Your Monday Morning Waiver Wire Report for Week 16

Here are the players I am targeting on the waiver wire for the fantasy football championship.

“Every champion was once a contender that refused to give up.”

– Rocky Balboa

I really enjoy writing this article every other week. I look forward to interacting with those of you that post comments and ask questions. I want to wish all of you a happy holiday and a pleasant end to 2016. Thank you so much for reading and for being a RotoViz subscriber.

Alas, it has come to this. All of your time, effort and sanity comes down to this last week, CHAMPIONSHIP WEEK. I’m going to go through next week’s schedule using The Buy Low Machine and try to identify a few plus matchups for some lesser owned players.

Running Backs

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If you somehow have Todd Gurley on your team and you are still alive, you have accomplished the impossible. Enjoy your championship.

Week 15 was a week of vultured touchdowns. Turbo Robert Turbin snatched two touchdowns from Frank Gore owners. Derrick Henry did the same thing to DeMarco Murray owners. If I had to play one, it would be Henry against the Jaguars. Henry has looked great with limited opportunity. The wild card is how Jacksonville responds to the firing of their head coach. The Jags may just roll over and play dead.

Adrian Peterson was ineffective in his return. Peterson takes away from Jerick McKinnon’s rushing appeal but McKinnon has 20 receptions in the last three weeks. I think he continues to see targets in a potential blowout at Lambeau.

Kenneth Farrow stunk with a full-time workload. I’m assuming Melvin Gordon returns this week. If he doesn’t, I’m admittedly hesitant about starting Farrow in another good matchup.

The only running back injury concern coming out of Week 15 is Lamar Miller. He suffered an ankle injury in the 4th quarter and didn’t return. I’m not sure I could accurately pick a starter between Alfred Blue, Akeem Hunt and Jonathan Grimes anyway. If Miller sits this week out, I’m avoiding this backfield entirely.

Wide Receivers

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I don’t expect there to be many useful wide receivers on the wire this late in the season. I’m not one to advocate benching your studs but there are a few name brand WRs that have difficult matchups. Jeremy Maclin hasn’t done much this year; sit him vs. Denver. I wouldn’t be overly excited about starting A.J. Green coming off his hamstring injury against the Texans and A.J. Bouye. Jordy Nelson will probably see a lot of Xavier Rhodes but I wouldn’t have the stones to sit him.

Here are a few wide receivers that are sparsely owned and I would consider rostering them in deep leagues:

  • Marqise Lee – Gus Bradley didn’t make it through the gauntlet but Lee did. The Albino Tiger might be available and has a great matchup.
  • Aldrick Robinson – Late-season waiver wire star Taylor Gabriel injured his shoulder vs. the 49ers, and Julio Jones is likely ready to return. If neither play on Christmas Eve, Robinson makes for an interesting spot start. Keep an eye on the Falcons’ practice reports this week.
  • Anquan Boldin – Boldin is quietly fifth in WR touchdowns. The Lions and Cowboys play the final game of Week 16. I’d roster Boldin as an emergency play if you have any questionable players heading into the weekend.

Tight Ends

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Cincinnati has been vulnerable to TEs all season. If C.J. Fiedorowicz sits again, I like Ryan Griffin a lot this week. Griffin had six of his eight receptions for 69 yards after Tom Savage replaced Brock Osweiler. Nice.

It was also nice to see Charles Clay show up in Week 15 for seven receptions, 72 yards and a touchdown. He has another favorable matchup next week. I feel much more comfortable plugging him into a TE deficient lineup then I did 24 hours ago.

Quarterbacks

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If you’ve streamed your way to the top, someone you may want to consider this week is Matt Barkley. Washington allows the sixth most fantasy points to quarterbacks heading into tonight’s game. I’d expect the Bears/Redskins game to have some shootout appeal with one of the highest expected game totals in Week 16.

In two competitive home games, Barkley has 20.6 and 14.5 fantasy points. He produced over 300 yards and multiple touchdowns in both games. If he can cut back on the interceptions (Washington has the third fewest INTs in the NFL), Barkley has the potential to be a championship week streaming hero.

Defense

The top (likely) available play of the week is San Diego at Cleveland for obvious reasons. The Chargers held the playoff-bound Raiders to 19 points and they lead the NFL in passes intercepted.

The Texans defense have been a disappointing fantasy producer this season. I did peg them as being overdrafted in August. The benching of Osweiler for Savage may provide some energy to both the team and the home crowd. They face the Bengals who mustered only 38 yards of total offense in the second half against the Steelers.

Green Bay is another defense with a good matchup at home. The Packers are second in interceptions and tied for eighth in sacks. They play the Vikings who were embarrassed by the Colts on Sunday. Minnesota had only two first downs in the first half. They’ll be overmatched by the rolling Packers in Week 16.

Closing Out 2016

Best of luck to those of you still battling. Thanks for following along this season.

If you have any difficult drop/add decisions that you would like assistance with, please use the message board below. We (and the rest of the RotoViz community) will be monitoring the boards offering help when we can. You can also contact us directly on Twitter.