Last week, we saw a slew of injuries to runningbacks, which opened up the door for some hot pickups like Toby Gerhart and C.J. Spiller. This was a calmer week, with fewer big injuries, and thus, fewer big pickups. Moreover, the mindset for waiver pickups has to change as we enter the final regular season week of fantasy action. If you’ve already locked up 1st place and a first round bye with the help of 3 or 4 elite RBs, don’t worry about picking up Toby Gerhart even though he has a great matchup with Denver next week. Next week doesn’t matter to you. You may as well use that roster spot on a 2nd Defense that has great matchups in Weeks 15 and 16. Then again, if you find yourself in a 3-way battle for the last playoff seed, it’s time to drop your backup QB and break the bank on a guy like Gerhart if you need an RB this week. With that in mind, let’s get on to this week’s pickups:
Roy Helu (Owned in 47% of Yahoo Leagues)
We mentioned Helu weeks ago, but he may have been dropped after it looked like no Redskins back would be worth owning. Against the Seahawks, who boast a surprisingly stout run D, Helu managed 108 yards on the ground with a TD, and 7 catches for 54 yards. Knowing old Shanahan, after a huge game like this from Helu, Clinton Portis will probably be re-signed and start next week. But on the off chance that Shany behaves like a sane person, Helu should be the featureback going forward. He’ll be a solid flex play against the Jets next week.
Maurice Morris (37%)
Morris was dropped in a ton of leagues when it looked like Kevin Smith would be the true stopgap until Jahvid Best returns. Then Best landed on I.R. and Smith went and injured himself after a hot start on Thanksgiving. Always the second favorite behind a hotter option, Maurice Morris is the Mitt Romney of Detroit RBs. In the end, it’s gonna be him. Monitor Smith’s health to see whether his “high ankle sprain” will make him miss time or not. If it does, Morris will continue to see the lion’s share of Lions touches. He’s been underwhelming most weeks, but against the Pack, Morris ran for 39 yards and added 9 catches for 81 yards.
Donald Brown (13%)
We’ve advised staying away from all Colts RBs, but Brown’s recent string of solid performance seems to scream “Hey what about me?!?” Despite Joe Addai’s return to the starting lineup, Brown ran for 80 yards and a TD, plus a 17 yard catch. Over the last four weeks, Brown’s fantasy point totals have been: 9, 7, 7, and 15. The Colts have a tough slate of matchups coming up (so they could very well complete a winless season), but you could do worse than DBrown.
Johnny Knox (32%)
Knox showed off his incredible speed against the Raiders, with 5 catches for 145 yards and a TD. This is following a performance last week with 3 catches, 97 yards, and a TD. It’s possible that Caleb Hanie and Knox have great chemistry for the remainder of the season. I’m concerned, however, with Knox’s low reception totals however. And in the 2 weeks before these big games, Knox had 1 catch for 14 yards, and 1 catch for 18 yards. He’s worth a speculative add, but I think Knox is far from a sure thing.
Greg Little (16%)
We talked up Greg Little when the Browns came out of their bye and said he’d be their new #1 WR. His fantasy output since then has left something to be desired. He had a solid game against the Bengals though, catching 5 balls for 57 yards and a score. In PPR leagues, Little is a rock solid start, always catching a healthy handful of balls. In standard leagues, he’s more of a low-end WR3.
Scott Chandler (34%)
Chandler started the year as just a redzone threat, with the majority of his catches going for short TDs. But this week he caught 6 balls for 50 yards. And last week, he caught 5 balls for 71 yards. Look, I’d be surprised if you’re still in the playoff hunt and considering a guy like Chandler, but maybe you’ve ridden everyone else on your team but your TE.
Jermaine Gresham (38%)
Gresham caught 5 balls for 68 yards and a score against the Browns. Again, if you’re still looking for a solution at TE, Gresham could help you out.
Caleb Hanie (4%)
Although the Bears lost to the Raiders, Hanie showed us that he won’t destroy the Bears playoff chances. Hanie threw for 254 yards, 2 TDs, 3 Ints, and added 50 rushing yards. Plus, he has a pretty easy slate of games to close out the season against KC, DEN, SEA, and GB.
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