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Fantasy Football: Week 14 waiver wire

12.03.13 at 10:20 am ET
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As we look toward what is a playoff week in most fantasy football formats, there certainly are a few solid new options to consider adding. The sad reality is that half of the teams in most leagues just got sent packing, and that obviously cuts down on the competition for talent. Hence, we are concentrating on the better players vs. the depth moves, but we still have a little of both.

If you are looking for deeper options, you can head over to Rotobahn later Tuesday and check out my expanded wire for those in deep formats. As always, I’ll be back later this week with Jim Hackett for the Fantasy Football Podcast, plus the starts and sits. Then, on Sunday, I’ll be hosting a chat to help with any last-minute lineup issues that you might have. To those of you reading this, please accept our congratulations on making your league’s playoffs. Now let’s see if we can bring home the fantasy bacon!

QUARTERBACKS

Andy Dalton, Bengals

He’s available in about 25 percent of Yahoo! leagues, and that percentage could rise after the stinker that Dalton had in Week 13. Still, we like Dalton’s Week 14 matchup, and Week 16 is pretty sweet, too.

  • Week 14 – Colts
  • Week 15 – at Steelers
  • Week 16 – Vikings

Joe Flacco, Ravens

He plays at home vs. the Vikings this week, and that could be enough to make him a great add. As an added bonus, he’s playable on all three remaining weeks. In Week 14, Flacco may also see the return of his favorite target, Dennis Pitta.

  • Week 14 – Vikings
  • Week 15 – at Lions
  • Week 16 – Patriots

Carson Palmer, Cardinals

He can’t help you Week 16, but he’ll be useful this week and next. Palmer has been very good lately, with multiple touchdown passes in five consecutive games. He can help you as a QB2 in most leagues, and you can still add him in 54 percent of Yahoo! leagues.

  • Week 14 – Rams
  • Week 15 – at Titans
  • Week 16 – at Seahawks

EJ Manuel, Bills

He plays a solid, though not incredible, schedule the rest of the way, and he’s been getting better in terms of health. Manuel also has scored well the last two weeks, so he can help you if you need to add a QB2 in a 12-team league. His receivers are healthy and he now has C.J. Spiller ripping off big runs, and that could take the edge off of the pass rush going forward.

  • Week 14 – at Buccaneers
  • Week 15 – at Jaguars
  • Week 16 – Dolphins

RUNNING BACKS

Shane Vereen, Patriots

He’s STILL available in 27 percent of Yahoo! leagues, and he’s now a borderline RB1 in 12-team leagues. Go get Vereen in any league if he’s available. It’s a complete no-brainer if you can pull it off. The schedule is solid, and Vereen is close to matchup-proof anyway because of the way they use him.

  • Week 14 – Browns
  • Week 15 – at Dolphins
  • Week 16 – at Ravens

Ben Tate, Texans

You still can add him in 20 percent of Yahoo! leagues, and he has RB1 upside. Go get Tate if he happens to be there in your league. He’s obviously running quite well at this point, and his ribs obviously are on the mend.

  • Week 14 – at Jaguars
  • Week 15 – at Colts
  • Week 16 – Broncos

Donald Brown, Colts

We’ve been saying for weeks (and we certainly are not alone) that Brown has been outplaying Trent Richardson. Last week, the Colts came clean and admitted the same by moving Brown ahead of Richardson on the depth chart. For now, Brown is usable as a solid flex or light RB2 in 12-team leagues.

  • Week 14 – at Bengals
  • Week 15 – Texans
  • Week 16 – at Chiefs

Chris Ivory, Jets 

He’s the guy in New York, and he’ll get the carries over the next few weeks. He won’t be much of an option in Week 15 against the Panthers, but he’ll be serviceable in Weeks 14 and 16 if you need a back, and Ivory can be had in 43 percent of Yahoo! leagues.

  • Week 14 – Raiders
  • Week 15 – at Panthers
  • Week 16 – Browns

Joique Bell, Lions

He looked healthy last week while he torched the Packers for 94 yards and a score on 19 carries. Bell is a mandatory add for anybody who has Reggie Bush, but he’s a recommended add for everybody, because he gets plenty of love even with Bush healthy, as we saw last week. Bell is a quality add for depth at tailback, and he’s available in 40 percent of Yahoo! leagues.

  • Week 14 – at Eagles
  • Week 15 – Ravens
  • Week 16 – Giants

Montee Ball, Broncos

With Knowshon Moreno banged up but playing, the fantasy worth of Ball is underscored. Quite simply, if you own Moreno, you really need to go after Ball … unless you have great depth at tailback. The remaining schedule is solid, and Ball is going to be a factor. He should be rostered in all leagues with 12 or more teams.

  • Week 14 – Titans
  • Week 15 – Chargers
  • Week 16 – at Texans

Jonathan Dwyer, Steelers

If Le’Veon Bell has a concussion after his big goal-line collision with the Ravens’ Jimmy Smith, Dwyer is the back to add in Pittsburgh. You might want to make a preemptive move if you own Bell in a deep format, just to cover your tail for this week.

  • Week 14 – Dolphins
  • Week 15 – Bengals
  • Week 16 – at Packers

WIDE RECEIVERS

Michael Crabtree, 49ers

He’s back, and he’s somehow owned in less than 50 percent of Yahoo! leagues, so go get him if you can. He’ll be the 49ers’ No. 1 option very soon and should be added in all formats and leagues sizes as San Francisco continues its playoff push. They worked him in slowly last week, allowing him to take a lot of snaps off, but that should change soon. The schedule looks quite good after this week.

  • Week 14 – Seahawks
  • Week 15 – at Buccaneers
  • Week 16 – Falcons

Kendall Wright, Titans

How is this kid still available in 36 percent of Yahoo! leagues? Go get him if you can — in any league size or format. He’s playing very well right now with Ryan Fitzpatrick at the helm. Wright has a solid schedule with the exception of Week 15.

  • Week 14 – at Broncos
  • Week 15 – Cardinals
  • Week 16 – at Jaguars

Emmanuel Sanders, Steelers

He’s been a double-digit scorer in most scoring formats for four of the last six weeks, and he can help you in all leagues right now. Sanders can be added in 40 percent of Yahoo! leagues, and his schedule is nothing to fear.

  • Week 14 – Dolphins
  • Week 15 – Bengals
  • Week 16 – at Packers

Julian Edelman, Patriots 

With the injuries to Aaron Dobson and Kenbrell Thompkins, Edelman is an obvious pickup in all formats this week, but the reasons to pick up Edelman go beyond the injuries. As Jim Hackett and I have pointed out on WEEI’s Fantasy Football Podcast, Edelman has been playing heavy snaps for weeks now. This guy needs to be owned in all PPR formats and most leagues, period.

  • Week 14 – Browns
  • Week 15 – at Dolphins
  • Week 16 – at Ravens

Cordarrelle Patterson, Vikings

Finally! I’ve been wondering out loud for months why this guy gets no carries. In Week 13 the Vikings finally gave Patterson two carries. On the first, he took a reverse for a 6-yard loss, but he took the next one to the house. On the score, they had him lined up as a tailback. The Vikings are beginning to figure things out with Patterson, who has found pay dirt twice in the last three games and now has scored touchdowns as a runner, receiver and returner. As I have been saying all year, roster him in deep leagues just in case they really unleash this kid. He’s a high-upside stash.

  • Week 14 – at Ravens
  • Week 15 – Eagles
  • Week 16 – at Bengals

Tavon Austin, Rams 

You can still add the “little big play machine” in 31 percent of Yahoo! leagues, and though we had him as a bench player last week against the 49ers, we like him plenty in the rest of his 2013 matchups. Austin is a player to add for the playoffs in all leagues.

  • Week 14 – at Cardinals
  • Week 15 – Saints
  • Week 16 – Buccaneers

Andre Holmes, Raiders

He’s a big, athletic kid with good speed for his size, and he is making big plays with Matt McGloin at the helm. The Raiders may have found something here, and Holmes is worth adding in large formats if you have a spot available. You’ll obviously have a crowd when Denarius Moore returns from his shoulder injury. In that vein, Holmes could be a nice add for Moore owners as a hedge against a Moore shutdown, though we do expect him to return, possibly this week. The bottom line is that Holmes has been around the league a la Andre Brown, and he may be finding his footing as a Raider.

  • Week 14 – at Jets
  • Week 15 – Chiefs
  • Week 16 – at Chargers

TIGHT ENDS

Ladarius Green, Chargers

He did it again. Green only caught two balls against Cincinnati last week, but one of them went for six. That’s two weeks in a row that he’s scored and three weeks in a row that he’s seen five or more targets despite being the backup to Antonio Gates. We are seeing the future right now in San Diego at the tight end position. This kid has monster upside and he might be a player that pays off big time in 2014. In the meantime, he can help you in deeper redraft leagues and as a rare TE handcuff option for those who rely on Gates in 12-team leagues. For example, I’d rather have Gates with Green as my backup than Gates and a guy like Anthony Fasano or Heath Miller. His schedule is solid, and he was on the field for all but six of the Chargers’ offensive snaps in Week 13.

  • Week 14 – Giants
  • Week 15 – at Broncos
  • Week 16 – Raiders

Dennis Pitta, Ravens

He most likely will return this week, though there’s no guarantee, and the reasons for adding him are obvious. Pitta could be a recommended play in all leagues as early as Week 15. It makes sense to add him if you have a roster spot and he’s among the best players available in your league. Even if you’re strong at the position, you might keep a competitor from using him against you.

  • Week 14 – Vikings
  • Week 15 – at Lions
  • Week 16 – Patriots

Zach Ertz, Eagles

He’s been getting more involved since Week 6, but we’ve seen better production the last few weeks starting in Week 9, when Ertz scored his first touchdown. He could be an asset down the stretch in deeper leagues if his involvement continues to grow. He’s on the fringe right now. He’s certainly worth an add in larger formats, and his schedule is friendly.

  • Week 14 – Lions
  • Week 15 – at Vikings
  • Week 16 – Bears
Read More: Andy Dalton, Ben Tate, Carson Palmer, EJ Manuel Print  |  Bark It Up!  |  Digg It
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