Chris Wesseling

Waiver Wired

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Tuesday, October 02, 2012


Running Backs

Brandon Bolden, Patriots - A week after vulturing a goal-line series from Stevan Ridley, Bolden touched the ball 17 times for 148 yards versus the Bills. His previous high was five carries versus the Titans in garbage time. In other words, Bolden’s increased role came out of the blue. This is New England, so Bolden’s role will depend on game plan, matchups, momentum and the whims of Bill Belichick and Josh McDaniels. He’s worth adding in 12-team leagues, but it’s clear that he’s behind Stevan Ridley on the depth chart. The Pats won’t rush 40 times for 250 yards again the rest of the season.

Recommendation: Worth a look in 12-team leagues.

LeGarrette Blount, Buccaneers - Blount had his biggest role of the season in Week 4, taking over as the clear red-zone back in power situations. Rookie Doug Martin is the better all-around player, but Blount has shown more play-making ability in two straight games. There’s a chance that his role could grow at Martin’s expense.

Recommendation: Worth a look in 12-team leagues.

Jackie Battle, Chargers - The takeaway from last week’s game wasn’t that Battle started and scored two touchdowns. Ryan Mathews will soon be back in the driver’s seat because there’s a chasm of difference in talent between the two backs. The Chargers made their point to Mathews, and signs out of San Diego suggest he will resume lead-back duties versus the Saints this week. The upshot is that Battle could be here to stay as the red-zone back, as the Bolts want to use Mathews in lower-level situations. Battle’s only value is in touchdown-heavy leagues.

Recommendation: Worth a look in touchdown-heavy leagues.

Bilal Powell, Jets - Playing from behind, Powell was on the field for 32 snaps compared to Shonn Greene’s 18 in Week 4. The Jets were already struggling to move the ball, averaging just 3.0 yards per carry on first down. With Santonio Holmes (foot), their biggest offensive playmaker out, Powell and Greene will see more stacked boxes going forward. Powell is worthy of a roster spot to see if his role continues to grow, but he shouldn’t be near starting lineups at this point.

Recommendation: Worth a look in 12-team leagues.

Lamar Miller, Dolphins - Coach Joe Philbin indicated that his No. 2 back will decided by game plan going forward. Miller is more talented than Daniel Thomas but still struggles in pass protection. Neither back will have value unless Reggie Bush misses extended action with an injury. Bush appeared to emerge from Week 4 with his knee in good shape.  

Recommendation: Worth a look in 12-team leagues.

Joique Bell, Lions - The Lions like Bell in the “game-closer” four-minute role as well as the no-huddle, two-minute drill back. Don’t be misled by his 72 yards on six receptions in Week 4, though. The Vikings sat back in prevent defense, allowing Matthew Stafford to dump off to Bell while taking away the receivers downfield. Bell has a bye in Week 5.

Recommendation: Worth a look in deeper PPR leagues.

Ronnie Hillman, Broncos - The rookie picked up extra carries in a blowout victory, showing a better burst than his 3.1 YPC would indicate. Lance Ball still played more snaps, however, and the two would likely form a committee along with Knowshon Moreno if Willis McGahee goes down with an injury.

Recommendation: Worth a look in deeper leagues.

William Powell, Cardinals - The NFL’s preseason rushing leader actually played more snaps than Ryan Williams in Week 4, taking over in the no-huddle offense. Powell could stumble onto PPR-league value if things break right with Beanie Wells (turf toe) out of the lineup, but it’s more likely that he sees just a handful of touches per game as Williams’ backup.

Recommendation: Worth a look in deeper leagues.

Watch List: Jahvid Best, Bernard Pierce

The Lions have yet to announce that Best has been cleared for contact, but the tentative expectation is that he will be available when eligible in Week 8. … Pierce is Ray Rice’s clear handcuff entering the bye-week gauntlet.


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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



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