The following players are owned in less than 60% of fantasy football leagues and could present a value to your rosters.
With the second half of the season upon us, and thus the games being more important, I am trying to be a little pickier about which options I give on here.
*Availability (% owned) and statistics based on Yahoo! PPR leagues.
Jared Goff, Los Angeles Rams (47%) — There are not many (if any) QB’s left on the majority of waiver wires that you’ll want to hang onto for an extended period of time. There are streamer options more than anything. However, Goff is the closest thing to a long-term QB out there. His bye week is now out of the way, and his remaining schedule is favorable. Goff’s remaining opponents give up an average of 17.16 FPPG, and it includes three bottom-10 teams against QB’s. Philip Rivers, Tom Brady, Ben Roethlisberger, Alex Smith, Derek Carr, Carson Wentz and Cam Newton all have their bye weeks coming up, so the opportunity to play someone like Goff may be arriving for you.
Orleans Darkwa, New York Giants (47%) — It’s a little late in the season to be unearthing any gems at RB, but if you’re looking for a guy just to get you some points while your other RB’s are hurt or on a bye, Darkwa can supply that. He led the Giants in carries each of the last two games, and over the last three games has averaged 11.5 FPPG.
Marlon Mack, Indianapolis Colts (44%) — It’s been three weeks since the Colts lost RB2 Robert Turbin for the season. In the two games that have passed, it’s not been Frank Gore leading the Colts backfield either. Mack has led RB’s in snaps each week, totaling 71 to Gore’s 58. However, Gore has 29 touches compared to Mack’s 23. Regardless, this is a true timeshare now with both RB’s gaining fantasy value. Mack is averaging 64.5 total YPG and 11.2 FPPG in the last two weeks.
Sterling Shepard, New York Giants (57%) — The Giants just had their bye, so Shepard had an off week to help rest his ankle. He practiced on Monday, so it looks like he has a good shot at returning to the field this Sunday against the Rams. When Shepard does officially return, he will assume New York’s WR1 role, which makes him a high-volume target for an offense that often struggles to run the ball.
JuJu Smith-Schuster, Pittsburgh Steelers (49%) — You don’t need me to tell you about JuJu after what he’s done recently. He is now WR16 after a huge 30-point game on Sunday night. With Martavis Bryant being in the dog house and Smith-Schuster obviously capitalizing on the opportunity, it’s time to throw him on your rosters and probably make him a regular starter.
Cooper Kupp, Los Angeles Rams (42%) — In my home league, I ran right to the waiver wire this week to pick up Kupp. Keenan Allen and Smith-Schuster are on a bye, so I need another body. Kupp has had at least 6 targets in five-of-seven games this year, and he’s also got 3 TD’s. In their last two games, the Giants Def/ST has allowed three WR’s to eclipse 10.0 fantasy points.
Josh Doctson, Washington Redskins (42%) — Doctson isn’t a “safe” fantasy player, but he is a high-reward player based on the risk. He really only began playing in Week 3, and although he only has 8 catches for 130 yards, he does have 3 TD’s to go with it. He’s a constant red-zone threat for Kirk Cousins.
Allen Hurns (35%) and Marqise Lee (35%), Jacksonville Jaguars — These aren’t sexy options but they will give you something pretty much every week. Lee is catching 4.0-of-7.7 targets per game, and Hurns is catching 3.7-of-5.4 and has 2 TD’s.
Paul Richardson, Seattle Seahawks (31%) — Richardson needs more targets. He makes big plays seemingly every game and is fantasy’s WR19 despite only having 22 catches. He is catching 3.1-of-5.1 targets per game for 53.4 yards and has scored 5 TD’s.
Robby Anderson, New York Jets (28%) — Anderson was not just a flash in a pan last year with Bryce Petty at QB. Josh McCown still looks Anderson’s way as well, and it’s led to 54.4 YPG and a TD in each of the last two weeks. Anderson is also being targeted 6.5 times per game.
Corey Davis, Tennessee Titans (27%) — Davis is finally expected to play again this week after being out since Week 2. He aggravated a summer hamstring injury and hasn’t quite been the same all year. Whenever he plays, he should help give Marcus Mariota some immediate assistance in a passing game that ranks 26th, averaging just 202.0 YPG. The fifth overall draft pick this year is a blow-up candidate for the second half of the season.
Jack Doyle, Indianapolis Colts (50%) — There was a three-week stretch that really turned people off from Doyle (Weeks 3-5) but it would be wise to shake that off and get back on the bandwagon. I’ve featured him in this series four times but he’s still owned in just 50% of leagues despite being fantasy’s TE5. Doyle averaged 15.0 FPPG over the last three weeks, and overall this year, he’s caught 6-of-7.9 targets per game. His 55 targets are the third-most among all NFL TE’s.
Tyler Kroft, Cincinnati Bengals (47%) — Kroft has quietly been among the most consistent fantasy TE’s since he took over for the injured Tyler Eifert in Week 3. Kroft averages 4.4 catches (5.2 targets) for 40.6 YPG and has 3 TD’s.
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