The NFL saw big changes in Week 6. A high-powered offense lost arguably the best quarterback in football, an 0-5 team proved they don’t need one handed catches and extreme talent to win games, and other teams adapted to their new situations. Regardless of what changed in the NFL, fantasy football players can rest assured knowing they can be rewarded through the waiver wire.
Orleans Darkwa – New York Giants – 0.7% Owned (NFL.com Leagues)
If you had asked me last week which Giants running back to pick up after getting demolished by the injury bug, I wouldn’t have been able to tell you. After Week 6, however, I can without a doubt say that it’s Orleans Darkwa. He out-touched his rookie comrade Wayne Gallman by 10 touches and rushed for a pleasing 5.8 yards per carry. If you’re playing in an NFL.com league, I can almost guarantee you that Darkwa is available. Regardless of your format, he is certainly worth a pick-up.
D’Onta Foreman – Houston Texans – 5.0% Owned
Of course, I don’t believe Foreman will be stealing Lamar Miller’s starting job. However, one of the selling points for Miller is his volume (no less than 14 carries per game this season), and Foreman has been getting his own share of Miller’s workload. In the last three weeks, Foreman has had 13, 4, and 12 carries (that 4-carry game being the blow-out against Kansas City, where the Texans had no chance to run the ball). While Foreman isn’t getting the production fantasy owners want, he is getting the volume equivalent to that of a starting running back. Although he’s going into his bye in Week 7, Foreman is worth at least a stash on your roster, or a FLEX start in deeper leagues later this season.
Dion Lewis – New England Patriots – 3.8% Owned
Coming into the season, the four-headed monster that was the Patriots’ backfield was hard to read. To an extent it still isn’t clear today. However, Dion Lewis has proven that he can be a productive back with fewer carries than teammate Mike Gillislee. Gillislee still has 49 more carries than Lewis on the season, but his main feature was his opportunity on the one-yard line. On Sunday, it was Lewis who got the call and was able to find his way into the end zone. In the last two weeks, Dion Lewis has rushed for at least 50 yards and has scored in two of his last three games. I think he’s a start-able player, that you can get for almost nothing.
Nelson Agholor – Philadelphia Eagles – 23.5% Owned
Nelson Agholor is a direct beneficiary of Carson Wentz’ breakout, receiving at least 50 yards in the last three games while scoring a touchdown in his last two. In addition, Agholor’s targets have been increasing in the last four games. He has displayed talent worthy of targets, and in the next two weeks faces a Josh Norman-less Washington defense, as well as a horrid Niners defense (both at home). I say that he is easily a WR2 or a FLEX play in the coming weeks.
Marqise Lee – Jacksonville Jaguars – 4.2% Owned
I know, I know, a Jacksonville wide receiver makes you gag a little. But I truly believe that this is a wide receiver that is trending up and could break out soon. Against a decent Los Angeles Rams defense, Lee caught five passes for 83 yards and had one carry for 17 yards. Over the season his targets have decreased (12 to 7 to 3 over three weeks), but since then they have spiked back up (10 targets last Sunday). He also has a juicy schedule coming up (Colts twice, the Browns, the 49ers, and the Chargers). I think Lee is worth at least a FLEX play in deeper PPR formats.
Sterling Shepard – New York Giants – 22.8% Owned
There are bound to be Sterling Shepard owners who bailed on the Giants’ passing game, and even more so after Shepard was inactive Week 6. While Eli Manning wasn’t the best on Sunday Night Football, he proved that he can produce fantasy targets (Tight end Evan Engram received 82 yards and a touchdown). The Giants don’t have many other options at wide receiver, and Shepard has proven he has the talent to be worth targets. When he’ll return from his ankle injury is uncertain, but I think he’s worth a stash and should see increased volume the rest of the season.
Austin Sefarian-Jenkins – New York Jets – 15.6% Owned
How ASJ is owned in less than 16 percent of leagues is mind-boggling. His upside is that the Jets just don’t have anyone else to throw to. Sefarian-Jenkins has seen increased targets in the last three games (4 to 8 to 11), and is almost always targeted in the red zone. Even with the touchdown taken away from him on Sunday, the Jets tight end has two touchdowns in two games to accompany 152 yards in four games. ASJ needs to be owned and started in all formats.
George Kittle – San Francisco 49ers – 1.5% Owned
George Kittle has quietly become a start-worthy tight end, which is strange considering the wasteland that is the tight end fantasy position. In his last two games, Kittle has seen nine and eight targets, respectively. In those two games, he has received 129 yards and a touchdown. Now that C.J. Beathard has been named the starting quarterback, he’ll need a security blanket. George Kittle has a decent schedule coming up and an even better fantasy playoff schedule. I think he’s start-able moving forward, especially if you’re struggling to find a consistent tight end.
Ed Dickson – Carolina Panthers – 15.8% Owned
Ed Dickson was rather quiet in Week 6. He caught four passes for 36 yards, which isn’t truly awful but is very disappointing compared with the 175 yards he had the previous week. Cam Newton has proven that he can be efficient enough from the pocket to yield decent fantasy weapons, and Ed Dickson is one of them. His targets have trended upward in the last four weeks (1 to 4 to 5 to 8), and he has a very nice schedule from here on out. Of course, Dickson will be competing with wide receivers Kelvin Benjamin and Devin Funchess, who have also been heating up, but he’s better than a lot of other options at tight end and has high upside.