Fantasy football championships are won on Tuesdays. I’ll be providing you with weekly advice for navigating what could often be an intimidating waiver wire claim process. It’s a fun mix of deep stashes, dynasty roster changes, and FAAB suggestions. If you enjoy this article or want to discuss any of the players with me-I’m always happy to engage with readers and fellow dynasty degenerates on Twitter, @Top2Matt.
Taysom Hill (Owned in 0.2% of ESPN Leagues): Waiver Wire Stash
The 6’2” 235 lbs man out of BYU has been one of the most perplexing players of the young 2018 season. Hill hasn’t made a significant impact if you’re looking at box scores, but it’s clear that the Saints view him as a critical part of their offense. Since Week 3, the multi-purpose back (it seems more appropriate to drop the “quarter” part) rushed for 91 yards and a touchdown on 12 attempts. Hill offers a stark change of pace from the passing presence of Brees, and opposing defenses have yet to catch on. As the season continues, Hill’s snaps increase: with 15 snaps (21% of all snaps) in Week 4 being his high. There’s obviously limited upside here but keep an eye on Hill-who is likely to grow into a larger role in a future offense that doesn’t feature Brees. He’s the definition of a stash and should only be considered in deeper dynasty leagues.
Josh Adams (Owned in 0.3% of ESPN Leagues): Waiver Wire Target
I could play it easy here and flip a coin between writing up Clement or Smallwood, but I’ll dig deeper for you instead. This undrafted free agent had 1,430 rushing yards and 9 touchdowns his junior season at Notre Dame. Adams received a dedicated set of truthers through his draft process by those recognizing his incredible strength and ability to cover ground quick once he gets moving. Adams could offer an alternative to Smallwood as a between the tackles pounder for the Eagles as the season wears on. Adams has seen limited work (12 snaps all season) but rushed for 30 yards on 6 attempts when given the chance in Week 3 vs the Colts. Now chances are likely to come Adams way, as the Eagles continue to rotate through their running backs in an attempt to find a formula that gets them back over .500. You should be able to get Adams for 2% or less of your FAAB; while the rest of your league drops piles of FAAB money on the other two Eagles running backs.
Alfred Blue (Owned in 15.5% of ESPN Leagues): Waiver Wire Priority
Yes, I know Lamar Miller is coming back in Week 6. No, I don’t care. Blue lit it up when given the reigns of the Houston backfield in Week 6: he finished as RB13 overall while rushing for 46 yards and catching all 8 of his targets for 73 yards. Blue put up that production on an offense which struggled to move the ball the entire game. Even with Miller playing, Blue has seen 24% of snaps Week 3 and 25% of snaps in Week 2. I don’t expect Blue to simply fade out as the Texans attempt to put together an offense that can overcome their poor offensive line. Blue has the floor of a reliable check-down target for the consistently under pressure Watson and has the upside of an RB1. I think you can get Blue for 10% or less of your FAAB this week-as your box score watching league mates turn right back to Miller.
Courtland Sutton (Owned in 9.9% of ESPN Leagues): Waiver Wire Target
Full disclosure: I love Courtland Sutton. I’ll give you the highlights since I really raved about him in my preseason dynasty targets article: He’s a big target 6-4, 215 lbs, averaged 16.5 yards/receptions per game in college at SMU, and he scored 31 touchdowns in 37 games over the course of his college career. Sutton showed that big-play ability in Week 5 when he pulled in a monster catch that showed by his athleticism and his redzone potential. The best part: Sutton is a long-term investment. Thomas and Sanders will hit the Broncos for a combined $30.4 million if they keep them both next year. If they cut one, they’re looking at between $2.6-$4.4 million dead cap instead. That makes Sutton a prime candidate to take over WR2 and redzone option 1 work. He will be a breakout player in 2019, the only question is whether he can also contribute for your team in 2018. If you have room to wait for him to contribute on your dynasty squad, pay whatever you need to get this future star.
Marquez Valdes-Scantling (Owned in 3.2% of ESPN Leagues): Waiver Wire Target
The preseason sensation proved to be much more than that in Week 5. With Cobb and Allison out, Valdes-Scantling caught 7 of his 10 targets for 68 yards and a touchdown. Injuries aside, he had been working his way into the game-script: he had 71% of snaps in Week 4 and has out-snapped fellow rookies Moore and St. Brown in every game this season. It’s clear that this big target (6’4” 206 lbs.) has earned his way to the top of the preferences list for one of the best quarterbacks in the league. I’d proceed with caution and not blow too much of your budget on Valdes-Scantling in case he gets faded out when Cobb and Allison are healthy. I don’t see that happening, though, and would spend 5-8% of my FAAB budget of this potential weekly flex play option.
Niles Paul (Owned in 0% of ESPN Leagues): Waiver Wire Target
Yeah, I know: suggesting a 29-year-old tight end as a dynasty asset is gross. But guess what? Tight ends are gross-especially this season. Paul jumped into the Week 5 match-up vs Kansas City once Austin Sefarian Jenkins went down. He caught 7 of 9 targets for 65 yards. That was good enough for TE6 this week…it was a tough week for tight ends. Opportunities are likely to continue for Paul, in an offense that’s thrown the ball the 5th most amount of times this season. Bortles has thrown the ball more than 30 times in every game this season and has two games with at least 45 attempts; including his 61 attempts in Week 5. You actually might have to spend between 5-10% of your FAAB on Niles Paul, let that sink in.