If you’re reading the Week 14 Waiver Wire Pickups, then you either secured a spot in your fantasy football playoffs, or are still alive if your playoffs started this week. And for both, I congratulate all of you. For those who didn’t make it, don’t get discouraged. There is always next year.
Keep in mind that this list will be updated throughout Monday and will be 100% complete by Tuesday afternoon. See anyone you think deserves a spot? Hit me up in the comments section below and I will see if your player is worthy.
Russell Wilson – Seahawks (ESPN Owned 17.7%)
I had listed Wilson as a shaky QB2 in recent waiver wire articles, but no more. With a 293 yard outing and 2 touchdowns in Chicago, Wilson is hitting his stride and is free to run the offense like a seasoned veteran. Over the last 4 games, Wilson has thrown 9 touchdowns to 0 interceptions. Not bad for a player who many thought would be nothing more than a mid-tier backup over the summer. And with his rushing ability, Wilson has escalated to a strong QB2 going forward.
Brandon Weeden – Browns (ESPN Owned 7.5%)
I’ll still list Weeden for those owners who are in desperation mode at QB2, but keep in mind this is the Browns we’re talking about. In a good matchup against the Raiders, Weeden threw for 364 yards, 1 touchdown, and 2 interceptions. Luckily for Weeden, he still has 2 more quality matchup against the Chiefs and Redskins coming up. As you can tell by his 2 interceptions, he still makes too many mistakes. But it’s hard not to put him on the wire with matchups like these coming up.
Bryce Brown – Eagles (ESPN Owned 68%)
Brown has racked up an exorbitant amount of rushing yards over the past 2 weeks with 347 yards and 4 rushing touchdowns. However, fumbles continue to plague him. After losing 2 in Week 12, he lost a crucial fumble which was returned by Dallas cornerback Morris Claiborne for a touchdown, which sealed the win for Dallas. LeSean McCoy sounds like he is making progress with his concussion, but I still don’t see him returning this week with the Eagles clearly out of the playoffs. Brown gets a tougher matchup against a strong Bucs rushing defense, but he’is still too good to bench at this point.
DeMarco Murray – Cowboys (ESPN Owned 94.7%)
Like I always say, you never know who will be on your wire. Even if he is a big name, some owners simply couldn’t wait on Murray any longer. In what was supposed to be a “limited” role against Philly, Murray carries the ball 23 times for 83 yards and a score. This is more of a showing that the Cowboys have zero faith in Felix Jones, who carried the ball just 7 times, even in a part-time role. If it’s reported that Murray suffered no setbacks, he should be good to go as an RB2 for the rest of the year.
Knowshon Moreno – Broncos (ESPN Owned 48.7%)
Even though Moreno has yet to find pay dirt, he is convincing me that he isn’t the old Moreno from the past. He’s now carried the ball 40 times over the past 2 weeks. And while he’s only averaging 3.9 yards a carry, he is worth much more in PPR leagues after a second week of 4 catches against the Buccaneers. His Week 13 numbers aren’t bad considering he went up against the No. 1 rushing defense. He should put up much better numbers against the Raiders in Week 14.
Joique Bell – Lions (ESPN Owned 9.5%)
For the second-straight week, Bell has been a factor in the backfield while the team gives Mikel Leshoure a breather. He ran for 82 yards off a mere 7 carries, but was left out of the endzone against the Colts Sunday. Don’t let the numbers on the surface fool you, however, as most of Bell’s yards come off huge gains. I’m not recommending him as a flex option, but Leshoure owners should pick Bell up as he is one of the more secure handcuffs in the league.
Josh Gordon – Browns (ESPN Owned 24.2%)
I really think if Gordon was on a team that had better talent around him, he’d be a top-notch fantasy receiver. Not that he isn’t good right now, but the thought of someone like Drew Brees throwing him the ball is a sick thought. Against the Raiders, Gordon racked up a career-high 6 receptions for, another career-high, 116 yards. His first 100-yard game of the season. With a juicy schedule coming up over the next 2 weeks, Gordon is a high-upside WR3.
Sidney Rice – Seahawks (ESPN Owned 92.4%)
I will probably get a lot of flack for listing guys who are available in most leagues, but owners have to cover all options and make sure these guys weren’t dropped. With Russell Wilson coming into his own, Rice has caught fire lately. He has now scored 5 touchdowns in the last 5 games and appears more in-sync with his rookie quarterback. His production outside of those scores is somewhat hit-and-miss, so Rice is still only a WR3 with a chance to hit the endzone every game. UPDATE: Per the Tacoma News Tribune, Rice has to go through concussion protocol this week. Pete Carroll hinted that Rice may not practice, but we have yet to hear if Rice will officially sit Week 14.
Golden Tate – Seahawks (ESPN Owned 10%)
Unlike Rice, you’ll likely have an easier time snatching Tate off the waiver wire. But he is a nice consolation prize. Tate has now tallied 9 catches for 152 yards in 2 weeks and has totaled 4 touchdowns in 4. Tate will be a mid-tier WR3 to pick up with the Cardinals coming up in Week 14.
TY Hilton – Colts (ESPN Owned 33.6%)
Another one of my fantasy sleepers for 2012, Hilton has now notched his 3rd 100-yard game over the past 5 outings. Problem is; he is inconsistent as the numbers in between those big games (3/33/1) aren’t all that great. But still, he is getting heavily involved in the passing game and has earned the trust of Andrew Luck. Even with Donnie Avery around, Hilton is a must-own WR3 against the Titans this week. Another 100-yard game isn’t out of the realm. If you are one of the owners who lost Ryan Broyles for the year then Hilton should be on your radar this week.
Mike Thomas – Lions (ESPN Owned .2%)
Lions head coach Jim Schwartz told reporters that the team’s medical staff is “concerned” with Ryan Broyles’ right knee. While it wasn’t the same knee Broyles tore up in college, it doesn’t look good at the moment. Titus Young is an asshat, so expect the team to have to roll with Thomas if Broyles has to miss time. Thomas is not the talent that Broyles or even Young is. And outside of the 1 touchdown he scored against the Texans, he has yet to make any real impact since being traded from the Jaguars. Look for the Titans to lean heavily on their running game, Calvin Johnson and Brandon Pettigrew going forward, leaving Thomas as nothing more than a desperation flex in Week 14.
Brandon Myers – Raiders (ESPN Owned 22.1%)
14 catches for 130 yards and a touchdown against the Browns. Not much I can say that hasn’t been said already. TE1 TE1 TE1.
Jacob Tamme – Broncos (ESPN Owned 55.6%)
After scoring against the Chiefs in Week 12, Tamme followed that up with 9 catches for 89 yards against the Bucs. While I still don’t consider Tamme a consistent TE1, he has been doing enough to warrant TE2 status if you carry 2 tight ends. Oakland ranks 27th against opposing fantasy tight ends, so maybe Tamme could eek out 1 more relevant game.
Kyle Rudolph – Vikings (ESPN Owned 58.1%)
With Percy Harvin out, someone has had to shoulder the passing game. Now that Christian Ponder is trusting his tight end, Rudolph has now tallied 18 receptions and has scored a touchdown in each of the last 3 games. No word yet on if Harvin will play Week 14, but Rudolph has finally put himself back in my good graces as a low-end TE1 against the Bears, a team that allowed Rudolph to score 16.5 PPR points in Week 12.
Dallas Clark – Buccaneers (ESPN Owned 5.1%)
The Buccaneers have a potent offense and Clark has gotten in on the action over the past 3 weeks. He has 2 touchdowns in 3 games, but still relies heavily on those scores to keep most of his fantasy value afloat. His receptions have gone down over the past 3 weeks, so don’t overvalue him. He’s a mid-to-upper TE2.