by Will Overton
You only have a couple more weeks to really go for it and secure a playoff spot in your league, so we’re at a point where you can’t have that struggling option stuck on your bench that you can’t bring yourself to cut ties. If you’re at a point where you have that guy and it’s time to finally move on, we have some Week 11 standouts from the waiver wire for you here to consider:
Lamar Jackson – QB, Baltimore Ravens
This one obviously first comes down to whether or not Jackson remains the Baltimore Ravens quarterback, or if a healthy Joe Flacco takes his job back. For the purpose of this we are looking at is if he does remain the starter and whether he’ll have fantasy value. Jackson made the most of his opportunity on the ground where he rushed an incredible 27 times totaling 117 yards. The passing wasn’t terrible, but certainly watered down, ending the game 13–19 with 150 yards and 1 INT.
Jackson’s ability to run obviously makes him intriguing for fantasy football, but I still think he’s a matchup play only right now. That said, if he does start in Week 12 against that Raiders I obviously like that matchup.
Verdict: Matchup play if he is starting, but I do like him for Week 12
Gus Edwards – RB, Baltimore Ravens
In a bit of a surprise the Ravens turned the running game over to Edwards as he out carried Alex Collins 17 – 7. Edwards took those 17 carries and turned them into 115 yards and a TD for what was one of the best rushing games of the season for the Ravens. Edwards is a bigger bruising style back, checking in at 238 lbs. There is certainly a place for that type of back in the NFL, but I’m not sure it’s in a featured role. He could be one of those guys who just comes out of nowhere and ends up being a monster, but I’m still taking a wait and see approach. That said, in fantasy football if a guy is getting starters touches you almost have to own him.
Verdict: I have reservations, but you have to add him if he’s going to start
Theo Riddick – RB, Detroit Lions
Seeing Kerryon Johnson leave the game yesterday with a knee injury was a blow to the Lions, but it could be a boon for Theo Riddick’s fantasy value. Early reports are that Johnson likely has only a strain, but even that will probably keep him from playing Thursday on a short week. Riddick has been getting more involved in the passing game the last three weeks with 18 catches and now he should get even more run, and possibly some action in the running game too.
Verdict: You should own him at least while Kerryon Johnson is out
Royce Freeman – RB, Denver Broncos
After missing a month Freeman returned yesterday and took his role back from Devontae Booker. While Freeman seems to be on a shorter end of the split with Phillip Lindsay, he still has a role. Freeman carried the ball seven times for 23 yards and found the end zone for the fifth time in his last seven games. He should continue to see 7–12 carries per week and is always a risk to punch one in for a TD given his role. His ceiling isn’t great, but if you’re in a pinch he’ll get you double digit points as long as he scores.
Verdict: Doesn’t have the game to game upside as others, but given the TD potential he’s worth owning
Keke Coutee – WR, Houston Texans
Out for the last month, Coutee returned this week and looked pretty good as he was targeted a team high nine times. It was unclear what kind of role he would have since the Texans traded for Demaryius Thomas while he was hurt, but Thomas was targeted just once and didn’t catch a single pass. Coutee is the clear slot guy that is turning into a move the chain machine. I don’t know how many TD we’ll get from him, but Coutee could turn into a PPR must start soon.
Verdict: Top option at WR this week
DJ Moore – WR, Carolina Panthers
It would seem that Moore has moved to the top of the food chain as far as receiving options in Carolina, not counting Christian McCafferey. Moore had his best game yesterday catching seven passes for 157 yards and a TD. We knew he had big play ability and we saw it this week, including an 82 yard catch. I do think there is still some risk because things could look different from week to week with Carolina and there is a risk that he disappears in a game.
Verdict: He’s someone you need to own, but there is still risk of a down game from time to time
Tre’Quan Smith – WR, New Orleans Saints
A week ago the fantasy football world fell out of love with Smith when he failed to catch a single pass against the Bengals, in a game the Saints offense exploded. Now here comes Week 11 and the Saints offense explodes again, but this time Smith is the focal point of it. He caught 10 passes on 13 targets for 157 yards and a TD. He clearly has some upside, but he hasn’t found that consistency and owners will always be a bit scared to start him because you know you could get 20 points or 0. I like his long term upside, but for the remainder of this season I’d put him third on this list of receivers.
Verdict: There’s upside, but there’s also a fair amount of risk that offsets it
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Make sure to check out all of our Week 12 rankings: