Fantasy Football Waiver Wire: NFL Week 16
Dan Malin brings you his top waiver wire adds heading into Week 16 of the fantasy football season.
Well if you magically made it to the finals in your fantasy football league then congratulations! You dodged a plethora of bullets over the past few weeks and are just one step away from glory. Because it’s Week 16 this piece is going to be a bit shorter. Let’s face it, you have a team you’re probably comfortable with, but maybe you need a streaming option or a D/ST for Week 16. I’ll help you out with that. But I’ll also provide some names to consider as stashes to keep from your opponent or maybe you actually do need help this week so below are the names to target. Thanks for following along all season and best of luck to you all in the finals! There will still be another waiver wire piece next for any leagues still playing into Week 17.
Special Note on Tight Ends: I didn’t want this suggestion to get lost in the fold of the deeper league section, but Matt LaCosse is a recommendable streamer in shallow and deeper leagues. The reasoning behind that decision is because the tight end position has been atrocious all season long. Obviously if you own a stud like Gronk, Kelce, Kittle, or Ebron then you’re starting them. But Matt LaCosse had four receptions for 43 yards and the Broncos face the Raiders next week. The Raiders are awful at defending tight ends so LaCosse is a good play. I’m also throwing Ian Thomas ’ name out there again. I know he was kept in check against the Saints, but the matchup gets a little better at home against Atlanta. Thomas is a little more than 50% owned on ESPN, so he’s only available in shallower leagues.
Josh Allen (QB – Buffalo Bills) – In four-point per passing touchdown leagues, Josh Allen has four straight games with at least 18 points. You’ll certainly take that in shallower leagues or two-quarterback formats. Allen also has over 350 rushing yards over his last four games with three touchdowns. He gets a road matchup on Sunday against the New England Patriots. The Patriots haven’t looked like themselves lately and this does present itself as a “get right” game for them. Even if that’s the case there could be garbage time potential for Allen and the Bills in this game.
Elijah McGuire (RB – New York Jets) – Elijah McGuire now has back-to-back games with at least 20 touches and it’s no coincidence that he’s scored in both games. The Jets seem comfortable giving McGuire touches this late in the year to see what they may have in their young running back. McGuire’s performance could play a role in how the Jets approach free agency and the draft in regard to running backs. The Jets have a difficult matchup in Week 16 against the Packers, but this past Sunday both Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen managed to find the end zone against Green Bay so they can be beat on the ground.
Jordy Nelson (WR – Oakland Raiders) – Jordy Nelson hasn’t scored since Week 5, but lately he’s been getting more and more involved in the offense. Over his last three games he has 22 receptions on 26 targets for 233 yards. In standard formats he’s a bit of a risky flex play because he hasn’t scored in months and the 233 yards are relatively modest. But in PPR formats he can be considered if you have no better options (hopefully you do). He has at least six receptions and at least seven targets in each of his last three games. If he finally finds the end zone then that’s gravy and you’ll take it.
D/ST to Stream – The Tennessee Titans get a pretty favorable matchup against the Josh Johnson -led Washington Redskins. The Titans have allowed just 23 points to their last three opponents and they’re coming off a shutout win over the Giants. Is it likely they get a second straight shutout? Not really, but there’s a strong chance they keep Washington at bay this coming week.
Nick Foles (QB – Philadelphia Eagles) – Assuming that there are absolutely no quarterbacks available on waivers for you then you can do a lot worse than Nick Foles who looked to have little-to-no rust on Sunday night against the Rams. He only threw for 270 yards and an interception against the Rams, but he gets a slightly better matchup against the Texans in Week 16 at home. Over their last four games the Texans secondary has given up 338 passing yards to opposing quarterbacks with seven passing touchdowns over that span. He’s a solid streaming option in 12-team leagues and deeper formats.
Jamaal Williams (RB – Green Bay Packers) – In case you missed it, I felt REALLY good about Aaron Jones last week. Loved the workload, was a little iffy on the matchup. But I still felt he was a great play even against a great defense like the Bears. Well Jones unfortunately left the game in the first half and screwed over anybody that I told to start him. And for that, FANation, I do apologize. I wish I could’ve seen the injury coming. Alas, I’m no wizard, so here we are. But in his place, Jamaal Williams picked up the rock and churned out a very productive day. He rushed for 55 yards on 12 carries and a touchdown and caught four passes for 42 yards. There’s no word yet on the severity of Jones’ injury. After the game on Sunday he thought that he had sprained his MCL, which obviously puts him at risk in Week 16. Williams is probably the top waiver wire addition at running back this week so even if you don’t play him against the Jets (you should at least consider it), he’s worth stashing so your championship opponent can’t grab him.
Mike Williams and Tyrell Williams (WR – Los Angeles Chargers) – How convenient is this: we can group two guys from the same team, that play the same position, with the same last name! With Keenan Allen going down with a hip injury, both players stepped up in his place last Thursday night. Mike Williams was the big start so you should prioritize him. Even if Keenan Allen ’s active for Saturday’s game against Baltimore, Williams can still be a Flex option after showcasing why the Chargers used a first-round pick on him. If Allen has to miss Saturday’s game then the outlook for both players is even better despite a bad matchup against the Ravens secondary. It’s actually kind of surprising that Mike Williams has ten total touchdowns on the year. He hasn’t topped 100 receiving yards yet this season, but Rivers does look his way in the red zone.
Deeper League Options
Alfred Blue (RB – Houston Texans) – If Lamar Miller has to miss any time then Blue would be the beneficiary in the backfield. Blue didn’t do much on Saturday night against the Jets. On nine carried he totaled six rushing yards. But if Miller is out then Blue would go up against the Eagles on the road and the Eagles just gave up a pair of touchdowns and 76 receiving yards to Todd Gurley on Sunday night. Miller’s injury isn’t considered serious by any means as Houston expects him to be healthy for the playoffs. However, he’s still questionable for Week 16 at this early stage in the week.
Kalen Ballage (RB – Miami Dolphins) – With Frank Gore going down with injury on Sunday you would’ve thought that would open things up for Kenyan Drake . Well Week 15 was bizarre so in hindsight nobody should be surprised that Adam Gase fed Ballage more than Drake. Ballage, on a dozen carries, totaled 123 yards and a touchdown while Drake was held to 34 total yards on four touches. To be fair, Drake was battling a shoulder injury and while Adam Gase said the injury had nothing to do with shying away from Drake once Gore went down, you have to take that with a grain of salt. You should only start Ballage if desperate in Week 16. The Dolphins face the Jaguars who still have a respectable defensive front despite their poor record. Hopefully you have better options and don’t need to attempt this Hail Mary.
Robert Foster (WR – Buffalo Bills) – This is an absolute prayer because Foster needs the big play to return fantasy value. Over his last two games he has 212 receiving yards and a touchdown, but he did all that on 11 catches. Josh Allen still has horrendous accuracy issues, but there’s no denying the connection these two have and the potential for big plays. Against the Patriots you can consider Foster as a flex option in deeper formats, but this is one of those guys you can stash that I alluded to in the intro.
D/ST to Stream – This is the defense to stream for 12-team leagues as well. But the Indianapolis Colts defense is surprisingly underrated. Yes they just shut out the Cowboys, which is a stunning feat in itself. The Colts have at least three sacks in four of their last five games with 17 sacks total over that span. Next week they face the Giants at home who are coming off a shutout loss of their own and the Giants offense is lost right now especially if they’re without Odell Beckham Jr. once again. Indy should get plenty of pressure on Eli this Sunday.