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Fantasy Football: Week 6 waiver wire 10.07.14 at 9:52 am ET
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What a difference a week can make, huh? Well, maybe not for Calvin Johnson owners like myself, but for Patriots fans, a week has cured a host of ills. Now it’s time to cure some fantasy football ills. This is a week to really focus on free agency, because things are coming into focus now. The good options are drying up, but you still can get impact talent if you act now, especially in smaller formats.

The ownership percentages are listed for each player. These rates of ownership are based on Yahoo! leagues, which tend to be smaller and more representative of the 10-team leagues most of us play in. Obviously, these numbers are mostly for perspective. What really matters is which players are available in your particular league, and you’ll need to do the legwork on that. If you play in really big leagues, as I tend to do, you should head on over to Rotobahn this afternoon and check out my expanded waiver wire. The expanded edition gives you about twice as many options. To keep pace with all WEEI and Rotobahn fantasy football content, including Sunday chats and The Fantasy Football Hour with my good buddy Jim Hackett, follow me on Twitter.

QUARTERBACKS

Eli Manning, Giants – 66 percent

He’s clearly the guy to go after if you are lucky and he’s still available. With the addition of Odell Beckham, Jr., Manning now has a very nice array of targets. The Giants can create mismatch havoc against most secondaries, and the pass protection has improved as well. And, as I’ve said each of the last few weeks, the schedule is mostly friendly. Manning could post QB1 numbers going forward.

Carson Palmer, Cardinals — 30 percent

He’s been dumped in a lot of leagues, but he may be back this week, and we’ve seen how much the Cardinals need their veteran signal caller. Palmer is past his bye and has really good matchups the rest of the way with a few exceptions. I’m looking to add Palmer in all leagues where I need some QB help.

Alex Smith, Chiefs — 45 percent

There are a lot of good matchups left on the schedule, but be wary of Smith’s bye week. It’s this week. If your QB2 needs are further ahead, Smith makes sense. He’s got a solid weekly floor even if he doesn’t post a lot of huge numbers.

Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins — 35 percent

His schedule is nothing scary for the next few weeks and he performed well going into Miami’s Week 5 bye. Tannehill’s an option to consider in all formats as a QB2.

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Read More: Alex Smith, Carson Palmer, Eli Manning, Kirk Cousins
Fantasy Football: Week 5 starts, sits 10.03.14 at 8:59 am ET
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I’€™ll get to the starts and sits in a second, but I have to say that if the NFL wants to keep having Thursday night football, could they have both teams agree to play?

It’s now two weeks in a row that one team showed up and mopped the field with what looked like a JV unit. It seems like we keep getting low-quality football on Thursdays and it’€™s almost certainly related to the short week of preparation. And, in an era where player safety is supposedly of paramount concern, what’€™s the rationale for the short week? Not to mention that Jim Nantz and Phil Simms are about as compelling as another Derek Jeter retrospective. I never thought I would miss Mike Mayock.

So who do we want in our Week 5 lineups this weekend? Let’€™s endeavor to find out. As usual, I have avoided the exceedingly obvious choices. The most obvious selection below probably is Reggie Bush, who is included because his Week 5 situation is atypical. If the player or players that you want feedback on are not listed here, consult my full lineup rankings at Rotobahn. If you still have unanswered questions on Sunday, then head over to our chat, which starts at 11 a.m. every Sunday during fantasy football season. And, don’€™t forget to check out The Fantasy Football Hour. It airs each Sunday morning starting at 6:30 a.m., and you can listen to a tape of the show right here on WEEI.com if you are not an early riser.

To keep track of all our fantasy football content both here and at Rotobahn, follow us on Twitter.

QUARTERBACKS

Start

Eli Manning, Giants vs. Falcons

He gets Odell Beckham, Jr. back this week, and they have righted the ship lately even without the highly regarded rookie. It’€™s a sweet home matchup with the Falcons, who can score the ball and who aid others in doing the same. Fire up all your Giants skill players.

Ben Roethlisberger, Steelers at Jaguars

He’€™s playing well, and this matchup is a slam dunk. Big Ben is a solid QB1 option with a cast of healthy targets led by scorching-hot receiver Antonio Brown.

Blake Bortles, Jaguars vs. Vikings

He should be playing from behind for much of the game, and we like the way he stays cool under pressure. This is crucial in Jacksonville, where quarterbacks face constant pressure. The good thing about Bortles is that he’€™s a rugged dude who gets you points with both his arm and his feet. If you need an option in a deep league, he can help you.

Sit

Andy Dalton, Bengals at Patriots

He’€™s playable in big formats, but I am not loving him on the road against a Patriots defense that projects to be fired up and ready to go. The Bengals are likely to be without Marvin Jones again after the tall receiver rolled his ankle in practice this week. Jones was supposed to return and bolster the Cincinnati receiving corps, but he’€™ll be limited if he can play. I see this game as a ground battle, so be careful with Dalton in smaller formats. You probably have better options.

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Read More: Ahmad Bradshaw, Andy Dalton, Ben Roethlisberger, Blake Bortles
Fantasy Football: Week 5 waiver wire 09.30.14 at 10:57 am ET
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Welcome to the morning after, folks. In the words of John Winger, “and then depression set in.” It was a long weekend for Boston fans. First, they had give begrudging respect to Derek Jeter for three days, which is stomach-turning enough. Then there was Monday night’s debacle in Kansas City. Hopefully Gronk’s late touchdown did something for some of you. Hopefully a few of you listened to me and stashed Jerick McKinnon, who saved my bacon in a few leagues. No matter what your weekend was like, Rotobahn’s here to help pick up the pieces. Let’s get to work.

The ownership percentages are listed for each player. These rates of ownership are based on Yahoo! leagues, which tend to be smaller and more representative of the 10-team leagues most of us play in. Obviously, these numbers are mostly for perspective. What really matters is which players are available in your particular league, and you’ll need to do the legwork on that. If you play in really big leagues, as I tend to do, you should head on over to Rotobahn Monday afternoon and check out my expanded waiver wire. The expanded edition gives you about twice as many options. To keep pace with all WEEI and Rotobahn fantasy football content, including Sunday chats and The Fantasy Football Hour with my good buddy Jim Hackett, follow me on Twitter.

There is some good news. The Week 5 byes are not as painful as last week’s losses. Only Oakland and Miami have the week off. Not too many fantasy studs on those two powerhouses. Oakland doesn’t even have a coach right now after mercifully canning Dennis Allen on Monday night. The rumor mill is spitting out Tony Sparano‘s name as a possible replacement. Yikes.

QUARTERBACKS

Eli Manning, Giants – 48 percent

As I said last week, buy Eli now because the Giants have some solid matchups the rest of the way and they should get rookie WR Odell Beckham Jr. soon — perhaps this weekend in a sweet home matchup with the porous Falcons defense.

Alex Smith, Chiefs — 42 percent

The Chiefs were searching and grinding for a few weeks — trying to get the new offensive line in sync. It would appear that they’ve turned the corner and are back to taking good care of the ground game and of Alex Smith. Smith can help you in most leagues as a matchup play. He’s got a very interesting matchup at San Francisco this week.

Joe Flacco, Ravens — 39 percent

He’s a guy you can throw in there anytime you need him. The Ravens are throwing the ball well now that Gary Kubiak‘s system is beginning to take hold. Flacco can be your backup in any format.

Blake Bortles, Jaguars — 18 percent

He’s a foot-points guy. I love those foot points. Bortles also plays for a team that will be throwing in the fourth quarter almost every single week. The game doesn’t seem too big for the rookie and he can help you as a matchup play or QB2. He’s playable this week in a home matchup against the Steelers, who can’t stop much these days and who do not have Ike Taylor at corner for the foreseeable future.

Carson Palmer, Cardinals — 33 percent

Arizona’s starting quarterback is a viable fantasy play, whether it be Palmer or Drew Stanton. Palmer is the guy worth owning in smaller formats and he could return as soon as this week. HC Bruce Arians has Arizona moving in the right direction. Palmer should be a solid matchup play the rest of the way, though he might not be able to help you this week. His return may be one more week away. We’ll know more once practice reports start coming out.

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Read More: Alex Smith, Blake Bortles, Carson Palmer, Eli Manning
Fantasy Football: Week 4 starts, sits 09.26.14 at 9:31 am ET
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Welcome to the Week 4 starts and sits! Is it too late to recommend Larry Donnell? Oh well. Don’t fret, we have plenty of other ideas for this weekend. If you need more guidance than I could fit into this space, check out my full lineup rankings over at Rotobahn or participate in our WEEI Sunday morning chat. It starts right here at 11 a.m. and I’ll tweet a link to the chat early Sunday morning as soon as it’s available. Follow me on Twitter to get all the fantasy football info we have to offer.

I will also be back on the air this weekend, so tune in Sunday morning for The Fantasy Football Hour with my co-host and good friend Jim Hackett. You can check out our latest podcast as well. I’ll also be on NFL Sunday with Dickerson, Price and DeOssie at about 10:45 as usual, so don’t miss it.

And, don’t forget to start your Week 5 with us on Tuesday, when I break down the best pickups in the Week 5 waiver wire.

QUARTERBACKS

Start

Tony Romo, Cowboys vs. Saints

He’s been shaky in his return from back surgery, but he battled back last week on the road against a better defense. I expect a high-scoring game and a solid fantasy output from Romo. Don’t hesitate to use him in any format.

Philip Rivers, Chargers vs. Jaguars

He’s playing very well so far, and this is a very enticing home matchup. Treat Rivers like a QB1 in all formats in Week 4. He’s good for a solid outing.

Blake Bortles, Jaguars at Chargers

He’s a young QB making his first start on the road. That’s normally a red flag situation, but Bortles will be chasing a Chargers offense that can score points in bunches in good matchups like this one. Bortles can score points with his feet and with his arm. That should give him a solid fantasy floor. He can help you in big formats if you need some help in Week 4. If you are unfamiliar with the rookie’s skill set, check out my original scouting report on the UCF product.

Sit

Geno Smith, Jets vs. Lions

This is not a week with a lot of sits for quarterbacks outside of the obvious ones. Smith is a good passer to avoid this week because he struggles more than most when the pocket gets busy, and things certainly will get busy with Detroit’s front four in town. Factor in the injuries to Smith’s receivers and you have a recipe for bad play or at least limited success. Even on a slow week, there are better options out there than Smith.

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Read More: Blake Bortles, Frank Gore, Geno Smith, Khiry Robinson
Fantasy Football: Week 3 waiver wire 09.23.14 at 10:19 am ET
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Welcome to the Week 3 waiver wire! Hopefully you are here looking for the talent you need to get to 4-0, but we’ve got your back whether you are fighting for playoff positioning or for your fantasy life. I’ve got teams in both situations right now, thanks to all the injuries and legal tribulations so far in 2014.

The byes hit this week, and we’ve got you covered. There are a lot of hot teams taking a rest this week.

Get ahead of the curve and make your moves early. This is not a week to wait. There are a few very appealing options out there like Jordan Matthews and Donald Brown. Get in on it.

As I said last week, the ownership percentages are listed for each player. The rates of ownership are based on Yahoo! leagues, which tend to be smaller and more representative of the 10-team leagues most of us play in. Obviously, these numbers are mostly for perspective. What really matters is which players are available in your particular league, and you’ll need to do the legwork on that. If you play in really big leagues, as I tend to do, you should head on over to Rotobahn later and check out my expanded wire. The expanded edition gives you about twice as many options. To keep pace with all WEEI and Rotobahn fantasy football content, including Sunday chats and The Fantasy Football Hour with my good buddy Jim Hackett, follow me on Twitter.

QUARTERBACKS

Ben Roethlisberger, Steelers — 76 percent

He’s the most available of the obvious guys. Grab him if he’s there in your league. The Steelers have the offense in about-to-click mode. Things are looking good if they can get and stay healthy.

Kirk Cousins, Washington — 48 percent

He might not be a long-term solution, but then again, maybe he is. Robert Griffin III will be out at least another six weeks and probably a few more. Whether he is handed his job back is potentially debatable depending on how Cousins plays and if the team is winning. We all saw Cousins’ potential last week. He can be your starter in large leagues and he makes a fine QB2 in smaller ones.

Eli Manning, Giants – 37 percent

He stepped up last week and he could get Odell Beckham, Jr. back soon. I am buying Eli shares right now because they are ungodly cheap and because the Giants‘ schedule gets plenty light in the coming weeks.

Blake Bortles, Jaguars — 5 percent

He plays behind a bad offensive line, so don’t get too excited. He also has too many injuries to his receivers and to TE Marcedes Lewis as well. Bortles’ fantasy intrigue largely is due to his mobility. He can get you foot-points if the coaching staff gives him the green light as it should. If you are not familiar with Bortles, check out my scouting report on the former UCF star.

Teddy Bridgewater, Vikings — 4 percent

I’d say he’s a potential breakout, but he lost two incredibly crucial cogs while he was waiting for his chance to start. Adrian Peterson would have been a huge benefit for a young quarterback, and, to make matters worse, he lost his starting tight end last week for more than a month with an ankle injury. Bridgewater is a guy to add if you need some QB help, but he’s got fringe QB1 upside at best right now with such a limited supporting cast. On the positive front, the Vikings’ schedule lightens up going forward.

Mike Glennon, Buccaneers — 1 percent

He could be the guy for the rest of the year, and that could be worth getting excited about if Vincent Jackson‘s wrist injury proves to be something he can play through. The Bucs have been playing without their offensive coordinator so far this season, but they get him and Doug Martin back this week. That’s very positive news.

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Read More: Ben Roethlisberger, Blake Bortles, Eli Manning, Kirk Cousins
Fantasy Football: Week 3 starts, sits 09.19.14 at 11:22 am ET
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Welcome to the Week 3 starts and sits. Between injuries, suspensions, deactivations and the like, the average fantasy football GM’s head is spinning. I know mine is. As always, I will avoid the easy calls. I’m not here to tell you what to do with players you’d never consider benching.

I’ll be back Sunday morning with my partner in crime, Jim Hackett, for another Fantasy Football Hour. Check it out! We’re on air from 6:30 to 7:30 a.m. on 93.7 FM. If you sleep in, you can listen right here on WEEI.com. In addition, I’ll be here, as always, with a chat on Sunday starting at 11 a.m. Head on over if you have any lineup questions.

If you are looking for info on players not listed in this article, go to Rotobahn and check out my full Lineup Rankings. I’ll be updating them over the weekend, as always. And, to keep track of all things fantasy football at both Rotobahn and WEEI, feel free to follow me on Twitter. I always tweet links to new articles.

QUARTERBACKS

Start

Russell Wilson, Seahawks vs. Broncos

He’ll shine in a rematch of last year’s Super Bowl. Wilson’s an underrated fantasy QB and he’ll give you some touchdowns this week. He’s playable in all formats.

Colin Kaepernick, 49ers at Cardinals

Kaepernick’s always a solid play and should get it done this weekend in a tough divisional matchup. Yes, he has some injuries to his tight ends, but San Francisco has more offensive depth than in the past. Start Kaepernick if you normally would.

Kirk Cousins, Washington at Eagles

He’s not an ideal option because he’s got injuries to his tight ends and receivers, but he’ll also be playing in a high-scoring game and his team will not be in close-it-out mode at the end. Washington is far more likely to be throwing the football in the fourth quarter. Cousins can help you in deep formats.

Sit

Joe Flacco, Ravens at Browns

He’s playing decent football, but the Browns are looking tough at home and can take his receivers away for much of the game. Flacco is playable, but this is a week to look for other options if you can.

Derek Carr, Raiders at Patriots

It may be tempting to start him in a deep league because he’ll be throwing a lot and playing from behind, but I hate playing rookie quarterbacks against Bill Belichick defenses. I’d avoid doing so if possible.

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Read More: Colin Kaepernick, Derek Carr, joe flacco, Kirk Cousins
Fantasy Football: Week 2 waiver wire 09.16.14 at 10:46 am ET
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Depending on your perspective, it’s a great waiver wire week. There are tons of options that can really make a fantasy impact, especially in the running game. Of course, the reason there are so many options is because we had so many tough injuries last week. I certainly can understand if some of you are in a bit of a mood. You’re not alone.

As I mentioned last week, the players listed below are good pickups in just about any league, and there are plenty of options here. That being said, if you play in deeper leagues, with 12 or more teams, I will be posting my expanded waiver wire over at Rotobahn later Tuesday. It will be loaded with options for you big leaguers, and it’s all free. You don’t even need to register. One thing I recommend doing is to follow Rotobahn on Twitter. We’ll keep you up to date on all of our content whether it’s here at WEEI or at Rotobahn.

The ownership percentage is listed for each player. The rate of ownership is based on Yahoo! leagues, which tend to be smaller and more representative of the 10-team leagues most of us play in. Obviously, these numbers are mostly for perspective. What really matters is which players are available in your league, and you’ll need to do the legwork on that.

QUARTERBACKS

Kirk Cousins, Washington — 8 percent availability

He’s a nice pickup and he will get at least a handful of starts while Robert Griffin III gets healthy. If Cousins plays to his potential while Griffin is out, he could end up being the quarterback of the future in Washington. Cousins is an add in all leagues as a strong QB2.

Josh McCown, Buccaneers — 29 percent availability

He’s been in control the first two weeks, and as his weapons continue to mature, his numbers should continue to be solid. McCown is an underrated passer. He’s efficient and accurate. You can get by with him at quarterback even in smaller leagues.

Blake Bortles, Jaguars — 4 percent availability

He could be a nice addition, but it’s hard to tell when the Jaguars will make the move to the younger quarterback. If and when Bortles gets the gig, he brings a lot of skills to the table. He’ll get you points with his arm and with his feet as well. If you are searching for fantasy upside at the position, Bortles could be the move.

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Read More: Blake Bortles, Josh McCown, Kirk Cousins, Knile Davis
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