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Fantasy Football: Week 1 waiver wire 09.09.14 at 1:58 pm ET
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Welcome to the first waiver wire of 2014. It was a wild Week 1 and I’m here to help you sort out the best available free agent targets. The level of available talent identified here is geared for the more common 10-team leagues. I like all the players listed below in those types of formats, and obviously in larger ones if they happen to be available. I’ll be posting the Rotobahn waiver wire later Tuesday, and as always, I’ll be digging even deeper and adding more names as I continue to break down Week 1 game film.

I’ll be back later this week with another Starts and Sits column plus another podcast with Fantasy Football Hour co-host Jim Hackett. All the ownership rates listed below are based on Yahoo! leagues, which tend to be smaller and are most reflective of 10-team leagues. To keep pace with all WEEI and Rotobahn fantasy football content, follow me on Twitter.

QUARTERBACKS

Carson Palmer, Cardinals

Palmer is taken in just over half of all leagues, and his weapons make him dangerous in plus matchups. He gets the Giants next week and has some nice soft matchups on the horizon from Weeks 6-9.

Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins

He looked very much in-control in Week 1 vs. a New England defense that we expected to hold him down. Tannehill certainly has some fantasy appeal as a matchup play when the opponent is right. You still can get him in more than half of Yahoo! leagues.

Jake Locker, Titans

Locker gets Dallas this week and that could be a reason to add him in and of itself. Locker also has a nice developing group of weapons, and he played well on the road last week against a tough Rams defense. He’s got some appeal in the short term for sure. Locker can be had in 88 percent of leagues.

Ryan Fitzpatrick, Texans

Fitzpatrick is what he is — an uninspiring quarterback. Still, he has some very nice targets to throw to like Andre Johnson and DeAndre Hopkins. He also has a decent overall schedule and that includes visiting Oakland this week. He’s only taken in 9 percent of leagues.

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Read More: Carson Palmer, Jake Locker, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Ryan Tannehill
Fantasy Football: Week 1 starts, sits 09.05.14 at 2:02 pm ET
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Well, it’€™s officially Week 1 and it’€™s time for our first batch of starts and sits. For our newer readers, I do my best to avoid the obvious choices. These are not rankings. Rather, they are takes on specific matchups that make players more or less desirable than they would normally be. Is there a player you want our take on that isn’€™t mentioned? No problem. For rankings on all the major players, go to Rotobahn and check out our full Week 1 lineup rankings.

This Sunday features the first regular-season airing of the Fantasy Football Hour with my co-host Jim Hackett. We’€™ll be discussing this article and other Week 1 roster options that will help you to submit your most potent weekly fantasy roster. Tune in to WEEI 93.7-FM at 6:30 a.m. on Sunday game days to check it out. If you’€™re not an early riser, go to WEEI.com and enjoy it on your own schedule. I’ll be back in this space on Tuesday with our first waiver wire of the year.

QUARTERBACKS

Start

Carson Palmer, Cardinals vs. Chargers

He’€™s got a nice home matchup, so it’€™s a good week to use him. He should be ready to roll in his second year as the starter in HC Bruce Arians’€™ offense. If Andre Ellington’s new foot injury proves serious, Palmer will be throwing most of the game.

Derek Carr, Raiders at Jets

He’€™s far from ideal, but if you are a Cam Newton owner (like me), looking for insurance, you could do worse than the strong-armed Carr vs. a battered Jets secondary.

Geno Smith, Jets vs. Raiders

It’€™s a great home matchup, so if you need a cheap option in a deep league, Smith can help.

Sit

Robert Griffin III, Washington at Texans

If you happen to have another strong option, then this is a week to consider benching Griffin, who will be running a new offense while facing JJ Watt and Jadeveon Clowney … and the chaos they create.

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Read More: Carson Palmer, Chris Johnson, Derek Carr, Eric Decker
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

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Read More: Andy Dalton, Ben Tate, Carson Palmer, EJ Manuel
Fantasy Football: Week 13 starts, sits 11.30.13 at 8:23 am ET
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Welcome to the starts and sits for Week 13. I’€™ll be featuring better players than usual because there are no more bye concerns and most fantasy teams, especially those still alive, will be looking at better players when it comes to lineup decisions.

For those who have more questions than this article has answers for, you have two places to go. First, you can hit Rotobahn and consult our full lineup rankings, which will give you a ranking and a ‘€œskinny’€ on just about any player you might be considering in any league. Second, you can come back to WEEI.com tomorrow and participate in our Sunday morning chat where I will answer all of your lineup questions. You’ll find a link to the chat on the homepage in the “This Just In” section.

QUARTERBACKS

START

Tom Brady, Patriots at Texans

Just kidding, folks. This one is an ultra-obvious freebie — meant to do nothing but point out that Rotobahn had the future Hall of Famer on our trade-for list when others were running for cover. For those who stuck with Brady … or dealt for him, enjoy the next few weeks. He’€™s a QB1, period.

Josh McCown, Bears at Vikings

How often do we recommend a backup quarterback playing on the road? Not that often, but McCown has been very good so far in terms of fantasy production and this matchup is very solid. Start McCown in any format this week and you are in pretty good shape.

Colin Kaepernick, 49ers vs. Rams

Two things factor into the decision to make CK a start. First, he looked much better last week. Second, he gets Michael Crabtree back this week. The Rams are not an easy mark, but they can be had, especially when on the road, and this one is at Frisco.

Andrew Luck, Colts vs. Titans

He may not inspire the kind of confidence that he did a few weeks back, but a lot of it is perception. Luck is still a very sound fantasy play in 12-team leagues and has produced good fantasy numbers in games that were pretty ugly from the Colts’€™ perspective. He was serviceable against the Titans on the road in Week 11 and he should be able to handle them this week in Indianapolis.

Andy Dalton, Bengals at Chargers

He’s been a strong option for most of the season and he gets a decent road matchup here. We expect the Bengals to be ready after having an extra week to prepare. Dalton can start for you in any format this week. He always has nice scoring potential due to the quality of the weapons around him.

Carson Palmer, Cardinals at Eagles

The matchup is mediocre, but he’€™s playing well and has tons of good places to throw the football in Bruce Arians‘€™ offense. The Eagles are playing well, but they will have trouble matching up with Larry Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd. Palmer can help you in 12-team leagues this week.

Brandon Weeden, Browns vs. Jaguars

Here’€™s an option for those searching for an answer in a deep league. Weeden is not a great start, but he may be the best thing on waiver wires in 12-team formats and he could have a solid day at home vs. the Jaguars. Weeden can be your QB this week if you are hurting and he might just surprise you if he can get Josh Gordon going and hit on a few deep balls.

SIT

Mike Glennon, Bucs at Panthers

The rookie has been pretty good so far, but he lacks the experience and the firepower to play against the Panthers defense on the road in a hostile environment. Look elsewhere if you can.

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Read More: Andrew Luck, Andy Dalton, Brandon Weeden, Carson Palmer
Fantasy Football: Week 13 waiver wire 11.26.13 at 9:40 am ET
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Welcome to the Week 13 waiver wire, and happy Thanksgiving to all! It’€™s crunch time in most fantasy football leagues as teams fight for a spot in the playoffs or for a playoff bye. I’€™ve done my best to give you a wide array of choices, and I will be adding players all day over at Rotobahn for those of you who play in deeper formats. I’€™ll be back later this week with the starts and sits plus another Sunday chat. I hope to see you there!

QUARTERBACKS

Carson Palmer, Cardinals

You can add him in 60 percent of Yahoo! leagues, and he’€™s been on fire for fantasy purposes the last few weeks. Palmer has the weaponry to succeed, and his schedule is good enough with the probable exception of Week 16 at Seattle, though the Seahawks have taken a big hit in their secondary. Palmer is a fantasy asset in any format.

Read More: Andre Brown, Carson Palmer, Josh McCown, Matt Flynn
Fantasy Football: Week 12 starts, sits 11.22.13 at 10:28 am ET
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Welcome to the starts and sits for Week 12. I’€™ve done my best to find some options from across the spectrum while avoiding the really obvious stuff. This is the last bye week for the NFL, so things get a lot easier going forward for those whose teams are still in the thick of things. If you require more assistance or clarity, head over to Rotobahn and check out our full lineup rankings. Also, make sure you check out the Fantasy Football Podcast with Jim Hackett sponsored by our friends at Mohegan Sun. And, as always, I’€™ll be here Sunday morning for our chat to help with your Week 12 lineup decisions.

QUARTERBACKS

STARTS

Ben Roethlisberger, Steelers at Browns

He’€™s gone off in two out of the last three games, and he’€™s worth a look based on upside alone. He probably will have his best receiver taken away because Cleveland’€™s Joe Haden is one of the league’s best cornerbacks, but Big Ben has other places he can go with the ball.

Carson Palmer, Cardinals vs. Colts

He’€™ll have his ups and downs in this weekend’€™s game because Indy can get a pass rush going sometimes, but he’€™ll have enough moments throwing to Larry Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd to have a solid fantasy outing.

Josh McCown, Bears at Rams

He’€™s not fun to watch, but like Shaun Hill on the Lions, he gets the job done. Coach Marc Trestman has done his usual magnificent job with his quarterbacks, and you can expect some solid stats in Week 12. The Rams simply cannot match up with the size and athleticism of the Chicago receivers and tight ends. The Rams could get lit up if they fail to rush the passer, which is the strength of their defense. McCown is a solid option in 12-team leagues.

Mike Glennon, Bucs at Lions

This is a deep play. Glennon is a bit risky on the road, but I like the matchup with the Tampa receivers going against the Detroit defensive backs. I also think the Bucs can hold up better than most teams against the Lions’ nasty front four. Glennon can play for you in a 12-team league if you’€™re in a bind. The same can be said for Scott Tolzien of the Packers and and Case Keenum of the Texans.

SIT

Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins vs. Panthers

He’€™s got bad protection, broken weapons and a bad Week 1 matchup. He may get some volume stats, but you can do better in most formats. Leave Tannehill on the bench this week if you have other options.

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Read More: Ben Roethlisberger, Carson Palmer, Josh McCown, Mike Glennon
Fantasy Football: Week 11 starts, sits 11.15.13 at 9:28 am ET
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Welcome to the Week 11 starts and sits. It’€™s a tough week with a lot of bad matchups, but I’€™ve done my best to find some appealing options for this weekend. If you need some more feedback on players not listed here, hit Rotobahn for our full lineup rankings. And don’t forget to check out our weekly podcast, too. I’€™ll also be back at WEEI on Sunday at 11 a.m. for our regular chat, so send in those questions.

QUARTERBACKS

STARTS

Nick Foles, Eagles vs. Redskins

Is Michael Vick healthy yet? Will it matter when he is? Foles has been outstanding lately, and I’€™d be very willing to start him this week against a Washington defense that fails to inspire fear in opponents. He’€™s a QB1 in Rotobahn’€™s Week 11 rankings.

Case Keenum, Texans vs. Raiders

This kid can play, and there’€™s very little reason to doubt him in this plus matchup at home. Expect a few big plays and a solid performance that yields numbers worthy of a start in most formats.

Andy Dalton, Bengals vs. Browns

Dalton has played well against Cleveland in the past and he has enough options to work around CB Joe Haden if he’€™s having a good day against A.J. Green. Dalton should give you solid production that’€™s good enough to be a QB1 in 12-team leagues.

Carson Palmer, Cardinals at Jaguars

The Jaguars will give him some opportunities, and he’€™s been solid the last few weeks against stronger opponents. If you need an option this week, Palmer can give you a serviceable start.

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Read More: Alex Smith, Andy Dalton, Carson Palmer, Case Keenum
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