Waiver Wire Weekly: Ride Carr, Jones to victory


Monica Herndon, Tampa Bay Times | TNS

Ronald Jones rushed for a career-high 75 yards in the Bucs’ 31-17 loss to the San Francisco 49ers Sunday at Raymond James Stadium.

By Adin Link, Staff Writer

With Week 10 of the fantasy football season coming up, fantasy managers are either pushing to secure a playoff bye or just scrambling to make the playoffs at all. With the stakes so high, finding the right player off the waiver wire is more crucial than ever.

To throw another wrench into this high-pressure week, a season-high six teams are on bye. The Houston Texans, Philadelphia Eagles, New England Patriots, Denver Broncos, Jacksonville Jaguars and Washington Redskins will all have the week off. The players included in this column will help you survive the absence of fantasy mainstays like Deshaun Watson, Deandre Hopkins, Zach Ertz, Julian Edelman, Cameron Sutton and Leonard Fournette.

*The %OWN statistic is based on ESPN standard leagues on Nov. 5. 



Derek Carr, Oakland Raiders, %OWN: 37.2%

Carr has quietly put together a very solid season, especially over the last three weeks. He threw for 289 yards and two touchdowns in a Sunday win over the Detroit Lions, marking his third consecutive week of at least 280 passing yards and two touchdowns. Carr will look to continue his recent success as the Raiders stay at home against a struggling Chargers team.

Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans, %OWN: 8.0%

Much like Carr, Tannehill has lit it up over the past three weeks. Posting at least 19 fantasy points in each game, Tannehill had his best performance on Sunday, throwing for 331 yards and one touchdown while also adding a rushing touchdown. He has opened up the passing game in a big way since taking over for former starter Marcus Mariota in Week 6. The Titans also have an oft-overlooked arsenal of offensive playmakers for Tannehill to utilize in Corey Davis, A.J. Brown, Adam Humphries and Delanie Walker.

Running Backs

Ronald Jones, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, %OWN: 38.1%

After officially being named the Buccaneers’ starting running back, Jones needs to be added in all fantasy leagues. He previously competed with Peyton Barber for touches throughout the season, but apparently separated himself enough on Sunday to earn the title of starter. Jones rushed 18 times for 67 yards and one touchdown against a stout Seattle defense in Week 9 and figures to have a big day coming up in Week 10 against a very weak Arizona Cardinals defense.

Kalen Ballage, Miami Dolphins, %OWN: 8.8%

After Mark Walton appeared in last week’s edition, he was subsequently suspended for four games because of legal trouble stemming from the offseason. With Walton now in the rearview mirror for at least the next four weeks, Ballage becomes the Dolphins’ starter at running back.

Though he only carried the ball seven times for 19 yards against the New York Jets on Sunday, Ballage figures to be a much larger part of the game plan this week against a bottom-of-the-barrel Dolphins defense.

Wide Receivers

Zach Pascal, Indianapolis Colts, %OWN: 6.8%

Perhaps no team in the NFL has had more unfortunate luck with injuries than the Indianapolis Colts. After losing quarterback Jacoby Brissett and top receivers T.Y. Hilton and Parris Campbell, the Colts nearly held on to beat the Steelers but lost on a heartbreaking missed field goal.

With the injuries to Indy’s starting receivers, backup quarterback Brian Hoyer looked for Pascal to be his main target. He responded by hauling in five passes for 76 yards and a touchdown against an improving Steelers defense. Pascal will have a much easier matchup this week against a Dolphins team that arguably remains among the NFL’s worst.

DeVante Parker, Miami Dolphins, %OWN: 22.9%

Parker will become the beneficiary of increased opportunities after the Dolphins’ No. 1 receiver Preston Williams suffered a season-ending knee injury on Sunday. Parker had a great performance in Week 9 even with Williams on the field, catching four passes for 57 yards and a touchdown. Expect him to take on the role of Williams as the primary target for quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick.

Tight Ends

Vance McDonald, Pittsburgh Steelers, %OWN: 43.9%

McDonald has had a sporadic season thus far, in part due to the Steelers’ changing quarterback situation. While he was a favorite target of Ben Roethlisberger, it seems McDonald has taken a bit longer to build chemistry with current starter Mason Rudolph. It appears that chemistry finally started to show on Sunday as Rudolph and McDonald connected five times for 30 yards and a touchdown. Expect McDonald’s role in the offense to continue to grow as Rudolph becomes familiar with him.

Chris Herndon, New York Jets, %OWN: 23.5%

Herndon had a disappointing result last week after being featured in our previous edition, again not playing even though he was technically active for the game. He’ll finally make his season debut on Sunday against the Giants, barring an injury in practice. Herndon showed what he is capable of last season, and will face a very weak Giants defense susceptible to giving up big plays to opposing tight ends.