Waiver Wire Dumpster Dives takes you beyond the obvious plays and helps you find undervalued gems for deep leagues.
Thanksgiving is coming up. Christmas shopping and travel plans are being made. Fantasy playoffs are just over the horizon. There is a lot of … well just plain life going on. But fear not. The team at RotoViz is going to do the hard work for you. Including this week’s Dumpster Dives. It’s not easy finding value this deep in the waiver wire. Which is why I’ve dug around for you to find some solid picks for all of you deep league junkies.
We’ll use the RotoViz tools like the amazing NFL Stat Explorer to discover and visualize the data we need to unearth these hidden gems.
Gus Edwards, RB (Baltimore Ravens) — Owned 4.0%
This late into the season, Dumpster Dives can get more challenging, as many of the high upside players are getting snagged by the active fantasy GM. So imagine how pleasantly surprised I was to find out that a running back on the highest-scoring team in the NFL was still available in 96% of leagues.
Yes, Edwards is second fiddle to Mark Ingram. But the Ravens are running the ball for an average of 203.8 yards-per-game and a 1995-esq 35.8 attempts-per-game. That makes for a pretty big pie that Edwards is taking a slice out of.
Edwards and his 5.5 yards per carry is getting a 13.5% market share in the best offense in the league. That’s second among all RBs in Baltimore’s stable. If anything were to happen to Ingram, which is commonplace in his career, Edwards would catapult into Waiver Wire stardom. With positive matchups down the stretch, Edwards might just power your team through the playoffs.
Ben Watson, TE (New England Patriots) — Owned 2.8%
The Patriots had one of the worst offensive performances in Week 11. But one thing that it was good for was solidifying who holds the top spot among Patriots’ tight ends. In Matt LaCosse’s return to the field, he only logged 21 snaps versus Watson’s 59 of a possible 74. This screams to me that as long as he can stay healthy, Watson is the top pass-catching tight end for Tom Brady.
The New England tight end position has yielded mediocre fantasy spoils as a whole this season. But when I look at the stretch of games coming up I see a reason for optimism.
When using the SoS Streaming app in this case, ignore the shading. Dallas, Houston, and Kansas City are all in the Top 10 of NFL teams in Points per game. New England will have to score points to keep up. And with Baltimore nipping at their heels, if the Patriots want home-field advantage throughout the playoffs, they need to keep stacking up wins. I want pass-catching weapons for teams in high-scoring games. And Watson is a highly available option to get exposure to that offense.
Demaryius Thomas, WR (New York Jets) — Owned 7.5%
I am going to keep this one short and sweet since I just wrote about Thomas in last week’s column. We were able to increase Thomas’s ownership by about 70%. Alas, that amounted to only 3.1 percentage points. However, that is good news for those of you slow to pull the trigger.
If you need receiver help or depth in deeper leagues, Thomas may be uninspiring at this point in his career, but he provides a solid baseline for deep league play. With at least five targets in five out of eight games as a Jet, Thomas is still a top option for Sam Darnold.
Darnold has turned in an impressive three games since shaking off the trifecta of mono, New England and then Jacksonville defenses rattling his cage. Since then, Darnold is averaging 260-plus yards per game and has thrown six touchdowns. With the QB situation improving in Gotham, I believe Thomas can continue to put up steady, if not spectacular, fantasy production.
With the most receiver-friendly schedule in the NFL, Thomas and Darnold are going to have lots of opportunity to connect and it is only a matter of time before he shows off his ability to be the red zone weapon we all know and love.
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