What do you know, the fantasy football playoffs have finally arrived. The entire season has been a grind, but the job for those who made the postseason cut is far from over. That means our weekly habit of looting the waiver wire will continue to play a significant role in determining the fate of our fantasy teams.
10. Jeff Wilson Jr. – San Francisco 49ers RB (0.0% owned in ESPN)
There are not many healthy bodies left in the 49ers’ backfield, which paved the way for Wilson to come out of nowhere and produce 61 rushing yards on 15 carries in last week’s 43-16 road loss to the Seattle Seahawks. In addition, Wilson carved out a decent role in the passing attack, with 73 receiving yards on eight receptions. Matt Breida has already been ruled out for Week 14’s matchup with the Denver Broncos, while Alfred Morris has been getting healthy scratches of late, so there shouldn’t be any problem for Wilson, at least in terms of touches and looks this coming weekend.
9. Chase Edmonds – Arizona Cardinals RB (1.1% owned in ESPN)
David Johnson remains as the unquestioned bell cow of the Cardinals’ ground attack, but that didn’t stop Edmonds from making his presence felt against the Green Bay Packers last Sunday. The rookie out of Fordham carried the ball five times and went off for 53 rushing yards and a pair of touchdowns. The Cardinals are going nowhere and may reduce Johnson’s workload moving forward. In that case, Edmonds would see an uptick in snaps and touches. In any case, he appears to be an ideal handcuff during this time of the season.
8. Dante Pettis – San Francisco WR POS (2.2% owned in ESPN)
Pettis has stepped up in a big way of late due to the absences of Marquise Goodwin and Pierre Garcon. Pettis has been on the field for at least 91 percent of the team’s total snaps in each of the last two games. In Week 13’s loss to the Seahawks, he was on the field for a season-high 93 percent of snaps. In turn, Pettis blew up for 129 receiving yards and two touchdowns on five catches and seven targets. The status of Goodwin and Garcon are still up in the air with both trending negatively for Week 14, so Pettis should get picked up for depth purposes – at the very least.
7. Jaylen Samuels – Pittsburgh Steelers RB (3.2% owned in ESPN)
That sound you heard last Sunday night was the collective howls of James Conner fantasy owners, who saw the second-year running back exit late in the game between the Steelers and the Los Angeles Chargers with an apparent lower leg injury. Although the latest updates on Conner suggest that the injury is not as serious as initially thought, it would be smart for his owners to handcuff the former Pittsburgh Panthers star with Samuels, who’ll definitely get the lion’s share of touches in the backfield if Conner would miss time.
6. Bruce Ellington – Detroit Lions WR (8.8% owned in ESPN
Golden Tate’s departure from Detroit and the placement of Marvin Jones on the injured reserve have truly opened up a chance for Ellington to be relevant again in both real-world and fantasy football. Ellington, who was acquired by the Lions via a trade with the Houston Texans back in October, got a team-high 10 targets against the Los Angeles Rams last Sunday, catching seven and finishing with 35 receiving yards. The yardage leaves much to be desired, but the ample number of looks he’s getting from Matthew Stafford compensates for that, especially in PPR leagues.
5. Justin Jackson – Los Angeles Chargers RB (12.1% owned in ESPN)
Justin Jackson and Austin Ekeler were both on this list before, and owners who picked up the former ended up having bigger smiles than those who went with the latter after Week 13. With Melvin Gordon out against the Pittsburgh Steelers due to a knee injury, Jackson paced the team with 63 yards and a touchdown despite getting fewer touches than Ekeler, 13-8. Gordon is still considered as week-to-week, but even if he comes back in Week 14, Jackson may have just have put himself in front of Ekeler in the Chargers’ pecking order in the backfield.
4. Curtis Samuel – Carolina Panthers WR (12.5% owned in ESPN)
Samuel had a productive Sunday, leading his team with 88 receiving yards on six catches and 11 targets. The targets are definitely encouraging and he’s likely to get plenty of attention from Cam Newton with tight end Greg Olsen done for the season.
3. John Ross – Cincinnati Bengals WR (15.5% owned in ESPN)
The Bengals took a punch in the gut with the news of A.J. Green needing surgery after re-injuring his toe in last week’s road loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. With Green ruled out for the rest of the season, John Ross will continue to be a fixture in the Bengals’ passing attack as the No. 2 receiver behind Tyler Boyd.
2. DeVante Parker – Miami Dolphins WR (18.7% owned in ESPN)
Parker reminded fantasy owners that he’s still around, when he racked up 43 receiving yards and a touchdown on seven targets in a win over the Buffalo Bills at home in Week 13. The Dolphins will have the New England Patriots in Week 14, and are expected to trail Tom Brady and company for the most part of the game, which means that the contest’s script is likely going to favor the Dolphins’ passing attack.
1. Adam Humphries – Tampa Bay Buccaneers WR (41.2% owned in ESPN)
Humphries has exceeded 50 receiving yards in each of the Bucs’ last six games, a stretch that includes Week 13’s home win over the Carolina Panthers in which the wide receiver had 61 receiving yards and a touchdown on seven receptions and nine targets. The Bucs’ offense has repeatedly proven that it can put up points in bunches, and it should continue doing that in favorable matchups the rest of the season against the likes of the New Orleans Saints and the Atlanta Falcons.