Monday, November 23, 2020

Week 12 Fantasy Football TE Waiver-Wire Rankings

Every week, we examine players that may be available on your league's waiver wire that could help your team in the short and/or long term.

For a player to be listed, he must be owned in 50 percent (or less) of Yahoo! leagues. The goal is to provide recommendations of players that have a greater chance of being available on your league's waiver wire. Of course, your league's size and settings could significantly impact whether these players (or better options) are available in your particular league(s).

With that said, here are some tight end waiver-wire options to consider heading into Week 12 (Yahoo! % rostered in parenthesis):

[Note: Players listed below are sorted by our preference to add.]

1. Jordan Reed, San Francisco 49ers (15%)

While the team is "hopeful" that Deebo Samuel will return in Week 12, Reed is still one of the team's top-three targets along with Brandon Aiyuk and Samuel. In the game before the bye, Reed had five catches for 62 yards on six targets. Given the landscape at the tight end position, a 62-yard scoreless outing was good enough to finish as fantasy's TE6 in Week 10.

With George Kittle (foot) likely out for the rest of the season, Reed will continue to operate as a high-end TE2/low-end TE1 the rest of the way as long as he can stay healthy. The next four opponents -- LAR, BUF, WAS and DAL -- are either neutral or favorable matchups for the tight end position.

2. Robert Tonyan, Green Bay Packers (46%)

Heading into Week 11, Tonyan had four quiet performances (4.8 fantasy points or less) in the previous five weeks. Despite a difficult matchup against the Indianapolis Colts in Week 11, Tonyan caught all five of his targets for 44 yards and a touchdown. Tonyan's remaining five games between now and Week 16 feature four teams -- Bears, Eagles, Panthers and Titans -- among the top 11 most-generous fantasy defenses.

3. Dalton Schultz, Dallas Cowboys (21%)

Outside of studs at the position like Travis Kelce, Darren Waller and Mark Andrews, nobody is setting the world on fire. Neither is Schultz.

Over his past three games, however, Schultz has a minimum of four catches and six targets per outing. During that span, he has a total of 14 catches on 21 targets for 126 yards and a touchdown.

The Cowboys have two favorable (top-10) matchups over the next three weeks that includes Washington Football Team on Thursday and the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 14.

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Week 12 Fantasy Football WR Waiver-Wire Rankings

Every week, we examine players that may be available on your league's waiver wire that could help your team in the short and/or long term.

For a player to be listed, he must be owned in 50 percent (or less) of Yahoo! leagues. The goal is to provide recommendations of players that have a greater chance of being available on your league's waiver wire. Of course, your league's size and settings could significantly impact whether these players (or better options) are available in your particular league(s).

With that said, here are some wide receiver waiver-wire options to consider heading into Week 12 (Yahoo! % rostered in parenthesis):

[Note: Players listed below are sorted by our preference to add.]

1. Curtis Samuel, Carolina Panthers (50%)

In Week 11 against the Detroit Lions, Samuel converted a season-high 10 targets into eight catches for 70 yards and a touchdown in addition to his four-yard carry. Heading into Monday Night Football, Samuel is the WR8 on the week with 17.4 fantasy points.

This performance was his third big game in the past four weeks. While there is still one more game to be played this week, Samuel has finished as a top-eight receiver in three of his past four games. During that four-game span, he has a total of 24 receptions for 214 yards and three touchdowns and 10 carries for 44 yards and another score.

While it would be unrealistic to continue to expect weekly top-10 performances from Samuel, he's certainly a viable WR3/flex option with upside the rest of the way.

2. Michael Pittman, Indianapolis Colts (44%)

Pittman Jr. caught all three of his targets for 66 yards and a touchdown in Week 11 against the Green Bay Packers. While the outcome (14.1 half-PPR fantasy points) was similar in terms of fantasy production to last week (15.7 points), the low volume is a small concern.

Pittman had a total of 15 targets over the previous two weeks, which corresponded to 17.5% and 22.22% target shares in Weeks 9 and 10, respectively. In Week 11, Pittman saw only 8.82% of the team's targets. Pittman was tied with two others for fifth on the team in targets as Philip Rivers spread the ball around.

In Week 12, the Colts will face the Tennessee Titans, which have allowed the sixth-most fantasy points to the position this season. And in the first matchup against the Titans (Week 10), Pittman had 7/101 on eight targets and a 21-yard run.

3. Sterling Shepard, New York Giants (45%)

Before New York's Week 11 bye, Shepard had a minimum of six receptions in his previous four games. The volume of targets (32) and receptions (26) over that stretch are a major positive, but he hasn't parlayed that volume into as much production as fantasy owners would have liked. Shepard has 219 receiving yards (8.42 Y/R) over that span.

Even so, it's difficult to ignore that volume and there a streak of favorable matchups on deck against the Bengals, Seahawks, Cardinals and Browns -- all top-12 matchups -- over the next four weeks.

4. Tim Patrick, Denver Broncos (21%)

Patrick had five catches for 119 yards on eight targets in Week 11. Over his past seven games, Patrick has either 100-plus yards and/or a touchdown in five games. During that seven-game stretch, Patrick has finished as a top-36 fantasy wide receiver (WR3) or better in all but one game.

5. Jalen Regaor, Philadelphia Eagles (28%)

It was another solid, but not spectacular, performance for Reagor in Week 11 with four catches for 52 yards on five targets against the Cleveland Browns. Since returning in Week 8, Reagor has 11 catches for 115 yards and a touchdown on 18 targets. While we'd like to see more volume, something that may not happen with Zach Ertz possibly returning soon, but Reagor and the Eagles have a dream matchup in Week 12 against the Seattle Seahawks for fantasy owners feeling lucky.

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Week 12 Fantasy Football RB Waiver-Wire Rankings

Every week, we examine players that may be available on your league's waiver wire that could help your team in the short and/or long term.

For a player to be listed, he must be owned in 50 percent (or less) of Yahoo! leagues. The goal is to provide recommendations of players that have a greater chance of being available on your league's waiver wire. Of course, your league's size and settings could significantly impact whether these players (or better options) are available in your particular league(s).

With that said, here are some running back waiver-wire options to consider heading into Week 12 (Yahoo! % rostered in parenthesis):

[Note: Players listed below are sorted by our preference to add.]

1. Gus Edwards, Baltimore Ravens (29%)

As much as I expected COVID-19 to lead to many surprise inactives throughout the season that would lead to a fantasy football version of the Wild, Wild West, that hasn't really materialized (yet). Perhaps it will in the final month-plus of the season as cases explode across the country, but so far, so good.

That said, Edwards gets a COVID-infused bump in workload as both J.K. Dobbins and Mark Ingram have been placed on the COVID-19 reserve list today and will miss Thursday's game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. The general rule with the team's backfield was the trio negating each other's fantasy relevance with a generally even workload split, although Dobbins handled 17 (73.9%) of the team's 23 backfield touches in Week 11.

As Garafolo says (or tweets), "all about the Gus Bus."

2. James White, New England Patriots (40%)

White had five carries for 19 yards and added six receptions for 64 yards on nine targets in Week 11 against the Houston Texans. White's workload (11 touches) was nearly as much as his previous four games combined (13).

Sony Michel was a healthy scratch as Damien Harris continued to handle the bulk of early-down work, but the versatile Rex Burkhead tore his ACL in Week 11. While neither Harris nor Michel are involved much as receivers, White should see his role expand as the team's primary pass-catching back going forward.

3. Frank Gore, New York Jets (10%)

Gore had 15 carries for 61 yards and a touchdown and added two catches for 10 yards in Sunday's loss to the Los Angeles Chargers. It's easy to root for Gore as a player in a real life, but he's generally a low-upside, uninspiring option in fantasy. That said, La'Mical Perine will "miss time" due to a high-ankle sprain. With the injury, Gore should have more opportunities to handle 15-20 touches like he did in Week 11.

It's possible that kind of volume pushes Gore into flex range, but he's had 14-plus carries in six games this season. Here are Gore's weekly finishes in those weeks: RB44 (Week 2), RB37 (Week 3), RB48 (Week 4), RB23 (Week 6), RB36 (Week 9) and WR11 (so far in Week 11).

4. Carlos Hyde, Seattle Seahawks (46%)

Recovered from his hamstring injury and returning after a three-game absence, Hyde turned 16 touches into 95 scrimmage yards and a score against the Arizona Cardinals on Thursday Night Football. Pete Carroll has said that Chris Carson (foot) will play in Week 12 and that Rashaad Penny is a couple weeks away. Even if Carson is active in Week 12, Hyde is a high-end handcuff.

5. Tony Pollard, Dallas Cowboys (19%)

As the clear handcuff to Ezekiel Elliott, Pollard has received a larger workload over the past six weeks. During that span, Pollard has a minimum of eight touches in five games and has averaged 8.83 touches per game over that span. More efficent than Elliott, the second-year back from Memphis has 157 rushing yards (7.48 YPC) and three catches for 25 yards (8.33 Y/R) over the past three games.

At this point, the Cowboys are very much in the thick of things in the NFC Least. If the team falls out of contention for the division, however, Pollard could earn an even larger role towards the end of the season.

6. Cam Akers, Los Angeles Rams (30%)

Here's what I wrote in last week's Waiver Wire post:

Darrell Henderson and Malcolm Brown had eight touches each.) Akers now has at least nine carries in back-to-back games and the second-round pick has the talent to earn a larger role down the stretch. If you have the bench space, Akers is worth a stash.

While Akers and the Rams won't play until Monday Night to give us any potential additional clarity with the backfield, Akers remains worthy of a RB stash as we head down the stretch.

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Week 12 Fantasy Football QB Waiver-Wire Rankings

Every week, we examine players that may be available on your league's waiver wire that could help your team in the short and/or long term.

For a player to be listed, he must be owned in 50 percent (or less) of Yahoo! leagues. The goal is to provide recommendations of players that have a greater chance of being available on your league's waiver wire. Of course, your league's size and settings could significantly impact whether these players (or better options) are available in your particular league(s).

With that said, here are some quarterback waiver-wire options to consider heading into Week 12 (Yahoo! % rostered in parenthesis):

[Note: Players listed below are sorted by our preference to add.]

1. Daniel Jones, New York Giants (28%)

A popular sleeper pick in the preseason, Jones has failed to live up to the hype. The second-year quarterback has thrown more interceptions (nine) than touchdowns (eight) this season and has zero 300-yard passing games. Through 10 games, he has surpassed the 250-yard mark only twice -- 279 vs. the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 1 and 256 yards vs. the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 8.

Looking forward, there is reason for cautious optimism.

From a fantasy perspective, Jones has been more productive recently. In his four games before the team's Week 11 bye, Jones scored at least 18 fantasy points in three games. During that four-game span, he has finished as fantasy's weekly QB11, QB14, QB24 and QB8, respectively.

Much of his fantasy scoring has been derived from his rushing ability as he now has at least 64 rushing yards in three of his past five games. With 384 yards on the ground this season, Kyler Murray (619) and Lamar Jackson (575) are the only quarterbacks with more in 2020.

All four of his upcoming opponents -- Bengals, Seahawks, Cardinals and Browns -- rank amongst the 12th-most generous fantasy defenses to opposing quarterbacks this season.

2. Taysom Hill, New Orleans Saints (42%)

With Drew Brees placed on IR, it was Hill -- not Jameis Winston -- that drew the Week 11 start, the first of his career. From a fantasy and team (a win) perspective, it was a successful debut as a starter.

Hill threw for only 233 yards and no touchdowns, but he completed 78.3% of his pass attempts (18-of-23) for an average of 10.1 Y/A. If a deep touchdown pass to Emmanuel Sanders weren't negated by a holding penalty, it would have been an even more productive day for Hill.

That said, the dual-threat quarterback delivered for his fantasy owners by what he did as a rusher -- 10 carries for a team-high 51 rushing yards and two touchdowns. Heading into Monday Night Football, Hill's 24.42 fantasy points ranks third to only Deshaun Watson (31.36) and Justin Herbert (27.74).

With his floor and upside raised by his rushing ability, Hill will be a viable starter in Weeks 12 and 13 against the Denver Broncos and a rematch against the Atlanta Falcons, respectively. Brees is eligible to return in Week 14 against the Philadelphia Eagles.

3. Derek Carr, Las Vegas Raiders (36%)

If you're looking for a one-week starter, you could certainly argue that Carr deserves to top this list as the Raiders will face the Falcons, who have allowed the most fantasy points to the position this season. Nearly as good, the Raiders will get to follow that up with another soft matchup against the New York Jets in Week 13.

Against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday Night Football, Carr completed 23-of-31 for 275 yards, three touchdowns and an interception to score 22.6 fantasy points (seventh-most so far this week).

In his previous three games (all wins), it was low volume (25 pass attempts or less) and low production (165 yards or less). Before that, Carr threw multiple touchdowns in his previous five games, a span during which he had scored 20-plus fantasy points in four of those games.

Carr was listed as a "start" in our Week 11 Fantasy Football Start'em, Sit'em and he will likely be listed as a "start" again in Week 12.

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Saturday, November 21, 2020

Washington Football Team Week 11 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2020 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Here is where the Washington Football Team rank in terms of average, best and worst:

  • Average ranking: 29.2 (29th)
  • Best ranking: 29th (Multiple)
  • Worst ranking: 30th (CBS Sports)

Below you will find a Week 11 roundup for Washington in our consensus 2020 NFL Power Rankings.

The Athletic -- Rank: 29

They played well offensively (464 yards and 34 first downs) but wasted too many opportunities against the Lions. Washington drove inside the Detroit 40 on four separate occasions in the first half but had just one field goal to show for it. Chase Young's roughing the passer penalty with 12 seconds left cost them a shot at overtime. They're still not out of it in the NFC East. Washington has a 14.9 percent chance to win the division.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 30

Alex Smith made some nice plays in his first start last week. The defense let them down against the Lions.

USA Today -- Rank: 29

Sunday provided pretty solid proof that QB Alex Smith isn't just an appreciated heartwarming story in 2020, but a man who can still play at a high level. The next benchmark will be getting his first win since 2018 -- perhaps Sunday against Cincinnati.

ESPN -- Rank: 29

What would they take back: Their stance on Dwayne Haskins Jr.

Washington was devoted to Haskins because of his talent and how he finished the 2019 campaign; he also was the team owner's selection in the previous draft. The incoming staff felt it could coax more from Haskins by challenging and supporting him, only to sour on him after 11 weeks and four starts. They were right to move on from his play, but they failed to pick up better backup options in the offseason. They needed to have Haskins compete against stiff competition, they but passed over other quarterbacks atop the draft to take Chase Young. Alex Smith is showing what a good quarterback can do in this offense, but it would have been nice to test Haskins earlier against better personnel. -- John Keim

NFL.com -- Rank: 29

Alex Smith is more than just a feel-good story now; he's back to being a legitimate starting quarterback in the NFL, and he nearly had his Disney ending on Sunday in Detroit. Smith set career highs in completions (38) and passing yards (390), leading Washington back from a 21-point deficit in the second half. Matt Prater's 59-yard field goal at the gun stopped the screenplay in its tracks, but Smith has brought stability to the quarterback position for Ron Rivera. Don't expect to hear Dwayne Haskins' name uttered again this season unless Smith goes down with an injury. Even then, don't be so sure Haskins finds a way out of the dog house.

Previous update: Washington Football Team Week 10 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

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Denver Broncos Week 11 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2020 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Here is where the Denver Broncos rank in terms of average, best and worst:

  • Average ranking: 24.4 (26th)
  • Best ranking: 22nd (CBS Sports)
  • Worst ranking: 25th (NFL.com)

Below you will find a Week 11 roundup for the Broncos in our consensus 2020 NFL Power Rankings.

The Athletic -- Rank: 28

Game-changing sequence late in the first half of their loss to the Raiders. Drew Lock scored on a 5-yard touchdown run that would've given the Broncos the lead, but it was called back for a holding penalty. Lock threw an interception -- one of four on the day -- on the next play. The Broncos are 3-6 and rank 31st in overall offense.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 22

Drew Lock looked ordinary at best against the Raiders, which is not a good thing for the long run. He has to quit turning it over.

USA Today -- Rank: 24

They better learn how to compete in AFC West after surrendering 110 points in their initial three-game swing through the division.

ESPN -- Rank: 23

What would they take back: Not picking up Garett Bolles' fifth-year option

Passing on Bolles' fifth-year option will cost Denver in the short term. Had the Broncos engaged Bolles' fifth-year option, he would have been paid slightly more than $11 million next season. While Bolles led the league in holding penalties during his first three seasons, he worked this past offseason to get stronger, and he has played with more composure as well as better hand technique. Some personnel executives believe he has played as well as any tackle in the league. The Broncos will face a decision, as well as competition for his services, when he is an unrestricted free agent in March. They'll need to cut a big check to keep him. -- Jeff Legwold

NFL.com -- Rank: 25

It is not too early to be worried about Drew Lock. The second-year quarterback's hot-and-cold sophomore season hit a nadir on Sunday with a four-interception meltdown against the rival Raiders in a 37-12 loss. Lock has thrown 10 interceptions in seven starts this year and continues to play recklessly with the football -- a cowboy style of football that doesn't quite sync up with his skill level. Lock is very young and still relatively inexperienced -- his game has clear mechanical flaws and his play could improve with good coaching and better decision-making. But will John Elway and the Broncos have the patience to live with the growing pains? Lock might need a strong finish in the final seven weeks to keep the faith.

Previous update: Denver Broncos Week 10 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

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Jacksonville Jaguars Week 11 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2020 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Here is where the Jacksonville Jaguars rank in terms of average, best and worst:

  • Average ranking: 30.8 (31st)
  • Best ranking: 30th (USA Today)
  • Worst ranking: 31st (Multiple)

Below you will find a Week 11 roundup for the Jaguars in our consensus 2020 NFL Power Rankings.

The Athletic -- Rank: 31

Give them credit for battling Green Bay and playing with enthusiasm. The Jaguars' last two losses have come by a total of six points. They get the Steelers in Week 11 and have the second-toughest remaining schedule, according to Football Outsiders.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 31

They played decent football at Green Bay, but didn't win. That's a good thing for draft position and it means some young players are getting better.

USA Today -- Rank: 30

They gave a good account of themselves at Green Bay against the NFC's current No. 1 seed. Next up for the Jags? Pittsburgh, the AFC's current No. 1 seed.

ESPN -- Rank: 31

What would they take back: Not trading up to draft Justin Herbert

The Jaguars might actually be a contender in the AFC South had they moved up to take Herbert, who has thrown for at least 264 yards in seven of his eight games and has 19 TD passes to six INTs. They would have had to give up their second first-round pick -- which they used on edge rusher K'Lavon Chaisson, who has one sack and two QB hits in nine games -- but they had the extra picks to put together a good deal. The Jaguars would have a young core of offensive players with RB James Robinson and WR DJ Chark Jr. around which to build and could be playing meaningful late-season games. -- Mike DiRocco

NFL.com -- Rank: 31

Give Doug Marrone credit: There's very little chance the coach will be around in Jacksonville beyond the 2020 season, but his players continue to fight. On Sunday, the Jaguars went back and forth with the Packers at Lambeau, even managing to take a lead in the fourth quarter. The Jags' defense was unable to hold, and Jake Luton couldn't provide a dramatic finish to save the day. James Robinson, meanwhile, wonders what could have been: He went over 100 yards from scrimmage for the fifth time this season, but he'll remember the two touchdowns wiped away by penalties. That's eight straight losses for the Jags, with the undefeated Steelers on deck.

Previous update: Jacksonville Jaguars Week 10 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

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