Waiver Wire Pickups for Week 13
Every Tuesday I will be bringing you the NFL players who have somehow flown under the fantasy radar and are owned in far too few leagues given their production and/or ceiling. Injuries and byes are inevitable, too.
With the first game of the week a mere 48 hours away, here are some players that are on quite a few waiver wires out there that simply shouldn’t be.
Carson Palmer, Arizona Cardinals (Yahoo 38% owned; ESPN 10.2%) – 11% FAAB
Palmer completed 26 of 37 passes against the Colts, the fifth time in seven games in which he has completed at least two-thirds of his passes, with the two games he failed to coming against a top four pass defense (in terms of yardage). He, like the next quarterback mentioned, has always been able to produce decent numbers but has been a turnover risk. For now, he seems to have cured that flaw, as he hasn’t thrown an interception in back-to-back games after throwing at least one in his first nine games of this season.
Michael Floyd and Larry Fitzgerald are looking like a potent duo with plenty of size and athletic ability, and Palmer has always been a quarterback that gives his teammates plenty of opportunities to make plays. His 9.6 aDOT ranks in the top ten of all quarterbacks this season, indicating that he has been (and should continue to) take shots down the field, giving him enough upside to consider should your starter have a tough matchup or a nagging injury.
Ryan Fitzpatrick, Tennessee Titans (Yahoo 9% owned; ESPN 3.8%) – 7% FAAB
He’s not the ideal fantasy quarterback, but he does come with plenty of upside. In his last 3 games, FitzMagic has completed 74 of his 103 passes (71.8%) for five touchdowns and zero interceptions. His completion percentage jumps to 77.1% when subtracting passes that were thrown away, a level of efficiency that is impossible to ignore. Two of those games came against the Jags and Colts, teams that the Titans will play again over the next month. Don’t be surprised if Fitzpatrick ranks as a top 15 quarterback more often than not for the remainder of the fantasy season.
Josh McCown, Chicago Bears (Yahoo 18% owned; ESPN 6.6%) – 5% FAAB
Who knows how long he will have the starting gig in Chicago, but as long as he does, he is worth a roster spot. We do know that Jay Cutler will not suit up this weekend, so if McCown is available in your league and you’re counting on young gun in a tough matchup (Andrew Luck, Russell Wilson, or Ryan Tannehill), don’t sneeze at the idea of spot starting the 34-year old backup against the Minnesota Vikings.
McCown has completed 70.5% of his passes over the last two weeks against two good (not great) defenses in St. Louis and Baltimore. Alshon Jeffery, Brandon Marshall, and Matt Forte are all top shelf weapons, and Martellus Bennett (6 catches on 7 targets for 110 yards and TD over those two games) has established himself as a trusted option.