NFL fantasy waiver wire: Week 12

Baker Mayfield
Baker Mayfield” by Erik Drost is licensed under CC BY 2.0

How was Week 11 without some of your key players? I found myself losing in a league where I had Michel, Drake and Landry all on a bye. I’m still in the playoff hunt and hoping for a bigger Week 12.

You should be too! Are you still in the hunt for playoffs? Or are you one of the top teams just trying to stash players on your bench?

Let me help you figure out who needs to be added to your roster in hopes of making a playoff push and deep playoff run.

This week, we only have two teams on bye. Those are the teams we saw battle it out on Monday Night Football, the Los Angeles Rams and Kansas City Chiefs. That leaves a lot of available players on our bench this week.

We won’t have QBs Jared Goff or Patrick Mahomes available to us this week. RBs Todd Gurley and Kareem Hunt will also be out. How about the WRs? We have already lost Cooper Kupp for the season, but Brandin Cooks and Robert Woods will be out too, along with Tyreke Hill and Sammy Watkins. We might as well add TE Travis Kelce to the WR list as well. How do you plan on working your roster around these guys who were probably game winners this week? I’ll tell you how.


First, let’s figure out the QB situation. I’m sorry for those of you who added Mariota expecting another big week. Unfortunately, he got injured and left the game early. But there are still plenty of options available to us.

  1. Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys, 69.8 percent availability
  2. Andy Dalton, Cincinnati Bengals, 53.2 percent availability
  3. Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns, 67.4 percent availability
  4. Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens, 77.6 percent availability
  5. Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 90.8 percent availability

Prescott has been able to prove himself worthy of a roster spot over the past few weeks. With the addition of Amari Cooper, the Cowboys’ offense has opened up more, which has allowed for more passing plays for Prescott. Although his numbers aren’t that impressive, Prescott has managed to get touchdowns for his team, whether it’s through the air or with his feet. Their Thanksgiving Day game with the Washington Redskins will be another defensive game, but Prescott will have to find a way to make plays in order to win, so let’s see what he can do for us.

Dalton and Mayfield will both be facing off this week and we should see both of them have good games. For Dalton, it’s all about whether or not he’ll have his top target, A.J. Green, returning for him this week. Having Green available to Dalton makes everything easier for him, but Dalton should find a way to still have success against the young Browns.

At the same time, Mayfield will be coming off a bye and got to watch a lot of tape on the Bengals as he looks forward to facing them for the first time in his career. We saw rookie QB Lamar Jackson get a win over the Bengals last week, but how will Mayfield fair? For the sake of fantasy, I hope this game is more of an offensive game compared to defensive.

Speaking of Lamar Jackson, he should still be able to get another chance to start this week against the Raiders. We know he plans on getting a lot of rushing yards, so if that is something that gives you points from a QB, than you should definitely consider adding him. Let’s not forget he still has some offensive weapons who could help him have a successful game against the Raiders.

After another poor game by Ryan Fitzpatrick, Winston will once again be the starter for the Buccanneers. Although Tampa lost to the Giants this past weekend, the Bucs offense managed to get the ball moving. This week, it’s the 49ers. Hopefully, Winston can find a way to connect with all his receivers and hope for a big game against a Niners team who is in of a win. Do you think Winston will help lead you to a win, or should we go with someone else?


How about the RBs? This list didn’t change much and it isn’t much you would probably need right? Oh, who am I kidding? Gurley and Hunt are game changers. Not having them for one week could result in a loss, but let’s try to avoid that and get you the right pieces to help continue the winning ways.

Running Backs
  1. Derrick Henry, Tennessee Titans, 31.3 percent availability
  2. Ito Smith, Atlanta Falcons, 56.3 percent availability
  3. Theo Riddick, Detroit Lions, 66.9 percent availability
  4. Jalen Richard, Oakland Raiders, 43.5 percent availability
  5. Josh Adams, Philadelphia Eagles, 72.1 percent availability

Henry and the entire Titans offense were nowhere to be found on the field this past week, as they got destroyed by the Colts. Mariota also got injured. Not sure what the status of Mariota is, but Henry and Lewis will still be a huge part of the offensive game. Last week was just a down week for a Titans team who has been on a hot streak since their bye. This game against the Texans on Monday night should be a good example of what we have all seen these past few weeks.

Smith and Riddick will only be available until Thursday, as both players are playing on Thanksgiving. Smith and the Falcons look to knock off the Saints from their hot streak of nine in a row. Smith will have to play a lot better than he did last week. The Falcons have one of the better offenses in team history. They’ve managed to still be in every game they’ve played, and Smith has been a part of it with Freeman being out. Riddick has continued to benefit from the lack of depth on the Lions’ roster. Riddick is a reception first RB and can get you a good amount of points that way. Both guys are expected to have big games and should be added to our rosters.

Richard and Adams have taken over as the primary backs on their teams. Richard has been involved all season long. With a banged up Doug Martin, he should be getting more snaps, which means more yards. Don’t forget about the receptions if you’re in a PPR league.

Adams is one of three RBs in the mix in Philadelphia. He has shown he’s ready for the job. We have previously seen both Wendell Smallwood and Corey Clement on this list, but since then Adams has taken over. It will be interesting to see what they plan to do for the rest of the season, but we should expect Adams to get the majority of the snaps. Whether or not that will be the answer for this Eagles run game that hasn’t been the same since Jay Ajayi went back, will be a big question for the Eagles, but Adams should have a good day against the Giants on Sunday.


Wide Receivers
  1. Tre’Quan Smith, New Orleans Saints, 86.7 percent availability
  2. Christain Kirk, Arizona Cardinals, 82.5 percent availability
  3. Courtland Sutton, Denver Broncos, 47.2 percent availability
  4. Anthony Miller, Chicago Bears, 50.9 percent availability
  5. D.J. Moore, Carolina Panthers, 68 percent availability

Smith is playing out of his mind right now. Like all the Saints players, but he has proven he’s ready to be the second receiving option for Drew Brees and Saints. With Smith continuing to put up numbers, other players are being affected, like TE Ben Watson, who has been removed for the TE list. Smith will look to continue being hot against the Atlanta Falcons on Thanksgiving Day and should be added as a WR3/Flex.

Kirk got one big play against the Raiders this past week. That one big play was a 54 yard touchdown, which is 11.4 points in fantasy. That’s not bad for a flex player on your roster. We should continue to see what he can do with QB Josh Rosen, as the two of them look to continue getting their chemistry together in hopes for a better 2019.

Although Sutton didn’t have an explosive game like we all wanted, we should be patient, because it will be here soon. The thing about the Broncos, is that their offense is a run first offense, which is good for guys like me who have Phillip Lindsay on their roster. QB Case Keenum will have to start passing a lot more as the season gets close to an end. Their next opponent will be the Steelers. We could see another high scoring affair, so let’s keep an eye on Sutton and the Broncos’ offense.

Miller has posted back to back good games for the Chicago Bears and is finally coming around to being what the Bears wanted him to be when they drafted him. We should continue seeing him play a big role for the Bears’ offense for the rest of the season. He and QB Mitchell Trubisky will continue to get their chemistry together. So add Miller as a flex pick this week against the Lions in their annual Thanksgiving Day game.

This was a long time coming. I have been holding out on you all just a little bit. You see, Moore should have already been on this list, but I wanted to wait and see how productive he was over the last few weeks. Since the season is almost over for fantasy owners, now is the time to add D.J. Moore. The Panthers will be facing a lot of tough opponents over the next few weeks. That will force QB Cam Newton to pass the ball more. Moore should be the one who gets more chances.


Now it’s time to find a tight end to fill your roster, just in case you still need one at this point of the season.

Tight Ends
  1. Vance McDonald, Pittsburgh Steelers, 47.8 percent availability
  2. Jeff Heuerman, Denver Broncos, 88.3 percent availability
  3. Cameron Brate, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 91 percent availability
  4. Jonnu Smith, Tennessee Titans, 97.6 percent availability
  5. Chris Herndon, New York Jets 93.4 percent availability

McDonald has been on this list weekly and should be added to your rosters. He has been a big part of the Steelers hot streak as of late and will continue to be a part of the offense in a big way. If he hasn’t been added yet, then he should be now!

Heuerman is continuing to earn QB Case Keenum’s trust. With Demariyus out of Denver, he could see a bigger role in the passing game. The fact that the Broncos have a good running attack helps the offense move the ball more with the pass. Heuerman could be a big threat for the Broncos, so add him as a replacement at your own risk. The Broncos do like to run the ball a lot.

Brate is a good option at TE this week because of two reasons. O.J. Howard’s injury and Winston’s start at QB. They are also playing a Niners team who gives up big yards to TEs. Expect a good game from Brate and Winston, as they try to turn their season around and hope to stay in the playoff picture.

Smith had another average game against the Colts despite the team getting destroyed. Smith should continue to be a part of the offense, whether it’s Mariota or Blaine Gabbert at QB. He has been a nice replacement for those who had Delaine Walker and were patiently waiting for him. Well, why are you still waiting? He’s available and should be added for the rest of the year.

Another TE to keep our eyes on this week and next will be Herndon. He has shown a bright future in the league and hopefully he can manage to continue putting up the touchdown numbers we all hope for. Whether it’s Darnold or McCown, Herndon should be able to find himself some receptions and get a touchdown against the Patriots!


Regardless of who you add, good luck to all the fantasy football players this week! Hope you can put together the best lineup to win your matchup in Week 12!

3 replies to “NFL fantasy waiver wire: Week 12

  1. From a fantasy perspective, I predict Baker Mayfield will lead the Browns brilliantly to win three of their renaming six games. Winston will be a season ending bust.


    1. That’s a good prediction! Seeing how things have played out for both players, it may very well be true. Winston has to prove himself this week against the 49ers


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