Week 13 fantasy football waiver wire targets David Johnson Doug Baldwin Julius Thomas
In case you missed my Week 12 fantasy football recap, be sure to review how the surging Detroit Lions could still help you win a fantasy football title. As with any fantasy analysis, previews and reviews, the minutiae in the margins all indirectly point to your spin of the weekly waiver wire roulette wheel.
Cardinals’ first-string running back Chris Johnson (broken tibia) was placed on injured reserve Tuesday and won’t return during the regular season. Oft-injured Andre Ellington is dealing with (another) case of turf toe. So, the 224-pound rookie running back out of Northern Iowa will most likely earn the start in Week 13 and possibly the rest of the season. Johnson faces the Rams this week. St. Louis has allowed 115 rush yards per game over the last month. In Week 14, the Cardinals face the Vikings who ranked 20th in rushing yards allowed per game – 110 RYAPG – but opposing running backs have only scored five touchdowns on the ground this season. The amount of touches Johnson is expected to receive with CJ2K out and Ellington hobbled makes him a Top 24 running back the next two weeks. Two things to remember: Cardinals pass offense is elite this season and if DJ loses fumbles – which got him in trouble early in the season – Bruce Arians isn’t going to accept that as the new norm.
Received several questions regarding Ajayi during my Monday night’s fantasy football chat. Because Lamar Miller has only touched the ball 17 times over the past two games, paint-by-number owner analysis believe Ajayi is about to strong-arm his way into the starting role. If that was the case, know the Dolphins just fired their offensive coordinator. You think the decison to can Lazor may have something to do with Miller – who is averaging 15.5 PPG (PPR) – averaging less than half his production over the past two weeks? With injuries popping up on the regular, Ajayi is better on your roster than on the waiver wire. Miller could go down at any moment, right?
If you chop up Baldwin’s season into four slices, check out his point-per-game averages (PPR):
He’s also seeing nearly 21 percent of Russell Wilson’s targets. Granted, the Steelers allow the fourth-most fantasy points per game to opposing wide receivers (27.8), but no matter the team, Baldwin’s ceiling has been reached and the 25.5 FPPG over the past two games is inflated. He’s more likely to score less than 15 FPPG (PPR) than to reach 20 FPPG – even with Jimmy Graham out for the season. That said, the Seahawks face the Ravens and Browns horrible pass defenses Weeks 14 and 15 – fantasy playoffs streamer. You should snatch him up.
Aiken’s owned in nearly 50 percent of leagues, but you should strongly consider adding him this week. Aiken faces the Chiefs and Steelers – great matchups – in Weeks 15 and 16. Matt Schaub struggled against the Browns in Week 12, but managed to connect with Aiken six times on 10 targets for 80 yards with a touchdown. Also keep in mind that the Chiefs and Steelers secondaries allow MORE fantasy points per game than Cleveland. Aiken’s averaging more than 16 fantasy points per game over the past month.
With Bill Lazor out, reports suggest the Dolphins will lean on the run game the rest of the season. So, despite Rishard Matthews out with broken ribs, Parker’s fantasy ceiling is muted when you consider Lamar Miller and Jarvis Landry are 1-2 in the offense’s pecking order. The team probably wants to see what the rookie can do for them 2016 and beyond and he is coming off a big game in place of Matthews. Parker caught four balls (10 targets) for 80 yards with a touchdown. With the Ravens and Giants on the schedule the next two weeks, some owners may be able to squeeze him into the lineup.
Julius Thomas and Scott Chandler
Chandler is the short-term play, while Thomas is the long-term play IF you don’t already own Gronk.
Thomas is averaging 20 fantasy points and nine Blake Bortles’ targets per game the past two. The sample size sucks and it’s not a great indicator of future success. What is a great indicator of future success is Week 16 against the Saints. New Orleans has allowed opposing tight ends to catch 22 passes for 288 yards with six touchdowns over the past three games. Have you heard the Saints’ defense stinks?
Chandler – once a staple of the Bills pass game – will see plenty of targets to warrant TE1 status because Tom Brady’s offense is so depleted. If Julian Edelman and Dion Lewis were active and Gronk was the only missing piece, maybe Chandler slides outside of the top 12 tight ends, but the Patriots love to hit the big guys in the red zone. So, he’s a great rental until Gronk is back in a couple weeks.