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Waiver Wire: Time to swap Vick for Nick?

Senior Fantasy Writer
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For the first time since Week 5 when Cedric Benson and Ryan Williams got hurt, we went a week without a starting running back being lost for a significant amount of time. That's the good news.

The bad news is we might be looking at a quarterback change in Philadelphia with Michael Vick getting benched. While coach Andy Reid has yet to make an announcement on his quarterback heading into Week 9 at New Orleans, we would prefer Vick keep his job over Nick Foles, especially with the matchup against the Saints.

But Vick could be a scapegoat for the Eagles' woes this season, and Fantasy owners need to be prepared. We'll give you some options to replace Vick and also deal with Tom Brady being on a bye.

At running back, it's time to make sure you have the handcuff to your stud No. 1 option if there's a direct No. 2 in place. Every Maurice Jones-Drew and DeMarco Murray owner has learned a lesson that even though the backup is not as skilled as the starter, it's still comforting to know you have a replacement option in case of injury.

And at receiver, Titus Young will likely be the most added player this week -- and rightfully so. He had a career performance for the Lions against the Seahawks and helped turn Matthew Stafford's season around.

Editor's note: Must add is for players worth adding in all leagues. Maybe add is for players worth adding in 14-team leagues or larger. Desperation add is for players worth adding only if you're, well, desperate. The ownership percentage listed is how many leagues that player was owned in the previous week for CBSSports.com.

Quarterbacks

Must add: Josh Freeman, Buccaneers (74 percent)
Maybe add: Brandon Weeden, Browns (44 percent), Russell Wilson, Seahawks (29 percent), Jake Locker, Titans (22 percent), Nick Foles, Eagles (6 percent)
Desperation add: Matt Moore, Dolphins (1 percent)
The breakdown: Hopefully this is the last time we have to mention Freeman here, because he's been the second-best quarterback the past three games behind Aaron Rodgers (98 Fantasy points) at 92 points. You might not have the need to start Freeman every week, but you definitely want him on your roster. And every Vick owner should make a move to get Freeman now. ... Foles could step into the starting role for the Eagles and play like a star. After all, Vick has four games with at least 19 Fantasy points this season and former Philadelphia backups like Kevin Kolb, A.J. Feeley and Vince Young have had success before. In deeper leagues, every Vick owner should add Foles, but in standard formats you might want to wait to hear what Reid says heading into practice Wednesday. ... Despite Weeden's poor performance against the Chargers in the rain in Week 8, we would still consider him a replacement option for Brady this week against the Ravens, who have allowed multiple passing touchdowns against Tony Romo and Matt Schaub in their past two games. ... Wilson could also be useful as a bye-week replacement against the Vikings, who have struggled recently against Robert Griffin III and Freeman in two of the past three games. ... As we've been saying the past couple of weeks, if you want to speculate on a quarterback down the road then gamble on Locker, who still has plenty of upside once his left shoulder is healthy. He is expected to resume his starting job soon. ... Moore would only be useful in two-quarterback leagues if Ryan Tannehill (quad) is out for an extended period of time.

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Running backs

Must add: Jonathan Dwyer, Steelers (71 percent), Daniel Thomas, Dolphins (32 percent)
Maybe add: DeAngelo Williams, Panthers (72 percent), Kendall Hunter, 49ers (54 percent), Peyton Hillis, Chiefs (45 percent), Jacquizz Rodgers, Falcons (43 percent), Toby Gerhart, Vikings (34 percent), Joique Bell, Lions (30 percent), Mike Goodson, Raiders (27 percent), Robert Turbin, Seahawks (22 percent), Ronnie Hillman, Broncos (19 percent), Shane Vereen, Patriots (17 percent), Ronnie Brown, Chargers (15 percent), Jamie Harper, Titans (15 percent), Bernard Pierce, Ravens (8 percent), Bryce Brown, Eagles (3 percent)
Desperation add: Beanie Wells, Cardinals (24 percent), Kevin Smith, Lions (22 percent)
The breakdown: There's talk that Dwyer could remain the starter in Pittsburgh even when Rashard Mendenhall (Achilles) is healthy, which would be a surprise. But Dwyer does have 34 carries for 232 yards the past two games and could start at the Giants in Week 9. ... Thomas has scored in three of his past four games and even though he's missed time with two different concussions, he still has double digits in carries in three games this season. He could be a flex option in deeper leagues because he continues to take touchdowns away from Reggie Bush while also averaging 43 total yards a game. ... If Williams is traded from the Panthers (Arizona and Green Bay would make sense) then he could have value. If you want to speculate and he's available then add him now. ... In PPR leagues, Brown is a must add. He has 15 catches in his past three games with at least six Fantasy points in two of those outings. ... Vereen has two touchdowns in his past four games and 15 carries for 71 yards in his past two outings. He has taken over for the injured Brandon Bolden (knee) and could excel if Stevan Ridley goes down. ... Rodgers might start getting more involved for the Falcons if Michael Turner continues to struggle. Rodgers had eight carries for 60 yards and five catches for 20 yards at the Eagles in Week 8 while Turner had 24 carries for 58 yards. ... If you like your roster then gamble on adding Wells, who could return from his toe injury in Week 12. ... Smith also might have value if Mikel Leshoure continues to struggle. It's a situation to monitor, especially with Bell continuing to steal work as well. ... Hillman did well against the Saints with 14 carries for 86 yards, but he's just the handcuff to Willis McGahee. ... As for the rest of the running backs listed, these are your handcuff options in San Francisco, Kansas City, Minnesota, Oakland, Seattle, Tennessee, Baltimore and Philadelphia. If your starting quarterback has passed his bye then drop your No. 2 quarterback and handcuff your stud running back. It makes more sense going forward.

Wide receivers

Must add: Danny Amendola, Rams (77 percent), Santana Moss, Redskins (63 percent), Titus Young, Lions (51 percent), Cecil Shorts, Jaguars (15 percent)
Maybe add: Sidney Rice, Seahawks (70 percent), Kendall Wright, Titans (61 percent), Darrius Heyward-Bey, Raiders (58 percent), Brandon LaFell, Panthers (41 percent), Chris Givens, Rams (21 percent), Ryan Broyles, Lions (16 percent)
Desperation add: Golden Tate, Seahawks (15 percent), Dexter McCluster, Chiefs (6 percent), Donald Driver, Packers (3 percent), Drew Davis, Falcons (0 percent)
The breakdown: We had Young as breakout candidate prior to the season but until Nate Burleson (leg) went down he was a bust. In Week 8 against the Seahawks, Young exploded for nine catches for 100 yards and two touchdowns on nine targets. He should continue to be heavily involved and be owned in all leagues. Broyles is also worth owning in deeper leagues, as he has two touchdowns in his past two games. ... Amendola is expected to return in Week 10 following the Rams' bye week. If he's still out there in your league then plan on adding him now to make sure you get him. If he remains out with his shoulder injury then look for Givens to continue to shine, but Givens is worth stashing anyway as the second-best receiving threat for the Rams. ... Moss continues to be the go-to receiver for Griffin with Pierre Garcon (foot) out, and he has four touchdowns in his past three games. ... Shorts has become the best receiver for the Jaguars. He has 12 catches for 195 yards and a touchdown in his past two games on 22 targets. ... Rice, Wright, Heyward-Bey and LaFell should be owned in most leagues because they are excellent No. 3 receivers and bye-week replacements. LaFell could have a solid performance in Week 9 against the Redskins. And Wright has been the most consistent Titans receiver this year. ... If you're looking for a one-week Hail Mary then take a chance on Tate. The No. 2 receiver against the Vikings has a touchdown in each of the past two games.

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Tight ends

Must add: Jermaine Gresham, Bengals (74 percent), Dustin Keller, Jets (59 percent)
Maybe add: Logan Paulsen, Redskins (10 percent), Dwayne Allen, Colts (5 percent)
Desperation add: Kellen Davis, Bears (3 percent), Zach Miller, Seahawks (2 percent), Tony Moeaki, Chiefs (2 percent)
The breakdown: Gresham has been hit or miss this season, but he has a favorable matchup this week against the Broncos. Denver has allowed six touchdowns to opposing tight ends and four to reach double digits in Fantasy points. Gresham is a great bye-week replacement for Vernon Davis, Rob Gronkowski or Aaron Hernandez. ... Keller is off this week, but in two games since coming back from a hamstring injury he has 14 catches for 170 yards and a touchdown on 18 targets. If you can carry two tight ends he appears to be worth it. ... The Redskins are leaning on Paulsen with Fred Davis (Achilles) out, and he has eight catches for 119 yards on 12 targets the past two games. ... Allen continues to be the No. 1 tight end for the Colts despite Coby Fleener on the roster. Allen had his best receiving game in Week 8 at Tennessee with four catches for 56 yards and could be helpful in deeper formats. ... If you're stuck, Kellen Davis could be worth a flier. He scored in Week 8 against Carolina and faces the Titans this week. Tennessee has allowed the most Fantasy points to opposing tight ends this year.

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us via Twitter @CBSFantasyFB . You can also follow Jamey at @JameyEisenberg and on Facebook .

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Player News
Report: Titans S Bernard Pollard wants to be released
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12:52 am ET) Titans safety Bernard Pollard has requested a release from his contract, The Tennessean reports. He is scheduled to make $3.1 million in the final season of his two-year deal in 2015.

Pollard submitted his request to general manager Ruston Webster at the end of the regular season, per the report. He is recovering from a ruptured Achilles and wants to play in 2015, but said on The Tennessean's Bernard Pollard Show earlier this month that he was unsure of his future with the Titans.

"I am not getting any younger, so I want to win, I really do. I want to win,'' Pollard said. "Looking at how things took place this year, looking at where (the Titans) need to be for next year, that is a tough, tough question, and I don't even know if they can give me the answer. I have one year on my deal, but it is going to take some time."

Pollard has been out of his walking boot for a month and is making progress in rehab. He suffered his Achilles injury in Week 5 and was placed on injured reserve.


Patriots fairly healthy heading into Super Bowl Sunday
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(1/30/2015) The Patriots will be at nearly full strength for Sunday’s Super Bowl as the following players have been listed as probable: Tom Brady (ankle), Dont’a Hightower (shoulder), Chris Jones (elbow), Akeem Ayers (knee), Darrelle Revis (non-injury-related) and Sealver Siliga (foot).

All except Brady were limited participants in practice Friday. The only question mark is center Bryan Stork, who is questionable with a knee injury and was limited in practice Friday.

The Patriots are currently 1-point favorites against Seattle.


Seahawks unveil final injury report in preparation for Super Bowl
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(1/30/2015) The Seahawks have listed the following players as probable for the Super Bowl on Sunday: J.R. Sweezy (ankle), Justin Britt (knee), Marshawn Lynch (back), Earl Thomas (shoulder), Richard Sherman (elbow) and Kam Chancellor (knee).

Chancellor was a late addition to the injury report, when he fell on the next-to-last play of practice and missed the last play. He was not limping on his way off. All other players were full participants in practice Friday.

The Seahawks are currently 1-point underdogs against New England.


Saints tight end Jimmy Graham to avoid surgery on shoulder
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(1/30/2015) Saints tight end Jimmy Graham said Friday he will avoid surgery on his shoulder after testing it at the Pro Bowl. 

"I’ve been doing rehab and I’m going to start back on my rehab Monday and really there’s going to be no surgery," Graham told SiriusXM radio. "I’m just going to do rehab, strengthen the area. That’s what’s best — not having to take six months off and try to heal up with a surgery, but now have those six months to work on all things I need to to try and hopefully get to a place like (the Super Bowl) next year."

Graham, who had 85 catches for 889 yards and 10 touchdowns in 2014, fought off the injury for most of the season. He was still unsure about having surgery before the Pro Bowl last week.

"It was something that really needed some rest and unfortunately it wasn’t able to get that during the season," he said. "It happened early and then you have about 10 straight weeks of trying to make it to the game. Now after having about three or four weeks and last week kind of testing it at the Pro Bowl, it feels great."


Vikings' Greg Jennings: We all want Adrian Peterson back
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(1/30/2015) Vikings veteran wideout Greg Jennings said during a SiriusXM NFL Radio interview on Friday that embattled running back Adrian Peterson is wanted back by everyone in the organization, per ESPN.

"I don't know if he'll be back. I can't answer that question," Jennings said. "But what I do know is that if he does come back, he'd be accepted with open arms. As an organization from the Wilfs on down, we all want him back. So, I mean, it's a touchy subject and he's been the franchise player -- face of that team -- for eight years. So it will be a loss, a huge loss, if we can't get him back, and that's the nature of this business."

In November, Peterson was suspended by the league without pay for the rest of the season, making him ineligible for reinstatement until at least April 15. The move came after Peterson pleaded no contest to recklessly injuring his 4-year-old son last May. He is under contract with the Vikings for next season, and is set to earn $12.75 million.

It's unclear at this point if Jennings has talked to Zygi and Mark Wilf about the Peterson situation. What is clear is that the team is not allowed to communicate with Peterson during his suspension.


Eagles' Maclin believes contract will take care of itself
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(1/30/2015) Eagles wide receiver Jeremy Maclin believes he will be back in Philadelphia in next season. His representatives and the Eagles are in the process of negotiating a new contract for the 27-year-old, who will become a free agent in March unless he is re-signed.

"I'm excited about what the future holds," Maclin said on Friday. "Once again, both sides have made it known what we want to do. I think it will take care of itself."

He could be franchise tagged if a deal is not signed. The tag number for wide receivers is yet to be determined.

Maclin had 85 catches in 2014 for 1,318 yards and 10 touchdowns in Philadelphia.


Bears sign LB DeDe Lattimore to two-year contract extension
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1/30/2015) The Bears have signed linebacker DeDe Lattimore to a two-year contract extension. He appeared in 10 games as a rookie in 2014, recording five special teams tackles.

Jaguars' Khan 'very optimistic' about WR Blackmon being reinstated
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1/30/2015) Jaguars owner Shahid Khan said Friday he is "very optimistic" about wide receiver Justin Blackmon, who missed the 2014 season after being suspended indefinitely for a third violation of the league's substance abuse policy, being reinstated to the NFL.

"I think he's paid his dues and I think he's got his life together," Khan said, per The Florida Times-Union.


NFLPA president Eric Winston: New conduct policy 'violates CBA'
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1/30/2015) After the union field a grievance last week against the NFL over changes to the NFL personal conduct policy, Players Association president Eric Winston said Thursday the new policy "violates the CBA in several ways and we're going to be grieving this as far as we can."

NFL owners unanimously approved the changes in December.

"We have an agreement with the league and they have an agreement with us," Winston said, per the Associated Press. "We're going to hold them to that agreement. Many aspects of this policy fall outside of the CBA and we're going to continue fighting it going forward."

Following former Ravens running back Ray Rice's domestic violence case and Vikings running back Adrian Peterson's child abuse case, a more extensive list of prohibited conduct was included in the policy, as well as criteria for paid leave for anyone charged with a violent crime. A suspension of six games without pay for violations involving assault, sexual assault, battery, domestic violence, child abuse and other forms of family violence will be in effect.

"The league's revised conduct policy was the product of a tremendous amount of analysis and work and is based on input from a broad and diverse group of experts within and outside of football, including current players, former players, and the NFL Players Association," the league said in a statement last week.

"We and the public firmly believe that all NFL personnel should be held accountable to a stronger, more effective conduct policy. Clearly, the union does not share that belief."


Eric Decker 'pushing' for Demaryius Thomas to sign with Jets
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1/30/2015) Broncos wide receiver Demaryius Thomas is set to become a free agent in March, unless he agrees to a contract extension or Denver uses the franchise tag on him. If he does become a free agent, former teammate Eric Decker hopes Thomas would consider joining him on the Jets roster.

Decker spent a few days in Arizona this week with Thomas filming a commercial.

“I’ve been pushing for the entire year now,” Decker said in a telephone interview with The New York Post. “It was just another opportunity to talk to him about it. It’s going to be interesting to see what happens. I think it would be tough for Denver to let him go. So whether they franchise-tag him here in the next month or give him a long-term deal, he’s just one of those premier players in this league.

"If he happens to make it to free agency, I would love to sign him because playing alongside him for four years and especially the last two years made it a lot of fun and made it a lot easier. He’s just one of the great players in this league.”

Thomas recorded a career-best 1,619 receiving yards in 2014. It was his third straight season of 1,000-plus receiving yards. He also had at least 10 touchdowns for a third straight season.


 
 
 
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