There’s been a slew of injuries in the NFL so even without bye weeks some fantasy owners are looking for last-minute pluck-and-play additions from the waiver wire. Coming into this NFL Week 12 Sunday action, here’s three options at each position that are available in over half of ESPN leagues who could contribute if you need points to seal your win this week. They are ranked in the order I would add them.
1. Colin Kaepernick-San Francisco: (24.0% owned in ESPN leagues) Kapernick is expected to get the starting nod as the Niners hit the “Big Easy.” He put up 18 fantasy points in standard leagues in his first NFL start throwing for 243 yards and a touchdown against a tough Chicago defense. Imagine the numbers he could put up against the Saints. New Orleans was shredded by RG3 week one of this season and assuming Kaepernick gets the start, we could see similar results. There’s been no official word from Coach Jim Harbaugh but there have been multiple reports that Kaepernick will start.
2. Chad Henne-Jacksonville Jaguars: (5.5%) Henne exploded last week scoring 30 standard points against a tough Texans defense. The Jags have put former starter Blaine Gabbert on the IR so it’s Henne’s show the rest of the way. He may not have long-lasting success but faces a Tennessee Titans team that is very beatable in week 12 making him a solid fill-in if you’re a scrambling Michael Vick owner or need a one-week fill in at the position.
3. Russell Wilson-Seattle Seahawks: (17.1%) Wilson has been efficient posting 15+ in standard scoring in each of his last three games and four of five. He’ll have to do it on the road this week-which is why he’s not higher on this list- as the Seahawks fly east to take on the Dolphins. Miami has struggled defensively which could lead to another solid game from Wilson.
1. Bryce Brown-Philadelphia Eagles: (3.7%) Brown will take over as the Eagles lead back with LeSean McCoy on the sidelines. Brown has looked exceptional in short stints and should be involved in the passing game as well making him even more valuable in PPR leagues. The K-State product has a nice matchup in his first start as the Eagles take on the Panthers who rank 19th in rushing defense and have allowed 15 or more fantasy points (standard scoring) to opposing running backs in three of the last four games. Brown could be a workhorse and emerge as a solid option for Phily and fantasy owners for as long as McCoy is out.
2. Marcel Reece-Oakland Raiders: (44.9%) Reece is still vastly underowned mainly because he plays on the little-known Raiders. He had 193 total yards against the Saints last week and had solid fantasy production despite not being able to find the endzone. He’ll get another heavy workload, but this week faces the Bengals who have a much better defense. That’s why he’s #2 on the list. 100 yards and a TD would be a good game on the ground but his use in the passing game is also a major wildcard that works in the favor of his owners.
3. Jalen Parmele-Jacksonville Jaguars: Parmele is third on this list since his run as starting RB is going to be short with the impending return of Maurice Jones-Drew. He should have a good game this week against a Titans defense that gives up plenty of points.
1. Danario Alexander-San Diego Chargers: (25.3%) Alexander found the endzone twice last week giving him three scores and 230 yards in his two games as a San Diego starter. The Ravens secondary has been nothing special lately so he’s a solid WR2 coming into week 12.
2. Mohamed Sanu-Cincinnati Bengals: (1.0%) Sanu has settled into the #2 Wide Receiver position in Cincinnati and faces the Raiders secondary with red-hot quarterback Andy dalton under center. Things line up for him to be a nice plug-and-play flex or WR3 option.
3. T.Y. Hilton-Indianapolis Colts: (22.0%) Hilton and Andrew Luck take on the Bills this week and he makes a great pickup with Donnie Avery recovering from his concussion. Hilton has had a pair of 100-yard games in the last three and has found the end zone three times in that span. His finishing schedule is favorable so he makes a good pickup for the rest of the season.
1. Marcedes Lewis-Jacksonville Jaguars: (6.9%) Lewis had a pair of touchdowns from the Jags new QB Chad Henne. He should keep getting plenty of looks and could finish the season nicely if Henne continues to get him the ball.
2. Dwayne Allen-Indianapolis Colts: (3.6%) Allen was targeted 11 times against New England lats week. Against the Bills, Lions, Titans, and Chiefs in four of his next five games, Allen could be a huge target in what should be a good stretch run for the Colts and fellow-rookie Andrew Luck.
3. Dennis Pitta-Baltimore Ravens: (32.2%) Pitta has recovered from his concussion and should be ready to go as the Ravens take on the Chargers. Baltimore’s passing game has been inconsistent, and the Chargers are good against the Tight End which is why he’s not higher on this list. Still, he’s a solid option going forward.
1. St. Louis Rams: (28.9%) The Rams D dominated the Cardinals in their week 5 matchup and could easily do the same as the NFC West rivals meet in the desert this Sunday. Ryan Lindley is expected to start at QB so sacks and turnovers could come in bunches.
2. Carolina Panthers: (7.9%) The Eagles won’t have Michael Vick or LeSean McCoy which is bad news for their fantasy owners and Eagles’ fans but not for the Panthers defense. They could help pull off a Monday Night Football miracle for their owners if they can turn in a big effort against the Eagles.
3. Indianapolis Colts: (3.9%) They were torched by the Pats last week but should fair far better against the Bills. Buffalo has 16 turnovers in their last 7 games, and Indy’s defense was able to score 19 points just two weeks ago in Jacksonville.