Need flex value? The waiver wire has an overflowing abundance of flexing fun. Need a viable, sure-fire, trusted option? Welp, see ya later.
Let’s play a drinking game, and take a shot every time you read the word “flex” in the many sentences below. If you make it through the entire post, you sir are a champion.
We’re skipping quarterbacks this week, though we’re only skipping them in the sense that our analysis of the QB wire can’t be read right now, at this very instant. Our excitement to find solutions for the Robert Griffin III owner should he miss time this week couldn’t be contained, so we took an extra long and extra deep and extra good look at the QB waiver options yesterday.
Alright then, let’s get drinking.
1. David Wilson: Yeah, he’s still behind Ahmad Bradshaw on the Giants’ RB depth chart, but he could be behind him only because two bodies can’t occupy the same space at the same time (this guy passed his first-year university philosophy elective). And clearly if Bradshaw is either out or limited again due to his knee problems — both strong possibilities after he underwent an MRI yesterday — then Wilson’s Week 15 potential will quickly escalate. He’s earned more touches and more playing time in general after finishing with 100 yards on just 13 carries this past Sunday night against the Saints (7.7 yards per carry) while also averaging an absurd 56.8 yards on his four kick returns. Add it all up and he set the Giants’ record for single-game all-purpose yards (327). If you’re tempted to cast his performance aside because it came against the Saints — owners of the worst rush defense in the league that’s giving up over 150 yards per game — please note Wilson’s next opponent. The Falcons have also been woeful against the run with a front seven that’s ranked 23rd, and they just allowed 195 yards on the ground against the Panthers. Bradshaw will be on the high end of a split if he’s healthy (think 70-30), but Wilson still gives you quality flex value in an ideal matchup.
Percentage owned: ESPN – 40.3%, Yahoo – 32%
2. Alex Green: I realize you’d rather stick your head in a freezer filled with human urine than own a Green Bay running back, but work with me here for a second. Similar to Wilson, you’re seeking flex value here with this pickup, and Green will produce that in abundance, possibly giving you more production than Wilson since he leads the Packers’ backfield platoon. Green’s had 127 rushing yards over his last two games on just 25 carries (five yards per carry). That’s five-to-seven points out of your flex spot, efficient numbers that shouldn’t be overlooked. Green will also be opposing a Bears run defense that’s still playing without Brian Urlacher.
Percentage owned: ESPN – 3.9%, Yahoo – 29%
3. Montell Owens: Maurice Jones-Drew’s health remains uncertain, and at this point it’s a very real possibility that he could miss the remainder of the season. Hey, at least he came at a draft day discount because he spent all of August demanding mo money and less problems, right? Right. Anywho, enter Owens since every other Jaguars running back spontaneously combusted (Rashad Jennings, Jalen Parmele). And of course, the fourth time is the charm, or whatever, as Owens had 91 rushing yards and a touchdown in his starting debut, fun and profitable math that leads to 15 fantasy points. That made Owens the 11th best fantasy running back in Week 14, ahead of Arian Foster and Frank Gore, and tied with Alfred Morris and Trent Richardson.
Percentage owned: ESPN – 8.8%, Yahoo – 23%
1. Josh Gordon: Gordon has appeared in this prestigious space before, and likely several times. And he may appear a few more times next week and beyond if his ownership doesn’t rise quickly. I get that bye weeks are long gone, and the talent pool is flooded at the wide receiver position. But Gordon being unowned in half of Yahoo leagues is a little ridiculous, you guys. Earlier in the year this was a player who was capable of only running really fast and then looking up, hoping a football was there waiting for him. And he can still do that, but lately he’s shown that a new dog can learn new tricks. After he had 12 catches during a five-game stretch between weeks 5 and 9 that he still turned into 324 receiving yards (yep, 27 yards per catch), Gordon now has 14 catches over just the Browns’ last two games. That’s led to 202 yards and a touchdown, and Sunday Gordon was targeted 12 times, a season high. If Gordon is available in your league, you should be putting a claim on him in about five minutes, the time it takes to finish reading this post (please keep me employed, thx).
Percentage owned: ESPN – 37.9%, Yahoo – 50%
2. Jason Avant: There’s a lot to like about Avant’s situation too, words I never thought I’d write about the Eagles’ offense. Avant’s 19.3 yards per catch average over the past two weeks has led to 212 yards, and like Gordon he’s getting targeted often. With 12 targets Sunday during Philly’s win over the Bucs, Avant now has 17 over the past two weeks. Now, let’s maintain a bit of perspective here, as his 133-yard day against Tampa came against the league’s worst secondary, and the Bengals’ 10th-ranked pass defense led by Nate Clements and Leon Hall is teed up for tomorrow night, along with the top pass rushing defense that leads the league with 42 sacks. So yeah, both of those things could be problematic, but with Avant’s high target volume set to increase even further with Brent Celek out and Jeremy Maclin hurting, he’s still worth a flex play.
Percentage owned: ESPN – 0.5%, Yahoo – 3%
3. Rod Streater: Usually I’m not the kind of person who says atoadaso. But you know what? Atoadaso. Streater has suddenly busted out over the Raiders’ last two games with 196 receiving yards on just seven catches. Mind you, that 28 yards per reception has been back-filled with catches for 64 and 58 yards, so it’s difficult to read too deeply into those sporadic outbursts. But at worst there’s still deep league flex value here against a Chiefs secondary that’s allowed 25 touchdowns, the second worst total in the league.
Percentage owned: ESPN – 0.4%, Yahoo – 2%
1. Dwayne Allen: Dammit this is painful. We’re greeted with just barren nothingness on the tight end wire this week, and the position as a whole has been sucked dry between the continued replacement-level play of Vernon Davis and Antonio Gates, and the injury to Brent Celek. But although Allen had an 11-yard dud of a game in Week 14, he’s still not a bad place to start if you’re desperate. Prior to Sunday against the Titans he was averaging 52.8 receiving yards over his last six games. Five fantasy points from a reaching tight end? Where do I sign.
Percentage owned: ESPN – 2.5%, Yahoo – 12%
2. Benjamin Watson: Also filed under “you could do worse” is Watson, who’s averaging nearly 50 receiving yards over his last four games, and in two of those games he was targeted at least eight times. He still has a prominent role as a checkdown bail out option.
Percentage owned: ESPN – 4.2%, Yahoo – 2%
3. Rob Housler: How the hell could the Cardinals’ tight end have any value whatsoever when Larry Fitzgerald is borderline drop-able? Well, those in point per reception leagues need to note the collective calamity of the Arizona quarterbacks, and the resulting frequency with which they target Housler, as he has 27 targets over his last three games. That’s led to 19 receptions over that stretch, and 133 yards. Somehow we live in a world where Rob Housler may be the only receiving option with any value on the Cardinals’ roster.
Percentage owned: ESPN – 0.1%, Yahoo – 1%