Here are this week’s top Waiver Wire players who are owned in less than 50% of Yahoo leagues. Our favorite players are broken down in Top Targets and the best secondary options are in our Going Deeper sections. We’ll also list any players at the top of each position who are above the 50% threshold — or are household names — and are still widely available for those who might be in smaller leagues.
Be sure to check out our weekly Waiver Wire podcast for more analysis. We’ll also have Streaming articles every Tuesday that focuses on the top quarterbacks, tight ends, and defenses for the upcoming week(s).
Note: The initial Waiver Wire article writeup will be posted every Monday evening, followed by in-depth updates Tuesday, and continued additions/updates Wednesday.
Teams on Bye in Week 14
New England Patriots
Hansen’s Top-15 Options
Note: For these rankings, John Hansen leans on players who are available in at least 40-50% of Yahoo leagues and who also saw a favorable development for their fantasy values last week. Some players are better long-term pickups, and some are better for just this week or the short term.
- Russell Gage (Atl, 34%) — He’s the WR6 for Weeks 12-13.
- Ricky Seals-Jones (Was, 5%) — Logan Thomas is on IR and will not play again this year, and RSJ is back practicing and soon back into this valuable TE1 role. If not, it’s rookie John Bates, who is a decent bet for 5-7 FP if he’s the top guy
- K.J. Osborn (Min, 3%) — Adam Thielen on IR and likely out at least two weeks.
- Josh Reynolds (Det, 4%) and Amon-Ra St. Brown (Det, 6%) — Both guys looking good now with Reynolds the upside choice and ASB the safe PPR guy.
- Jeff Wilson (SF, 26%) and JaMycal Hasty (SF, 1%) — Eli Mitchell is dealing with concussion symptoms this week and a knee issue, and Trey Sermon is on IR. Hasty is the healthiest mid-week.
- Ameer Abdullah (Car, 4%) — Should have a decent role and some upside to grow it if Chubba is lame.
- Taysom Hill (NO, 34%) — More risky with finger injury, but obviously viable.
- Justin Fields (Chi, 19%) — Returning Week 14 and QB1 upside.
- Carlos Hyde (Jax, 12%) — James Robinson is very banged up and could be limited or even sat this week.
- Jalen Richard (LV, 0%) and Peyton Barber (LV, 0%) — Kenyan Drake will not play again this season, and Barber is also a Josh Jacobs injury away from getting 15-20 opportunities a game.
- Tre’Quan Smith (NO, 3%) — Deonte Harris is out Weeks 14-16, which opens up a few more looks for Smith.
- Jamison Crowder (NYJ, 21%) — Corey Davis is on IR, so Crowder’s chances have improved.
- Tyler Conklin (Min, 34%) — The Thielen injury helps his volume and red zone love.
- Ben Roethlisberger (Pit, 21%) — Looks like they may let him sling it more often the rest of the way, good matchups coming.
- James O’Shaughnessy (Jax, 0%) — He’s probably the first or second most reliable receiver for the Jags at this point.
None of note.
Taysom Hill (NO, 34%) — Taysom’s performance against the Cowboys in Week 13 demonstrated one of the starker disconnects between real football and fantasy football. Taysom threw four INTs, including a late pick-six to a defensive lineman, and he completed 46.3% of his passes in a two-score loss to the Cowboys in Week 13. With that said, he finished as a top-12 fantasy QB last week because of his 10.1 FP as a runner with 11/101 rushing against the Cowboys. Unfortunately, Hill suffered the same “mallet” finger injury that Russell Wilson suffered earlier this season, but Taysom’s injury isn’t nearly as severe and he’ll try to play through it. Considering his injury and his dismal passing performance, Hill isn’t a lock to dominate snaps moving forward (@NYJ, @TB, Mia, Car). He’s a week-to-week proposition right now with Trevor Siemian waiting in the wings if Taysom continues to severely limit this passing attack. On the other hand, there’s a chance Sean Payton goes all-in on using Taysom as a glorified running back at quarterback as he did in the second half against the Cowboys. Hill will be a fringe QB1 because of his rushing ability for as long as he dominates the QB snaps in New Orleans.
Cam Newton (Car, 33%) — Cam sucked everyone in with his 26.2 FP performance in his first start of 2021 before he pulled the rug out on everyone who started him in Week 12. He completed a truly horrific 5/21 passes (23.8%) for 92 yards (4.4 YPA) and two INTs before HC Matt Rhule mercifully pulled the plug on him with a quarter to play. His one-yard TD plunge kept him from being a complete fantasy abomination, and his 15 rushing TDs since the start of 2020 are the only thing keeping him afloat for our game. He’s now averaging just 172.8 passing yards per game and 7.0 YPA with just 10 passing TDs in 17 starts over the last two seasons — he’s scored 20+ FP just four times in his last 15 starts. The NFL has told us the last two years that he’s no longer a viable starting quarterback based on the limited interest he’s received as a free agent. With that said, he’s a viable streamer this week against the Falcons before his schedule turns much more difficult (@Buf, TB, @NO) in the fantasy playoffs. The Panthers also fired OC Joe Brady over their bye week reportedly because he’s not running the ball enough, and big changes in-season usually net positive results, at least initially. Cam could be used even more in the run game going forward after seeing 16 carries in his first two starts.
Tua Tagovailoa (Mia, 42%) — Tua has played fairly well this season despite the Dolphins’ organization undermining him at every turn, and despite a receiving corps that can’t stay intact this season. And lately, he’s played a little better than “fairly well.” The Dolphins are suddenly riding a five-game winning streak and Tua’s efficient QB play has been a major reason why. He completed 30/41 passes for 244 yards (6.0 YPA) and two TDs in Miami’s two-score victory over the Giants in Week 13. He’s a volume-based, mid-QB2 moving forward (bye, NYJ, @NO, @Ten), and he’d have even more potential if Will Fuller (finger, IR) would ever get healthy this season — but at least DeVante Parker returned in Week 13. Tua is on bye this week so he can’t help you in Week 14, but his schedule is one of the better ones in the league Weeks 15-17, and he did score 18.5 FP against his Week 15 opponent (Jets) earlier this season.
Justin Fields (Chi, 19%) — ALL of the QBs listed in this report have some issues, and most are pretty mediocre options at this point. That’s why the old cheat code stands out a little for Fields. Fields missed Week 12-13, but he did get some limited practices before Week 13, and he’s ready to return this week and set to be @GB, vs. Min, @Sea, and vs. NYG the next four weeks. Fields could fold again, but he did show serious signs of life in his last healthy game. He has a stud in Darnell Mooney, clicked with TE Cole Kmet earlier in this season, and may have Allen Robinson back Week 14. It is possible he plays well and is actually reliable in 1-2 weeks, assuming he’s running, with one of the better playoff schedules out there. UPDATED: 12/8
Ben Roethlisberger (Pit, 21%) — Big Ben hadn’t hit 18+ FP in each of his first eight games, but he’s done it twice in his last three games after stunning the Ravens in Week 13. He completed 21/31 passes for 236 yards (7.6 YPA) and two TDs for 19.3 FP, and he’s now thrown for multiple TDs in three of his last four games. His play has slightly improved in recent weeks, and the Steelers are expected to continue to play “Big Ben Ball,” which entails Ben in the shotgun or pistol and getting rid of the ball quickly, usually to superstar Diontae Johnson. He has a solid upcoming schedule (@Min, Ten, @KC, Cle) as he closes in on his 40th birthday, and there’s no doubt he wants to end his final regular season with some respectable showings.
Taylor Heinicke (Was, 15%) — The Football Team is one of the hottest teams in the league with four straight victories, and they’ve done it with Heinicke playing more of a game-manager role. He completed 23/30 passes for 196 yards (6.5 YPA), two TDs, and one INT and he added 3/10 rushing in their victory over the Raiders in Week 13. He’s reached 16+ FP just twice in his last eight games, but this is his team with Ryan Fitzpatrick now fully expected to miss the rest of the season. The FT is running the ball a ton with Antonio Gibson, and, while Logan Thomas is on IR, Ricky Seals Jones is likely back, so Heinicke still has a solid TE option. Heinicke is merely a serviceable lower-end QB2, but they do have some beatable/intriguing NFC East matchups looming with five consecutive divisional games looming (Dal, @Phi, @Dal, Phi, @NYG). UPDATED: 12/8
Jimmy Garoppolo (SF, 32%) — Jimmy G is playing his best football of the season with San Francisco surging back into playoff contention, and for now Trey Lance will continue to stay glued to the bench as long as the 49ers don’t freefall in the next couple of weeks. He’s thrown for two TDs in four of his last five games, and he’s averaged 8.0 YPA or better in six straight games with George Kittle returning to the lineup and with Brandon Aiyuk coming back to life. The 49ers running game has taken over lately, but he has the chance to be a fringe top-12 option if he’s ever forced to throw the ball 35 times or more. He could be without Deebo Samuel (groin) for another game, which is a massive loss, but he at least could have some more competitive matchups looming (@Cin, Atl, @Ten, Hou) that should force him to the air a little more. HC Kyle Shanhan said on 12/8 that he’s still hoping that Deebo can play Week 14, so there’s certainly a chance he does. UPDATED: 12/7
Teddy Bridgewater (Den, 24%) — Teddy put up 16.1 FP in Denver’s first game out of their bye despite playing just three quarters in their victory over the Chargers because of a lower-leg injury, and then he followed that up with a 14.0 FP performance in Week 13. That’s not great, but hey, he scored more points than Patrick Mahomes on the other side of the field. Teddy has cooled off with only four TD passes overall in his last five games (1 rushing TD), but he’s still a serviceable low-end QB2 with a solid upcoming schedule (Det, Cin, @LV). There’s no shortage of weapons here, and Teddy’s OL is healthier now, so he does have potential.
Mac Jones (NE, 38%) — Coming out of Week 12, Jones was throwing a catchable pass 85% of the time, which was tops in the league (per Cris Collinsworth). That number probably didn’t change much in Week 13, since Mac threw only three passes (actually, his ball to TE Jonnu Smith, while caught, was not very catchable). This is obviously still a run-heavy offense with a stout defense, which often caps Mac’s fantasy upside. But if you’re looking for a low-end option, it’s always nice to roll with a guy who's actually playing well, and Mac did come through in Week 12 with a little extra volume, completing 23/32 passes for 310 yards (9.7 YPA) and two TDs for 21.5 FP against the Titans. Jones should at least play in some competitive upcoming games (bye, @Ind, Jax, vs. Buf) where he’ll be forced to throw a little more, at least vs. Indy and Buf. UPDATED: 12/7
Baker Mayfield (Cle, 38%) — Mayfield is playing through a fracture in his non-throwing shoulder in addition to his torn labrum and, to make matters worse, he looked clearly hobbled last week playing through a knee injury he suffered in Week 10. Mayfield’s tough to go to battle with due to his mounting injuries and due to the fact that he’s in a run-heavy offense with limited passing-game weapons. With just one performance with 19+ FP through 12 games, Mayfield is a desperation option in Superflex/two-QB formats (Bal, LV, @GB). It’s getting so bad in Cleveland that HC Kevin Stefanski has to be seriously considering a switch to Case Keenum. On the positive side, Baker’s not planning on heading to the bench anytime soon, and they do have a very good schedule the rest of the way.
Matt Ryan (Atl, 44%) — Ryan has scored 13+ FP and he’s reached 2+ TD passes just once in his last six games. But he’s still scrappy and he’s still trying like hell to get things done. He completed 30/41 passes for 297 yards (7.2 YPA) without a touchdown in a loss to the Buccaneers in Week 13. He’s hardly a priority option with one of the league’s worst receiving corps at his disposal, and he’ll be nothing more than a low-end QB2 in Superflex/two-QB formats with a relatively difficult upcoming schedule (@Car, @SF, Det, @Buf).
Daniel Jones (NYG, 22%) — He can’t be trusted against anything close to a good defense at this point, which makes him a volatile low-end QB2. That also assumes he’s playing, and he’s not expected to play in Week 14. But in a 2-QB league, if he can return to the lineup, he does have some beatable matchups (Dal, @Phi, @Chi) Weeks 15-17. Getting Kadarius Toney and/or Sterling Shepard back would help, but they’ve been completely unreliable with their lack of availability this season. UPDATED: 12/8
Trevor Lawrence (Jax, 30%) — The first overall pick from last spring’s draft has struggled mightily for most of the season as he’s playing with limited weapons under a first-time NFL coach who is in way over his head. Lawrence completed 16/28 passes for 145 scoreless yards (5.2 YPA) and he had 4/10 rushing to finish with 6.8 FP in a 30-point loss to the Rams. Lawrence’s receivers have been coming up extremely small, and he will be without Dan Arnold (knee, IR) and Jamal Agnew (hip, IR) for likely the rest of the season. It’s so bad right now that Laquon Treadwell has been the team’s best receiver the last two weeks. He can’t be trusted in lineups right now even with some beatable matchups in his future (@Ten, Hou, @NYJ, @NE).
Jared Goff (Det, 6%) — Goff finally picked up his first victory without Sean McVay, and the Lions finally got off the schneid in dramatic fashion on Goff’s game-winning TD pass as time expired against the Vikings in Week 13. Goff completed 25/41 passes for 296 yards (7.2 YPA), three TDs, and one INT for his first 20+ FP performance since the first two games of the season. Before Week 13, Goff had been pretty miserable with just three TD passes in six games in Weeks 5-12. He’s only a desperation option in two-QB/Superflex leagues moving forward (@Den, Ari, @Atl, @Sea), but he’s at least shown more life recently since the Lions added his old Rams teammate Josh Reynold to the receiving corps.
Zach Wilson (NYJ, 6%) — Wilson took back the starting job in Week 12 after missing four games for a knee injury, and he looked like the same quarterback from before his injury. He showed marginal improvement in his second start since the injury, completing 23/38 passes for 226 yards (5.9 YPA), two TDs, and one INT in a loss to the Eagles. Wilson also added a one-yard touchdown plunge to give him his first 20+ FP performance of his career. New York’s upcoming schedule features mostly difficult matchups (NO, @Mia, Jax, TB) for this limited passing attack, so he’s still a desperation option in Superflex/two-QB leagues until we see signs of significant improvement. But there’s no question Wilson HAS improved the last two weeks.
Khalil Herbert (Chi, 15%) — David Montgomery is back and dominating touches and playing time in Chicago’s backfield, but Herbert asserted himself as his handcuff during Montgomery’s four-week absence. He averaged 21.8 touches and 97.0 scrimmage yards per game in Weeks 5-8 so he’s a viable RB2 if Montgomery misses more time. Montgomery is dealing with Shoulder/groin/glute issues this week, which does not sound good. Just in case, Herbert should be owned as a Week 14 stash in case Montgomery misses Week 14. UPDATED: 12/8
Jeff Wilson (SF, 26%) and JaMycal Hasty (SF, 1%) — Wilson returned to San Francisco’s lineup in Week 9 after needing knee surgery in the middle of the season, and he got a chance to lead this backfield with Eli Mitchell sitting out Week 11 with a finger injury, but he managed just 19/50 rushing (2.6 YPC) with an eight-yard catch on two targets. Wilson coming out of Week 13 is still dealing with some knee soreness, which is not good. Wilson was limited early in the week, but if Mitchell (concussion, and also a knee issue) can’t play, then Hasty could potentially get 10+ touches and get some run as their changeup and receiving back. The team signed RB Brian Hill off their practice squad on Wednesday, which is not a good sign for Mitchell. UPDATED: 12/8
Samaje Perine (Cin, 7%) — Perine is the primary handcuff for Joe Mixon, who already had an injury scare this season when he went down with an ankle injury. He’s also seeing some time playing behind Mixon on a weekly basis but it’s not quite enough to be fantasy relevant. Mixon is on the injury report with an illness, so Perine is a decent Week 14 stash. UPDATED: 12/8
Dontrell Hilliard (Ten, 40%) and D’Onta Foreman (Ten, 42%) — The Titans’ backfield had devolved into a fantasy quagmire, but it cleared up some in Week 12 with Adrian Peterson being released and Jeremy McNichols (concussion) missing his second consecutive game. The Titans split the work in this backfield essentially right down the middle in Week 12 with Hilliard posting 12/131/1 rushing with a two-yard catch on two targets on a 51% snap share. Foreman finished with 19/109 rushing while catching his only target for three yards on a 49% snap share against the Patriots. Both players could hang in there as low-end RB2s if this backfield remained untouched, but McNichols will return to the lineup this week, so this backfield could be a disaster. Hilliard is hurt most if McNichols plays a third of the snaps, as he was previously. UPDATED: 12/8
Carlos Hyde (Jax, 12%) — Hyde has been buried behind James Robinson in Jacksonville’s backfield since early in the season, but he’s on the radar right now with J-Rob struggling through heel and knee injuries. Hyde led the backfield with nine carries in their 30-point loss to the Rams, which he turned into 24 rushing yards and a touchdown, while Robinson managed just 8/24 rushing. Hyde also out-snapped Robinson 29 to 26 in Week 13. The Jaguars could elect to shut J-Rob down for a week or perhaps for the rest of the season with his lingering injuries, which would elevate Hyde into a workhorse role. Hyde saw 22 touches when Robinson sat in Week 9, and he could get enough work to be a viable low-end RB2 if the second-year back misses more time. HC Urban Myer admitted on Monday that he should have pulled Robinson at the end of the game in Week 13, so he probably won’t be shy about playing Hyde, his former college player at Ohio State, a lot in Week 14.
Mike Davis (Atl, 47%) — Hey, he did look a lot better in Week 13, with 4/31/1 rushing and 4/37 on 4 targets in the passing game and a decent 56% of the snaps. If he’s going to get 8-10 opportunities the rest of the way, he’s got a chance. He’s been dropped in probably 34-50% of leagues out there, and going into Week 13 was available in over 50% of Yahoo! leagues.
Ameer Abdullah (Car, 4%) — Rookie Chubba Hubbard is back in as the lead runner and early-down back, but Abdullah is going to play in passing situations because they do not trust Hubbard in pass protection. The Panthers’ coaching staff has also been impressed with Abdullah over the last month, and he looks fast and explosive in Carolina. He’s a player to stash now just in case the Panthers come out of their bye and give Abdullah a bigger role than Hubbard, who has faded some after a solid start as CMC’s replacement earlier this season. The Panthers have some brutal run-game matchups anyway in Weeks 15-17 (@Buf, TB, @NO) and Abdullah could be on the field more than expected as their receiving back, so he could sneak into the flex conversation with Cam Newton potentially checking it down to him 3-5 times per game. OC Joe Brady also got let go over their bye week because he reportedly wasn’t running the ball enough, so Hubbard and Abdullah could see a little more work with Brady out of the picture.
Jordan Howard (Phi, 11%) and Boston Scott (Phi, 41%) — Good luck navigating this Eagles’ backfield on a week-to-week basis with four backs in the mix and injuries galore to Miles Sanders (ankle), Howard (knee), and Scott (illness). HC Nick Sirianni is committed to rotating his backs, and this backfield has produced plenty of rushing production since they dedicated themselves to running the rock starting in Week 8. The Eagles are on bye this week but Howard should be back in the mix starting in Week 15, and he was used ahead of Scott before his injury. Rookie Kenneth Gainwell is the #4 option in this backfield, and he’s worth considering if Sanders and/or Howard aren’t ready to play coming out of their bye.
Tevin Coleman (NYJ, 41%) and Ty Johnson (NYJ, 27%) and Austin Walter (NYJ, 1%) — With Michael Carter out at least one more week, Coleman has performed the best with 11/58 rushing and 3/19 receiving on 39% of the snaps against the Eagles in Week 13. But he’s dealing with a concussion this week and may not play. Johnson last week once again disappointed with just 3/15 scrimmage on a backfield-best 47% of the snaps as Zach Wilson is not throwing to his RBs. If Coleman is out, then Walter could be the early-down back or in a 50/50 split with Johnson. UPDATED: 12/8
Rashaad Penny (Sea, 6%) — Seattle’s backfield has been a fantasy landmine ever since Chris Carson (neck, IR) played his final game of the season in Week 4. Penny saw the highest snap share (41%) in Week 13, turning his 11 touches into 62 yards while Adrian Peterson finished with an unspectacular 11/16/1 rushing on a 26% share. Travis Homer also factored in with 6/17 scrimmage on traditional offensive snaps on a 30% snap share, and he added a 73-yard touchdown on a fake punt. Oh, and per HC Pete Caroll, Alex Collins (abdomen) will be back in the mix this week against Houston (at Peterson’s expense)! The guy they should be playing, DeeJay Dallas, played just two offensive snaps in Week 13. At this point, Penny is the player we’re most intrigued with since he theoretically has the pedigree to be a playmaker, but he’s barely played for two seasons now so he’s a true stash-and-pray option. Penny has five games to show something before his rookie contract runs out at season’s end. UPDATED: 12/7
Rex Burkhead (Hou, 23%) and David Johnson (Hou, 44%) — Chasing fantasy production in this Houston backfield has been a fruitless endeavor this season, but it’s at least notable that HC David Culley pared down the backfield to a two-man committee between Burkhead and Johnson coming out of their Week 10 bye — they released Phillip Lindsay before Week 12. Johnson didn’t play in Week 13 because of an illness, which left Burkhead and Royce Freeman as the top options in this backfield. Burkhead managed just 8/30 rushing and 1/15 receiving on two targets while playing 46% of the snaps in their shutout loss to the Colts — Freeman had 4/21 scrimmage on 42% of the snaps. Burkhead hasn’t been effective at all, but it’s notable that he’s seeing the most rushing and receiving work.
Jalen Richard (LV, 0%) and Peyton Barber (LV, 0%) — The Raiders placed Richard on the COVID-19 list before Sunday’s game so he may not be available this week against the Chiefs, but he could be worth a stash in deeper PPR formats after Kenyan Drake needed to be carted off for a leg injury in Week 13. Drake will not play again this season. As soon as he’s back to action, Richard would work in passing situations next to Josh Jacobs. Barber is more of a Jacobs handcuff, but he’s the only other option in this backfield and he could be forced into a role if both Drake and Richard are out this week. UPDATED: 12/7
Matt Breida (Buf, 23%) — So much for that. The Bills pulled the plug on second-year RB Zack Moss on Thanksgiving Day, and Breida for the second week made the most plays in the backfield, catching both of his targets for 29 yards and a touchdown while posting 9/26 rushing on a 32% snap share. But Moss was active in Week 13 and he played 41% of the snaps with Breida at just 7% and he had just two touches. Breida had done a lot on limited opportunities over the previous three weeks with three scores in that span while averaging 6.2 YPC and 11.2 YPR, so OC Brian Daboll could use him a lot again. But he’s not a viable longshot play for now after Week 13. UPDATED: 12/7
Brandon Bolden (NE, 24%) — Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson are the clear top runners in this offense, but the veteran Bolden is still the clear receiving back in this passing attack. He caught all four of his targets for 54 yards against the Titans in Week 12, which gave him 9+ FP in four of his previous six games. Week 13 was more of a burn the tape game, as he played only 6 snaps. But he did touch the ball on 5 of those 6 snaps and he got 4.5 FP, which is more than we can say about anyone else involved in the passing game. The Patriots could be forced to throw a little more over the next month or so with some tougher matchups looming (bye, @Ind, Buf) so he’s still a viable option in deeper PPR formats. UPDATED: 12/7
Best Handcuff Stashes
Ronald Jones (TB, 25%) — RoJo has fallen out of favor in Tampa Bay and, despite scoring the last two weeks, he’s yet to reach double-digit FP in any game this season. His only path to real fantasy reliability is if Leonard Fournette would miss time in the future and, even then, Giovani Bernard would take on a bigger role as a passing back next to RoJo.
Devontae Booker (NYG, 28%) — Booker is the running back to own behind Saquon Barkley in this Giants’ backfield. He scored double-digit FP in each of his five games with Saquon out of the lineup in Weeks 5-9, and he’s been getting some weekly work behind Barkley since he returned to the lineup after their Week 10 bye.
Marlon Mack (Ind, 2%) — Mack is nothing more than a decent handcuff for Jonathan Taylor. He’s not really a must-have due to the presence of Nyheim Hines, but Mack would certainly be in line for 12+ touches if JT’s out.
Russell Gage (Atl, 34%) — Atlanta is trotting out the second-worst receiving corps in the league, ahead of only Detroit, and Gage is the top option in this sad group while Calvin Ridley is away from the team, ahead of Olamide Zaccheaus and Tajae Sharpe. Gage paced this pathetic passing attack for a third straight game in Week 13, posting season-bests in targets (12), catches (11), receiving yards (130), and FP (23.0) Gage has a rock-bottom floor with two goose eggs since their Week 6 bye, but he’s been a viable PPR option in his other five games in that span with a combined 33/372/2 receiving for 81.2 FP. Scordarrelle Patterson’s presence in the lineup lifts up the floor for this entire offense, and Gage should remain involved with defenses focused on wiping out Kyle Pitts most weeks. Gage is a viable WR3 in PPR formats as we head into the fantasy playoffs. In a 14-team league or larger, he’s a lifesaver at this point.
K.J. Osborn (Min, 3%) — Osborn has been awfully quiet since Minnesota’s Week 7 bye, failing to register more than three FP in five straight contests in Weeks 8-12. That changed in Week 13 with Adam Thielen leaving in the first quarter with an ankle injury, which elevated Osborn into the #2 WR role behind Justin Jefferson. Osborn stepped up with 4/47/1 receiving on seven targets (17% share) against the Lions, and his touchdown came on a five-yard strike in the fourth quarter. Thielen never came close to returning in Week 13 and he’s OUT this week, so Osborn is going to be in a great spot with CB Joe Haden out and the Steelers focusing on Justin Jefferson. UPDATED: 12/8
Marquez Valdes-Scantling (GB, 19%) — MVS garnered some preseason hype and he looked potentially primed for a mini-breakout early in the season before a hamstring injury sidelined him for five weeks. He’s been slow out of the gates since he returned to the lineup in Week 9, but he finally exploded in Week 11 with 22.3 FP against the Vikings. He backed it up 4/50 receiving on a team-high nine targets (20% share) against the Rams in Week 12, and he just missed a big play as well. It’s tough to trust any of these Packers’ secondary receivers behind ball-hog Davante Adams, but MVS is worth a look since he’s seen a team-best 19 targets over Green Bay’s last two games. It also doesn’t hurt that Randall Cobb could be out of the mix in the future after he left Week 12 early with a groin injury. MVS is capable of exploding for a massive fantasy performance in any matchup playing with Aaron Rodgers, who has shown trust in MVS. He’s also capable of posting a dud in any matchup, so he’s a true boom-or-bust fantasy option.
Kendrick Bourne (NE, 23%) — Heading into Week 13, Bourne had been a viable PPR option since Week 3 with 4+ receptions in seven of his last 10 games. He had also gone for 23+ FP in two of his last three games after a 5/61/2 performance against the Titans in Week 12. He’s still been playing behind Nelson Agholor, but he has the most chemistry with Mac Jones out of all the Patriots receivers. He’s still averaging career-best in YPR (14.8) and in catch rate (79.2%), two stats that were not disrupted in Week 13 because he didn’t even get a target. That was a burn-the-tape-game, but keep in mind Bourne is off Week 14. UPDATED: 12/7
Josh Reynolds (Det, 4%) and Amon-Ra St. Brown (Det, 6%) — Reynolds has been on Detroit’s active roster for just three weeks, and he’s already been elevated into the top perimeter WR spot. He also has more chemistry with Jared Goff than the rest of these receivers since he spent the first four years of his career (2017-20) playing with the Rams. Reynolds has posted a combined 7/139/1 receiving on 12 targets in Weeks 12-13 for double-digit FP in each contest. The rookie St. Brown has 4+ catches in seven of his last eight games, and he finally reached double-digit FP again in Week 13 for the first time since Week 5. He posted a career-best 10/86/1 receiving on 12 targets (29% share) against the Vikings, and Goff went to him for the game-winning, 11-yard touchdown as time expired, which secured Detroit’s first win of the season. Goff has been groping for any kind of help at WR all season long, and it looks like contributions from Reynolds and St. Brown have given Goff some stability at the position. These WRs also have a little more fantasy potential if D’Andre Swift (shoulder) continues to miss time, and Swift likely will.
Tre’Quan Smith (NO, 3%) — Smith put up only 2/15 in Week 13, but he was second on the team with seven targets, and Taysom Hill missed him for an easy 25-yard TD. Most importantly, Deonte Harris will miss the next three games, so Smith’s volume should be increasing. The Saints have the Bucs and Dolphins in Weeks 15-16, but they do have a great matchup this week against the Jets.
Jamison Crowder (NYJ, 21%) — He’s been tough to trust, but Crowder has a 6/41 game with 7 targets and a 4/62 game on 6 targets over his last three games. Corey Davis is now done for the season, and while Denzel Mims will likely get chances, Davis being out should give Crowder a small bump.
Nick Westbrook-Ikhine (Ten, 14%) — Julio Jones has been designated to return from IR, and he’s actually had four full weeks to rest up. He can practice now and be elevated, but it’s not clear if he’s set to play Week 14. A.J. Brown, and Marcus Johnson are both players still on injured reserve, Westbrook-Ikhine should have a prominent role in Tennessee's low-volume passing game. He posted 2/25/1 receiving on five targets (24% share) to pace the Titans against the Patriots in their last game in Week 12, and Westbrook-Ikhine will be viable on the low end for as long as Tennessee’s without either Jones ot Brown, which will be the case for at least Week 14.
Kadarius Toney (NYG, 38%) and Sterling Shepard (NYG, 22%) — Yes, Toney and Shepard are still on the Giants’ roster, but a number of injuries have limited their availability this season. Both players could return in the near future, but they may not stay healthy for long, so beware. Shepard has been active when has been in the lineup, averaging 6.4/64.8/.2 receiving on 8.6 targets per game, but he’s appeared in just two games since Week 3. Toney saw 12 targets in his last appearance in Week 11, and he’s the most dynamic WR on this roster. As we saw yet again in Week 13, Kenny Golladay is hopeless, so Toney and Shepard have a chance to put up numbers when healthy in this lousy passing attack. The Giants won’t likely have Daniel Jones in Week 14, though, and Toney may miss Week 14. Shepard is on track to play after Wednesday’s practice. UPDATED: 12/8
Ricky Seals-Jones (Was, 5%) — RSJ nearly returned to the lineup in Week 13 after getting limited practices in with his hip injury, but Washington ultimately gave him another week to rest. They’ll likely need him starting this week after Logan Thomas was place on IR with a knee injury. Thomas won’t play again this year, and RSJ had a solid run earlier this season when Thomas missed time, posting 4+ catches in three straight games in Weeks 5-7. He’s back on the radar again since on track to return Week 14. Taylor Heinicke has shown a propensity to look for his TEs in the middle of the field. Rookie John Bates would be the next man up if RSJ cannot play. UPDATED: 12/8
Tyler Conklin (Min, 34%) — Conklin has a fantasy pulse at a weak position since he gets weekly targets while seeing a large snap share. Those targets dried up a bit in Weeks 11-12 with just six looks, but he’s back to being on the radar with Adam Thielen leaving in the first quarter of Week 13 with an ankle injury. Conklin finished with 7/56 receiving on a season-high nine targets (22% share) in Minnesota’s loss to the Lions. Thielen never came close to returning in Week 13 and the Vikings have a quick turnaround to play on Thursday Night Football against the Steelers, so he has low-end TE1 upside for as long as Thielen is out of the lineup.
Cole Kmet (Chi, 26%) — Kmet has been trending in the right direction since Week 6 with 3+ catches in six of his last seven games. He finished with 3/41 receiving on seven targets (17%) against the Cardinals in Week 13, but he, unfortunately, saw Jimmy Graham steal a touchdown for a second consecutive game. Kmet has yet to score a touchdown so his ceiling is a bit limited, but he’s seen 6+ targets in five of his last six games if you’re looking for help in PPR formats. Kmet did show chemistry with Justin Fields earlier in the season, and Fields is back Week 14. UPDATED: 12/8
James O’Shaughnessy (Jax, 0%) — O’Shaughnessy made some noise in Jacksonville’s season opener with 6/48 receiving before going down with a high ankle injury in Week 2. He returned to the lineup at the right time in Week 12 with Dan Arnold going down with a knee injury. The good news is that he led the Jaguars with six targets (21% share) in Week 13, but the bad news is he turned those looks into just 2/13 receiving with Trevor Lawrence struggling mightily once again. O’Shaughnessy is on the radar with Arnold on the injured reserve and the Jaguars groping for help at receiver, but he’s hardly a reliable fantasy option in this broken passing game.
Gerald Everett (Sea, 20%) — Everett sure is happy to see Russell Wilson back in action, with 3+ catches in four straight games. He had a miserable game against the 49ers in Week 13 though, losing two fumbles and finishing with 4/7 receiving on six targets (16% share). He’s established himself as the third option in this passing attack, but he needs Russ to improve over the final month if he wants to be a reliable fantasy option.
Evan Engram (NYG, 29%) — Engram has been one of the more reliable options in this Giants’ passing attack, which tells you all you need to know about this struggling offense. With Mike Glennon getting the start in Week 13, Engram led the Giants with 4/61 receiving on five targets (11% share). New York has struggled to field a healthy receiving corps all season, which has kept Engram in the mix with 3+ catches in seven of his last eight games if you’re dying for PPR help.
Chris Boswell (Pit, 59%) - Boswell has converted on multiple field goals in a game in six of his last eight outings. Of his 24 field goals converted in 2021, 14 of them have been from the bonus range. In fact, Boswell has at least one bonus range field goal in five straight games and in eight of his last nine outings.
Younghoe Koo (Atl, 46%) - The Falcons’ offense has been erratic, especially of late. Koo has converted on just two of three field goal attempts in his last four games combined. Yet, he did have a four-game stretch prior to that in which he had multiple field goals in a game. During that stretch, he faced Carolina and converted on two of three field goal attempts with both of his conversions coming from the bonus range.
Jason Myers (Sea, 10%) - Myers has converted multiple field goals in a game just twice all season. Yet if there is a game in which to roll the dice on him, this is the one. Even though it is a road game, Myers has a solid match up in Houston. The Texans have allowed multiple field goal attempts in three of their last four home games. While a risky play, Myers could give you multiple field goals here. Also consider that of his four missed field goals this season, three of them have been from the bonus range.
Chiefs (KC, 51%) — With a few defensive personnel changes, the Chiefs D turned things around pretty quickly. They’ve held three of their last four opponents to single-digit points and added 9 sacks, 6 INTs, 4 fumble recoveries, and a TD during that span. They have an average schedule heading into the fantasy playoffs, but they’ve finished in the top 10 against Green Bay, Dallas, and Denver, so there should nothing scary about their last stretch of LV, @LAC, Pit, and Cin.
Chargers (LAC, 26%) — You’ll have to endure one tough matchup against the Chiefs — though they haven’t been as tough this season as expected — but the Chargers have a really good schedule for the fantasy playoffs. After dismantling the Bengals last week (22 PA, 6 sacks, 2 INTs, 2 FRs, and a TD), Joey Bosa, Derwin James, and Co. will face NYG, KC, @Hou, and Den next.
Seattle (Sea, 13%) — Though they’re not much for big plays — no more than 2 sacks in a game since Week Two, and just 7 total INTs — the Seahawks have been keeping their opponents in check in terms of points allowed lately. Since Week Six, no opponent has scored more than 23 points in a game, including holding Green Bay to 17 PA and Jacksonville to 7 PA. While none of that makes them an above average defense, they do have three good matchups in their next four games (@Hou, @LAR, Chi, Det).