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Working the Wire: The Unsexy Pick

Kevin Payne

Kevin Payne

Kevin has worked for Rotowire just under a decade and has covered basketball, baseball and football. A glutton for punishment, he roots for his hometown Bills, Sabres and the New York Yankees. He hosts the RotoWire SiriusXM show every Wednesday and Friday and you can follow him on Twitter @KCPayne26.

I hope everyone's fantasy teams are doing well and that this column has been a good tool. We are now at a point in the season where players mentioned in this column in earlier weeks can be brought up again. I don't usually return to players who have been discussed in the last two weeks; that's kind of the threshold.

QUARTERBACK

Primary Targets

Ryan Tannehill, MIA -
Tannehill finds himself on a lot of waiver wires given that the Dolphins are coming off a bye week. He has a bunch of things working for him this week as he's had two weeks to prepare, at least 236 passing yards each game and can scramble. The Bills have been torched each week by the opponent's top wide receiver, so don't be surprised if Mike Wallace has a big day as well. FAAB: $8-$12

Hail Mary

Brandon Weeden, CLE -
Look, this is the antithesis of a sexy pick. However, Weeden has a ton of potent weapons with Josh Gordon, Jordan Cameron and even Greg Little. He won't hesitate to dump off to a running back, which doesn't hurt his value, and Weeden threw for 296 yards Sunday. FAAB: $1 or FCFS

RUNNING BACK

Primary Targets

Andre Ellington, ARI -
Ellington was mentioned here at the beginning of the season, and he's done enough to bring him up again. First, he's owned in about half of fantasy leagues, so there's a chance he isn't available. Second, I'm not sure what the Cardinals are doing with their running back situation as they seem content to let the flat tire known as Rashard Mendenhall handle a bigger workload than Ellington. For the season, Mendenhall averages 3.3 YPC while Ellington averages 7.0 YPC. Ellington is also a much better receiver out of the backfield and average 10.0 YPC. He has a tough matchup this week against Seattle, but one would think common sense would take over in Arizona at some point and Ellington will become more of a featured back. FAAB: $12-$18

Brandon Jacobs, NYG -
I really struggle to write about Jacobs given that he wasn't even on a roster to start the season. He's put himself back into fantasy relevance with his 106-yard, two-touchdown performance against the Bears last Thursday. Keep in mind that Andre Brown will be back in a few weeks, and I don't think Jacobs has much upside. Still, he'll have the bulk of carries for the Giants the next few weeks. FAAB: $8-$12

Joseph Randle, DAL -
It is unclear on how much time DeMarco Murray will miss but it will be at least this weekend. Lance Dunbar is dealing with a hamstring injury, likely leaving Randle and a little Phillip Tanner to handle the workload in the backfield. Randle hardly impressed in relief Sunday night with 11 carries for 17 yards and a touchdown, but again, is in line for 15-plus touches. Watch to see if Dunbar returns to practice this week as that could eat into Randle's workload as well. FAAB: $7-$11

Secondary Targets

Chris Ogbonnaya, CLE -
Ogbonnaya jumped onto the fantasy radar after catching seven passes for 61 yards and a touchdown. He also received five carries for 24 yards and should be looked at in keeper leagues. Brandon Weeden checked down to Ogbonnaya plenty Sunday with 12 targets, suggesting Weeden will continue to dump off to Ogbonnaya. He won't continue having these type of productive outings but should be considered in PPR formats. FAAB: $6-$10 in PPR, $2-$4 in standard formats

WIDE RECEIVER

Primary Targets

Brandon LaFell, CAR -
LaFell is another repeat offender in this column as he makes this week's list after posting at least 17 fantasy points in standard formats twice in his last three games. He's showing big-play ability (he had a 79-yard touchdown catch Sunday) and appears to be in sync with Cam Newton. This week he is home against St. Louis, which is missing its top corner in Cortland Finnegan, making LaFell a sneaky WR3. FAAB: $8-$12

Jarrett Boykin, GB -
Word is, as of now, Randall Cobb is out 6-8 weeks. That brings Boykin into the fold, especially with James Jones not 100 percent healthy. If Jones misses time it boosts Boykin's value even more in an offense where Aaron Rodgers makes everyone better. Here is the background on Boykin: he's 6-foot-2 and just less than 220 pounds, so he has good size for a wide receiver. He holds two career receiving records at Virginia Tech and is in his second year as a professional. This weekend's matchup looks pretty good as you can expect shutdown corner Joe Haden to be shadowing Jordy Nelson all game. FAAB: $8-$12

Secondary Targets

Marvin Jones, CIN -
Jones saw his biggest fantasy production of the season against the Bills on Sunday, finishing with 105 yards from scrimmage and a touchdown. But his five targets Sunday were a season high, and he's still technically behind Mohamed Sanu on the depth chart, so it's hard to get overly bullish on him. However, his production could mean he's carved out a bigger role in the Cincinnati offense for the rest of the season.FAAB: $3-$6

TIGHT END

Primary Targets

Timothy Wright, TB -
I noticed Wright a few weeks back when he had five catches for 41 yards against the Cardinals. It's been quite some time since we've seen a tight end be relevant in Tampa, and there's a good chance Wright can continue to be productive. It's probably not a coincidence that Wright has worked well with fellow rookie Mike Glennon as they've probably worked a lot together early in camp while low on the depth chart together. Wright benefited from the absence of Mike Williams and could continue to see plenty of targets if Williams remains sidelined. While Wright is listed as a tight end, he's not as big (220) as your typical tight end, which helps his quickness and speed. He gets a great matchup against the Falcons this week and is a great insurance policy if you own Jimmy Graham.FAAB: $8-$12

Secondary Targets

Joseph Fauria, DET -
It's tough to put any stock into someone who has gone multiple weeks without targets, but all three targets Fauria got in Cleveland on Sunday went for touchdowns. The result was the worst touchdown dancing celebrations ever by Fauria. He's a big red-zone target at 6-7, so he could rack up a few more touchdowns if opponents focus on Calvin Johnson. FAAB: $3-$6

DEFENSE

San Diego -
Look, like most people, I've piled on the San Diego defense this season. Given that, I'd be fine streaming the Chargers against a Jaguars offense that seems to give the ball up on a weekly basis. It's a short week for the Chargers, but there's some fantasy defense/special teams value here. Miami coming off the bye week against either Thaddeus Lewis, Jeff Tuel or Matt Flynn is a gift as well. FAAB: $3-$6