Waiver Wire Week 12

For the first times since week three we have an NFL week without any teams on bye.

If you are holding a Cole Beasley type as a fourth receiver or Matt Asiata as a fourth running back, it is time to dump them for either the high upside player or you running back hand cuffs.

Not every player has a direct handcuff. And Even if they do, the handcuff might not be a great player. 

This doesn’t count the places where teams use two running backs at all times. Tevin Coleman is not a handcuff to Devonta Freeman. He is a weekly starter on his own.

This week’s waiver priorities do not coincide with the handcuffs in some cases where it looks like someone might have value for the next week or two. 

Below are my running back handcuff tiers.

Tier 1 – The must cuff

Alfred Morris, Derrick Henry, Mike Gillislee

Tier 2 – Top-20 if the starter goes down

Damien Williams, Charcandrick West, Matt Jones, DuJuan Harris, Cameron Artis-Payne.

Tier 3 – Flex plays

Kapri Bibbs, Paul Perkins, Bilal Powell, DeAndre Washington/Jalen Richard, Wendell Smallwood, Kenneth Farrow, Andre Ellington.

Tier 4 – No reason to cuff but if you have an extra bench spot

Alex Collins, Benny Cunningham, Peyton Barber, Jeremy Langford, Ty Montgomery

Tier 5 – Ignore the handcuff or already in a committee 

Falcons, Ravens, Browns, Bengals, Lions, Colts, Jaguars, Vikings, Patriots, Saints, Steelers, Texans.

If there are any players in your league that don’t show up on the list feel free to ask in the comment section below or on Twitter.

And like I said before, you know your league better than I do. Some of these bids might be far too high, some too low. Depth of the league and your roster construction has a lot to do with how much to bid as well.

    Position FAAB Burn waiver claim?


Mike Gillislee RB 15-20% Yes


Kenneth Dixon RB 15-20% Yes


Wendell Smallwood RB 15-20% Yes


Tyler Boyd WR 5-10% No


Brandon LaFell WR 5-10% No


Tyreek Hill WR 5-10% No


Sammy Watkins WR 3-10% No


Dontrelle Inman WR 3-10% No


Eli Rogers WR 0-5% No


Adrian Peterson RB 0-5% No


Alex Collins RB 0-5% No


Alfred Morris RB 0-5% No


Jared Cook TE 0-5% No


Tajae Sharpe WR 0-5% No


Cameron Artis-Payne RB 0-5% No

Mike Gillislee – I am not buying McCoy is playing this week until he is practicing and really ready to go. This is the same team that said Watkins foot injury wasn’t serious and McCoy’s hamstring was ok.

Kenneth Dixon – Pretty much splitting snaps evenly with West. Don’t wait until after he takes the starting role to try to add him.

Wendell Smallwood – Right now this is assuming Mathews is out and Sproles is limited this week. If things change he could go up or down this list. If more news comes out that Sproles is looking like he will not play, Smallwood is my no doubt top priority in a week where many need a win. It takes two injuries to make me want Smallwood. The two injuries happened, but it also means my interest disappears when one of the two are active.

Tyler Boyd – This has more to do with Green’s injury than Boyd’s performance. He is the most exciting receiver to benefit because of his potential.

Brandon LaFell – I wouldn’t be surprised if he is the Bengals highest scoring receiver the rest of the season. It is going to be boring and probably touchdown dependent.

Tyreek Hill – Involved every week and the snaps are going up, but they still aren’t as high as you would want as a top-30 option. Hill is making the most of his opportunities and I don’t think Maclin returning hurts his value at all.

Sammy Watkins – I am not buying the reports that he plays this week. The bad news is I bet someone in your league does buy it. That will probably drive his FAAB price up a little and I assume someone will probably want to use a waiver claim on him now. I think he is going to win a lot of people their leagues this year.

Dontrelle Inman – The Chargers have a great playoff schedule, and Inman is on the field more than any other Charger receiver.

Eli Rogers – He seems like the slot receiver for Pittsburgh. It is still the Brown and Bell show on the offense, but if you need a flex level receiver I think he can be that.

Adrian Peterson – Still getting in here because he could return at some point in December,

Alex Collins – Prosise and Pope both got hurt. By default he becomes the number two running back and reports have already said Rawls is banged up, although still expected to play.

Alfred Morris – The best pure handcuff in the league.

Jared Cook – Had a huge week, but I don’t buy it. Too many mouths to feed and we have been let down by him too many times.

Tajae Sharpe – As long as Mariota keeps rolling Sharpe should be a solid flex.

Damien Williams – Line is banged up, but he is the handcuff to Ajayi who has an injury history.

Quarterback Streamers

Carson Wentz vs. Packers: He has fallen off the fantasy radar since an early season surge. The Packers are so ridiculously beat up on defense that Wentz makes for a decent play.

Colin Kaepernick @ Dolphins: I didn’t list him last week, but that was an accident. He is a streamer every week until he crosses the threshold of being owned too much.

He is a lot higher owned, but if Eli Manning is out there I also like him this week.

Defense Streamers

Bills vs. Jaguars: Here is your defense against Blake Bortles play.

Steelers @ Colts: It looks like Andrew Luck won’t be playing this week. The Steelers defense isn’t great, but Scott Tolzien isn’t either.

Chargers @ Texans: The Chargers have been better than expected, and Brock Osweiler had at least one turnover in the first eight games of the season. That streak ended this past week when he threw for 99 yards.


Fantasy Rundown BannerNeed more waiver wire suggestions and Start-Sit advice, head on over to Fantasy Rundown.

Andy Germani

Written by 

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.

15 thoughts on “Waiver Wire Week 12”

    1. Yes DeAngelo is unownable right now due to the knee injury. You can take your pick between those guys. Harris and Artis-Payne both back up injury prone guys.

      If I am not handcuffing my own guy I like to grab a handcuff of someone that will be in the playoffs if they are in the same grouping. So if the Ware owner is going to be in the playoffs I would rather grab West and hurt the Ware owners chances, than grab Harris when the Hyde owner isn’t going to be in the playoffs if that makes any sense.

        1. Im pretty good. Currently in the playoffs in all of my leagues but not a lock in any of them.

          I hear you on not trusting Brown or Landry. You have 3 pretty solid RBs and some of the best WW flier options out there in Morris and Henry.

          If I am burning a #1 claim on anyone its Smallwood or Lewis. I would be interested in adding Boyd, LaFell, Inman, Sharpe but I wouldnt burn a claim on any of them. I would let the dust settle and add whoever is left from that group.

          I dont think you need Smallwood. Between the RB depth you have and the possibility that by the end of the week we find out Sproles and/or Mathews are playing and it was a wasted claim.

          If you really want to burn the claim I would go with Lewis but I dont know if he is going to be a season changer and he probably doesnt start over Kelley, Murray, Rawls most weeks.

          I think I would hold the #1 spot and add whoever is left out of the Boyd, LaFell, Inman, Sharpe group once waivers clear and drop Gio and Brown. Mainly because you dont need the RBs.

          Have a nice Thanksgiving!

  1. Hi, Andy. How’s it going? I need some advice, ‘Cause I have to figure out a way to improve my wr3 slot. Brown gave me a big 0 and Landry got his first TD, because the whole Mia team carried him into the end zone. I don’t trust Brown or Landry. Also, I own the top waiver priority and wonder if I should use it for a wr or rb?

    rbs available from your list is Smallwood, A. Peterson, and D.Lewis is on waiver too.
    Wr available from the list Boyd, Lafell, Inman, Sharpe

    Qb Brady
    Wr Julio
    Wr Evans
    Wr Landry
    Rb L. Murray
    Rb R. Kelly
    Te Eifert
    Flex Rawls
    Bench, A. Morris, D. Henry, K. Dixon, J. White, G. Bernard and John Brown (these two are drop-able)
    IR Gronk

    Or I could stock Def for the Playoffs

    Thanks for everything. And Happy Thanksgiving. Make sure you eat a lot and be grateful.

  2. Drop Crowder or alshon jeffery for Morris, Smallwood, and Gillislee? Also, do u think the difference between Washington DST vs cleveland and Denver DST vs KC is big enough to warrant holding a 2nd DST? Any good DSTs to stash for the playoffs? Bills are available. Thanks!

    1. I would drop Alshon for any of them. Suspension plus no real QB now. No chance you are ever going to want to start him.

      I would roll with the Broncos. Great defense and that matchup is fine.

      1. Need 1 WR and one flex for this week. Is Crowder (plays tomorrow) a start over…Cooks, J. Stewart, Tyrell Williams, Brandon Lafell, or Smallwood? Or would you bench him and start 2 of those guys? Thanks and Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

        1. I would rank them Cooks, Crowder, Stewart, Williams. Those guys are all pretty close though.

          I like the matchups for the first three. Ill take the receivers over Stewart though because of how beat up the Panthers line is

          1. Hope you had a great Thanksgiving! I made some trades to get Brees before the deadline. I see Boyd (WR), lafell, Cooks (TE), and Collins (RB) are available. And also a few and DSTs like the rams, redskins, Texans, Giants, steelers with more favorable weeks 15-17 schedules. At this point I’m looking for highest value/upside ROS. I’m leaning towards dropping Gillislee or Dixon for Boyd and/or lafell to see what happens with Cincinnati. Any Thoughts on these options? As always, thank you!

            RB: Ajayi, Ware, Stewart, Smallwood, Gillislee, Morris, Damian Williams,  Dixon
            WR: Julio, Cooks,  Tyrell Williams, Crowder
            TE: Bennett
            DST: Broncos

          2. You arent going to start any of those players probably ever with the lineup you have.

            I would rather get a second defense for matchups in the playoffs than either of the Bengals receivers in your case. You wont ever need to start one. I would be trying to get the Texans who get the Jaguars when the Broncos play the Patriots.

            I wouldnt drop Dixon right now.

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