Week four is officially under way which means waiver wire pick ups for fantasy football are now becoming more clear.
The chapter has come to a close on an emotionally charged week three of the NFL season and more importantly, week three of the fantasy football season. The waiver wire for week four is sure to offer several intriguing options.
Offense was at a premium, beginning with an unlikely 41-39 shootout between San Francisco and Los Angeles. Jared Goff had his best day as a pro, notching his first 300 yard performance and tossing three touchdowns.
Aaron Rodgers engineered another comeback victory, ultimately resulting in his first overtime win. Speaking of firsts, Eagles rookie kicker Jake Elliot booted his longest kick of his career from 61 yards out to stun the Giants.
Journeyman quarterback Case Keenum didn’t need the dramatics. His three touchdown performance came during a convincing 34-17 win over Tampa.
Whether your squad is a contender, in need of one missing piece, or scrambling to find answers, the following players are worth consideration.
Wendell Smallwood, RB, Philadelphia Eagles
Darren Sproles’s farewell tour was cut short after suffering a broken arm and torn ACL on the same play during Sunday’s win over the Giants. The 5’6 speedster ignited the Eagles offense regularly as both a proven pass catching threat out of the backfield and terror on special teams. Second year back Wendell Smallwood is expected to see an increased workload alongside rookie Corey Clement and bell-cow LeGarette Blount. Despite logging 67 yards on 12 carries and a touchdown, Blount’s role is still undefined in Doug Pederson’s pass-happy offense.
Smallwood matched Blount’s 12 carries, while amassing 71 yards on the ground. The Eagles have been waiting for Smallwood to emerge and earn a spot on top of the depth chart. Although he will be sharing duties with Clement and Blount, Smallwood’s pass catching ability and elusiveness gives him upside.
D’Onta Foreman, RB, Houston Texans
The Houston Texans almost escaped Foxborough with a win on Sunday in shootout with the defending champs. Foreman is a part of the young offensive nucleus who are starting to make their presence felt. The rookie from Texas rushed for 25 yards on 8 carries along with two key receptions that each went for over 30 yards. Lamar Miller hasn’t impressed early on, and is yet to find the end zone after the first three weeks of the season. Foreman is a must-add handcuff for Miller owners, and warrants a roster spot in 12-team leagues.
Blake Bortles, QB, Jacksonville Jaguars
Home is where the heart is. Perhaps a trip across the pond to the Jaguars second home is the remedy Bortles needed. Last month Bortles was one subpar performance away from starting the year holding the clipboard. The Jaguars quarterback is walking with a little extra pep in his step following a performance to remember Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens.
In Bortles’ turnover free start, he completed 20 of his 31 passes for 244 yards and four touchdowns. Wide receivers Marqise Lee and Allen Hurns have proven to be reliable commodities since Allen Robinson’s season-ending injury week one. Having a bruising back like Leonard Fournette and a stout defense can also aide in calming a quarterback’s nerves.
Five of the next seven games include games against the Jets, Colts, Bengals, Chargers and Browns who have a combined two wins amongst them. If you need a backup or play in a two QB league, Bortles has favorable match-ups moving forward.
Sterling Shephard, WR, New York Giants
Abysmal offensive line play has Eli Manning’s release time getting quicker by the second. As noted by Metro news, Manning’s average release time on Sunday was 1.86 seconds, good enough for fastest in the NFL.
One of the beneficiaries of Ben McAdoo’s up tempo offense is second year receiver Sterling Shepard. The second year receiver finished with seven catches for 133 yards and found the end zone once. A nonexistent running game means more of Manning’s warped speed passes. Let’s not forget that Odell Beckham looked to be in rare form. Should he start commanding double coverage, it would free up Shepard for more targets who should feature well in PPR leagues.