This column is a lot more fun to write when there isn’t a huge name going down at a premium position. That’s not the case today. If you’ve been living under a rock, Arian Foster is out for the season with a torn Achilles. Before you go crazy trying to buy Alfred Blue or Chris Polk, see who is on your waiver wire.
As usual, my suggestions are divided into three sections: Stream Weaver (week-to-week plays), Long Hauls (long-term options), and Hail Mary's (long shots).
- Teddy Bridgewater (Min) @ Chi – Bridgewater had a good game against Detroit, and Chicago doesn’t scare anyone either. Bridgewater has also found a new toy in Stefon Diggs.
- Alex Smith (KC) v Det (London) – Smith has struggled lately. No QB struggles against Detroit’s secondary, though. Smith should have Maclin back and has developed a little rapport with Chris Conley.
- Ryan Fitzpatrick (NYJ) @ Oak – Fitz has been surprisingly good. He has 2 good wide receivers and good running game. Oakland doesn’t stop anyone. He’s the best option as a streamer, however, the Jets may get up by enough that Ivory and Stacy feast late. That could keep Fitz’s numbers down.
- Brian Hoyer (Hou) v Tenn – You probably have better options than Hoyer. If you need to roll with Hoyer, though, Tennessee gives up points to QBs; and Hoyer has averaged over 20 points per game in the last four.
- Charles Sims (TB) @ Atl – Sims has been very good as the change-of-pace and third-down back. This week, Tampa plays the Falcons in Atlanta. After the dud Atlanta put up last week, I would expect an offensive explosion. With that, the Bucs passing-downs back will get more play. Sims is that guy.
- Antonio Andrews (Ten) @ Hou – I keep ringing the Andrews bell. He is the running-downs and goal-line back. Houston is a great matchup (ask Lamar Miller).
- Joique Bell (Det) v KC (London) – Detroit fired their Offensive Coordinator and the O-Line coach. They needed to run the ball and they flat out were not. Bell isn’t flashy but there should be an increased workload with the new play calling. They should score against KC, and he’s the goal-line back. I would also look at Abdullah, if he’s available.
- Alfred Blue (Hou) v Tenn – Blue is going to be the #1 waiver wire pick up with Foster going down. He has a great matchup against Tennessee. I could see a three-headed monster in Houston. Blue is going to get the first shot, but Chirs Polk and Jonathon Grimes will also get a shot. Grimes is now the third down back.
- Stefon Diggs (Min) v Chi – Diggs is showing to be the second best rookie receiver and the best WR in Minnesota. Chicago doesn’t stop anyone. Diggs should be added in all leagues and started this week,
- Marvin Jones (Cin) @ Pit – Jones is either the second or third option in a good passing attack, and they have the Pittsburgh secondary this week. Jones is a great start.
- Rishard Matthews (Mia) @NE (TNF) – I hate the passing game when it’s a Thursday night game. Matthews should be owned already and will continue to get targeted. Miami should be chasing points in NE, he’s a solid start.
- Brandon LaFell (NE) v Mia (TNF) – Another Thursday night game, and another wide receiver on the list. LaFell dropped six balls last week. He still had eight targets and didn’t get benched for the drops. Edelman is hurt, so LaFell will get the ball thrown to him.
- Chris Conley (KC) v Det (London) – He’s more or less a home run play this week. Detroit can’t stop the pass, and Maclin missed a week. Smith might have found something in Conley.
- Jeff Cumberland (NYJ) @ Oak – He’s simply the TE that’s playing the Raiders. He should at least be in line for a TD.
- Ladarius Green (SD) - @ Bal – Baltimore is good against TEs, but Green is a top option given that Gates is out. This offense throws the ball…a lot.
- Ben Watson (NO) v NYG – We all know that Brees likes his TE. Watson has looked good the last couple weeks. All things point to Watson having a good game
- Austin Sefarian-Jenkins (TB) @ Atl – If ASJ plays, he has a great matchup in a game where TB will be chasing points.
- Tyrod Taylor (Buf) – He’s on a bye this week, and he has been out of the lineup the last two weeks as well. He has been very good when he’s played. He should be a low-end QB1 when he gets back.
- Tony Romo (Dal) – Week 11. If you don’t get him soon, you won’t get him. Be proactive.
- Darren McFadden (Dal) – DMC was great. He ran like the old DMC and caught a few balls. He will only be the running back while Randle is out, but he should be owned and is, at least, a flex option.
- Ryan Mathews (Phi) – He’s a better fit in Philadelphia's backfield than DeMarco Murray. He’s going to get production. The offense isn’t great, but Mathews is. He’s a handcuff with flex appeal.
- Antonio Andrews (Ten) – He is the starter and should get plenty of work this week. If he doesn’t produce this week, I might get off the bandwagon.
- Matt Jones (Was) – He’s the lead back going forward. He’ll show why there was hype.
- Charles Sims (TB) – A handcuff with flex appeal. That’s rare.
- Alfred Blue (Hou) – He’s now a starter in the league. That’s all I can really say about him.
- Stefon Diggs (Min) – Diggs should have been added last week, make that happen this week.
- Devante Adams (GB) – He’s back either this week or next. He should be universally owned until we know he’s NOT a part of this offense.
- Rishard Matthews (Mia) – Matthews is a huge part of the offense. The offense looks good for now.
- Michael Crabtree (Oak) – Oakland came out and said they want to get Crabtree more looks, and he’s already getting a ton.
- Marvin Jones (Cin) – He’s in a great offense and has produced. He’s a solid WR3.
- Michael Floyd (Ari) – See Jones, Marvin.
- Brandon LaFell/Danny Amendola (NE) – They have Tom Brady throwing the ball to them. LaFell over Amendola.
- Jordan Reed (Was) – He’s a stud. Add him in ALL leagues.
- Eric Ebron (Det) – He’s one of the best up-and-coming TEs in the league. Grab him now.
- Crockett Gilmore (Bal) – He had the final pass thrown to him again this week. That’s trust.
- Derek Carr (QB, Oak) – He’s baaack. After a couple of lackluster games, he was great again. He’s a guy that could sneak in the QB1 conversation.
- Jay Cutler (QB, Chi) – He’s hot and cold. When he’s hot, he’s REALLY hot.
- David Cobb (RB, Ten) – He’s been hurt but had the inside track to get the starting job this offseason.
- Orleans Darkwa (RB, NYG) – He was the best RB in the Giants backfield last week, and his name is fun to say.
- Khiry Robinson (RB, NO) – He had 2 TDs last week. If he gets the ball, he’s good
- Tavon Austin (WR, StL) – Boom or bust, but if they can get a more consistent passing game, he could be great.
- Dorial Green-Beckham (WR, Ten) – Huge talent, but does he have it between the ears?
- Robert Woods (WR, Buf) – He’s the #1 WR with Watkins and Harvin out. He’s also pretty good.
- Austin Sefarian-Jenkins (TE, TB) – He was good when healthy, even though it was for one week, and Winston throws to his TE when he has one.
- Vernon Davis (TE, SF) – He used to be good…
That's a lot of names. The big names to add are Diggs and McFadden. I know it seems like there are a lot of running backs, but they are low-end options and matchup plays, at best.
I wish I had the next superstar to suggest, and maybe I did…