Week 8 - Buy & Sell Report
By Mike Beacom
Wire Tap 10-23
For almost two years Rashad Jennings has been living off of two games. His 100-yard performances against Oakland and Houston at the end of the 2010 season have stuck in the minds of fantasy owners, even though Jennings has done nothing special since. Now, with Maurice Jones-Drew tied up with a foot injury, Jennings will get a crack at the second act of his career.
On Sunday, Jennings’ efforts on the ground were pathetic (2.1 yards per carry) but he gained more than 100 yards from scrimmage thanks to his seven catches. He’ll make a solid No. 3 back for fantasy owners, with the potential to provide a nice week now and then during Jones-Drew’s absence. Jennings will be the hottest pick up of the week.
Here are a few other waiver wire candidates to consider …
RB Larod Stephens-Howling, Cardinals
Remember everything that was written about William Powell last week? Yeah, well, forget it. Stephens-Howling’s 104-yard effort against a very good Minnesota run defense has given him the edge (again) in the Cardinals backfield. It does not mean Stephens-Howling is a candidate to be a breakout fantasy star, only that he is in the driver’s seat for Arizona.
RB Joe McKnight, Jets
McKnight is a long shot, but he’s still a cheap pickup, so it’s worth the minimal risk. At the end of the Jets loss to New England he was given a fair number of carries while Shonn Greene was being looked at on the sideline. McKnight was quick to the hole and ran with power, carrying Patriots on his back on several plays. It looked like a teaser for something more to come.
WR Josh Cooper, Browns
The Browns have too many mediocre receivers. Of them, Josh Gordon is the best option for fantasy owners, but Josh Cooper may be making his case for relevancy. Cooper has racked up 92 yards receiving over the past two weeks, and he was the team’s second-most targeted player in Sunday’s loss to Indianapolis.
TE Logan Paulsen, Redskins
Most will pick up Chris Cooley now that Fred Davis is done, but Paulsen may be the better prospect. He led the team with 76 yards on Sunday, catching four of the six passes thrown to him. Robert Griffin III has grown used to having Davis as his security blanket, and Paulsen is the next closest thing moving forward.
The waiver wire isn’t the only way for fantasy owners to improve their roster; a well-crafted trade proposal can help every bit as much as picking up an up-and-coming free agent. Here is a look at this week’s buy and sell candidates:
RB Daryl Richardson, Rams
Richardson gained 80 yards from scrimmage in Week 7, and even though Steven Jackson had a solid game, it was apparent Richardson is on the way up. For now these backs are splitting time; at some point, however, fantasy owners can expect Richardson to see full time duties, and when he does he’ll be a productive fantasy back.
WR Randall Cobb, Packers
Cobb’s role grows in the Packers offense each week, and it reached a new level in the win over the Rams (two touchdowns). But instead of advising fantasy owners with Cobb to “sell high,” now is the time for those without to make their offer. Cobb will be a steady No. 2 fantasy receiver the rest of the way, and could see more work as a ball carrier. His future is bright.
WR Titus Young, Lions
The loss of Nate Burleson will speed up Young’s maturation process, whether he is ready for it or not. The proof was on display Monday night, as Young led the Lions in catches and yards. He could have logged 100 yards, but one first half pass sailed high and behind him. Young has tons of talent, and now could have the opportunity to become a fantasy star.
RB Fred Jackson, Bills
Jackson out-gained C.J. Spiller and even found the end zone in the loss to Tennessee. The two backs will split time the rest of this season, and it won’t be pretty for either player. Buffalo’s upcoming schedule includes games against Miami (twice), New England, Houston and Seattle.
RB Vick Ballard, Colts
Donald Brown is close to returning from the knee injury that has sidelined him the past few weeks. Ballard will stick for one more week, but after that will drift into obscurity. The time is now for fantasy owners to let go. This week, Ballard will be a No. 3 fantasy back in most leagues; next week he won’t be worthy of a roster spot.
TE Dallas Clark, Buccaneers
Clark took part in Sunday’s shootout with New Orleans, catching five passes for 51 yards and a touchdown – this from a tight end who had gained 48 yards in the previous four weeks combined. If you’re holding Clark, now would be the appropriate time to shop him. Most weeks he offers little to no value, and he is nowhere near the prospect he once was when he was Peyton Manning’s wingman.
Mike Beacom is a contributing writer for FootballDiehards.com. Follow him on Twitter @mikebeacom