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:
Tyler Boyd – Cincinnati Bengals – Wide Receiver
A.J. Green was lost early on Sunday and talk is that he could be lost for the rest of the season. The team had four players with at least six targets in the game in his absence:
- Brandon LaFell – 9
- Tyler Boyd – 8
- Giovani Bernard – 8
- Tyler Eifert – 6
Bernard and Eifert were already likely owned, so it’s the two wide receivers that should pique our interest. We know what LaFell is already (plus he struggled, with just 4 receptions), but Boyd should definitely carry some intrigue. The second round rookie picked up 6 receptions for 58 yards and 1 TD yesterday and prior to the draft NFL.com compared him to Keenan Allen saying, “Boyd makes up for a lack of speed with vice grips for hands and being intelligent in his routes. Boyd isn’t a standalone WR1, but he can be a very productive starter in a play-action attack that allows him to play to his strengths.”
Verdict – Worth owning in all three-receiver formats
Mike Gillislee – Buffalo Bills – Running Back
According to Joe Buscaglia of WKBW Buffalo:
“According to the team, McCoy will need to have surgery to fix his thumb injury. However, the expectation from the Bills is that they’ll have their top running back Sunday in the team’s next game against Jacksonville on November 27.”
Obviously it’s not impossible that McCoy is ready to suit up, but we also can’t label it a given. Gillislee, for his part, has performed well over the past two seasons (14 games) when given the chance. It’s not a huge sample, but he’s taken his 89 carries for 521 yards (5.85 YPC) and 7 TD. The question is if he’ll get the chance or not, and given the Bills history this season that’s hard to bank on.
Verdict – Must own handcuff/Deep league stash
Dorial Beckham-Green – Philadelphia Eagles – Wide Receiver
The Eagles were forced to throw the ball 45 times, so we don’t want to read too much into Beckham-Green’s performance (he turned 8 targets into 5 receptions, 54 yards and 1 TD). That said, no one has ever questioned his potential and we knew it would take time for him to become incorporated into the Eagles’ offense. He’s shown flashes, but it’s going to take more than 1 game for us to fully buy in. In deeper formats he’s always been worth stashing (especially dynasty leagues), but in most cases he’s not going to be trustworthy quite yet.
Verdict – Deep league stash
Alex Collins – Seattle Seahawks – Running Back
The injury to C.J. Prosise is going to force Collins into action, though there is potential for production despite his lack of opportunities thus far. After being drafted NFL.com’s Mark Dulgerian said of Collins:
Collins fits what Seattle likes in it’s runners-a downhill, power-back with enough speed to break through the 2nd level. Their RB depth is shaky so Collins should get plenty of opportunity to contribute early.
While he’s hardly a lock to produce, and the Seahawks will likely add another option, Collins is worth grabbing if you are desperate for help.
Verdict – Worth stashing for RB needy teams
Malcolm Mitchell – New England Patriots – Wide Receiver
With Chris Hogan and Rob Gronkowski sidelined we knew someone would step up. Most pointed towards Julian Edelman (8 catches, 77 yards and 1 TD) and Martellus Bennett (1 catch on 2 targets), but it was Mitchell who made the most of his opportunities. While he was targeted just 5 times, he had 4 catches for 98 yards and 1 TD. On the flipside, Edelman was targeted 17 times and you have to start wondering a little bit about him despite seemingly coming around the past few weeks.
This is the first time Mitchell has had more than 2 catches in a game all season and it’s hard to expect continuous big performances, especially once Gronkowski returns. If Hogan was going to be sidelined then there’s more of a chance, but for now Mitchell is more of a player to monitor.
Verdict – Monitor, but hard to trust like most Patriots’ skill players
Jared Cook – Green Bay Packers – Tight End
He was the only Packer to be targeted more than 6 times against the Redskins, as he turned 11 targets into 6 receptions, 105 yards and 1 TD. Long a breakout candidate, this was his first game since September 25 so it’s nice to see him incorporated so heavily. At the same time, can we truly anticipate him being targeted nearly twice as much as the Packers’ talented receiving corps each week:
- Jordy Nelson – 5 targets
- Randall Cobb – 5 targets
- Davante Adams – 6 targets
In other words, it’s hard to bank on this type of usage on a weekly basis, despite the upside.
Verdict – Streaming option for now
Adam Thielen – Minnesota Vikings – Wide Receiver
With Stefon Diggs stifled by the matchup, the Vikings turned to Cordarelle Patterson (8 targets) and Thielen (5 targets). It was the latter who stepped up, turning his targets into 5 catches, 65 yards and 1 TD. While he has scored in back-to-back games, keep in mind that he’s topped 70 yards just once all season and Diggs is going to return to being the lead receiver in short order. Don’t bother.
Verdict – Not dependable
Tajae Sharpe – Tennessee Titans – Wide Receiver
It’s nice to see the big game (4 receptions, 68 yards, 1 TD), but he was behind Rishard Matthews (9 receptions, 122 yards) and he was targeted 7 times. In most weeks the offense is likely going to run through Delanie Walker and DeMarco Murray, with Matthews also stepping up. On a weekly basis Sharpe is going to be a tough sell.
Verdict – Not worth it
Sources – ESPN, NFL.com
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Make sure to check out all of our Week 12 rankings: