by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)
Looking to hit the waiver wire? Who isn’t looking to improve, though making any hasty decisions off one game could ultimately prove more costly than helpful. With that in mind, let’s take a look at a few players who may be available and if they are worth targeting or not:
Paxton Lynch – Denver Broncos – Quarterback
Starter Trevor Siemian was lost for the day with an injury to his non-throwing shoulder, which allowed Lynch to enter and thrive as he went 14-24 for 170 yards, 1 TD and 0 INT. Obviously we don’t want to read too much into the performance, especially after Siemian was playing just as well (5-7, 68 yards, 1 TD).
Siemian probably doesn’t deserve to lose his job, when healthy, and expect him to return to the role as soon as he’s deemed available (which could be as soon as Week 5). That said, Lynch showed enough to make him an intriguing stash for those in two-quarterback formats just in case the injury lingers longer than expected.
Verdict – Buy in keeper/deep two-quarterback formats, but nowhere else
Terrance West – Baltimore Ravens – Running Back
This was his opportunity to seize a significant role in the Ravens backfield, and he took advantage of it. Justin Forsett was a healthy scratch and ’16 fourth round selection Kenneth Dixon has not yet debuted, leaving West and Javorius Allen to battle it out. West was clearly the man this week, with 21 carries vs. just 3 for Allen, and he delivered by going off for 113 yards and 1 TD.
His schedule isn’t necessarily the easiest in the coming weeks, but he has an opportunity to really cement his role in a Week 5 matchup against the Redskins (who have allowed 532 rushing yards, most in the league, as well as 7 rushing TD). That turns this into an ideal opportunity to exploit, at least for those looking for a short-term answer. Long-term this remains a backfield in flux, though West should have as much opportunity as anyone.
Verdict – Must add
Dontrelle Inman – San Diego Chargers – Wide Receiver
The Chargers had a shocking collapse, though that shouldn’t take anything away from the target breakdown among the team’s wide receivers:
Inman turned his opportunities into 7 receptions, 120 yards and 1 TD, leading the team across the board. Of course he entered the day with 10 total targets over the first three games, so it’s hard to get overly excited. While he did show some upside last season, the Chargers’ receiving corps could be hit or miss in any given week. That makes it extremely tough to depend on any of them, as anyone could emerge as the go to receiver.
Verdict – Too risky to invest heavily in
Eddie Royal – Chicago Bears – Wide Receiver
Sure he had a big day, turning 7 targets into 7 receptions, 111 yards and 1 TD, but how often can we truly expect that to happen? As it is he wasn’t even the most targeted receiver (Kevin White had 9 targets), Alshon Jeffery was banged up and you have to wonder how many opportunities Royal will get when (or maybe if) Jay Cutler returns to a starting role. Royal had been given some chances over the first three weeks, but the results were hardly impressive:
The offense should run through the other two receivers, assuming their health… Jeffery was listed as questionable heading into the game and White was forced out with an ankle injury. Depending on the status of the latter, Royal could become an extremely intriguing option for those in three receiver formats.
Verdict – Worth the addition as injuries could open up regular opportunities
Jay Ajayi – Miami Dolphins – Running Back
He “led” the Dolphins backfield on Thursday, taking 6 carries for 33 yards (he was the only running back to get more than 3 carries in the game). Rotations are nice, but it also doesn’t necessarily allow for the runners to get into a rhythm. There’s a good chance that the Dolphins try to focus on just one or two running backs until Arian Foster returns, and Ajayi should be given an opportunity to claim the lead role.
Verdict – Worth stashing in all formats
Robert Woods – Buffalo Bills – Wide Receiver
Someone needs to step up in the wake of the injury to Sammy Watkins, and yesterday Woods was the obvious preferred target for Tyrod Taylor. He turned 10 targets into 7 receptions and 89 yards, and he was the only receiver to be targeted more than five times (Marquise Goodwin and Walter Powell were at that mark).
Woods has now been targeted 18 times over the past two weeks, and as we often say opportunity is half the battle. He’s hardly going to be a trustworthy option, but the potential is there to at least produce as a streaming option.
Verdict – Leave for the desperate
Brian Quick – Los Angeles Rams – Wide Receiver
He has 3 TD over the past two weeks, but he may be the epitome of a boom or bust receiver. While the TD are nice, it has come on just 4 receptions and 8 targets with the TD strikes being on plays of 44, 65 and 4 yards. Is anyone really prepared to gamble on that type of big play to come consistently, especially with Case Keenum at quarterback?
Verdict – Pass
Sources – ESPN, NFL.com, Yahoo!