Every week, the SI Fantasy team will post a full waiver-wire column early in the week. However, each Sunday night I will take an early look at a few waiver-wire options that could help you in the upcoming week or on a rest-of-season basis.
[Note: All players referenced in this post are available in more than half of Yahoo! leagues as their ownership levels are all below 50 percent.]
Here are a few waiver-wire options to consider heading into Week 11 (Yahoo! ownership in parenthesis):
Brian Hill, RB, Atlanta Falcons (2% owned)
The Falcons had already placed Ito Smith on Injured Reserve and Brian Hill entered today’s game as Devonta Freeman’s backup. With Freeman (ankle) exiting Sunday’s game in the third quarter, Atlanta turned to Hill, who carried the ball 20 times for 61 yards and added a 10-yard touchdown reception.
The Saints have one of the league’s best run defenses, but the Falcons get a softer matchup next week against the Panthers. Entering Sunday’s games, Carolina had allowed the seventh-most rushing yards per game and no team had allowed more yards per carry (5.1).
If Freeman is unable to go in Week 11, Hill will become a plug-and-play starting option off of the waiver wire next week. Even if Freeman plays next week, it makes sense to stash him on your bench if you have the space.
Darius Slayton, WR, New York Giants (9% owned)
Playing a road game in his home stadium, Darius Slayton had the best game of his young career on Sunday. The fifth-round rookie led the Giants in targets (14), receptions (10), yards (121) and scored a pair of touchdowns against the Jets. Over the past six weeks, Slayton now has 50-plus yards and a score (or two) in three games.
The Giants have a Week 11 bye, but it’s possible that Sterling Shepard (concussion) and Evan Engram (foot) continue to miss time beyond the team’s bye. Reports suggest the Giants are considering putting Shepard on IR and Engram’s foot injury may be the Lisfranc variety, which wouldn’t bode well for a quick return.
Testing off the charts athletically (4.39 forty and 40.5-inch vertical), Slayton could benefit from a favorable schedule down the stretch, especially if the team’s other top pass-catchers miss time. The Giants receivers get three plus matchups during the fantasy playoffs against Philadelphia (twice if your playoffs extend to Week 17), Miami and Washington.
J.D. McKissic, RB, Detroit Lions (21% owned)
Ty Johnson left Sunday’s game with a concussion, which puts his status for Week 11 in jeopardy. With Johnson out, the Lions turned mostly to J.D. McKissic, who had twice as many touches as backfield mate Paul Perkins.
McKissic was inefficient—yet more efficient than Perkins—against Chicago’s stout defense as he parlayed his 10 carries into 36 yards and his team-high six receptions into 19 yards. With Matthew Stafford (broken bones in back) out this week and perhaps upcoming weeks, McKissic could continue to be heavily involved in the passing game as the recipient of Jeff Driskel’s check-downs. It’s certainly possible McKissic gets north of 15 touches against Dallas next week as that volume pushes him into flex consideration.
Derek Carr, QB, Oakland Raiders (44% owned)
When it comes to fantasy quarterbacks, Derek Carr is obviously several tiers below that of Lamar Jackson, but he gets Jackson’s Week 10 opponent in Week 11. Jackson completed 15-of-17 against Cincinnati for 223 yards (13.1 Y/A) and three touchdowns on Sunday. Entering Sunday’s games, only the Giants (8.9) had allowed more passing yards per attempt than the winless Bengals (8.8) this season.
With Aaron Rodgers and Russell Wilson both on bye next week, Carr could become a viable bye-week replacement for those looking to stream. Leading the NFL in completion percentage (70.8 percent), Carr has thrown multiple touchdown passes in five of his past seven games while compiling an efficient 12-to-two TD-INT ratio over that seven-game stretch.
Kevin Hanson joins SI for the 2019 season. His fantasy rankings have placed him in the Top 20 in each of the past two seasons among all the industry experts tracked by FantasyPros.com, and he has been in the Top 25 in six of the past eight years.