Fantasy Football Week 5 - Top Waiver Wire Adds

Fantasy Football Week 5 - Top Waiver Wire Adds

Every Tuesday afternoon I'll send this sheet out to the interwebs, highlighting this week's top waiver wire pick-ups.
Criteria to Make this List:
  • All players must be owned in less than 50% of Yahoo Leagues.
  • FAAB is based on $100 budget. Y'all can do the simple math if your league isn't $100... The first bullet for each player is how much I would recommend spending on your league.
  • Is this FA Worthy of your top waiver wire claim?​ The second bullet is whether or not I would recommend spending your #1 WW claim on this player.

Sorry for any typos, I'v g0t no tyme to proophread.


Andy Dalton - Bengals (46% Owned)

  • $3-5
  • I would NOT use #1 claim.
  • After being wrongly written off following a slow start, Dalton has been on fire no-pun intended, over the last two weeks under newly appointed OC Bill Lazor. Dalton is QB6 in fantasy over the last two weeks, throwing for 498 yards, 6 touchdowns and 0 interceptions. 
  • But, before we anoint Dalton a QB1 like a lot of us had him pegged for preszn, he gets a tough matchup next week at home against Buffalo, a bye in Week 6 and a tough pass defense in Pittsburgh in Week 7. If you're in a shallower league, it might not be worth rostering him if you can't use him until Week 8. If you have the roster space, he does get Indy in Week 8.

Deshaun Watson - Texans (33% Owned)

  • $4-6
  • I would NOT use #1 claim.
  • Apparently Watson was a bust after playing one half of professional football. 
  • Turns out we shouldn't make career-long assessments after 30 minutes of football, who'd have known.
  • Watson has answered the critics and then some after a brutal Week 1. He currently sits as QB4 in fantasy behind just Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers and Russell Wilson. 
  • Watson did accumulate 42% of his 2017 fantasy points in Week 4, throwing for 283 yards and four scores on 25 completions, adding another score and 24 yards with his legs on four carries. Watson and Hopkins are showing great chemistry and Will Fuller is back at full strength to add to his weapons, catching 2 touchdowns in his first game back in 2017 following his preszn broken collarbone.
  • Watson leads all QBs in rushing yards (148) on the season despite having the 7th most QB carries and trails only Marcus Mariota (3) in rushing touchdowns (2).
  • I will say, Watson's past two games where he's put his name on the map were against New England and Tennessee, two of the worst pass defenses in the NFL right now, so before I'm ready to throw Watson in as my starter, I'd like to see him do it again against a much better pass defense in Week 5 versus Kansas City on Sunday Night Football. 

Running Backs

J.D. McKissic (3% Owned)/Eddie Lacy (19% Owned)/Thomas Rawls (29% Owned)

  • $5-8 on Rawls, $2-4 on Lacy, $2-4 on McKissic.
  • I would NOT use #1 claim.
  • Goddam, Carson was my homie I hate it had to be him. A broken ankle will see us lose the promising rookie for the rest of 2017, leaving a disgusting backfield.
  • McKissic would have been the easy add for me had Pete Carroll came out and say he fulluy expects Prosise to be back in Week 5. Had that not been the case I think McKissick would have stolen the 3rd down role but now it's anybodies guess as to who wins what here.
  • I like Carroll because he doesn't feel the need to play guys because he's supposed to, as in, McKissic was a savage on SNF, there's no reason to put Prosise in on 3rd downs if McKissic looks better. That's not the case with 90% of NFL coaches, they suck. Carroll said during the week that he'd give McKissic the opportunity to fill Prosise's role and he did just that, rushing four times for 38 yards along with catching his only target for 27 yards, scoring a touchdown both with his legs and on his lone reception. McKissic is a smaller back (5-10, 195) and won't be relied on to take carries in between the tackles, he didn't look great on SNF doing that imo. He excelled on bouncing his runs to the outside and one-cutting his way past wimpy tackles, but I can't imagine him seeing anymore than 4-6 carries a game if he wins the 3rd down role. He is, however, an excellent pass-catching back, piling up a ridiculous 289 receptions at Arkansas State playing receiver in college. He'll continue to be covered by safeties and linebackers when breaking routes out of the backfield which'll be a mismatch 25/7. All that being said, it's also possible C.J. Prosise returns to his normal 3rd down role and McKissic is dust in the wind.
  • Even with Rawls being a healthy scratch, and Lacy rushing for 52 yards on 11 carries, I'd put my money on the former being the early down back to own in Seattle, although it's not a great spot to be in, in the first place. The way I see it, neither of these two backs are going to be as good as Carson was, they can't make guys miss and create something out of nothing like the rookie had been doing through the first half of the season. And the fact that Carson began dominating snaps and early down work means he's about 10x more valuable than either of these guys because as I said, they won't be as good, and second, it's going to be a committee on a team with a shitty offensive line and not exactly a ton of goal-line opportunities. I'm not breaking the bank on either, but if I'm shelling out cash it'll be towards Rawls and McKissic. There's risk no matter where you lay the money down in this backfield.

Latavius Murray (17% Owned)/Jerick McKinnon (3% Owned) - Vikings

  • $5-8 on Murray, $5-8 on McKinnon.
  • I would NOT use #1 claim on Murray or McKinnon.
  • Dalvin Cooks tears ACL in Week 4, out for szn.
  • Murray came out yesterday and said his ankle isn't even fully healed from the offszn surgery that forced him to miss most of the preszn. After Cook left, Murray played in 33% of snaps compared to McKinnon's 19%. Murray out-carried McKinnon (7-2), but both saw two targets. McKinnon left their Week 4 game w/ an ankle injury so we'll have to await word on its seriousness before dropping guap.
  • I think the best thing to do here is look back to 2016, when McKinnon and Matt Asiata (comparable to Murray) were the Vikings main RBs.
  • McKinnon (15 Games)
    • 539 rush yards on 159 carries (3.4 ypc), 2 RUSH TDs.
    • 255 receiving yards on 43 receptions, 2 REC TDs.
    • After Adrian Peterson's first two games in 2016, McKinnon averaged 15.2 touches per game.
    • 3 rushes inside 5-yard line (1/3 TDs).
    • 7 rushes inside 10-yard line (1/7 TDs).
    • 2 targets inside 10-yard line (1/2 TDs).
  • Asiata (16 Games)
    • 402 rushing yards on 121 carries (3.3 ypc), 6 RUSH TDs.
    • 263 receiving yards on 32 receptions, 0 REC TDs.
    • After Adrian Peterson's first two games in 2016, Asiata averaged 10.1 touches per game.
    • 17 rushes (t-3rd in NFL) inside 5-yard line (5/17 TDs)
    • 26 rushes inside 10-yard line (6/26 TDs)
    • 0 targets inside 10-yard line.
  • I would expect a similar breakdown, McKinnon getting most of the receiving work, ~40% of early down work, but Murray to dominate goal-line and short yardage touches.
  • McKinnon saw 15+ touches in 7-of-13 games he played in following Peterson playing in Week 2. Asiata only hit that number 3 times and one of them McKinnon was not playing. 
  • I'm in the minority here but I'd rather own McKinnon here, especially in PPR formats (assuming he's healthy). Murray is no where near the back that Cook was, he's at less than 100% and he's going to lose a lot of passing-down work. Let someone else spend the necessary guap in your league to acquire LM.
  • In 2016, Vikings RBs (total) averaged 19.8 carries/game and 4.9 receptions/game. The team averaged 315 total yards and 20.4 points per game.
  • In 2017, Vikings RBs (total) are averaging 24.5 carries/game and 5.25 receptions/game. The team is averaging 371 total yards and 19.8 points per game.
  • Their next four games are: @CHI, GB, BAL, @CLV - nothing I'm scared of here.

Alex Collins - Ravens (10% Owned)

  • $3-6
  • I would NOT use #1 claim.
  • Collins now has back-to-back games of exactly 82 rushing yards on 9 carries (9.1 ypc). It's the second week in a row leading the team in carries, outrushing Buck Allen and Terrance West 164-41 (combined) over that span.
  • However, another fumble from the sophomore RB, his 2nd in 3 games, has HC John Harbaugh pissed. We'll have to see if this effects Collins' play time, but in an offense that badly needs playmakers, Collins has looked every bit of one.
  • He gets a plus matchup @ Oakland in Week 5 who's surrendering 120 yards per game on the ground.
  • Buck Allen is still very much the pass-catcher in this backfield as Collins is still catch-less on the szn.

Aaron Jones - Packers (11% Owned)

  • $4-5
  • I would NOT use #1 claim, unless I'm a TyMont owner.
    • Jones looked to be the #1 WW claim this week after Packers starting RB Ty Montgomery left the game with what appeared to be broken ribs, and Jamaal Williams exited with a knee injury. Turns out, neither injuries are too serious. TyMont was originally believed to miss a few weeks, but things swung 180 degrees and he's now listed as day-to-day. TyMont says he feels way better than at the time of the injury and now it's about making sure no internal damage can come as a result of the broken ribs. McCarthy fully expects him to be in the lineup for their Week 5 tilt at Dallas on 10 days rest. We'll have to wait and see. Jones will be a high-end RB2 if TyMont can't play in Week 5.
    • Following an impressive performance by Jones, the SPARQ score standout should be able to grab the #2 role while Williams recovers from what looks to be at least a one week knee sprain. Williams has been awful this year and there's no reason GB should keep trotting him back on the field to run for 2 yards and disappear into a pile. Montgomery has now left 3-of-4 games this season with an injury. All have been minor, but it's just a matter of time before the injury prone RB is sidelined indefinitely. Jones arguably ran better (13-49-1) than TyMont has at any point this year (3.3 ypc). Jones also got the cosign from Aaron Rodgers this week, "I’ve been a big fan of his since the beginning," said Rodgers in a postgame presser. "Very natural runner.
    • Jones isn't someone that needs to be immediately added in shallow leagues, but if I'm a TyMont owner it's definitely worth the investment. Jones has one of the highest upsides of an RB in fantasy football.

    Alvin Kamara - Saints (46% Owned)

    • $5-10
    • I would NOT use #1 claim.
    • I had to check my eyes to make sure I was seeing correctly after I read "Kamara - 10 receptions" in the Saints Sunday matchup versus Miami in London.
    • With Peterson involved in just 6 snaps on Sunday, it's not clear exactly who the RB1 is in NO, but it's crystal who the RB3 is.
    • Ingram is still dominating the backfield in snaps (51%-32%) and carries (42-15), but Ingram hasn't been able to run away with the job and is yet to score a touchdown. Kamara is shaping up to be the main pass catcher, out-targeting (26-20), out-catching (20-15) and out-gaining 147-125 Ingram through the air, and has scored twice in just four games.
    • Kamara has played in over 35% of the teams snaps just once this year, while Ingram hasn't dropped below 40% yet. 
    • It's likely the timeshare continues, as both backs are used efficiently in this backfield, but it's MUCH closer than I would've ever expected at the start of the szn.
    • Ingram is currently RB27 in standard, Kamara RB24. Ingram is currently RB in PPR25, Kamara is RB18. It looks great from the outside, but I can't sit here and say I'm comfortable starting Kamara yet on a week-to-week basis unless I'm in a full PPR. He's had two games with double digit touches, but two games of 5 touches or less. 
    • I'd probably still rather own Ingram right now because he's game script proof, but both guys will be heavily utilized moving forward and are decent RB3/flex options in all format.

    Andre Ellington - Cardinals (23% Owned)

    • $4-8
    • I would NOT use #1 claim.
    • Chris Johnson can dominate carries all he wants in an offense that blows at running, Ellington is the back to own in Arizona.
    • The Cardinals have averaged nearly 46 pass attempts per game, which is 1st in the NFL. The next closest team (NYG) is around 41.5 attempts per game. Ellington is the clear pass-catcher in this offense, with 29 targets on the season, and 21 over the last two weeks. He reeled in 9-of-14 targets on Sunday for 86 yards. He's also averaged 4.0 yards per carry on 10 rushes in that span.
    • Ellington led the backfield in snaps for the second consecutive week. 
    • No team has thrown more in the RZ than Arizona and Carson Palmer.
    • He should continue to be heavily utilized in the receiving game similar to David Johnson, going forward, regardless of their health at WR. 
    • He's a much better play in PPR leagues obviously and holds serious flex appeal going forward.

    Matt Breida - 49ers (12% Owned)

    • $2-5
    • I would NOT use #1 claim, maybe as a Hyde owner.
    • Hyde came into the game with what sounded like a decently serious hip injury, but still came away with his full 21-touch workload.
    • Breida is basically the only RB on the team getting carries outside of Hyde and will become the workhorse in this backfield if Hyde does get injured.
    • He doesn't hold any standalone value, but would be come an immediate RB2 with upside if something were to happen to the oft-injured stud Hyde.
    • Breida is right on pace with Hyde in yards after contact (2.6-2.7) and is averaging more tackles alluded (0.2/carry) than Hyde (0.14/carry). Basically, Breida is good too, and he'd be a good fit for Shanahan's offensive scheme in San Fran.

    Gio Bernard - Bengals (20% Owned)

    • $3-5
    • I would NOT use #1 claim.
    • Despite all the hype around Mixon, Gio has been by far and away the most efficient back in Cincinnati. He leads Bengals RBs in ypc (4.9), yac (3.5), tackles alluded per carry (0.11), tied w/ Mixon in targets (11), leads in receiving yards (126), total touchdowns (2) and in both standard and PPR fantasy points.
    • Mixon has seen 21 touches in both games since new OC Bill Lazor has taken over, but has yet to score a touchdown or top 3.4 yards per carry in either game, Gio has done both in both games.
    • It may not happen, but it could be in Lazor's best interest to start weening the workload a bit more towards Gio in the future. 
    • Gio isn't much more than a desperate flex play, but if his usage increases, he'll be an under-the-radar steady flex play going forward in PPR leagues.

    Wayne Gallman - Giants (3% Owned) 

    • $3-5
    • I would NOT use #1 claim.
    • None of the RBs in New York are in an ideal situation. You could tell me Perkins, Darkwa and Vereen all tore their ACLs and I'd barely be comfortable with Gallman as my RB2 then, and maybe not even then.
    • With Darkwa sidelined in Week 4 and Perkins eventually joining him later in the game, Gallman, the 4th round rookie from Clemson, made the most of his opportunities turning 13 touches into 50 yards and a score. He very well and should've earned more playing time with this performance seeing as how bad the rest of the backfield has been. There's a lot of opportunity to be won by the rookie and he showed he's capable of playing on all 3 downs.
    • At 0-4, it can't hurt to see what you have in Gallman if you're the Giants. They get a Week 5 game against one of the NFL's worst rush defenses in the Chargers, and if Gallman has another big game, it'll be much harder to grab him on the wire at this time next week. He's still playing behind an awful offensive line, on a team that passes the ball 2nd most in the NFL, Vereen will be the preferred pass-catching back and goal-line opportunities may be hard to come by. There's a lot of red flags, but he's got upside at least.

    Elijah McGuire - Jets (1% Owned)

    • $0-1
    • I would NOT use #1 claim.
    • Another New York running back I'm not particularly excited about, especially after seeing Bilal Powell run rampid on a terrible Jags run defense to the tune of 163 yards on 21 carries (7.8 ypc) scoring once and catching 4-of-5 targets for 27 yards. Reminds me a lot of Bilal Powell at the end of 2016... *chin scratching emoji***.. but we should probably still see if Matt Forte of yesteryear can help win us games though....
    • Anyways, McGuire's been quietly impressing as a 6th round rookie from Louisiana. He broke off a 69-yard sendddd ittt touchdown run on Sunday, compiling 131 total yards on just 12 touches. His snap counts have risen in each game this season, but it's likely that Forte returns in two weeks or so and I can't imagine McGuire flirting with anything more than ~20% of the teams snaps. He was out-snapped by Powell 46-19 in the game, but looked impressive nonetheless now up to 6.8 yards per carry on 23 carries in 2017.
    • McGuire has a nice blend of size (5-10, 214) and speed (4.53) but he's really nothing more than a flier in deeper leagues if Forte continues to miss time.

    Wide Receivers

    Geronimo Allison - Packers (13% Owned)

    • $5-8
    • I would NOT use #1 claim.
    • With Davante Adams seemingly ded after a monsterous hit to the head on Thursday night, Allison will be the next man up in what I call a revolving door as the WR2 and WR3 role in Green Bay's offense behind Jordy Nelson.
    • Allison's value hinges entirely on Adams' health and availability in the coming weeks, but considering how bad the hit looked and him spending the night in the hospital, I like Adams chances of missing at least a week. His MRIs came back negative, so it doesn't look there are any long-term worries for Adams.
    • With Randall Cobb out in Week 3, Allison filled in playing a full compliment of snaps and caught 6-of-8 targets for 122 yards.

    Paul Richardson - Seahawks (28% Owned)

    • $3-5
    • I would NOT use #1 claim.
    • We're four weeks into the season and Richardson hasn't failed to reach 9.5 PPR points in a single game. That being said, he's yet to surpass 11 points in any game.
    • Russell Wilson is finally getting into the groove and Richardson holds a lot of big play ability and upside, so I'm expecting more big games down the stretch. His floor is pretty safe now, playing in 69% of the teams snaps on the season and 76% over the past two weeks.
    • With what I expect to be a non-existent run game following Chris Carson's broken ankle, Wilson will continue to have to throw the ball a ton. Wilson's averaging 35.1 pass attempts per game in 2017.
    • Richardon has scored in 2-of-4 games on the year and gets a friendly Week 5 game against the Rams. He's worthy of flex consideration regardless of format.

      Will Fuller V - Texans (32% Owned)

      • $4-6
      • I would NOT use #1 claim.
      • Returning from a preszn collarbone injury, Fuller balled out in his first game back, grabbing 4-of-6 targets for 35 yards and scoring twice. 
      • Fuller started off real hot in 2016 too before falling straight off a cliff, production-wise.
      • With Watson playing great and looking to be the Texans solution at QB, Fuller should be a much more consistent fantasy producer. Watson has chucked It doesn't help having Hopkins lined up opposite you. Watson has attempted the 5th most deep balls in the NFL (21) on the year and ranks 13th in air yards (558), which matches perfectly with a guy like Fuller who has elite 4.32 speed on the outside. I'd expect the strong arm QB to start taking shots to Fuller downfield now that he doesn't need to force 80% of his throws to Hopkins. Despite it being just hit first game back, Fuller played in over 77% of the team's offensive snaps, something we should continue to expect. W
      • Again, though, I think we need to temper expectations on this Houston team for both Watson and Fuller. The last two games were against NE and TEN.. they'll get a much tougher task in Week 5 versus the Chiefs where we'll see the Texans true colors, for better or worse. I'm holding Fuller out of my starting lineup for the time being but we saw Terelle Pryor beat KC for a 44-yard TD on MNF, and has been burned by speedsters Travis Benjamin and Alshon Jeffery already this year. With Marcus Peters draped on D-Hop, Fuller might break loose for a big one next week.

      Zay Jones - Bills (15% Owned)

      • $1-3
      • I would NOT use #1 claim.
      • The main reason I was so high on Zaygawd entering the year was the lack of competition for targets in the Bills offense. Looks like that didn't work out, but it'll be my theory again now that Jordan Matthews needs thumb surgery and will be out at least a month. This leaves basically Jones, Charles Clay and the Bills running backs to divy up targets for the next month.
      • It seems clear that Jones isn't built to be an outside NFL WR. He excelled in college on short routes and dump-offs. With J-Mat out for a month, Jones is very likely going to occupy the slot where Matthews ran 66% of his slots from prior to the injury. This'll almost definitely result in more targets and receptions for the 2nd round rookie. 
      • He's not a must-add, but if you're looking for some PPR help in deeper leagues, I think Jones will float between 8-12 PPR FPPG over the next month.

      Tight Ends

      Evan Engram - Giants (46% Owned)

      • $5-8
      • I would NOT use #1 claim.
      • Engram has been the most consistent piece of this passing offense during OBJs absence and now 2nd during his target-hogging last two weeks. The rookie has played on 82% of the teams snaps this year and has only been asked to stay in and block on 7% of his snaps.
      • Engram is tied for 2nd in the NFL among TEs in targets (28), tied for 3rd in receptions (19) 5th in yards (200) and is fantasy's TE6 right now.
      • The G-Men have attempted an insane 41.5 pass attempts/game (2nd in NFL) this year and given their lack of anything closely resembling a run game, the trend should continue.
      • Engram's flown under the radar as a fantasy must-own because of his consistency, he's yet to have a breakout game which would "put him on the map". He's only scored once on the year but his worst line has been 4-44, and you'll take that all day in PPR leagues, especially for a TE that you probably didn't draft before the 13th round.

      Cameron Brate - Bucs (49% Owned)

      • $2-4
      • I would NOT use #1 claim.
      • Brate and rookie O.J. Howard are in a full time share at TE, but Brate is doing what he did all of last year, score touchdowns. He's scored in back-to-back games for the Bucs, and in 2-of-3 games on the season.
      • Against a terrible TE defense in NYG, Brate caught 4of-6 targets for 80 yards and a score. He dropped an EZ target which would've made it an even bigger day, but the looks down there are great to see. 
      • Howard has played more than Brate has in 2017, on the field for 64% of TBs snaps compared to just 52% of snaps, but Brate has only stayed in to block on 5% of his snaps, lining up from the slot on 64% of his snaps this year.
      • To me, Brate is clearly the fantasy TE to own in Tampa, out-targeting Howard 13-8, catching six more passes and compiling over 45 more yards. Winston loves to use Brate near the EZ and the trend should continue in Week 5 when they get an awful pass defense in the Patriots in a game that will have the highest over/under of the week at 54 points. I luh me some Brate for DSF in Week 5.

      Austin Seferian-Jenkins - Jets (7% Owned)

      • $3-5
      • I would NOT use #1 claim.
      • Welp, this is what we've come to in 2017. I think ASJ's nickname should be "The Hyphened Siphen", given the siphoning of targets his way over the last couple of weeks. Since returning to Jets from suspension in Week 3, ASJ's caught 9-of-10 targets for 77 yards while playing on 77% of the team's snaps.
      • In Week 5, ASJ and the Jets will travel to Cleveland to take on a team who let up 2 touchdowns to Jessie James in Week 1, 8 catches and 93 yards to Ben Watson in Week 2 and 6 catches, 68 yards and 2 touchdowns to their latest "victim", backup Bengals TE, Tyler Kroft. 
      • The hype on ASJ has been high this season, and if there's a week that it's warranted, it's Week 5 versus the Browns dreadful TE defense.

      Ben Watson - Ravens (24% Owned)

      • $2-5
      • I would NOT use my #1 claim.
      • A popular TE streamer since a disappointing Week 1, Watson's put up very usable fantasy lines in each of the past three weeks: 8-91, 3-12-1 and 5-43. 
      • He'll look to keep it up against a terrible defense against TEs in Oakland. Besides facing an ASJ-less Jets in Week 2, they let up a 7-76 line to Delanie Walker, 5-58-1 line to Vernon Davis in Week 3 and most recently a 4-75-1 line to Broncos TE A.J. Derby in Week 4. 
      • Safe to say, Oakland's defense is an area to exploit for fantasy owners.
      • Since Week 2, Watson is second on the team in targets (17) behind only Mike Wallace but leads Flacco's weapons in receiving yards (146) by a wide margin and is tied with Buck Allen for receptions (16).
      • His upside is capped in this offense, but he's proving his floor to be more than usable if you're a TE streamer.

      Additional Notes

      • Andrew Luck will start practicing this week, probably worth an add if he's available.
      • Charles Clay is a FA in 33% of leagues and is easily the top WW TE pick up for the ROS if available in your league. He leads the Bills in targets and has as 27.5% target market share, leads BUF in recieving yards and has scored 2 of the team's 5 REC TDs. With Jordan Matthews out for a month, Clay should continue to eat as fantasy's TE4.
      • JuJu Smith-Schuster has supplanted Eli Rogers for the starting slot WR role in Pittsburgh. He's caught at least 3 balls in as many games and has scored in 2 of their last 3 outings.
      • Detroit Lions DEF/ST has produced in 4 straight weeks to open the season. Week 4 was their worst fantasy week of the szn, and they produced 12 points. They get a home game versus the struggling (yes still struggling) Cam Newton who has 5 interceptions in 4 games in 2017.
      • Jake Elliot the new Kicker for the Eagles following Caleb Sturgis' trip to the IR, has 40 fantasy points in 3 games and has hit from 50+ in back-to-back weeks. He's 10-for-10 on XPs and has hit 7 FGs of 40+ yards on the season. The Eagles, averaging just under 26 points per game, get a home game against a surprisingly bad Cardinals defense, with an ov/under of 45 as 6.5 point favorites. 
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