NFL Waiver Wire: Injuries are Everywhere

This week hit a lot of people hard with injuries and a lot of people are looking to the waiver wire for a short term solution to their injury woes.

Below is my priority for this week’s waiver wire options. I used ESPN ownership percentage and picked players under 50 percent owned.

The FAAB portion is a rough range of what I would spend on these players. You know your league better than I do. I am in two FAAB leagues and they run completely different in terms of how much a potential starting running back will go for.

Unless you are desperate or in a league deeper than 12 teams I would not recommend going over the high-end for any of these budgets.

The following order is how I would want them in a vacuum. For example I would want McKinnon over Dwayne Washington, but I would prefer Washington at his lower expected price than McKinnon at his expected price.

For this week I think my strategy for waivers would be to let league mates use 30-50% on the high-end names while you sit back and grab less exciting names that should provide decent production.

For the column referring to the waiver claims. If your league resets the waiver priority every week disregard that and just use your waiver claim any time you can. No point in saving it so you can get the best available player someone dropped.

  Player Pos FAAB Burn waiver claim?
1 Jerick McKinnon RB 15-25% Yes
2 Tyrell Williams WR 15-20% Yes
3 Kenyan Drake RB 10-15% Yes
4 Dwayne Washington RB 7-12% Yes
5 Jay Ajayi RB 7-12% Yes
6 Matt Asiata RB 7-12% Yes
7 Cameron Artis-Payne RB 7% Only if you really need a RB
8 Fozzy Whittaker RB 7% Only if you really need a RB
9 Kenneth Dixon RB 0-3% No
10 Phillip Dorsett WR 0-3% No
11 Jalen Richard RB 0-3% No
12 DeAndre Washington RB 0-3% No
13 James Starks RB 0-3% No
14 Quincy Enunwa WR 0-3% No
15 Dennis Pitta TE 0-3% No
16 Matt Ryan QB 0-3% Need a QB streamer and no other options
17 Jesse James TE 0-3% No
18 Cole Beasley QR 0-3% No
19 Giants D/ST 0-3% Need a D/ST streamer and no other options
20 Buccaneers D/ST 0-3% Need a D/ST streamer and no other options


  • Jerick McKinnon – No clue on how long Peterson will be out. He will be the more talented half of a RBBC while Peterson is out, but wont get goal line work. The other downside here is once the starter returns he has no chance of being usable.
  • Tyrell Williams – If you didn’t grab him last week you will need to pay up now. His speed and size are going to look mighty nice when Rivers is looking for a new go to receiver.
  • Kenyan Drake – I don’t think the Dolphins want Ajayi to take the workload, and think Drake is better anyway. The issue for Drake is he also has injury concerns, and like McKinnon, has no chance to carry value when the starter returns.
  • Jay Ajayi – I don’t see the Dolphins giving him a starter’s workload. There is a chance they do and that is why I would be willing to spend about 10% on him.
  • Matt Asiata – He got more work than McKinnon last time Peterson missed time, but the yards were never great. If he didn’t fall into the end zone it ended up a bad day.
  • Dwayne Washington – Abdullah might be in trouble with his foot injury, and Washington should step in as the running downs and goal line back. The issue here is the Lions want to throw, throw, and throw some more. Expect him to get 10-15 touches in Abdullah’s absence, but once Abdullah returns little to no value.
  • Cameron Artis-Payne – He dominated the carries last year when Stewart went down, but he has to battle with Fozzy and Tolbert between the 20s and Cam near the end zone. Only go here if you’re desperate.
  • Fozzy Whittaker – He is usually active over Artis-Payne because of his special teams duties so when Stewart goes down he immediately looks like the guy. Don’t be fooled by that, but also don’t let one of your opponents get him just in case things have changed.
  • Kenneth Dixon – He hasn’t played a snap but he makes the list. The Ravens backfield is bad and he should have an opportunity to start soon after he returns.
  • Phillip Dorsett – With Moncrief dinged and Luck always airing it out Dorsett should be owned.
  • Jalen Richard and DeAndre Washington – Did you see the running back splits for the Raiders this week?
  • James Starks – Used a lot more than Lacy owners wanted to see.
  • Quinsy Enunwa – Jets run a ton of three wide sets. I don’t think he has a ton of value week to week, but if something happens to Decker or Marshall he could be a top-20 guy.
  • Dennis Pitta – Getting targeted a lot. There are a lot of bad tight ends out there right now.
  • Matt Ryan – He has been great lately. I would hate to use a waiver claim or significant FAAB on such a replaceable fantasy position, but he does get the Saints this week.
  • Jesse James – 6’7″ option on a team without many tall red zone receivers.
  • Cole Beasley – He is going to be a safe 7 for 70 machine if you need safety.
  • Giants and Buccaneers – Lowly owned streamable defenses for week 3.


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Andy Germani

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I am a lifelong Pittsburgh sports fan and a graduate from Penn State. Baseball was my first love and I still play to this day in an adult baseball league. I always love helping people with their questions on Twitter so feel free to follow me and ask questions.

25 thoughts on “NFL Waiver Wire: Injuries are Everywhere”

  1. For whatever reason, someone dropped Houston for Miami this week. I currently have NYJ on defense.

    How much is it worth dishing out for the texans? $15 / 100? $20? Top-5 defenses don’t hit the waiver wire very often…

    1. With how I am I wouldnt spend more than 5 percent. I am a streaming defense guy so I usually dont throw more than 1-2% on a defense ever. The Texans have a great matchup against the Brissett led Patriots and are a top option most weeks after that.

      I wouldnt be able to spend $15 on them. Week to week on the waiver wire you will be able to find defenses that will get close, or even better, than them. If you play the matchups right week to week you can use $0 bids to get solid defense production.

      With my philosophy you probably wont be able to get them. I would just rather allocate that FAAB to a potential big pickup. The replacement level at a position like QB, TE, D/ST is not far off. Then when you look at RB you have a big drop off from average starter to waiver wire replacement.

      I kind of jumped around on reasoning there but essentially I dont pay much for defenses. Save it for the potential David Johnson or Allen Hurns type players that pop up on the waiver wire every year.

        1. He is one of the guys I assumed was owned in more than 50% that wasnt (I am sure there are a couple others)

          I would say right around Dixon.

          I liked what I saw from Howard in very limited work last night. I wouldnt mind dumping Washington for him. Washington is in a true 3 headed monster and wont have real starter value unless Murray or Richard go down and he might even need both.

          Morris on the other hand could potentially immediately become a top 15 option in Dallas if anything happened to Elliott.

  2. Uggghhhh, I might have one of the shittiest 2-0 teams around….I need some help for the future…

    WR: Baldwin, Tate, Moncrief, Watkins, Fuller,
    RB: Forte, Langford, Stewart, Gore

    On the waiver wire are the following:
    RB: Coleman, Riddick, C-Mike, Mckinnon
    WR: Tyrell Williams, Davante Parker, John Brown, Mike Wallace, Core Coleman, Amendola

    Of my guys above only Forte and Gore cleared 10 points this past week, and 4 of the rest were injured in week 2….not sure who should get the boot considering what’s available….

    On top of all this….we might go to 7 keepers next year….I’m not sure if I’ll have even just one…HELP!

    1. I like Parker and Williams as nice waiver wire receivers for you to add. Coleman isnt a bad fail safe in a keeper league.

      All of those running backs would be great options to have as well. Based on all of those available player I think I would dump Tate. I would look to add in order

      Parker, Williams, Michael, Coleman, McKinnon, Riddick.

      That was really tough to order. Ending up with any of them would be a win. Do you have any backup quarterbacks, tight ends or defenses? Those are usually good drop candidates. I would like to get 2 or maybe even 3 of those waiver wire guys.

      Also as much as I love Forte you might be best off putting him out there and seeing if you can get 2 really solid players for him or a borderline elite receiver. With all those RBs on the wire plus Langford and Gore on your roster if you should be able to mix and match based on matchups Gore/Langford/Coleman/Michael/McKinnon/Riddick to have a solid RB group.

      1. the only other bench spot I’ve got is for Eifort, and I’m rostering Dwayne Allen while he’s out….maybe Eifort isn’t worth the effort at this point (pun not intended)

        Tate seems like a no-brainer drop at this point….but how bout Eifort? Or perhaps even Moncrief or Stewart? With only a 5-man bench, these injuries are killing me

        1. I think you have to let Eifert go at this point. He still might be 3-4 weeks away and who knows how quickly he will be back to 100 percent.

          I wouldnt cut Moncrief or Stewart. I think Stewart is still a top 16ish type back when healthy.

          I would try to grab 1 RB and 1 WR. Set up claims so you can get one at each spot. I would prioritize a WR in your spot because you have Watkins and Moncrief dinged up.

          1. Thanks for the help. I put in my claims for Parker, Michael and Williams in that order.

            Also I went boom or bust at QB and went with Winston….but Carr is also available…part of me thinks they could have an equivalent ceiling, but with Carr having the higher floor. What say you?

          2. I like Carr a little more than Winston. Winston has an awesome playoff schedule (Saints in week 14 and 16) but a rough schedule coming up. He has the Rams, Broncos, Patriots then a bye. If you drop him now I cant see anyone adding him or hanging on to him for the next few weeks. I would probably go ahead and make that swap.

            Matt Ryan also has a really nice matchup this week against the Saints.

          3. Thanks for the help! My roster has been transformed since yesterday. After you mentioned swapping Forte for a borderline elite WR I was able to pull off a trade for Hopkins straight up, while also picking up Parker, Michaels and Carr. off the waiver wire.

            Already feeling much better about my current lineup, and my prospects for next year! Thanks!

          4. Great deal on Forte. I had him as a buy high a couple weeks ago but the workload either wont continue ate 25 touches per game or he will get hurt. Hopkins is honestly better than what I thought you could get so that is fantastic. I was thinking in the Evans, Benjamin area.

            You if you have an extra roster spot somewhere you might want to give Jordan Howard a look. I have a feeling Langford might be on a short leash.

            If any of those guys from before I listed are still out there I think you might be ok to dump Moncrief. He is out 4-6 weeks. Essentially that puts him at maybe week 7 or 8 at best to be back. With short benches and byes I wouldnt be surprised if youre forced to drop him anyway.

            Who is left after all the waiver wire stuff cleared. (Feel free to start a new comment rather than reply. I get the notification no matter what)

  3. Hi. Any news on M. Lynch. When a report came out that he may come back I picked him up, but I haven’t heard anything. Do anyone know any news? And what should I do with him on my bench?

    1. I havent heard anything. I would just dump him.

      Assuming he is staying in shape in general he still has to get in football shape. Then the Seahawks would cut him and he would have to try to latch on somewhere midseason. You then are hoping a team in need of a RB that badly takes him so maybe he gets a starters workload like 15 touches. Then after all that you have to hope he produces on those touches.

      With there being no update other than the one saying he might come back last week I think that is enough to say it doesnt have a legitimate chance of happening

  4. Picked up M. Wheaton, D. Washington, and McKinnon for E. Roger, J. White, and rams DST. Which one would be the drop for DST… As i see the Bengals are available? Or even better, who would be a good player to package for a trade?

    1. Wheaton would be my drop there. Bengals have a nice matchup this week against Siemian

      With the Abdullah and Peterson news breaking this morning you have to be ecstatic to get Washington and McKinnon. I myself if I were to update this chart now would make McKinnon a 20-30% guy Asiata a 15-25% guy and Washington a 15-25%

  5. Hey Andy, thanks for keeping the dialogue open.

    So Here’s my new and improved roster:

    QB: Carr
    WR: Hopkins, Baldwin
    RB: Gore, Langford
    TE: Allen
    Flex: Michael

    Bench: Watkins, Parker, Stewart, Fuller Moncrief

    Both Tyrell Williams and Mckinnon are still available, as well as Howard. Williams seems like he might be a better bet points-wise, but is there a semi-decent chance McKinnon runs away with the job sets himself up for a feature back role for next year? Howard has the added benefit of being a handcuff for Langford….but it could also just end up that neither are worthy of starting….

    1. I think I would jump on McKinnon with Peterson being out for a while and possibly the season.

      Williams is definitely an interesting name but I think week to week you can find similar receivers. There wont be many with the potential of McKinnon out there.

      I would take McKinnon, Williams, Howard at the expense of dropping Moncrief. Even when he comes back no lock he steps back into the same snaps. They like going to 2 TEs and if Dorsett plays well he could really cut into his snaps.

      1. I forgot I’m limited to only 3 pickups per week, so McKinnon will have to wait until next week, if he lasts that long.

        I also just managed to swap Langford for Allen Robinson straight up. The future is looking much brighter indeed! Thanks for the help!

  6. E. Ebron was dropped and is available for tomorrow mornings waivers. Do you like him more than D Pitta? I kinda think Pitta is underrated so I’m torn… Advice? I would pick him up without droping anyone… But my extra roster slot is not available until tomorrow…

    1. I like both. Right now I think I would ride the hot hand in Pitta. Just a couple years ago Pitta was one of the top names at the position. If he is healthy now he could be that again.

      1. Howard, Whittaker, Artis-payne, Morris, Beasley, Davante Adams, and Beasley are some of the top available. Howard’s espn outlook sounds great…. Just making sure Howard would still be your pick. And thanks!

        1. Assuming you dont have to start who you add this week or next its Howard.

          The rest dont offer much in the terms of upside. Howard could be the lead back by this time next week.

          They tried working Carey in a lot last week and Carey is hurt now. Howard looked a lot better in his very limited sample last week.

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