Fantasy: Week 5 Waiver Wire
Fantasy: Week 5 Waiver Wire
Jason Campbell – Raiders
Campbell was actually pretty impressive in relief of Bruce Gradkowski on Sunday (13-of-18 for 159 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT), but Tom Cable has already said that Gradkowski will remain the starter. Even if Campbell were to be named the starter, he’s barely worth QB2 consideration. Leave him on the wire.
Brandon Jacobs – Giants
There’s not much to talk about at running back this week, but Jacobs is worth discussing. In what has been an underwhelming start to the season, he’s still managed to rack up 172 yards on 36 carries (4.8 YPC) and has scored twice. Comparatively, starter Ahmad Bradshaw is averaging 4.9 yards-per-carry on 91 carries and has scored three times. There’s no doubt that Bradshaw is the starter and Jacobs is the handcuff, but Jacobs will continue to steal goal line carries. He’s talented enough to consider as a bench player in most 12-team formats and should definitely be owned in TD-heavy leagues.
Deji Karim – Jaguars
Karim racked up 15 carries in his NFL debut while filling in for the temporarily-injured Maurice Jones-Drew. Karim was impressive, racking up 70 yards, but he has no chance of cutting into Jones-Drew’s carries as long as he is healthy. It’s also worth noting that the team’s usual RB2, Rashad Jennings, was inactive with an injury. Once he returns, expect Jennings and Karim to share backup duties. Jennings will have the edge since Karim’s main focus is on kick returns.
Danny Amendola – Rams
This week’s hot add is Danny Amendola. Mark Clayton was one of the season’s biggest surprises, but is done for the season after tearing up his knee on Sunday. Amendola was already being targeted 8-9 times per game and that number should rise to around 10/game going forward. Unlike Wes Welker, Amendola doesn’t have the all-pro quarterback and a high-scoring offense to help boost his numbers, but, similar to Welker, Amendola is a reception machine despite low marks in the yards-per-reception and touchdown departments. This makes him a must-start in PPR leagues and a WR3 option in standard-scoring formats. Put in a claim.
Brandon Tate / Deion Branch – Patriots
Tate was one of Fantasy Football’s top Waiver Wire adds last week, but he’s worth discussing again after the Patriots’ acquisition of Deion Branch. What we do know is that Tate is a young, explosive receiver who should step into Randy Moss’ role as the team’s deep threat. He won’t see quite as many looks as Moss did, but he will be involved more than he was earlier this season. We also know that Deion Branch is 31 and isn’t the same player he was the last time he played in New England. What we don’t know is how much Branch will cut into Tate’s snaps. Tom Brady and Branch made for a solid connection the first time they played together and Brady reportedly requested that the Patriots acquire Branch from Seattle. This is all relevant because we need to figure out how often each player will be on the field, and thus how often they’ll be targeted.
The Patriots would not trade Randy Moss unless they felt Brandon Tate could handle a larger role. Expect him to see close to 70 targets going forward, which would be good enough to make him a WR3 in all formats. The Patriots didn’t give up a 4th round pick for Branch to rot on the bench, though, and we should expect close to 50 targets for him going forward. That barely puts him inside the top 75 wide receivers going forward, but, considering the offense, he has enough upside to warrant a bench spot in most 12 team leagues.
If Tate is still available, he’s your top priority. If you still have a bench spot to play with, Branch is worth the speculative add.
Golden Tate – Seahawks
When the Branch-to-New England rumors first started, the first person I thought of was Golden Tate. The Seahawks have been getting the rookie involved more and more as the season has progressed and the Branch trade opens up a significant amount of snaps at the flanker position. Tate still has plenty of competition for snaps, especially from Deon Butler, but they didn’t take him in the 2nd round of this year’s draft to sit on the bench. Expect Tate to get every opportunity to win the other starting job along side Mike Williams. He shouldn’t be starting in any leagues quite yet, but be sure to get him on your bench now.
Mardy Gilyard – Rams
With Mark Clayton on Injured Reserve, rookie Mardy Gilyard is expected to get the first chance to replace him in the starting lineup. Gilyard hasn’t played much this season, but, similar to Golden Tate, he has seen more and more work each week. Gilyard isn’t going to put up the fantasy numbers Clayton did, but you can’t ignore the fact that Clayton was targetd a whopping 42 times in 4+ games. The Rams have a young, inexperienced offense, but there is some upside here. He’s worth considering as a speculative bench add in 12 team leagues.
Steve Johnson – Bills
Johnson continues to defy logic with 4 touchdowns in 5 games on a poor offensive team. Fortunately for him, new starting quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick likes looking his direction, especially in the redzone, and it has led to a team-high 31 targets, 17 receptions, and, as mentioned, 4 touchdowns. That all being said, Johnson’s 23.5% TD/Reception mark is one of those stats that will definitely regress. That’s a ridiculously high mark in a high-scoring offense, so there’s no chance it keeps up in a poor one. There are players with more upside in better offenses available on the wire.
Devin Thomas – Panthers
Thomas was waived by the Redskins over the weekend and claimed by the Panthers on Monday. It’s no secret that Thomas’ work ethic was a big reason for his release, but the Panthers are desperate for help at wide receiver, and you can’t blame them for giving a talented player like Thomas (who can also return kicks) a look. Still, the Panthers are a run heavy team and the passing offense has been terrible this season. Even with Steve Smith out, Thomas is unlikely to be any more than the 3rd string wideout (behind rookies Brandon LaFell and David Gettis). Leave him on the wire.
Visanthe Shiancoe – Vikings
Shiancoe owners are scrambling to find a new tight end after the team’s acquisition of Randy Moss, coupled with Shiancoe’s 2 catch effort in week 5. Don’t overreact. Moss and Percy Harvin were targeted 10 times each, but Shiancoe still saw seven, which is actually more than his season average. It should be expected that his targets will drop from what he saw early this year, but it won’t be too drastic. Favre still needs an underneath option and Moss/Harvin are down-field threats. Shiancoe is still a borderline TE1 and should be snagged by you if he is newly available.
Andrew Quarless – Packers
Quarless is on the fantasy map after week 5 injuries to both JerMichael Finley and Donald Lee. If you’re a Finley owner in a 12-team league, there’s a very good chance that Quarless is now the best available tight end on the Waiver Wire. The rookie ran 33 pass routes and was targeted 6 times on Sunday despite not playing much until both Lee and Finley left the game. Quarless is a receiving tight end, which means he will step right into Finley’s role, while Tom Crabtree fills in as the blocking specialist. Quarless is borderline TE1 as long as Lee and Finley are out, and might retain that status once Lee returns in a week or two. If you own Finley and are without a good backup, put in a claim for Quarless.