2018 Fantasy Football Week 12 Waiver Wire: Reload

by Jonathan Chan
2018 Fantasy Football Week 12 Waiver Wire

It's always an awful thing when a player gets injured. It's especially awful when the injury is as serious as the one Alex Smith suffered on Sunday afternoon. If you haven't heard, Smith will miss the rest of the season after suffering compound fractures of the tibia and fibula in his right leg. Due to the extent of the injury, there is some question whether or not Smith will be able to continue playing.

Fascinating is never a word I use when describing injuries, but it seems appropriate in this case.

One stat that Brandt did not include: Both injuries took place on the 40-yard line. One or two similarities I can accept. Three is pushing the realm of possibility. But SEVEN nearly identical aspects of the injuries? The whole thing is just bizarre to me, and I'm having trouble comprehending the odds of something like this happening.

In any case, whoever is QB for Washington in 33 years better be careful.

Oh. The Chiefs and Rams played a game on Monday or something. I chose not to watch because of the Monday Night Football crew. Did I miss anything?

As always, the Waiver Wire will focus on players owned in under 35% of Yahoo! Leagues. Players owned in under 50% of leagues will be listed in the "Other Options" section.

2018 Fantasy Football Week 12 Waiver Wire

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Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens (19% Owned)

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Jackson was thrust into the starting role following Joe Flacco's injury and had himself a record-setting performance. His 27 rush attempts (for 117 yards) were the most by a quarterback in the Super Bowl Era (since 1966).

The Ravens ran a ridiculous 51:19 rush: pass play ratio on Sunday, allowing Jackson to run wild. Of course, the Ravens can't expect to run Jackson so often without him falling apart. However, their willingness to call designed runs gives him a solid floor as a Fantasy option.

The Ravens have a great matchup with the Raiders this week, making Jackson a quality streaming option. Oakland's poor defense gives Jackson some room to make some errors without being punished too badly. If you need a Patrick Mahomes replacement, Jackson should be near the top of the list.

Colt McCoy, Washington Redskins (1% Owned)

I know no one wants to hear about Jamies Winston again so I'm going to go a little off the board with my second QB recommendation. McCoy played in relief of Smith and performed decently well, throwing a touchdown on his first pass attempt and rushing for 35 yards.

McCoy will likely be a volatile Fantasy option but he will attempt to stretch the field more than Smith did. I can't speak for the success he'll have, but the attempts should be there. He's also shown a willingness to create plays with his legs.

A game against Dallas on short notice may be a tough order, but owners in two-QB leagues and super FLEX leagues could do worse.

Other Options: Jamies Winston (10% owned), Baker Mayfield (41% owned)

Running Backs

Theo Riddick, Detroit Lions (33% Owned)

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Don't get me wrong, Riddick consistently disappoints when acting as the injury-fill in for the Lions. He can never seem to put together a big game, even with all his opportunity in the passing game. I don't think this time will be too different, especially with the depleted Lions offense up against Chicago.

What Riddick can provide is a very solid PPR floor, as he's seen 24 targets over his last three games. With the Bears on tap, Matt Stafford will need to get rid of the ball quickly, creating plenty of dump-offs for Riddick.

Gus Edwards, Baltimore Ravens (4% Owned)

Did anyone actually see this coming? If you did I'll give you a lot of credit. Edwards came out of nowhere to lead the Ravens running backs in carries. He toted the ball 17 times for 115 yards and a touchdown in Sunday's win over the Bengals.

Edwards easily led the Baltimore RBs in snaps, playing 62 percent to Alex Collins' 22 percent and Javorius Allen's six percent. Edwards also out-touched Collins 17-7. Head Coach John Harbaugh praised Edwards following the game, saying that "he gives us that back that we probably didn’t have earlier in the year."

Harbaugh said that Edwards "grabbed the bull by the horns". I don't know if that means he's taken the starting job, but he can be a huge difference maker down the stretch if he carves out a role for himself. The Ravens offense is extremely run-heavy, and even a 50 percent share of touches will make Edwards a low-end flex option, especially if he becomes the goal-line RB.

Other Options: Josh Adams (32% owned), Elijah McGuire (14% owned), LeGarrette Blount (9% owned)

Wide Receivers

Tre'Quan Smith, New Orleans Saints (26% Owned)

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After weeks of disappointment, Smith finally broke through and had the performance owners were hoping for following the injury to Ted Ginn Jr. Smith ran circles around the Eagles' secondary, catching 10-of-13 targets for 157 yards and a touchdown.

The biggest takeaway from this game is Smith's increased target share. His 13 targets matched his total from Weeks 7-9 combined. Smith has earned the trust of Drew Brees and will continue to be an important part of the rolling Saints offense.

Owners shouldn't expect 13 targets on a weekly basis, but WR3 production with a massive ceiling is in reach for the Saints newest weapon.

Christian Kirk, Arizona Cardinals (34% Owned)

Kirk has been hit-and-miss this season, but he's becoming a more consistent option as Byron Leftwich continues to implement his offense. After an ugly eight-yard game in Week 10, Kirk Kirk came back with 77 yards and a touchdown last week against the Raiders.

Kirk has developed good chemistry with Josh Rosen, which was on full display on Kirk's 59 yard TD catch. He has now scored a TD in two of his last three games. He may be sneaking under the radar because he plays for the Cardinals, but his stock is rising and he has the talent to be a good FLEX option as Rosen becomes more comfortable.

Other Options: Josh Reynolds (45% owned), D.J. Moore (39% Owned), Keke Coutee (30% owned)

Tight Ends

Cameron Brate, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (21% Owned)

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I feel like I have to talk about Brate every time Tampa Bay makes a QB change. At this point, we know that Winston loves to use Brate as a red-zone weapon and he immediately becomes a streamer if Jameis is playing. O.J. Howard may also miss next weeks game due to an ankle injury. There's been no word yet on his status, but he has gone for a second opinion, which is never a good sign.

If Howard doesn't suit up, Brate automatically becomes a low-end TE1. His horrid performance over the last few weeks has made him available in nearly 80% of Yahoo! leagues. If you're a Travis Kelce owner, Brate is likely going to be the best option on the wire for a BYE week replacement.

Jonnu Smith, Tennessee Titans (7% Owned)

Smith has been (very) slowly moving into the TE streamer conversation with his recent play. Over his last three weeks, Smith has caught 11 passes for 122 yards and two touchdowns. It doesn't seem like much, but it at least puts him in the realm of "streamable".

Smith saw his largest targets share to date in Week 11, catching 6-of-8 passes thrown his way. The Titans normally prefer to run the ball but were forced to throw because they were getting blown out by the Colts. I would expect his targets to settle in the 4-5 range on a weekly basis. Still usable if he's able to catch a touchdown.

All bets are off if Blaine Gabbert has to start, so keep an eye on Marcus Mariota's health before putting Smith in your lineup.

Deep League Special

Zach Zenner, RB, Detroit Lions (0% Owned)

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Oh yeah, I'm going DEEP for this one. I don't think Zenner is owned in any leagues at the time I'm writing this. His Yahoo! ownership reads zero percent, and if you're lucky, you could be the first person to own Zenner in 2018. Seeing Zenner's name is like seeing a relic from the past.

If you haven't been playing Fantasy Football for too long, I'll give you some background. Zenner was the subject of a massive hype train in his rookie year after averaging 5.2 YPC on 35 attempts in the pre-season. In classic hype train fashion, he went on to do absolutely nothing and carried the ball just 17 times during the season.

Starting RB Kerryon Johnson is week-to-week with a sprained knee. With the Lions playoff hopes all but gone, Detroit is in no rush to bring Johnson back. After Riddick, LeGarrette Blount seems like the obvious choice for carries. However, Blount looked AWFUL on Sunday, gaining one yard on seven carries. Over his last four games, Blount has gained just 16 yards on 21 carries.

Zenner is a bit of an unknown, having carried the ball once this season. Even in deeper leagues, I wouldn't recommend starting Zenner this week. But if Johnson was to miss multiple weeks I bet Zenner is able to out-perform Blount enough to earn carries moving forward.

Check out the rest of our 2018 Fantasy Football content from our great team of writers.

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1 comment

Tuesday, November 20, 2018 – Fantasy Football Links | FantasyRundown.com November 20, 2018 - 9:23 am

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