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Fantasy Football: Week 13 waiver wire

11.27.12 at 9:21 am ET
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Welcome to the Week 13 waiver wire. It’€™s crunch time for fantasy players, and if you are reading this, that means you’€™re still alive. Let’€™s endeavor to keep it that way, shall we? The keys are no longer about building a deep bench or thinking ahead to cover your bye weeks. At this point, we should have the depth and there are no more byes. What we really want now are players who can move the needle — players who might be able to make an impact in the event we need to replace a starter due to non-performance or injury. Luckily, there are a few such players out there in a lot of leagues. Let’€™s take a look.

QUARTERBACKS

Colin Kaepernick, 49ers

For those of you who frequent Rotobahn, you know how much we like this kid. We actually thought he’€™d take the starting gig sooner, but the lockout cost him valuable time as a rookie and Alex Smith played far better than most, myself included, anticipated. Even now, there is some doubt as to whether he starts in Week 13. We’€™re still buying.

Chad Henne, Jaguars

Henne has paid his dues in the league and he’€™s looked very good in his two-game stint as starter. He’€™ll continue in the starter role for the rest of the year as long as he stays healthy. One thing to like about Henne is the schedule he’€™ll be playing. In the next four weeks, he goes up against the Bills, Jets, Dolphins and Patriots. Those are solid matchups for a quarterback.  There aren’€™t many better remaining schedules out there as far as passing yards are concerned. Henne will be playable every week if you need him.

Sam Bradford, Rams

The former Oklahoma Sooner has been serviceable for the most part, but I expect him to finish stronger. The Rams have a very nice closing schedule for passing the football, and Bradford looks quite capable of taking advantage based on how he’€™s played in recent weeks. The worst matchup is this week’€™s home game with San Francisco, but after that, he’€™ll face the Bills, Vikings and Bucs. That’€™s some solid opportunity.

RUNNING BACKS

Beanie Wells, Cardinals

Wells struggled with conditioning in his first game back, but that was to be expected. He did score twice and we expect better results as far as yardage goes. He should not be available, but you need to get him if he is.

Knowshon Moreno, Broncos

I undersold him last week, but then again, so did everybody else. The Broncos obviously wanted to throw a curve ball to Kansas City by hiding the identity of the starter. For those who follow us on Twitter, you got the news in time to pull Ronnie Hillman. That’€™s why we encourage folks to follow us. In a pinch, we can get key info out to our people. As for Knowshon, he is a talented multi-skilled back who only needs to stay healthy and endear himself to coach John Fox. He’€™s a must-add player in all formats for his upside, but at the same time, who knows what Denver might do this week. There’€™s a chance that the Broncos might going with an opponent-specific approach at the position. The bottom line is that Moreno looked good. He looked like the guy who was a first-round draft pick. Add him in all leagues.

Bryce Brown, Eagles

Not a new addition to the waiver wire, but he is more than just a handcuff option now. The way Brown played last night, he may have created a larger role even when LeSean McCoy returns from his concussion. It’€™s looking doubtful that his return will be this week, so you might get another big performance from Brown if you can add him this week. He obviously is a super-high-priority add for McCoy owners.

Michael Bush, Bears

Bush is an absolute must-add if you own Matt Forte, who was injured (ankle) on Sunday and could miss next week’€™s game. Bush is a viable add for all leagues whether you own Forte or not, but he is crucial if you do. Bush could be an every-down back in Week 13 and perhaps beyond depending on Forte’€™s ankle.

Ronnie Hillman, Broncos

As I said with Moreno, we don’€™t know exactly what the plan in Denver is. We’€™d try to hold onto Hillman in larger formats and pick him up if he gets dropped. The kid can be explosive and even if Moreno is indeed being given a shot at the full job, he still has a very dicey injury history. Hillman could still end up being valuable.

Jacquizz Rodgers, Falcons

The worm may be turning in the Atlanta backfield and it may be time to add Rodgers, especially in PR formats where he has increased value. He’€™s run stronger in recent weeks and when you combine that with a declining Michael Turner and an offense trending towards more throwing and no-huddle, you have to conclude that Rodgers is a comer. Add him in all PPR formats and most standard formats too.

David Wilson, Giants

We’€™ve sounded his bell prematurely a few times, but with Andre Brown now done for the season, there are snaps to be had in the Giants’€™ backfield. Throw in the fact that starter Ahmad Bradshaw is oft injured and currently playing at less than 100 percent, and Wilson is blinking red. He’€™s a must-add for Bradshaw owners and a nice flier to take in larger formats. Wilson still has some learning to do in terms of pass protection and route-running, but his talent is undeniable.

Jonathan Dwyer, Steelers

With Ben Roethlisberger rumored to return, we like the idea of adding Dwyer, especially in larger leagues. The Steelers have a reasonable closing schedule vs. the run and Dwyer has been the best back in Pittsburgh this year based on what I have seen.

Alex Green, Packers

He got back into the flow in Week 12 and we still view him as the best back on the Packers‘€™ roster, and that includes Cedric Benson, who is a long shot to be fully healthy any time soon. Green is a very solid guy to add in larger leagues for depth and he could start posting better numbers soon as he gets his legs under him. Remember, Green had ACL surgery and he is just now getting back to full health.

Shane Vereen, Patriots

His big score against the Jets was in the second quarter with the result still somewhat in doubt. It was not garbage time. There is no question about his ability. He can play. Vereen is starting to tease flex value in 12-team leagues and is a must-own player for those who own Stevan Ridley. Add him for upside in 12-team leagues and in most leagues if you own Ridley.

WIDE RECEIVERS

Greg Jennings, Packers

Yes, really. Jennings is available in 21 percent of Yahoo! leagues, so you should do the legwork and check out your league’€™s waiver wire. If he got dumped, you could get a free upside option for the playoffs. By Week 14, Jennings could be back to must-start status.

Cecil Shorts, Jaguars

How is he is unowned in 40 percent of Yahoo! leagues is beyond me. This kid can play, as we’€™ve been saying for over a year now. He’€™s a legit weekly WR3 and he has upside too. Add him.

Pierre Garcon, Redskins

Now you know why we told you to hold onto him. Garcon, playing at less than full health, is still Robert Griffin III‘€™s best option. He is a weekly play again, so grab him if he’€™s out there. Garcon is the perfect kind of pickup this late, because he has the ability to make big plays and post big fantasy numbers.

Danario Alexander, Chargers

As I said in the introduction, we are looking for players that can move the needle. Alexander is a big-play threat and he can start for you in any league on most any week. He’€™s exactly the kind of player you should be adding right now in any league size. He’€™s got the talent, the role and the quarterback to deliver the ball.

Justin Blackmon, Jaguars

He’€™s now got a string of good games going with the switch to Henne at quarterback. Blackmon has all the talent in the world and now he’s got a situation that is working for him. Pick him up in any format as a WR3 with the upside to perform as a WR1.

Ryan Broyles, Lions

We told you he was a must-add last week and he posted 126 receiving yards. He’€™s still available in 78 percent of Yahoo! leagues, so you might still have a chance at him. Broyles has some solid upside and may have stolen the starting gig from Titus Young. As we have been saying all year long, Broyles is the better player. Pick him up in all leagues.

Julian Edelman, Patriots

I am a big fan of Edelman, and so is Bill Belichick. The latter is the key point, obviously. This guy is going to have a role when healthy, because he plays the game the way the head coach wants it played. He did take a helmet-to-helmet hit last week, so he may be questionable for Week 13, but we’€™d add him for depth anyway. This guy makes plays, period.

T.Y. Hilton, Colts

Another Rotobahn favorite, Hilton has really picked up steam lately and is a weekly flex option in 12-team leagues. Here’€™s what we said about T.Y. in July:

We think he shines in Indy with Luck and company. We also like his chances as far as challenging for snaps as a rookie. He needs a big camp to be a factor in typical redrafts, but we’€™d grab him in long term leagues and dynasty. This guy has DeSean Jackson-like potential without the hype. Yeah, I said it. He’€™s a serious KR threat and PR threat as well.

The kid did not come out of nowhere. The skill was there all along, and with Donnie Avery fading a bit, Hilton could be a fantastic add in any format. Get him now for depth if you can. You might end up using him.

Mohamed Sanu, Bengals

Now you know why he was in this space the last two weeks. Sanu is a very talented guy and he’€™s now getting the snaps to show his skills. At this point, we think he’€™s locked in opposite A.J. Green, so he really needs to be owned in all 12-team leagues and some 10-team leagues too.

Chris Givens, Rams

He’€™s an upside guy who could post very nice numbers down the stretch. As I have said, Givens is a great guy to own in long-term formats, but he’€™s got some value in 12-team leagues for the rest of the year, especially if you want a WR handcuff for Danny Amendola, who played very limited snaps in Week 12.

TIGHT ENDS

Dustin Keller, Jets

He was terrible in Week 11, but he’€™s been heavily involved apart from that. Sure, his score came in garbage time, but he’€™ll be playing plenty of garbage-time snaps the rest of the way, and it all counts, right? Keller can start for you in any format if you have a need at tight end.

Dennis Pitta, Ravens

He played in Week 12 and proved he was past his concussion. He also found the zone and saw plenty of looks from Joe Flacco. Pitta can help you at tight end in larger formats. He’€™s trending well again.

Brandon Myers, Raiders

He can play for you in any league or scoring format though he does get a bump in value in PPR formats. He’€™s still available in 43 percent of Yahoo! leagues and he can help you if tight end is a problem spot.

Jacob Tamme, Broncos

No, this is not a knee-jerk listing because he scored in Week 12. He’€™s been better the last two weeks and he is seeing the ball more. He can help you in 12-team leagues.

Dallas Clark, Colts

This guy reminds me of a young Dallas Clark. Really though, the Bucs tight end has been successful lately for a lot of the same reasons that Doug Martin has been going off. The downfield passing attack has been thriving with Vincent Jackson and company making big plays. That creates room for the underneath guys. Clark should continue to be a viable if not strong option for those in 12-team leagues.

Marcedes Lewis, Jaguars

The change at quarterback has obviously unshackled Lewis to some extent. He looks a lot more like the player who was helping fantasy owners a few years back. He can help you in leagues with 12 or more teams. He’€™s a very talented guy and a solid red zone threat.

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