2015 Fantasy Football – Waiver-Wire Targets

By Chet Gresham – @ChetGresham
Follow @walterfootball for updates.

Below are players I’ll be targeting on the waiver wire this week. As usual, I’m using the 50 percent ownership threshold at Yahoo to determine who is allowed on the list.

Players are listed in the order I would assign waiver priority. A need at one position could trump that priority.

Karlos Williams, RB, Bills (25 percent)
Williams is the only running back with a touchdown in each of the first three games and has run the ball just 24 times. We, of course, can’t count on that kind of production on just eight carries a game, but we did see a bump this week in work and LeSean McCoy is not at 100 percent. Williams isn’t a slam-dunk play the rest of the season, but it’s looking more and more likely that he’ll continue to see increased workloads, and his ability has been off the charts so far.

Tyrod Taylor, QB, Bills (38 percent)
Tygod won’t stop. He just had his best game of this short season, and it was his first road game and against what was supposed to be a decent Miami defense. The good news is that he’s looked better each game and has put up true QB1 numbers, not just garbage time and rushing yards and touchdowns. He has a 74.4 percent completion percentage, completing 58-of-78 passes for 714 yards and seven touchdowns. And, his schedule is not looking bad at all. The Bills face the Giants at home next week and then go to Tennessee, then back at home against the Bengals and then onto Jacksonville before their bye.

Andy Dalton, QB, Bengals (52 percent)
Dalton has played incredibly well to start the season and is currently on pace for 4,619 yards passing, 43 touchdowns and five interceptions. That’s not too shabby and would also destroy his numbers from 2013 when he was a Top-10 quarterback in fantasy. He has faced the Raiders, Chargers and Ravens, with the Chargers looking like the best pass defense of that bunch right now. His next games will be Kansas City and then Seattle at home. Then, there is a trip to Buffalo, followed by a bye week. Those aren’t the best matchups you’ll find, but with A.J. Green, Marvin Jones, Tyler Eifert and Gio Bernard, Dalton has the weapons to keep him performing at a high level.

Lance Dunbar, RB, Cowboys (17 percent)
With Tony Romo out, it was pretty obvious that Brandon Weeden was not going to attack the defense downfield. That set up well for Dunbar, who caught 10 receptions for 100 yards. That puts him at 20 receptions through three games. He could be PPR gold going forward.

Marvin Jones, WR, Bengals (20 percent)
Jones has a ton of talent, but has been unable to stay healthy. It looks like he’s healthy now, and his workload keeps rising. He’s now scored a touchdown in each of his last two games and was second in targets to A.J. Green against the Ravens with eight, which he caught five of for 94 yards and a touchdown. Jones very well may have supplanted Tyler Eifert in the pecking order.

Michael Vick, QB, Steelers (3 percent)
If this was just about any other team, I’d say not to even take a second glance at Vick, but this team is stacked with play-makers. If Vick can find a way to move this offense even a little bit, he should have fantasy value while Ben Roethlisberger is on the shelf.

Leonard Hankerson WR, Falcons (12 percent)
Hank Time looks to have passed Roddy White for good as he’s seen 17 targets to White’s one over the last two games. Matt Ryan is going to continue feeding Julio Jones, but there will be some scraps for the No. 2 receiver, and that is Hank right now.

Thomas Rawls, RB, Seahawks (3 percent)
Rawls rushed 16 times for 104 yards against the Bears while Marshawn Lynch rested/got hurt/played Candy Crush, whatever he was doing, and Rawls looked good as his backup. Fred Jackson will remain the utility back, while Rawls would get the lead-back work if Lynch were to miss time, and even though the Seahawks haven’t looked great so far, you want whatever piece of this running game you can get.

Rishard Matthews, WR, Dolphins (2 percent)
Rishard continues to put up numbers as the Dolphins’ No. 2 receiver, and it doesn’t look like he’ll be losing that distinction very soon. Over the last two games, he’s averaged six receptions for 114 yards and a touchdown. Matthews gets a tough Jets’ defense and then a bye, and then the Dolphins head to play the Titans. I could see holding off on him if you are looking for quick production over the next two weeks.

Eric Ebron, TE, Lions (50 percent)
The Lions continue to throw the ball a lot, and that’s getting Ebron, their third option, enough work to stay fantasy relevant. It appears that as long as the Lions’ offense stays dysfunctional, the more the team will pass and the more opportunities Ebron will see.

Chris Johnson, RB, Cardinals (42 percent)
I didn’t want to believe it, but Chris Johnson has played well this season. It of course helps that he’s on a team with one of the best passing offenses in the league right now, but he’s still making plays. Andre Ellington will most likely be back in Week 4, but Chris Johnson has most likely won a bigger chunk of the workload going forward.

Charles Clay, TE, Bills (18 percent)
The play of Tyrod Taylor has elevated those around him, but Charles Clay seems to be one of Taylor’s favorite targets so far. Clay has a knee issue that’s not going away, but it seems like he’s able to play with it and should be a useful fantasy tight end while Taylor is hot.

Ted Ginn Jr., WR, Panthers (10 percent)
Devin Funchess is not turning into a good starting NFL receiver anytime soon, so that leaves Old Man Ginn Jr. as the No. 1 wide receiver on the Panthers. Ginn’s hands are often stone-like, and he’s extremely hard to trust, but could be a nice bye-week fill-in moving forward.

Zach Zenner, RB, Lions (0 percent)
Joique Bell is either still recovering from offseason surgery, or he’s completely washed up. Either makes him a black hole in this Lions’ offense. Does that mean we see more Zenner as the bruiser between the tackles? I would hope so. But right now that is just speculation, but speculation is what we do, so grab him where you can and then drop him when he continues to get no work whatsoever.

Antonio Andrews, RB, Titans (1 percent)
Andrews was the lead back for the Titans against the Colts. What does that mean exactly? Probably not much. I’m not adding him except in my deepest leagues where I have to scrap for warm bodies to start when the warm bodies on my team turn cold.

Players over 50 Percent Ownership:

Devonta Freeman (64 percent) — Freeman went absolutely off against the Cowboys with Tevin Coleman out and should be high on your waiver priority if he is there. Coleman will be back, and there will still be a timeshare, but Freeman’ll still have flex appeal when Coleman returns.

Dion Lewis (74 percent) — People may be a bit scared of the LeGarrette Blount blow-up game, but he was just a garbage man and Lewis was the bill collector, no, that’s not good. Maybe Lewis was the lion tamer? Well, it was the Jaguars, not the Lions. Okay, whatever you want! I give up.

Donte Moncrief (78 percent) — Moncrief’s probably owned in your league, but even in small, shallow leagues, he should be rostered.

Matt Jones (66 percent) — Jones was a disaster last week, or at least the play where he fumbled away a touchdown was, but he was also the lead back and would have saved his night with that touchdown. I’m a glass-is-half-full kinda guy. It’s hard to know exactly how the Redskins will use him going forward, but he has more juice in his legs than Alfred Morris, and I expect Jones’ll continue to get plenty of work, and with the Eagles and Atlanta up next, he has some upside.

Ryan Mathews (55 percent) — Mathews looks to have more burst than DeMarco Murray right now, and there is a chance Mathews gets a big upgrade in snaps even when Murray returns. The Eagles aren’t going to give all of his work to Mathews, but a more even split is possible.

Tevin Coleman (67 percent) — Coleman will be back sooner than later and should be in line for half of the work, even with Freeman’s huge game.

For more recommendations, check out WalterFootball.com’s Fantasy Football Rankings.

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