by Ray Kuhn
The waiver wire has been quiet for the last few weeks, but this week might be a little different. There are few options potentially available, and while they might not be the most exciting they offer some hope. How do those “fliers” fit into the rankings? Who should we be trusting overall? Let’s take a look at what we can expect and how our options rank:
- Kareem Hunt – Kansas City Chiefs – at New York Giants
- Le’Veon Bell – Pittsburgh Steelers – vs. Tennessee
- Todd Gurley – Los Angeles Rams – at Minnesota
- LeSean McCoy – Buffalo Bills – at LA Chargers
- Leonard Fournette – Jacksonville Jaguars – at Cleveland
- Mark Ingram – New Orleans Saints – vs. Washington
- Melvin Gordon – Los Angeles Chargers – vs. Buffalo
- Jordan Howard – Chicago Bears – vs. Detroit
- Alvin Kamara – New Orleans Saints – vs. Washington
- Jay Ajayi – Philadelphia Eagles – at Dallas
- Tevin Coleman – Atlanta Falcons – at Seattle
- Chris Thompson – Washington Redskins – at New Orleans
- Isaiah Crowell – Cleveland Browns – vs. Jacksonville
- DeMarco Murray – Tennessee Titans – at Pittsburgh
- Kenyan Drake – Miami Dolphins – vs. Tampa Bay
- Lamar Miller – Houston Texans – vs. Arizona
- Jerick McKinnon – Minnesota Vikings – vs. LA Rams
- Joe Mixon – Cincinnati Bengals – at Denver
- Orleans Darkwa – New York Giants – vs. Kansas City
- Doug Martin – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – at Miami
- Adrian Peterson – Minnesota Vikings – at Houston
- Duke Johnson – Cleveland Browns – vs. Jacksonville
- Jamaal Williams – Green Bay Packers – vs. Baltimore
- Rex Burkhead – New England Patriots – at Oakland
- Marshawn Lynch – Oakland Raiders – vs. New England
- Ameer Abdullah – Detroit Lions – at Chicago
- Alfred Morris – Dallas Cowboys – vs. Philadelphia
- Latavius Murray – Minnesota Vikings – vs. LA Rams
- C.J. Anderson – Denver Broncos – vs. Cincinnati
- Theo Riddick – Detroit Lions – at Chicago
- Javorius Allen – Baltimore Ravens – at Green Bay
- Dion Lewis – New England Patriots – at Oakland
- Samaje Perine – Washington Redskins – at New Orleans
- J.D McKissic – Seattle Seahawks – vs. Atlanta
- Derrick Henry – Tennessee Titans – at Pittsburgh
- Austin Ekeler – Los Angeles Chargers – vs. Buffalo
- Damien Williams – Miami Dolphins – vs. Tampa BAy
- Thomas Rawls - Seattle Seahawks – vs. Atlanta
- Alex Collins – Baltimore Ravens – at Green Bay
- James White – New England Patriots – at Oakland
- We now have official word that Rob Kelley has been placed on injured reserve and is out for the season. What does that mean for fantasy owners? Their first inclination should be to feel relief. as Kelley has been banged up all season and when he has been on the field the results haven’t exactly been there. Now Kelley can be safely released. On 62 carries he is averaging just 3.1 yards per carry while not being a factor in the passing game. The passing game is the domain of Chris Thompson ,who has two 100-plus yard efforts as part of his 38 receptions for 494 yards and three touchdowns. The Redskins try to limit Thompson’s workload on the ground to keep him fresh, but based on the results (4.6 yards per carry on 60 carries) it is going to be hard to continue to do so. Entering the season there were some expectations around Samaje Perine, but with just 3.2. yards per carry on 66 carries he has failed to distinguish himself. When Kelley was previously injured Perine didn’t exactly grab hold of the job, and it’s hard to expect a different result this time. However he is worth a glance on the waiver wire just in case. I also would be careful not to give Thompson much more of a boost, but it’s hard to argue with the success he has had so far and now we know that isn’t going away.
- Another backfield that has been a mess got a little clearer with Seattle placing C.J. Prosise on injured reserve. With only 32 backfields you can’t ignore any situation, but the Seahawks’ is one that shouldn’t take too much of your attention. When healthy Eddie Lacy hasn’t done anything (128 yards on 48 carries) and I wouldn’t pay much attention to him either this week or the rest of the season. The problem is that Thomas Rawls hasn’t exactly been any better, or worse for that matter, with 125 yards on 49 carries. So, instead of chasing something that will likely never develop, we should just look to Prosise’s replacement in J.D McKissic. In spotty playing time McKissic is averaging 4.4 yards per carry on 21 carries with a touchdown, but his true value comes as a receiver. Again the sample size is small, but McKissic has 13 receptions for 126 yards and a touchdown. The fact that he has some foot speed and can catch the ball sets him apart from his competition, and if you must target one Seattle back he should be it.
- This is what Tevin Coleman owners have been waiting for. Obviously, and this cannot be stressed enough, we don’t want to see any player get injured, but due to Devonta Freeman’s concussion Coleman is now the starter. Atlanta’s offense is not what it was last season, and Coleman’s workload (Freeman’s too) has left fantasy owners disappointed but the production has been there when they have been given a chance. After Freeman’s concussion last week Coleman did carry the ball 20 times and he gained a solid 83 yards while scoring a touchdown. Overal, Coleman is averaging 4.8 yards per carry on 83 carries while also catching 17 passes for 203 yards. We do have to worry about Terron Ward getting some work in replacing Freeman, but it is clear we will see Coleman’s touches increase. Against a team in Seattle that has allowed the fifth lowest point totals to opposing running backs there likely will be better match-ups, but Coleman is easily starting worthy.
- We take production any place we can get it, and after last week we should be looking in Los Angeles. Or are we just overreacting? With Melvin Gordon not going anywhere for the Chargers and the fact that 15 of Aaron Ekeler’s 44 touches this season cameon Sunday, I think we might be. This doesn’t mean Ekeler isn’t going to be on my waiver wire radar, but he’s also not someone I’m going to rush out to grab. As just about every running back has done, Gordon struggled on the ground against Jacksonville as he gained 27 yards on 16 carries. Ekeler managed to pick up 42 yards on 10 carries, and the Chargers were leaning on him to control the clock at the end of the game. Once he fumbled that task went back to Gordon. Where Ekeler truly made his presence felt was through the air, as he caught five passes for 77 yards and two touchdowns. He certainly looked explosive in that role, but the Chargers do lean on Gordon in the passing game. He was targeted eight times, which led the team, and he has 35 receptions for 250 yards this season. Ekeler might have increased his role, but Gordon’s hold on the starting job isn’t going anywhere.
- With Aaron Jones sidelined for a few weeks with a knee injury and Ty Mongtomery’s rib injury aggravated once again, Jamaal Williams is the next man up for Green Bay. Brett Hundley looked a little better under center this past week for the Packers, so their offense isn’t a complete bust. Whether it was Jones (two games of more than 100 yards) or Montgomery in the backfield the Packers’ running game has had success, and I would expect that to continue with Williams for Week 11. After both running backs were injured the rookie carried the ball 20 times for 67 yards while also catching one pass for seven yards. The only other healthy running back on Green Bay’s roster is Devante Mays, so Williams should see a substantial workload. It comes against Baltimore, whose run defense has been roughly league average, so Williams should have a solid afternoon.
- The Eagles traded for Jay Ajayi to use him, and after their bye week that is what I would expect to see happen. Yes it is a crowded backfield, Corey Clement and LeGarrette Blount will have a role, but Ajayi is going to be the running back to own. This week Philadelphia faces the Cowboys, who are without Sean Lee, so Ajayi and company should find some room to run. Even after being acquired mid-week he gained 77 yards and scored a touchdown on eight carries two weeks ago, and being out of Miami should suit him well.
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Make sure to check out all of our Week 11 rankings: