by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)
Looking to hit the waiver wire? Who isn’t looking to improve, though making any hasty decisions off one game could ultimately prove more costly than helpful. With that in mind, let’s take a look at a few players who may be available and if they are worth targeting or not:
Jordan Howard – Running Back – Chicago Bears
We were proponents of adding him after Week 2, given the struggles of Jeremy Langford, and Howard’s Sunday night performances helps to hammer it home:
- Rushing – 9 carries for 45 yards
- Receiving – 4 receptions (6 targets) for 47 yards
Langford did break a 23 yard run, but finished the day with just 3 carries and 2 receptions (on 3 targets) before being forced from the game due to injury. Given how bad he was over the first two weeks and the potential that Howard possesses, this appears to be the changing of the guard in the Bears’ backfield. Howard is a must own option, as he has the upside of a must play RB2 (and occasionally more than that, depending on the matchup).
Verdict – Must Add
Wendell Smallwood – Running Back – Philadelphia Eagles
With Ryan Mathews sidelined for much of the game and the Eagles enjoying a big lead, they unleashed Smallwood in the second half and watched him flourish (17 carries for 79 yards and 1 TD). Of course he wasn’t the only Eagles running back to enjoy the day against Pittsburgh:
- Kenjon Barner – 8 carries for 42 yards and 1 TD
- Darren Sproles – 6 receptions for 128 yards and 1 TD
The Eagles are entering their bye week, which will allow them time to sort things out (as well as allow Mathews to get healthy, if it was an injury that sidelined him). This appears to be headed to a true committee, with Mathews/Smallwood handling the early down work, Sproles the receiving duties and Barner being a factor as well. That turns this into a tough situation to buy into, though it doesn’t hurt to invest in deeper formats just in case.
Verdict – Worth adding as a stash, but not as a player to depend on quite yet
Orleans Darkwa – Running Back – New York Giants
With Rashad Jennings sidelined and Shane Vereen losing another fumble, Darkwa made the most of his opportunity as he took 10 carries for 53 yards and 1 TD. That said, he’s going to be nothing more than a complimentary back when Jennings is healthy. The Giants learned their lesson last season, and there’s little chance that they go with a three-headed type monster once again.
Verdict – Only worth adding if Jennings will miss another week
Terrelle Pryor – Wide Receiver – Cleveland Browns
The Browns clearly wanted to get him involved in the offense, letting him do a little bit of everything:
- Passing – 3-5, 35 yards, 0 TD, 0 INT
- Rushing – 4 carries for 21 yards and 1 TD
- Receiving – 8 catches for 144 yards
With the quarterback position a mess, he should still receive opportunities there in an effort to keep defenses honest. He also should be one of the most targeted receivers (he was targeted 14 times yesterday), even after Josh Gordon returns to the lineup. In other words he has the potential to stuff the stat sheet each and every week on a team that should often play from behind and needs play-makers, which is going to make him one of the more intriguing additions this week.
Verdict – Must Add
Adam Humphries – Wide Receiver – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Buccaneers threw the ball 58 times, with Doug Martin sidelined, so there were obviously significant targets to go around. It’s still notable that Humphries was the second most targeted receiver on the team:
- Mike Evans – 13
- Adam Humphries – 12
- Vincent Jackson – 6
It’s possible he continues to be ahead of Vincent Jackson on the depth chart, as the veteran has struggled to just 9 receptions for 99 yards over the first three weeks. Humphries has been targeted 25 times thus far, turning them into 18 catches and 201 yards. That said he’s not a red zone/TD option (he’s listed at 5’11”) and hasn’t shown big play potential (11.2 yards per reception). In PPR formats he’s worth the add, but otherwise he can continue to be ignored.
Verdict – PPR Addition Only
Jamison Crowder – Wide Receiver – Washington Redskins
He was one of four Redskins to be targeted at least 7 times, picking up 4 receptions for 78 yards and 1 TD. The running game is questionable, and there’s a chance that Crowder becomes one of the more consistent performers with DeSean Jackson being a bit of a boom or bust type and Pierre Garcon on the downside of his career.
Crowder is emerging as a big play threat, and also has consistently been targeted by Kirk Cousins (7+ targets in each of the first three games). At 5’8” he’s not going to be much of a TD threat (despite scoring each of the past two weeks) and that limits any potential appeal.
Verdict – Only a PPR Consideration
Cameron Brate – Tight End – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
With Austin Seferian-Jenkins cut, Brate has emerged as the team’s top tight end and a go to option in the red zone (5 receptions, 46 yards, 2 TD). It was an impressive day, though how often is the team going to throw the football nearly 60 times? He also doesn’t have the upside of many others at his position, limiting his appeal despite the big game.
Verdict – Nothing More Than A TE2-type
Source – ESPN