Raymond Summerlin

Waiver Wired

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Waiver Wire: Week 15

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Welcome to the 15th edition of Waiver Wired for the 2017 season. With the playoffs upon us, this column will shift its focus almost solely on the present. That does not mean stashes will be ignored completely, but they will be relegated to the watch list. Also, a section highlighting widely-available players with good matchups in Weeks 16 and 17 has been added for each position.  

As a reminder, the drop list consists of players who are no longer must-owns, recommended adds are available in at least 50 percent of Yahoo leagues, the watch list consists of players worth keeping an eye on, and deep cuts are players owned in five percent or fewer of Yahoo leagues.

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The Drop List

With the playoffs upon us, the drop list can be simplified to any player, within reason, who is not going to be in the starting lineup this week. Of course, stashing players like Josh Doctson for the later rounds makes sense if bench space is available, but do not be afraid to cut a bench stash to pick up someone with less upside who will actually help get a win this week.

Before you ask, Aaron Rodgers is owned in 81 percent of Yahoo leagues. No. 1 add if available.
1. Blake Bortles
2. Jimmy Garoppolo
3. Joe Flacco
4. Jay Cutler
5. Nick Foles

Running Backs

1. Mike Davis
2. Kerwynn Williams
3. Jonathan Stewart
4. Theo Riddick
5. Peyton Barber
6. Rod Smith
Bench Stashes: Aaron Jones, Austin Ekeler, Marlon Mack, Chris Ivory, Wayne Gallman, Matt Breida

Wide Receivers
1. Dede Westbrook
2. Mike Wallace
3. Corey Coleman
4. Randall Cobb
Bench Stashes: Will Fuller, Josh Doctson, Corey Davis, Kenny Golladay

Tight Ends
1. Vernon Davis
2. Ricky Seals-Jones
3. Eric Ebron

Defense/Special Teams

1. New Orleans Saints
2. Arizona Cardinals
3. Tennessee Titans

1. Dan Bailey
2. Brandon McManus
3. Kai Forbath

Editor’s Note: FanDuel is hosting their Super Duel for a Difference contest this Sunday, where you can win tickets to the Big Game in Minneapolis! Support a good cause and compete for an unforgettable grand prize.


1. Blake Bortles, Jaguars – Owned in 34 percent of Yahoo leagues
While it feels like a house of cards just waiting to be blown down, Bortles has been a good fantasy option the last three weeks, topping 18.5 points in every contest and throwing for 577 yards total the last two games. One of those games came on the back of two rushing scores while another was against the Colts, but Bortles legitimately played well against the Seahawks and gets a good matchup at home against the Texans. I fully understand not wanting to put a fantasy season in the mistake-prone hands of Bortles, but he is a good option this week.

2. Jimmy Garoppolo, 49ers – Owned in 20 percent of Yahoo leagues
Garoppolo has been outstanding in his first two games as the starter, throwing for 627 yards in back-to-back wins. Unfortunately, the offense has struggled to convert scoring opportunities into touchdowns, and, as a result, Garoppolo has just one score over that span. The good news is that would figure to regress if the offense keeps moving the ball like they have. The matchup against the Titans is not great, but Garoppolo looks like a safe option who is some touchdown luck away from being a great one.

3. Joe Flacco, Ravens – Owned in 14 percent of Yahoo leagues
Do not look now, but Flacco has thrown for 269 yards and two scores in back-to-back games despite less than excellent matchups. He gets a much better one this week against a Browns defense which has given up multiple scores or 300 yards to all but three quarterbacks this year. Cleveland is also the only team Flacco has had any consistent success against over the last two years. Volume could be a concern, but Flacco should provide a nice touchdown floor.  

4. Jay Cutler, Dolphins -- Owned in 14 percent of Yahoo leagues
This may seem like point chasing after Cutler threw for three touchdowns against the Patriots on Monday night, but he now has multiple scores in each of the last six games he has finished. The Bills are not a great matchup, but Cutler has turned into a shockingly reliable option as of late. 

5. Nick Foles, Eagles – Owned in 2 percent of Yahoo leagues
Giving it a week to see what happens is the best decision, but Foles is taking over as the starter in an exceptional matchup against the Giants, who have given up 25 or more fantasy points to five quarterbacks already this season including Dak Prescott last week. It is a risk, but there is enough talent on this offense for Foles to post respectable fantasy numbers in good matchups, and this qualifies.  

Week 16:
Case Keenum will be in a good spot against the Packers…Trevor Siemian will once again have a good matchup against Washington, but that feels dangerous in the fantasy Super Bowl.
Week 17: Assuming he is healthy and still starting, Tyrod Taylor finishes with another game against the Dolphins…Jacoby Brissett has a tough run through the playoffs, but he finishes up in a great spot at home against the Texans.

Watch List:
 If Tyrod Taylor plays, he will be worth a look in a good matchup. That said, his calling card is his rushing floor, and it is possible if not likely that ability is compromised even if he is active. That makes him a much more risky option than usual as well as lowering his ceiling…Perhaps Mitchell Trubisky has turned a corner, but I am not ready to recommend him a streamer off one good performance, especially with a team which limited him to 179 yards and a touchdown through the air the last time they played next up on the schedule. It is worth noting Trubisky had 53 yards on the ground in that game…Blaine Gabbert has a pretty good matchup in Washington, but he has taken a step back the last two weeks…I had some hope for Eli Manning coming back, but the upside just is not there in this offense…The Snow Bowl can be thrown out, but Jacoby Brissett still managed just 196 and 174 yards passing the two weeks before that game while the Broncos defense got back on track against the Jets…It is a golden matchup, but Trevor Siemian has a total of six touchdowns in his last eight games…Ben Roethlisberger had a lot of success against Baltimore, but DeShone Kizer is not Big Ben and was destroyed by the Ravens in Week 2.

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Raymond Summerlin is a football writer for Rotoworld.com. He can be found on Twitter at @RMSummerlin.
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