Chris Wesseling

Waiver Wired

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Deadline Darlings?

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


Wide Receivers

Danny Amendola, Rams - Amendola isn’t viewed as a difference-making talent, but the Rams are 10-11 with him in the lineup the past three years -- and 2-17 when he sits out. Noting that Amendola was separating with ease, running more downfield and outside-the-numbers routes, and showing improved after-catch ability early this season, I pulled the trigger on a Dynasty league trade for him after his clavicle injury. A top-15 fantasy receiver (in points per game to date) even in standard-scoring formats, Amendola is still unowned in roughly half of Yahoo leagues. With the possibility of a monster second half, he should be picked up in the remaining leagues this week.

Recommendation: Should be owned in all leagues.

Titus Young, Lions - I’m shocked to find that Young is owned in just 40 percent of Yahoo leagues after he was a no-brainer recommendation last week. In a breakout game versus the Seahawks’ stout pass defense, Young became the first Lions starting receiver since 2001 to catch all of his intended targets in a game. He also joined Randall Cobb as the only receivers this season to record a perfect catch percentage on at least eight targets. Young is an every-down receiver with elite speed facing single coverage afforded by the presence of Calvin Johnson. He’s here to stay as an upside WR3 option.

Recommendation: Should be owned in all leagues.

Cecil Shorts, Jaguars - Shorts has essentially played five quarters as a starter with Blaine Gabbert under center, producing a 10/177/1 line on 16 targets. With an average of 11 targets, six receptions and 97.5 yards the past two weeks, Shorts should be locked into the No. 1 receiver role regardless of Laurent Robinson’s (concussion) health. His fantasy viability depends on your faith in Gabbert’s progress. I remain skeptical that the Jags passing attack can support a reliable WR3 option week-in and week-out.

Recommendation: Worth a look in 12-team leagues.

Ryan Broyles, Lions - Routes run by Lions receivers in Week 8: Titus Young (50), Calvin Johnson (49), Broyles (23). Detroit’s new slot receiver played 34-of-73 snaps, essentially splitting the third receiver role with No. 2 tight end Tony Scheffler. Broyles has been a favorite red-zone target of Matthew Stafford the past two weeks, but he’s going to need to put distance between himself and Scheffler before he gains weekly fantasy value. In the meantime, Broyles should be stashed in 12 team leagues.

Recommendation: Worth a look in 12-team leagues.

Chris Givens, Rams - The fourth-round rookie speedster is the first player since Detroit’s Pat Studstill (1966) with a reception of 50+ yards in five consecutive games. Essentially a poor man’s DeSean Jackson, Givens should hold onto a starting role opposite Danny Amendola in the second half of the season. Although Givens is worthy of a roster spot in 12-team leagues, he can’t be counted on as a Week 9 starter because the Rams are on bye.

Recommendation: Worth a look in 12-team leagues.

Brandon LaFell, Panthers - LaFell’s role is on the rise again after a late September swoon. He’s now topped 50 yards in four of seven games and is 44th in fantasy points on the season. Those desperate for a WR3 option can point to LaFell’s Week 9 matchup against a Redskins secondary that has allowed the second-most fantasy points to wide receivers this season.

Recommendation: Worth a look as a matchup play.

Alshon Jeffery, Bears - Jeffery (fractured hand) is reportedly targeted Week 10 for his return to game action. Devin Hester has predictably offered very little production as a starter in the rookie’s absence. Jeffery was averaging just 37 yards per game prior to the injury, so keep expectations low. He’s a talented but raw roster stash.

Recommendation: Worth a look as a roster stash.

Dexter McCluster, Chiefs - We’ve reached the underwhelming portion of the wide receiver list. McCluster has sandwiched 82- and 69-yard outings in Weeks 1 and 8 around four games of fewer than 40 yards. Those in PPR leagues can cite his back-to-back six-catch games and the possibility of an increased role if the Chiefs can unload Dwayne Bowe’s remaining $5 million this week.

Recommendation: Worth a look in deeper PPR leagues.

Watch List: Justin Blackmon, Clyde Gates, Marvin Jones, Vincent Brown

Blackmon can’t break out of his rookie funk. His effort at the end of last week’s game was questionable to say the least. … Hold off on Gates. He did all of his damage in garbage time and remains low on the depth chart. … Jones is a name to watch in deeper leagues. The Bengals had plans to increase his role before the bye, only to see him go down with an MCL tear on the opening kickoff. … Brown isn’t close to returning.

Cut Bait: Robert Meachem, Devin Hester, Leonard Hankerson, Kevin Ogletree, Domenik Hixon, Devery Henderson

A whopping 62 percent of Meachem’s fantasy production has come in one game. He’s been held without a catch three times. Owner Dean Spanos should point to the Meachem signing in dumping autocratic GM A.J. Smith after the season. … Hester never has fantasy value. … Hankerson isn’t going to be a recommended Week 9 starter after his one-catch performance at Pittsburgh. The Redskins have a bye in Week 10. … Ogletree has done nothing since the season opener. … Hixon can be dropped for a running back handcuff. … Ditto Henderson.


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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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