Chris Wesseling

Waiver Wired

print article archives RSS

More Bell-Cow!

Tuesday, September 08, 2009




RUNNING BACKS

Mike Bell, Saints – Starter Pierre Thomas (MCL sprain) is still walking with a noticeable limp, and his chances of playing in the opener are looking bleaker by the day. P.T. owners don't have to look far for a potential lead back. Thomas' backup could be carrying a heavy workload in a juicy matchup against the Lions in Week 1, yet Bell is owned in less than 10 percent of all leagues. Reggie Bush, struggling through swelling in his knee and a preseason calf injury, will play at less than 100 percent, which means leaves plenty of touches and short-yardage opportunities for Bell. The Saints' No. 3 back makes for a fine RB2/flex play against Detroit barring a miraculous late-week recovery by Thomas.

Recommendation: Should be owned in all leagues

James Davis, Browns – Sure, the Browns kept Jamal Lewis on the final roster, but it's not like they found a magic elixir to take him back to 2003. This offense is going to struggle early and often, with Lewis coming under fire as he flirts with 3.0 YPC. Last year's "We want Brady" chants will morph into this year's "We want Davis" pleas as fans wonder why a rookie back boasting 7.8 YPC in preseason action is being wasted behind an aging plodder. Expect Davis to eat into Lewis' production in September before taking the reins in October.

Recommendation: Should be owned in all leagues

Glen Coffee, 49ers – Frank Gore owners should move him to the top of the list. After Coffee's preseason coming-out party, he's officially a must handcuff for a back who gets banged up as much as Gore does. Even non-Gore owners would do well to snag Coffee as an end of the roster stash. How many backups have the potential for RB1 production if the starter goes down? If it helps, think of Coffee as a West coast version of Chester Taylor.

Recommendation: Should be owned in 12-team leagues

Cadillac Williams, Buccaneers – For all that he's been through the past few seasons, every one of us should be pulling for Caddy. That's why it stings a bit to be the one throwing cold water on his late preseason hype. While he's worth a roster spot in many leagues, Cadillac's ceiling is capped by the "2-2-1" running back rotation and his own injury history. The Bucs didn't sign Derrick Ward to waste away on the bench, and they're certainly not going to ride Caddy until his wheels fall off once again. Pick him up, sure, but reel in expectations.

Recommendation: Should be owned in 12-team leagues

Michael Bush, Raiders – Listed by the Oakland coaches as one of seven playmakers on the roster, Bush is a lottery ticket that can be cashed in for megabucks if Darren McFadden goes down. The 27/177/2 line from his Week 17 start against the Bucs is a useful reminder of his monster upside.

Recommendation: Should be owned in deeper leagues

Watch List - Shonn Greene, Edgerrin James, Ladell Betts, Bernard Scott, Rashad Jennings

WIDE RECEIVERS

Josh Morgan, 49ers – Owned in just 49 percent of all CBSSports.com leagues, Morgan fits squarely between bigger-named veterans Laveranues Coles and Derrick Mason in our projections. The second-year playmaker is the odds-on favorite to lead the 49ers in receiving as an exciting, high-ceiling WR4. A starting receiver with Morgan's explosiveness, speed and physicality should top the priority list for any league where he remains available.

Recommendation: Should be owned in all leagues

Justin Gage, Titans – Among players being drafted as late-round fliers, Gage may have the best chance of producing WR3 numbers from Week 1 on. Still owned in just half of all leagues, the Titans No. 1 receiver averaged six receptions for 105 yards in three games to close out last season. During offseason and exhibition action, he has continued to emerge as Kerry Collins' favorite target. We have Gage ranked among the Top-40 receivers going into the season.

Recommendation: Should be owned in all leagues

Earl Bennett, Bears – Somebody has to catch passes at wide receiver in this offense, and the cupboard is practically bare behind Bennett and deep threat Devin Hester. Jay Cutler's former Vanderbilt teammate has been the recipient of high praise from coaches and beat writers all offseason, so it's time to put up or shut up. Here's your chance, kid.

Recommendation: Should be owned in deep leagues

Laurent Robinson, Rams – After a 2008 season lost to an assortment of injuries, Robinson is once again flashing the promise shown late in his rookie season. The former third-rounder has the size and the 4.3 speed to flourish opposite Donnie Avery.

Recommendation: Should be owned in deep leagues

Chaz Schilens, Raiders – Stash! Schilens had emerged as the only Raiders receiver worth drafting in training camp, but a broken fifth metatarsal in his foot landed him on quite a few "do not draft" lists. He's aiming for a Week 2 return, which makes Schilens a better use of a roster spot than your typical late-round flotsam and jetsam. If he's unavailable, the Jags' Mike Sims-Walker is a nice substitute stash.

Recommendation: Should be owned in deep leagues

Davone Bess, Dolphins – Brian Hartline's preseason hype is beginning to fade, and Greg Camarillo is clearly not 100 percent recovered from ACL surgery. Bess is listed as the current starter, but Camarillo ran with the ones in Monday's practice. My hunch is that Bess opens the season opposite Ted Ginn. Regardless of whether he starts or not, Bess is worthy of a roster spot in PPR leagues.

Recommendation: Should be owned in deep leagues and PPR leagues

Nate Washington, Titans – This is just a reminder that Washington is unowned in 40 percent of all leagues, and he'll likely return from his hamstring injury in Week 2. If you have the roster space, he makes for a fine stash. Washington could be worth consideration as a fantasy starter in October.

Recommendation: Should be owned in 12-team leagues

Watch List - Mike Sims-Walker, Troy Williamson, Kenny Britt, Nate Burleson, Deon Butler


continue story »
Chris Wesseling is a senior football editor and Dynasty league analyst for Rotoworld.com. The 2011 NFL season marks his fifth year with Rotoworld and his third year contributing to NBCSports.com. He can be found on Twitter @ChrisWesseling.
Email :Chris Wesseling



Highest Searched Players over the last 7 days



Video Center

  •  
    Short: Plug in Despaigne?

    Short: Plug in Despaigne?
  •  
    Short: Buy, Hold or Sell

    Short: Buy, Hold or Sell
  •  
    Short: Trade Chris Davis?

    Short: Trade Chris Davis?
  •  
    Short: Cain hits rock bottom

    Short: Cain hits rock bottom
  •  
    Short: Buy, Hold or Sell

    Short: Buy, Hold or Sell
  •  
    Short: Struggling starters

    Short: Struggling starters
  •  
    Short: Will Mauer rebound?

    Short: Will Mauer rebound?
  •  
    Is Chisenhall the real deal?

    Is Chisenhall the real deal?