Waiver Wire Weekly: No superstars, no problem


Monica Herndon/Tampa Bay Times | TNS

Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston (3) attempts a pass during the first quarter against the New York Giants on Sept. 22 in Tampa, Florida.

By Adin Link, Staff Writer

With another week of NFL action in the books, here is the latest slate of players available to bolster your fantasy football squad. Last week we featured breakout players like Jacoby Brissett, Darrel Williams and Will Dissly. This week we focus on a slew of of Bucs and Steelers after big performances in Week 4.

*The %OWN statistic is based on ESPN Standard Leagues on Oct. 1.


Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, *%OWN: 43.9%

After a shaky first two games to start the year, Jameis Winston has quietly put together back-to-back stellar performances. Last week against the Los Angeles Rams, the reigning NFC champions, Winston posted 385 passing yards with four touchdowns.

The Buccaneers offense exploded behind Winston last week, putting up 55 points against a formidable Rams defense. Not to mention Winston is also surrounded by some of the best young pass catchers like Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and O.J. Howard to help continue his hot streak.

Gardner Minshew, Jacksonville Jaguars, %OWN: 14.3%

A once-devastated Jaguar fan base has been rejuvenated by the play and mustache of sixth-round pick Gardner Minshew. Many were skeptical of how the Jaguars would fare after Nick Foles was placed on injured reserve with a collarbone injury in Week 1, but Minshew has filled the starting position effectively.

Minshew has guided the Jaguars to a .500 record and has been a solid fantasy quarterback as well. Last week he posted 213 passing yards with two touchdowns in a come-from-behind victory against the Denver Broncos. Minshew will face another tough defense in Week 5 against the Carolina Panthers, but expect him to continue shining and proving draft analysts wrong.

Running Backs

Ronald Jones, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, %OWN: 41.3%

On Sunday, Ronald Jones posted his third game this year with 70 or more rushing yards. Although Tampa Bay still gives much of the rushing workload to Peyton Barber, Jones is gradually becoming the preferred option of head coach Bruce Arians.

Jones had 19 carries for 70 yards and a touchdown on Sunday against the Rams, good for 14.7 fantasy points, and is a must-add player at this point.

Jaylen Samuels, Pittsburgh Steelers, %OWN: 19.2%

A lot of fantasy owners may be wary of giving Jaylen Samuels a spot on their team because of his spot behind All-Pro back James Conner. But if Monday night’s game was any indication, Samuels will get plenty of touches going forward.

Samuels lined up several times in the wildcat formation, something the Steelers may use more this season to take pressure off of their new starting quarterback Mason Rudolph. He carried 10 times for 26 yards, including a touchdown coming out of that wildcat formation. Samuels is also a threat in the passing game for Pittsburgh, adding eight catches for 57 yards on Monday night as well.

Wide Receivers

Golden Tate, New York Giants, %OWN: 51.8%

Golden Tate will return to NFL action on Sunday after serving a four-game suspension for violating its PED policy. Tate will be integrated into an offense boosted by the sixth overall pick in last year’s draft, quarterback Daniel Jones.

Tate will step in and become one of the top pass-catching options in the Giants offense alongside Sterling Shepard and Evan Engram. Look for him to continue doing what he has built a career on — collecting yards after the catch.

Diontae Johnson, Pittsburgh Steelers, %OWN: 6.3%

With the departure of Antonio Brown, many in Pittsburgh wondered who would step into the role of number two receiver behind Juju Smith-Schuster. Diontae Johnson, a rookie third-round pick, has filled that role for the Steelers and so far is building an impressive rapport with new starting quarterback Mason Rudolph.

Johnson had six catches for 77 yards in Week 4, including a 43-yard touchdown. Look for him to grow in the Steelers offense alongside Mason Rudolph.

Tight Ends

Jimmy Graham, Green Bay Packers, %OWN: 35.7%

After struggling through injuries in Weeks 2 and 3, Jimmy Graham returned healthy in Week 4 and performed as such. Graham hauled in six catches for 61 yards and a touchdown on Thursday night.

Hopefully, Graham can stay healthy and continue working on his relationship with quarterback Aaron Rodgers. If Graham can stay on the field, he will undoubtedly become a favorite for Rodgers, especially in the red zone.

Ricky Seals-Jones, Cleveland Browns, %OWN: 0.1%

In last week’s edition, we predicted it would be Demetrius Harris that filled the shoes of injured tight end David Njoku, but instead it was former Arizona Cardinal Ricky Seals-Jones.

Seals-Jones caught three passes for 82 yards and a touchdown on Sunday, solidifying himself as quarterback Baker Mayfield’s choice tight end. Seals-Jones may even garner more attention from Mayfield if wide receiver Jarvis Landry, who exited the Browns Week 4 contest with a concussion, is unable to play.