Best fantasy football waiver wire pickups for Week 14
The conclusion of the fantasy regular season means that some owners will check out and others will start to really tune in as they try to claim a fantasy football championship. That could mean that the Week 14 waiver wire, which has some strong options (especially at RB) will have less volume of competition but also a bunch of your fellow playoff competitiors looking to beat you to the punch.
Speaking of running backs, it's hard to even decide where to start. There was Derrius Guice seemingly staking claim to be the top Washington running back the rest of the way. Patrick Laird and Benny Snell Jr. could remain fantasy relevant if injuries to starters continue. Raheem Mostert and Jordan Wilkins would both need to remain on the right side of their committees while also having other RBs remain out due to injuries. So, nothing is a sure thing at the position, but there are certainly options.
There are also plenty of streamers at QB and TE, despite the probable tendency to stick with your guys at those spots. But if you're battling some of the injuries that have hit the tight end position in recent weeks, it could be time to count on our streamers to come through for you (and that's always true at D/ST, where streaming is our preferred strategy even in the fantasy playoffs).
Wide receiver isn't quite as deep on the waiver wire this week, in part due to some difficult matchups for our preferred waiver options. But you can certainly pursue James Washington, at least, as Devlin Hodges looks to have found his favorite duckling in Washington.
See all of this week's potential waiver pickups, free agent adds, and emergency streamers.
1 Derrius Guice, RB, Redskins
Guice shouldn't be available in 51 percent of Yahoo leagues, but here we are -- and here he is, still available in 51 percent of Yahoo leagues. He received three fewer carries than Adrian Peterson (13), but Guice still gained 129 yards and scored twice on his 10 rushes in Week 13 against the Panthers. The matchup clearly helped, but Guice's big-play ability and talent were on full display. He'll have a favorable Week 14 (Packers) and Week 16 (Giants) sandwiched around an unfavorable Week 15 (Eagles). Either way, he's worth a high-priority waiver claim. -- Matt Lutovsky
2 Raheem Mostert, RB, 49ers
It was reported Matt Breida (ankle) was going to return for Week 13, but after being a surprise scratch on Sunday morning, it opened the door for Mostert to have some relevance once again. No one expected this much relevance, though. Mostert ran 19 times for 146 yards and a score, blowing away Tevin Coleman in all categories (five carries, six yards). It was especially surprising since Mostert was mainly just used in mop-up duty last week. The 49ers RB situation has been difficult to predict all season, so we can't simply say Mostert is going to be a starter going forward. Breida might be back next week, and Coleman will always be around. Still, Mostert is worth adding, even with a relatively tough fantasy playoff schedule (Saints, Falcons, Rams). -- ML
3 Benny Snell Jr., RB, Steelers
For some reason, Snell is owned in just 34 percent of Yahoo leagues despite clearly operating as the Steelers lead back last week. With James Conner's timeline unclear for a return from a sore shoulder, Snell could continue leading the way in the Pittsburgh backfield, at least for one more week. He once again showed what he can do with the job, rushing for 63 yards and a score on 16 carries against the Browns in Week 13. With a fairly favorable schedule the rest of the way (Cardinals, Bills, Jets), Snell will have value as long as Conner is out, making him a worthwhile free agent add, if not low-priority waiver claim. -- ML
4 Patrick Laird, RB, Dolphins
Laird led the Dolphins in carries after Kalen Ballage exited early due to a leg injury. The rookie back didn't do much on the ground (10 carries, four yards), but he plunged in a touchdown and caught four-of-five targets for 47 yards (plus a two-point conversion). Known for his receiving ability in college, Laird will really make his mark in PPR leagues. He's worth an add in both PPR and standard leagues, while fellow rookie RB Myles Gaskin is also in play in standard leagues. The Dolphins have a highly favorable fantasy playoff schedule (Jets, Giants, Bengals), so whoever is operating as the lead back will have some value. -- ML
5 James Washington, WR, Steelers
Washington continued his late-season surge in Week 13, catching all four of his targets for 113 yards and a score. The touchdown catch was a bit fluky, but it's clear Washington is Pittsburgh's No. 1 receiver while JuJu Smith-Schuster (knee) is out. What's unclearis when JuJu will return, so fire up Washington against the Cardinals next week and the Jets in Week 16, though he should be avoided in Week 15 against the Bills. -- ML
6 Jack Doyle, TE, Colts
With Eric Ebron (ankle) out for the season and the Buccaneers on Doyle's schedule for Week 14, there should be good times ahead for the veteran. He saw a team-high 11 targets in Week 13, so expect his usage to continue to be high, especially if T.Y. Hilton (calf) remains out.
7 Bo Scarbrough, RB, Lions
Scarbrough continues to shape up as Detroit's workhorse the rest of the way, picking up 21 more carries on Thanksgiving. Detroit's schedule is tough going forward (@ MIN, vs. TB, @ DEN), but you can count on volume for Scarbrough, at least.
8 Tyler Higbee, TE, Rams
Higbee reached his career-high receiving yardage total by halftime Sunday (and that's what he finished with -- seven catches for 107 yards and a score). Some of that was due to Gerald Everett's absence because of a knee injury, and a lot due to the Arizona defense's propensity to be torched by tight ends. But Higbee had already overtaken Everett in playing time of late, and so he could be looking at a decent game in Week 14 against Seattle.
9 Peyton Barber, RB, Buccaneers
Just when we thought it was all figured out in Tampa Bay, Barber went and ran for two touchdowns. He received 17 carries to Ronald Jones' six. It's obviously hard to buy in at this point, but Detroit in Week 15 is an especially appealing matchup after Indy in Week 14.
10 Jordan Wilkins, RB, Colts
Wilkins was deemed the "hot hand" over an ineffective Jonathan Williams in Week 13, and while it was Nyheim Hines who scored a short touchdown, Wilkins was used as the "feature back" during the second half. He finished with 47 rushing yards on 11 carries and added another nine yards on two catches (three targets). This situation is tough to get a read on, as Marlon Mack (hand) might be back next week. Even if he's out again, Wilkins might play second fiddle to Williams in tough matchups against the Bucs and Saints in Weeks 14 and 15. At the very least, Wilkins is worth stashing on the off chance he is expected to lead the Colts in carries during Week 16 against the Panthers. -- ML
11 Darwin Thompson, RB, Chiefs
Damien Williams (ribs) is out already, and Darrel Williams appeared to sustain what could've been a serious hamstring injury in the third quarter in Week 13. Thompson would be LeSean McCoy's backup if both Williams miss time simultaneously, and the rookie from Utah State could have low-end FLEX value. He scored a touchdown Sunday and generally looked good when he got the ball.
12 Allen Lazard, WR, Packers
Lazard caught all three of his targets for 103 yards and a touchdown Sunday for Green Bay before the snow took over and the Packers could run out their lead. As Lazard continues to stake his claim to the Packers' No. 2 WR job, a matchup with the Redskins in Week 14 should only help his cause (Bears and Vikings the following two weeks will be trickier).
13 Anthony Miller, WR, Bears
Miller was awesome on Thanksgiving, catching nine of a team-high 13 targets for 140 yards. It's his third straight game with at least nine targets as he turns into the player we hoped he'd be as one of our preseason sleepers. Especially if Taylor Gabriel (concussion) remains out, Miller will be a WR3 going forward, at least in good matchups (he has an especially good one against the Chiefs in Week 16 as you go for your fantasy championships).
14 Cole Beasley, WR, Bills
Too bad Beasley doesn't have more revenge games coming up because he dominated Dallas on Thanksgiving to the tune of more than 100 yards and a score. He's maintained a solid secondary role to John Brown in the Buffalo offense, and he will continue to work as a WR3/FLEX value, especially in PPR leagues. Although with Pittsburgh and New England in Weeks 15 and 16, Beasley won't be looking at friendly matchups.
15 Russell Gage, WR, Falcons
Julio Jones (shoulder) will probably be back in Week 14, but Gage had already proven to be a consistent possession receiver for Atlanta even with Jones healthy. Continue to think of Gage as a FLEX option, especially in PPR leagues, as the fantasy playoffs get underway. For what it's worth, Gage's best matchup in the fantasy playoffs is Carolina in Week 14, so maybe he's a one-week stream.
16 Darius Slayton, WR, Giants
Slayton caught six-of-nine targets for 44 yards for the Giants on Sunday. He's a FLEX option for fantasy purposes whether or not Golden Tate (concussion) is healthy, and Slayton continues to show a strong rookie connection with Daniel Jones. And it's a dream fantasy playoff sequence with the Eagles, Dolphins and Redskins on tap for New York.
17 Zach Pascal, WR, Colts
Pascal has already flopped in good matchups as the No. 1 WR for the Colts, so even if T.Y. Hilton (calf) is out against the Buccaneers, you can't count on Pascal as anything more than a risky FLEX option in Week 14. Still, after a big Week 13 (7-109, 10 targets), there's at least a little reason to believe in Pascal.
18 A.J. Brown/Corey Davis, WRs, Titans
The Titans get a juicy matchup against the Raiders in Week 14 - we don't really know which Tennessee receiver has a better chance of producing, but they're both potential FLEX plays.
19 Ryan Tannehill, QB, Titans
Between Tannehill's continued willingness to use his legs and his surprising consistency passing, he shouldn't have any issues putting up fantasy points against the Raiders in Week 14. He'll ball out in Week 15 against Houston, too, before slowing down most likely against New Orleans in Week 16.
20 Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB, Dolphins
Fitzpatrick threw for 365 yards and three scores in Week 13 as he just tossed the ball up again and again for DeVante Parker and Mike Gesicki. He follows it up with a good matchup against the Jets in Week 14, the Giants in Week 15, and the Bengals in Week 16. There could be some heavy volume coming down the stretch from Fitzmagic.
21 Sam Darnold, QB, Jets
Darnold was beating up on bad defenses -- although he struggled against the Bengals in Week 13 -- but he should get back on track in Week 14 against the Dolphins.
22 Jacoby Brissett, QB, Colts
One of the league's worst pass defenses, Tampa Bay, is Brissett's foe in Week 14. He might look like he did in the early parts of the season in this matchup, although rough week after rough week makes Brissett more of a desperation play despite the good matchup.
23 Daniel Jones, QB, Giants
Jones has an awesome fantasy playoff stretch of Eagles, Dolphins and Redskins. If you want one streamer to win you your title, it might be Danny Dimes.
24 Andy Dalton, QB, Bengals
Dalton led the Bengals to their first win in his return as a starter, and he threw for 243 yards and a touchdown. You can do worse than him against the Browns in Week 14, and then he gets a great matchup against Arizona in Week 15.
25 David Njoku, TE, Browns
The Browns should be activating Njoku (wrist) any day now, it seems. But until it happens, you can't really count on him. There is a dream matchup with Arizona in Week 15 waiting if Njoku can get back.
26 Mike Gesicki, TE, Dolphins
Gesicki grabbed five passes for 79 yards and a jump-ball touchdown in Week 13. The Jets, Giants and Bengals fill in the remainder of Gesicki's fantasy season schedule, and Fitzpatrick keeps trusting him to go up and get the ball.
27 Ryan Griffin, TE, Jets
Griffin should continue his stretch of consistently finding the end zone when the Jets play the hapless Dolphins in Week 14. He didn't score in a bad New York outing in Week 13, but he caught five-of-seven passes for 30 yards, at least.
28 Jonnu Smith, TE, Titans
The Colts are a friendly matchup for any tight end, and with Delanie Walker on Injured Reserve, this is Smith's job. Oakland in Week 14 and Houston in Week 15 are both solid matchups for Smith, too.
29 Jimmy Graham, TE, Packers
You gotta like the touchdown chances for the veteran against the Redskins in Week 14, although overall volume will be underwhelming as it has been all season. He'll be a one-week stream with the Bears and Vikings up next in Weeks 15 and 16.
30 Jason Witten, TE, Cowboys
Witten caught six-of-eight Thanksgiving targets for 42 yards and a touchdown. He continues to get red-zone usage and gets a matchup with Chicago in Week 14, which isn't as scary as we would've expected at the beginning of the year.
31 Ian Thomas, TE, Panthers
Greg Olsen appeared to sustain a concussion Sunday, so second-year player Thomas should step in and get a similar workload as Olsen if the veteran misses time. The Falcons are a solid matchup in Week 14, as well.
32 New York Jets D/ST
The Jets continue a dreamy second-half schedule against the Dolphins in Week 14, and we know that's a fantasy D/ST matchup that'll make you very happy.
33 Green Bay Packers D/ST
The Packers get to make plays against rookie Dwayne Haskins in Week 14. That's been a fruitful exercise for the other defenses who have gone up against Haskins so far.
34 Indianapolis Colts D/ST
Playing against Jameis Winston and his talented wideouts can be quite the interesting experience, and that's what the Colts will get in Week 14. Tampa Bay will probably put up some points, but Jameis will also surely give the ball to Indy a couple times.
35 Houston Texans D/ST
Denver's Drew Lock was better than expected in his starting debut, but any time an inexperienced QB goes on the road, you've got to try the D/ST against him.
36 Seattle Seahawks D/ST
Jared Goff and the Rams have been brutal, so we'll take a shot on Seattle's defense at home if available to lead off the fantasy playoffs as a D/ST stream.
37 Los Angeles Chargers D/ST
Nick Foles has looked incompetent at times running Jacksonville's offense, and so we'll bet on Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram causing him issues in Week 14 if he continues to start.
38 Tennessee Titans D/ST
The Titans play at Oakland in Week 14, and the Raiders' offense has been brutally ineffective in recent weeks. Maybe the turnover upside isn't as high here, but Tennessee should hold Oakland in check.
39 Dallas Cowboys D/ST
Dallas visits the Bears on Thursday night in Week 14 and should feast on the mistake-prone Mitchell Trubisky.
40 Atlanta Falcons D/ST
Atlanta's defense has partially turned its season around, and the last time it played Kyle Allen, he threw four interceptions.
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