As the weeks go on in the NFL, the waiver pool gets shallower and shallower and this week, most of the guys in the ‘Pick ‘Em Up’ section are guys you should use to plug in bye weeks, as not much is expected of them as they are mostly sharing playing time with one or more players. Bye Weeks: Bears, Saints, Panthers, Jaguars
Pick ‘Em Up
1. Ryan Tannehill – Dolphins
This is the only QB that will be in this section this week. Going back and watching some of the Dolphins games, it can be seen that Tannehill knows what he is doing and is making big time throws. He has also cut down on mistakes big time, which leads to more points for you. Also, he has a pass catching tailback in Reggie Bush that can turn a bubble screen into a 60 yard TD pass. Not only is Bush a good pass catcher, but he has come a long way on running between the tackles. That makes the defense respect the run and opens up that aerial game for the Dolphins.
1. Alex Green/James Starks – Packers
The injury bug bit the NFL big time over the past weekend and one of the casualties is Packers RB Cedric Benson. He will be out for at least eight weeks. Enter Starks and Green. The reason that both are in there is because it isn’t known who will be the starter and get more carries. Green has the most upside, so it’s possible that he could eventually take most of the carries away from Starks; but Starks has experience and has proven that he is able to carry the load. Pick up Green first, but if he is picked up, go ahead and check out Starks as well..
2. LaRod Stephens-Howling/William Powell – Cardinals
Another casualty is Ryan Williams. That, combined with the fact that Beanie Wells is out until November, makes LSH and Powell worth owning. Just like the two guys above, it is still unknown to what capacity both will be used. LSH was the feature back once last year and did rather well (93 yards on 21 carries), but Powell has the build of a guy who can handle that type of work on a week in and week out basis. If you want a guy for just this week go with LSH, if you want upside, roll with Powell.
3. Kendall Hunter – 49ers
Hunter is the backup to Frank Gore and will more than likely, barring an injury, will continue to be for the whole season. The reason to grab Hunter is that he is similar to Ben Tate of the Houston Texans as he can come in at times to spell Gore and break a big run. Also, as seen the past few weeks, when the 49ers get a big lead, they trust Hunter to run the ball and burn clock. Pick him up and play him when the matchup is right. If you are in a keeper league, he is definitely somebody to grab as he has huge upside.
1. Nate Burleson – Lions
Last week, you were suggested to drop Titus Young, now replace him with the guy that will be getting his targets in Burleson. His stats have been pretty solid through the first five weeks. The Lions did not play this past week and expect them to come out throwing early and often this week versus Philadelphia.
2. Darrius Heyward-Bey – Raiders
DHB was dropped by many people when he was rocked in the end zone in the Raiders game against Pittsburgh. Fair enough considering it looked like he could be seriously injured and possibly out for an extended period of time. It was serious in the fact that it was a concussion, but he is
returning this week to face the Atlanta Falcons. He will return to being Carson Palmers 1B option along with Denarius Moore. Definitely worth starting as a flex play every week, and depending on how your team’s bye weeks fall could even be a number two wide receiver.
3. Brandon Gibson – Rams
He scored in the first two weeks of the season and since then has battled injuries and been somewhat non-existent. He will also benefit from an injury to a teammate though. He has all of the skills needed to step in and be Sam Bradford’s number one option while Danny Amendola is nursing injuries.
1. Joel Dreessen – Broncos
The tight end free agent pool is very shallow, so Dreessen gets the nod here. He won’t get a lot of yardage, but has turned out to be a favorite red zone target of Peyton Manning. That is always a good thing as he will targeted a lot.
St. Louis Rams
They are your defensive pickup of the week. They held the previously undefeated Arizona Cardinals out of the end zone last week and have shown major strides this year. They take on the Miami Dolphins this week, so feel free to pick them up if your defense is on a bye week.
1. Andre Brown – Giants
He was the big pick-up a few weeks ago when Ahmad Bradshaw went down with an injury, now he is the one that has gone down with an injury.
When he went down, the rookie David Wilson stepped in and removed himself from Tom Coughlin’s doghouse. Now, when Brown returns he should be the number three back in New York.
2. Kevin Ogletree – Cowboys
He was the darling of the waiver wire the first week of the season after scoring two touchdowns on opening night. Since then, he has done nothing. Tony Romo has too many options when he isn’t throwing to the other team that Ogletree will not enjoy the same success as Laurent Robinson did last year.
1. Washington Redskins
The first week of this feature, it said the Redskins will be a weekly feature just because of their Head Coach Mike Shanahan. Now, this will be the last week they are featured thanks to the play of their running back Alfred Morris. He has proven he is the real deal and should be the feature back all season long.
2. San Francisco 49ers
This really is not a backfield battle because Frank Gore is the starter and Kendall Hunter is his backup. What needs to be addressed is the fact that you can start both of these guys as they will both get you points. Hunter has spelled Gore often this season and both have put up solid numbers. However, it is possible that Hunter could replace Gore by the end of the season, but that will only be due to wear and tear and not because Gore was playing bad.
3. Carolina Panthers
DeAngelo Williams created an uproar when he posted a message to fantasy owners on Twitter. The Panthers’ run game has struggled mightily this season, in what was expected to be a huge year for it. The addition of Mike Tolbert was believed to take away points from Williams and Jonathan Stewart, but Tolbert hasn’t been doing anything himself. Until any of these guys show you something, keep them on the bench and feel free to drop Tolbert if there are better options out there.
Ben Hogan is the producer of MSL and a long-time fantasy sports guru. Follow him @NotTheGolfer for any fantasy or lineup questions throughout the week.