CFB Waiver Wire: Players to Pick Up Week 13 (Playoffs)

CFB Waiver Wire: Players to Pick Up Week 13 (Playoffs)

This article is part of our CFB Waiver Wire series.

Welcome to another installment of the waiver wire watch. It's time for the fantasy playoffs! As I've done for all of the fantasy regular season, I'll pick two guys from every conference who either caught my eye in the previous week or who have a favorable match-up in the championship week. As always, I'll get to any questions or comments you have in the comments section below.

AAC

Demetrius Mauney, RB, East Carolina
Since quarterback Holton Ahlers is finally owned in more than 50 percent of leagues after putting up a combined 100 fantasy points in his last two games, I'll recommend the next best thing in their lead running back Mauney. There's a chance Tay Williams or Ahlers gets the most carries against an awful UConn rush defense, but there should be enough yardage to make it worthwhile for everyone. The Huskies are giving up 228.6 rushing yards per game which is seventh worst in the country.

Kylen Granson, TE, SMU
Time to circle back around to Granson who has been unbelievable in his last three games with a combined 17 catches for 291 yards and six touchdowns. SMU was on a bye this past week, so he's available in a bunch of leagues as many fantasy owners stream at the position. Navy is going to try to slow down the game, but I'm not sure anyone can slow down the Mustangs' offense right now.

Last Week; Memphis WR Antonio Gibson (4 catches for 93 yards, 1

Welcome to another installment of the waiver wire watch. It's time for the fantasy playoffs! As I've done for all of the fantasy regular season, I'll pick two guys from every conference who either caught my eye in the previous week or who have a favorable match-up in the championship week. As always, I'll get to any questions or comments you have in the comments section below.

AAC

Demetrius Mauney, RB, East Carolina
Since quarterback Holton Ahlers is finally owned in more than 50 percent of leagues after putting up a combined 100 fantasy points in his last two games, I'll recommend the next best thing in their lead running back Mauney. There's a chance Tay Williams or Ahlers gets the most carries against an awful UConn rush defense, but there should be enough yardage to make it worthwhile for everyone. The Huskies are giving up 228.6 rushing yards per game which is seventh worst in the country.

Kylen Granson, TE, SMU
Time to circle back around to Granson who has been unbelievable in his last three games with a combined 17 catches for 291 yards and six touchdowns. SMU was on a bye this past week, so he's available in a bunch of leagues as many fantasy owners stream at the position. Navy is going to try to slow down the game, but I'm not sure anyone can slow down the Mustangs' offense right now.

Last Week; Memphis WR Antonio Gibson (4 catches for 93 yards, 1 TD, 2 rushes for 7 yards) & Cincinnati QB Desmond Ridder (9/18, 78 yards, 18 yards rushing)

ACC

Jarren Williams, QB, Miami
In his last start in Week 11, Williams completed 15 of 22 passes for 253 yards and a school-record six touchdowns versus Louisville. The freshman is primed for yet another big game at Florida International as the Panthers aren't really in the same class as the Hurricanes. He's owned in less than 10 percent of leagues and is coming off a bye, so he could be a game-changer for the playoffs this week.

Dazz Newsome, WR, UNC
Newsome should be scooped up right away as he has eclipsed double-digit fantasy points in each of his last five games. The junior is having a great year in the baby blue with 57 catches for 817 yards and seven touchdowns on 84 targets. He ranked fifth in the nation with 15 targets in Week 12 and is averaging eight targets per game which is ahead of Dyami Brown's seven a game. UNC should put up a ton of points against Mercer and NC State to finish the year.

Last Week; Virginia Tech RB Deshawn McClease (11 carries for 34 yards, 1 catches for 1 yard) & Virginia Tech QB Hendon Hooker (9/13, 159 yards, 1 TD, 7 rushes for 10 yards, 2 TD)

BIG 12

James Gilbert, RB, Kansas State
Gilbert was back in action when the Wildcats surprisingly were upset by West Virginia this past weekend. While he had just an average performance with 88 total yards and a touchdown, his 17 total touches suggests that he'll have enough volume to put together a nice performance against Texas Tech. Moreover, the Wildcats have to be motivated after the embarrassing loss to the Mountaineers, so I would be willing to bet Gilbert finishes his college career strong. I would not advise utilizing him the following week against Iowa State.

Dillon Stoner, WR, Oklahoma State
Stoner has stepped up in a big way by combining for eight catches for 243 yards and four touchdowns in the Cowboys' first two games without Tylan Wallace. It wasn't entirely clear whether Stoner could slot in to the number one receiver role, but now it's known that he has what it takes. With remaining games against West Virginia and Oklahoma, Stoner should be owned for the playoff push.

Last Week; Oklahoma State WR Dillon Stoner (5 catches for 150 yards, 2 TD) & Oklahoma RB Kennedy Brooks (18 carries for 93 yards, 4 catches for 22 yards)

BIG TEN

Brian Lewerke & Elijah Collins, QB & RB, Michigan State
I'm a bit worried about this quarterback recommendation, but the schedule doesn't get any easier for the Spartans with Rutgers and Maryland to finish the season. Both of those teams are the worst in the Big 10 against the pass, so Lewerke should be set up for his best performances this year. There is some added bonus here considering that he has run the ball 24 times in his last two games which he'll have the opportunity to do over the next two weeks. I would feel really good about deploying Collins who should run wild against Rutgers and Maryland.

Dedrick Mills, RB, Nebraska
When it gets cold in Big 10 Country, it's all about the run-game which was apparent this last week when Mills was able to flash against the Badgers with 17 carries for 188 yards and a touchdown. He should be able to have a similar performance at Maryland who has one of the worst defenses in the country. This is followed by a tough match-up with Iowa, so plan accordingly.

Last Week; Northwestern QB Aiden Smith (7/13, 76 yards, 2 INT, 7 rushes for 47 yards), Northwestern RB Drake Anderson (5 carries for 15 yards) & Ohio State RB Master Teague (10 carries for 45 yards)

C-USA

Malcolm Davidson, RB, Florida Atlantic
Davidson has been impactful for the Owls over the second half the season with eight touchdowns in his last five games, including three versus Florida International in his last time on the field in Week 11. Florida Atlantic is coming off a bye to play UTSA who is giving up 202.1 rushing yards per game, so it's likely the freshman running back has another big day. I wouldn't utilize him in a championship bout as they go up against a tough Southern Miss run defense.

Zakhari Franklin, WR, UTSA
On the other side of that Florida Atlantic and UTSA game is another impressive freshman who has combined for 13 catches on 22 targets for 231 yards over the last two weeks. The Roadrunners will have to throw the ball a ton over the next two weeks against FAU and Louisiana Tech, so I like Franklin to finish the season strong. He's available in virtually all leagues as well.

Last Week; Southern Miss QB Jack Abraham (22/34, 290 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT, 14 yards rushing) & Rice WR Austin Trammell (3 catches for 22 yards)

MAC

Jaylon Bester, RB, Miami of Ohio
Bester has been solid over his last six games while averaging nearly 19 fantasy points per contest. The Redhawks' lead back gets to go up against Akron in Wednesday Night MACtion and the sky is the limit. Eastern Michigan's running back was one of the top fantasy plays last week when he went up against Akron who is yielding 207.3 rushing yards per game. Bester and the Redhawks also have a favorable match-up against Ball State to conclude the regular season.

Drew Plitt, QB, Ball State
Plitt has been a popular MAC recommendation this year and I'm not going to stop now with a timely match-up against Kent State. Plitt has four rushing scores in his last five games, so there's a good chance he can add some value in that department against the Golden Flashes' fourth worst rush defense in all of college football. I also like running back Caleb Huntley is he's available.

Last Week; Eastern Michigan QB Mike Glass III (20/25, 246 yards, 8 rushes for 83 yards, 1 TD) & Toledo RB Shakif Seymour (19 carries for 133 yards, 4 catches for 24 yards)

MWC

Patrick O'Brien, QB, Colorado State
The Rams will absolutely not stop throwing the ball, evident from O'Brien's average of 35 pass attempts per game in his last five games. In those five games, he has eight touchdowns versus just three interceptions with an uber-talented wide receiver corps. With tough opponents in Wyoming and Boise State on the docket, I could see the junior signal-caller surpassing his average in those games which is a ton of volume for fantasy purposes.

Xazavian Valladay, RB, Wyoming
Valladay has been a workhorse over the last month with four straight 100-yard rushing performances in which he's averaging around 33 total touches per game which is insane when you consider he's still available in over half of Fantrax leagues. Since quarterback Sean Chambers went down with a season-ending injury, Valladay has pretty much been all of Wyoming's offense. He'll have a huge game against Colorado State this week.

Last Week; Hawaii QB Chevan Cordeiro (4/9, 46 yards, 2 INT, 2 yards rushing) & Utah State WR Siaosi Mariner (4 catches for 123 yards, 1 TD)

PAC-12

Kedon Slovis, QB, USC
Slovis has been on fire in his past two games with 838 yards passing and eight touchdowns. USC's Air-Raid offense is for real with some extremely talented wide receivers. There's no way UCLA will be able to slow them down in Week 13. Do be cautious here as the Trojans do not have a game in Week 14 if you need a signal caller for a potential championship week.

Brant Kuithe, TE, Utah
Utah's on a mission to impress the college football playoff committee and what better way to do that than with your passing game. I recommended Tyler Huntley last week and he didn't disappoint with a 300-yard passing game and three total touchdowns. Kuithe had a career-day with five catches for 132 yards and a touchdown. He has a touchdown in three of his last five games. Oh yeah, the Utes get to go up against Arizona and Colorado who have the second and fourth worst pass defenses in the nation.

Last Week; Oregon TE Spencer Webb (2 catches for 27 yards, 1 TD) & Utah QB Tyler Huntley (14/18, 335 yards, 2 TD, 1 rushing score)

SEC

Brian Robinson Jr., RB, Alabama
Tough schedule for the SEC this week as five of their teams go up against FCS opponents. I would expect most playoff match-ups to have SEC defenses if they're smart. Not a great week for depending on fantasy starters though, especially when considering that Nick Saban had to watch his star quarterback Tua go down with a season-ending injury. That's why I'm assuming the Tides' back-up running back will get plenty of touches this week to preserve Najee Harris for the following week.

Tommy Stevens, QB, Mississippi State
Although Stevens had a forgettable performance against Alabama, he played pretty much the entire game with backup quarterback Garrett Shrader commanding just one carry. While Stevens will likely split time with Shrader against Abilene Christian, he has a great match-up against Ole Miss the following week. If you're in need of a quarterback out of the SEC, Stevens is likely your best bet to end the season.

Last Week; Kentucky QB Lynn Bowden (8/10, 104 yards, 1 TD, 17 rushes for 110 yards, 1 TD) & LSU TE Thaddeus Moss (5 catches for 63 yards)

SUN BELT

Zac Thomas, QB, Appalachian State
Thomas bounced back from a disappointing performance at South Carolina in Week 11 in fashion with five total touchdowns in a 56-27 beat-down of Georgia State. Thomas could make all the difference for fantasy teams with remaining games against Texas State and Troy who both have awful defenses that should be steam-rolled by Appalachian State. I also like receiver Corey Sutton who has an extremely high ceiling, evident from his eight catches for 173 yards and three touchdowns this past Saturday.

Kaylon Geiger, WR, Troy
Geiger is a high-volume receiver with eight targets per game. Troy's defense is so bad that Geiger has been even busier over the last three weeks with 27 catches on 33 targets for 316 yards and a touchdown. He has a capable quarterback in Kaleb Barker and will continue to see a ton of targets against the likes of Louisiana-Lafayette and Appalachian State who are both far better than the Trojans.

Last Week; Texas State QB Tyler Vitt (29/44, 263 yards, 2 TD, 4 INT, 8 rushes for 28 yards) & Georgia Southern RB J.D. King (16 carries for 102 yards, 1 TD)

INDEPENDENTS

Zach Wilson, QB, BYU
Wilson made his way back to the field against Idaho State after missing the previous four games with a thumb injury. He wasn't spectacular while completing just 61.3 percent of his passes, however, the Cougars didn't need him to do much. He has the potential to have a spectacular game against UMass who is college football's worst team.

Last Week; Army RB Sandon McCoy (6 rushes for 21 yards)

DEFENSE RECOMMENDATIONS

BYU (at UMass) – This is an easy one and a bonus that they play San Diego State in the final week which will be a low-scoring game.

Mississippi State (vs. Abilene Christian) – Because Alabama and Auburn are likely off the table, this is the next best thing.

Redhawks (vs. Akron) – The Redhawks were already an underrated defense, so this could be a very sneaky play this week.

Last Week; Kansas State (vs. West Virginia – 24 PA, 2 Sacks), Boise State (vs New Mexico) – 9 PA, 4 Sacks, 2 TA, 1 TD/DST), Louisiana-Lafayette (vs. South Alabama– 27 PA, 2 Sacks, 1 TA)

SUMMARY & TOP RECOMMENDATIONS

Utilizing the two players for each conference, I'll list out who my top recommendations are on a weekly basis by position:

QB: Appalachian State Zac Thomas, Miami Jarren Williams, USC Kedon Slovis
RB: Michigan State Elijah Collins, Miami of Ohio Jaylon Bester, Wyoming Xazavian Valladay
WR: UNC Dazz Newsome, Oklahoma State Dillon Stoner, Troy Kaylon Geiger
TE: Utah Brant Kuithe, SMU Kylen Granson
D/ST: BYU (at UMass)

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Nick Grays
Grays covers college football for RotoWire by night and is a Financial Analyst by day.
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