This article is an amendment to my waiver wire piece from yesterday.
Further Thoughts on the Browns/Ravens Backfields
After my piece yesterday and Rich Hribar’s piece yesterday, I have some more thoughts on the two high value/high volatility backfields of the week. In each case the most expensive waiver wire options might also be the most fragile. That’s certainly true in Justin Forsett’s case, and is maybe true to a lesser extent in Terrance West’s case. But in any case I think the best that either of these players is likely to end up with is a timeshare. That probably does make the argument to just take the cheaper guys in Isaiah Crowell and Lorenzo Taliaferro. Both might be worth less in the near term (although you’ll also pay less for them) and they might be worth more if there’s some disruption to the starters – like injury, or getting passed on the depth chart. For this reason, I think my bids will generally be for the cheaper guys in leagues where I don’t need running backs right away. Some part of this is motivated by my belief that most of the FAAB market is fool’s gold and the most valuable free agent pickups are free ones where you’ve needed foresight to made the add ahead of time.
Note that in Forsett’s case there’s probably some simple logic we can do. We kind of know based on the amount of time he’s been in the league, and his performance over that time, that he’s not the answer for Baltimore. Then we can draw a similar conclusion with increasing confidence as it relates to Bernard Pierce. He was one of the worst running backs in the league last year and the coaching staff went with another player after just one fumble this year. So given time, is it reasonable to think that Taliaferro might get a chance? Right now I’m wondering if a 1% waiver bid will get him, and then how long I’d be willing to hold him before I cut bait.
Marvin Jones might be owned in your league, but if he’s not, go pick him up. He’s actually reportedly on schedule for return after the team’s Week 4 bye. While it’s not exactly easy to see where Jones fits in considering the number of options in CIN, based on his 2013 season and an essentially free cost, you should definitely add him. But the reason to add him now and not later is because he’ll be free now. Considering that Tyler Eifert could be out for some time with a dislocated elbow, Mohammad Sanu is Mohammad Sanu, and Jones has the body of a potential red zone producer, I’m willing to go against the rule that I discuss below related to only trying to roster lead receivers. Remember that Jones was something of a popular breakout candidate this year. So getting him for free is good.
I left Wheaton out of my Monday update although he’s definitely worth an add. He doesn’t really fit my strategy for rostering WRs as I really do try to roster mainly guys who are primary pass catchers on their teams (or who could become primary pass catchers on their teams), but as the season progresses you can start to throw plans out the window. Wheaton actually looked pretty fast and his toe tapping reception down the deep sideline was pretty cool. Like every add, the amount of FAAB you spend on Wheaton should be related to who you have to drop in order to pick him up. I’m dropping end of bench guys like Mike Williams, but I’m really targeting Brian Quick when I do that. I would drop Williams for Wheaton as well, but if I didn’t end up getting Wheaton I wouldn’t lose any sleep.
Dobson was probably drafted in a lot of leagues, but some owners may be willing to cut bait after he was a healthy scratch. I would actually use that as an opportunity to pounce on him. The Pats need something to beef up their pass game because the Intangibles All-stars were not getting it done on Sunday. Dobson might also be a good trade target.
Doug Martin’s lower leg injury is reportedly not severe. You can actually see how between a partially hobbled Martin, who really hasn’t impressed anyone in about 18 months, and the capable Rainey, this might just develop into a weird timeshare. In fact there’s some speculation that Martin was just benched on Sunday. I don’t know if that’s true or not. But I would probably pick up Rainey if I could do it for cheap. He might just sit on your bench for a few weeks, or he might get to run behind one of the worst offensive lines in the league. Anything is possible. Seriously though, this is the kind of mess where you could either end up tossing Rainey back in three weeks, or look like a genius because you pulled a starting RB off the waiver wire.
Donnell might be a popular add this week after his Sunday night performance that left people googling “Larry Donnell”. Interestingly that Giants pass offense looks like a real dumpster fire, which is bad for Eli, but means that the receivers can rack up volume. I kind of like Donnell a little even though he doesn’t seem to be super athletic. He is 6-6 and you can’t teach size. I mean you can teach people that when they’re attacked by a bear they’re supposed to try to make themselves as big as possible, but that seems like more theory than anything that has been tested as to its effectiveness.
Kevin Cole has you covered on Paul here. Considering that WAS was rumored to be trying out TEs earlier today, the Jordan Reed injury looks like it might cause some missed time. As Kevin says, Paul is more of a short term band-aid for your team and if you can get him with a free add/drop, that would be ideal.