back offenses are becoming the norm.

Depending on the type of scoring your league uses, the safe bet is to draft the running back who is best suited to score. Fred Taylor is that back and should be available in most leagues.

Fred is poised to handle most of the carries and has increasingly become a threat to catch out of the backfield. An older veteran, he still has his speed and vision, and has impressed the coaching staff enough to warrant being the unofficial featured back on their team, and a good pickup for yours.

Ted Ginn Jr.

Rumors of Ted Ginn's demise have been greatly exaggerated. A disappointment in Miami, Ginn never separated himself as a receiver there, yet his preseason in San Francisco seems to have marked his awakening. 

If yardage counts for anything in your league, Ted Ginn will have value. The 49ers had a glaring hole in their special teams last year in the return game, and Ginn will rack up yards in bunches there. But the surprising thing has been Ginn's work in the receiving game. Josh Morgan seems set as the second receiver behind talented Michael Crabtree, but Ginn has caught more receptions and seems to fit the offensive system there.

With the potential to take one to the house at any time and the relative assurance that he will get decent yardage consistently, Ginn is a value pick that should be available for a team with a whole to fill at receiver.

Michael Vick

Call it a hunch, but I believe that Michael Vick will be the starting quarterback in Philadelphia by Week Four and will be in the upper tier of scoring quarterbacks in the league this season.

The reason? The Eagles' offensive line.

An overrated group for years, the Eagles did as well as they did because of Donovan McNabb's escapability. A careful look at the games that the Eagles had offensive success in the last few years will yield a startling trend. Most of those games big plays came from a pass from McNabb in motion... or better put, on the run.

This bears out with both Shawn and Stacy Andrews, who were starters on last year's offensive line, now being in New York and Seattle respectively. 

Although I believe that Kevin Kolb has talent, this preseason has seen him running for his life on more than one occasion and his production has suffered. Preseason is not a full test of a team, but you would like to see a few good drives from somebody other than your backup.

If Kolb struggles for a week or two, the Philly fans will call for his head with compulsion.

Vick has looked good and seems to be rounding back into football shape, a accordingly can throw on the run with ease. I would draft him with a comfortable assurance that he'll be behind center in Philadelphia in not too many weeks.

Other considerations:

Brandon Tate, WR (NE)

Back from injury and showing real talent. The heir apparent to Randy Moss in the system there.

Mike Williams, WR (SEA)

Looks to have added the word "redemption" to his name. He is playing quite well and could very well be the main option for Hasselbeck/Whitehurst this season, and for seasons to come.

Michael Bush, RB (OAK)

With the "bust-like" play of Darren McFadden, Bush may be the man in the run game in Oakland and has the talent and size to do the goal-line scoring too. If your draft left you with a hole in your backfield, this is the safest pick on the board.

Any player on Washington Redskins offense. For years, McNabb made an offense with role-player talent play above their abilities on paper. McNabb fit's Shanahan's offense like a glove and will make their players (from running backs to wide receivers) better. 

You can gamble on a no-named player on the offense and watch the first few weeks. Chances are good that they will produce for you enough to warrant making the team. Who knows, you just may find the "go-to" player for the team.


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