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Waiver Wire: Starting to run on empty?

Senior Fantasy Writer
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It was only a matter of time.

That was the sentiment I heard most on Twitter when sharing the news of Darren McFadden going down with a high ankle sprain during Sunday's loss against Tampa Bay in Week 9. McFadden, who has never played more than 13 games a year in his career, has a lengthy injury history, and Fantasy owners always expect the worst with him.

He is expected to be out in Week 10 at Baltimore and Fantasy owners are looking for replacement options. The problem is that the No. 2 running back in Oakland, Mike Goodson, also suffered a high ankle sprain against the Buccaneers.

With Goodson also now likely out against the Ravens, the Raiders will split touches between Taiwan Jones and Marcel Reece, and we view Reece as the running back to target. He should be the most added player this week.

The Raiders will be popular on the waiver wire with Carson Palmer being added in all formats and Brandon Myers seeing a significant spike in ownership after scoring two touchdowns. With the uncertainty at running back, Oakland will continue to trend toward a passing team.

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: Carson Palmer, Raiders (79 percent)
Maybe add: Ryan Fitzpatrick, Bills (73 percent), Alex Smith, 49ers (65 percent), Russell Wilson, Seahawks (34 percent), Jake Locker, Titans (22 percent), Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins (19 percent)
Desperation add: Matt Hasselbeck, Titans (13 percent), Nick Foles, Eagles (11 percent)
The breakdown: Palmer's ownership should be higher and I'd rather have him on my roster than the following quarterbacks who have a higher percentage: Philip Rivers (94 percent), Andy Dalton (91), Joe Flacco (89) and Jay Cutler (84). Palmer has at least 18 Fantasy points in six of eight games, including three in a row. He has a favorable schedule going forward and can be a good matchup-based quarterback if needed. ... Fitzpatrick has a great matchup against the Patriots, who he torched for 31 Fantasy points in Week 4, but he's been miserable on the road with a combined 17 Fantasy points in his past three games at San Francisco, Arizona and Houston. Start Fitzpatrick if need be, but he's risky. ... Smith isn't a dynamic Fantasy quarterback, but he is capable of good outings at times. He has four games this season with at least 21 Fantasy points and if you're missing Aaron Rodgers or Robert Griffin III, he might be helpful in deeper formats. ... Wilson doesn't have the best matchup against the Jets, but it's hard to ignore his recent production, especially at home. In his past three home games against Green Bay, New England and Minnesota he is averaging 24 Fantasy points. ... Locker could return this week against the Dolphins after being out the past five games with a left shoulder injury. This would be a good matchup since Miami has allowed opposing quarterbacks at least 23 Fantasy points in three of the past six games. We would have more faith in Locker than Hasselbeck. ... Tannehill also would have a favorable matchup since the Titans have allowed at least 20 Fantasy points in seven of nine games this year.

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Running backs

Must add: Vick Ballard, Colts (69 percent), Daryl Richardson, Rams (68 percent), Isaac Redman, Steelers (66 percent), Daniel Thomas, Dolphins (59 percent), Joique Bell, Lions (47 percent), Ronnie Brown, Chargers (26 percent), Marcel Reece, Raiders (1 percent)
Maybe add: Mark Ingram, Saints (40 percent), Mike Goodson, Raiders (24 percent), James Starks, Packers (21 percent), Shane Vereen, Patriots (16 percent), Chris Ivory, Saints (2 percent), Taiwan Jones, Raiders (2 percent)
Desperation add: Beanie Wells, Cardinals (28 percent), Shaun Draughn, Chiefs (10 percent), Evan Royster, Redskins (9 percent), Bernard Pierce, Ravens (8 percent), Justin Forsett, Texans (4 percent)
The breakdown: The good news is there are running backs available if you lost McFadden or have Trent Richardson or Alfred Morris on a bye. Ballard could remain the starter for the Colts in a great matchup against the Jaguars on Thursday with Donald Brown (knee) still not 100 percent. Redman could also remain the starter for the Steelers with Rashard Mendenhall (Achilles) and Jonathan Dwyer (quad) still banged up in a tremendous matchup against the Chiefs on Monday night. I would put in claims for Ballard and Redman, in that order, before any Oakland running back. ... I would approach the Raiders by putting in a claim for Reece in all leagues. He just seems to be the safest bet after he had eight catches for 95 yards and a touchdown against the Bucs. He didn't have a carry, but Jones only had one carry for 2 yards and one catch for 4 yards once McFadden and Goodson went down, including a fumble that he recovered. Jones would be the next target if you needed help for Week 10 because he should get increased playing time. But he's only worth adding in deeper leagues. ... Ivory is only a short-term solution with Darren Sproles (hand) possibly back within two weeks, but he ran well against the Eagles with 10 carries for 48 yards and a touchdown. I'd take him over Ingram right now since he had seven carries for 44 yards and two catches for 23 yards. Ivory already has as many games (one) with double digits in Fantasy points as Ingram this year. ... Daryl Richardson, Thomas, Bell and Brown are worth owning in most leagues because even in secondary roles they are still getting production. For this week, I'd rank them Brown, Thomas, Bell and Richardson. Brown is a must-own in PPR formats. ... 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. ... Wells is worth a flier with the hope he returns at 100 percent in Week 12. ... Every Ray Rice owner should invest in Pierce as a handcuff. The same goes for Arian Foster owners with Justin Forsett in case Ben Tate (hamstring) remains out.

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Wide receivers

Must add: Nate Washington, Titans (78 percent), Sidney Rice, Seahawks (73 percent), Darrius Heyward-Bey, Raiders (60 percent), Cecil Shorts, Jaguars (56 percent), Ryan Broyles, Lions (23 percent)
Maybe add: Justin Blackmon, Jaguars (42 percent), Donnie Avery, Colts (36 percent), Golden Tate, Seahawks (18 percent), T.Y. Hilton, Colts (8 percent), Emmanuel Sanders, Steelers (6 percent)
Desperation add: Kevin Ogletree, Cowboys (21 percent), Alshon Jeffery, Bears (19 percent), Danario Alexander, Chargers (0 percent), Jerricho Cotchery, Steelers (0 percent)
The breakdown: Washington is a great one-week starter against the Dolphins because secondary receivers have hurt Miami and Kendall Wright (elbow) is banged up. No. 2 receivers have scored five touchdowns against the Dolphins in the past six games. ... No. 2 receivers have also hurt the Vikings, which should help Titus Young and Broyles this week. Minnesota has allowed four touchdowns to No. 2 receivers in the past three games. ... Rice and Tate have a tough matchup against the Jets, but it's hard to ignore their production. Rice has three touchdowns in his past four games and Tate has five touchdowns in his past seven games. Rice should be owned in all leagues and Tate has plenty of value in deeper formats. ... Shorts had a disappointing game in Week 9 against Detroit, but he faces the Colts in Week 10. Indianapolis has allowed a receiver to score or reach 100 yards in every game this season, including Shorts in Week 3. He still has more value than Blackmon, who scored his first NFL touchdown against the Lions. Take a flier on Blackmon and hope this is the start of something in his disappointing rookie year. ... Heyward-Bey should be on every roster. He has averaged eight Fantasy points a game the past three weeks and should continue to be a significant contributor going forward. ... Hilton will have tremendous value if Avery (hip) is out, but both are worth adding if you need a receiver. Andrew Luck is only going to keep improving and you want to have his targets on your Fantasy team. ... Sanders and Cotchery will benefit if Antonio Brown (ankle) is out. Target Sanders first, but Cotchery is worth a look in deeper formats. ... Keep an eye on Alexander, who made a good impression on Norv Turner in Week 9 and could inject some life into San Diego's passing game. ... Jeffery is someone to monitor for when he returns from his broken hand, which should be soon.

Tight ends

Must add: Dustin Keller, Jets (52 percent), Brandon Myers, Raiders (46 percent), Joel Dreessen, Broncos (40 percent), Dwayne Allen, Colts (19 percent)
Maybe add: Scott Chandler, Bills (53 percent), Logan Paulsen, Redskins (10 percent)
Desperation add: Rob Housler, Cardinals (2 percent), Tom Crabtree, Packers (2 percent), Charles Clay, Dolphins (0 percent)
The breakdown: Keller should be added in all leagues and has the chance to finish the season strong. In two games since coming back from a hamstring injury he has 14 catches for 170 yards and a touchdown on 18 targets. ... Myers finally scored his first NFL touchdown in Week 9, but he's been playing well all season. He has at least five catches in five games, at least 55 receiving yards in five games and now he's broken through with a score. In deeper leagues he could start for you in Week 10 at Baltimore. ... Dreessen took advantage of a great matchup against the Bengals but also has four touchdowns in his past six games. He's not going to disappear as a red-zone threat for Peyton Manning. ... Allen had a solid game against the Dolphins with Coby Fleener (shoulder) out with six catches for 75 yards on seven targets, and he will start again in Week 10 at Jacksonville. ... Chandler scored twice against the Patriots in Week 4, but that was the last time he scored. Since then he has combined for eight Fantasy points in four games, so use caution if you decide to start him. ... Paulsen is off this week, but he has 13 catches for 178 yards on 20 targets the past three games. He has done well with Fred Davis (Achilles) out. ... Crabtree has three touchdowns on the season, which is two more than Jermichael Finley.

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
Zach Ertz makes biggest jump among Eagles tight ends
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(11:01 am ET) Eagles offensive coordiantor Pat Shurmur said the tight end group has really improved, especially second-year pro Zach Ertz.

"When you look at each guy, Brent Celek is very veteran, but he's in great shape. He looks terrific. James Casey kind of does everything we ask him to do, whether it's run block, pass block. He's really good even out of the back ield at times," Shurmur said.

"Then Ertz has probably made the biggest improvement because he's the youngest guy. I think we can use any combination of one, two or three of them at any time. Really, we train our guys. Receivers and tight ends, they're all just skill players to us."

The Philadelphia Inquirer expects the tight ends, specifically Ertz, to benefit from the departures of receivers DeSean Jackson and Jason Avant.


Nick Fairley gets six-month suspended sentence
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(10:48 am ET) Lions defensive tackle Nick Fairley was given a six-month suspended sentence and one year of probation in a 2012 DUI and reckless driving case. It's unclear if the NFL will punish Fairley, who had six sacks and two fumble recoveries last year.

Allen Robinson out at least two weeks
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(10:36 am ET) Jaguars rookie receiver Allen Robinson will miss at least two weeks with a hamstring injury, reports the Florida Times-Union. It's another big blow to a receiving corps already missing Cecil Shorts (hamstring), Ace Sanders (four-game suspension) and Tandon Doss (ankle).

Shaun Suisham gets four-year extension
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(10:25 am ET) Steelers kicker Shaun Suisham signed a four-year contract extension through 2018. He nailed 30 of 32 field goals last year, setting a team record with his 93.8 percent conversion rate.

Arian Foster misses another practice
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(10:21 am ET) Texans running back Arian Foster sat out another practice Friday. Though he practiced Wednesday, Foster has now missed three of the last four workouts while dealing with an undisclosed injury, according to the Houston Chronicle.

Earlier reports indicate Foster has a hamstring issue.


Giants still plan committee approach at running back
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(10:14 am ET) Despite the likely loss of David Wilson to a neck injury, Giants coach Tom Couglin indicated he'll use a running back-by-committee approach. Rashad Jennings is the starter, with rookie Andre Williams, veteran Peyton Hills and Michael Cox and Kendall Gaskins also in the mix.

"I think we have some talented guys at that spot," Coughlin told The Star-Ledger on Thursday. "I think Rashad has done well. I think the young kid (Williams) has come along the more we have given him to do. Michael Cox has had his spots.

"Gaskins did some pretty good things today. We’ll let this thing play out. It’ll be some kind of combination of people involved. They’ll have plenty of opportunities in the preseason to show us what they can do and where they fit."


Fisher impressed by Sam Bradford's explosive plays
by Dave Richard | Senior Fantasy Writer
(9:55 am ET) Rams coach Jeff Fisher told the media Thursday that the most impressive part of Sam Bradford's training camp thus far isn't just that he's back on the field after tearing an ACL, but that the passing game has become much more explosive. 

"We are getting a lot more explosive plays," Fisher explained. "Sam's throwing the ball real well. The balls going down the field on time to Kenny (Britt) and to (Brian) Quick and to Tavon (Austin) and Cookie (Jared Cook) and all the guys. ... Now, before you put the shoulder pads on there's a lot of congestion in the pocket, but now the pocket's starting to clean itself up because offense has pads on things are starting to even out a little bit, so we're getting time to make those throws."

Before getting hurt in 2013 Bradford averaged 241.0 passing yards and two touchdowns per game. 


Rueben Randle to reap rewards of the red zone?
by Dave Richard | Senior Fantasy Writer
(9:47 am ET) After Rueben Randle got a bunch of targets in the red zone during drills on Thursday, the Newark Star-Ledger advised that "we should probably get used to seeing" the Giants' tall receiver used in such a capacity. Randle dropped one target but caught the other two. 

Randle had missed a couple of practices with a hamstring issue but was back at it. Randle had 41 receptions for 611 yards and a team-high six touchdowns last season.


Even if he's splitting reps, Maurice Jones-Drew is motivated
by Dave Richard | Senior Fantasy Writer
(9:36 am ET) Saying it's "hilarious" to hear about people doubting his abilities, Maurice Jones-Drew said Thursday that he's fully prepared to show the world that he can still play at a high level

"I know what I have left," Jones-Drew said according to the San Jose Mercury News. "I know the work I put in this offseason to get to where I need to get to be able to play at a high level. I stopped worrying about what people were saying."

Raiders head coach Dennis Allen reaffirmed that Jones-Drew will split carries with Darren McFadden, something MJD has to get used to since he hasn't split with anyone in some time. A Sports Illustrated report said McFadden has an edge on Jones-Drew in the race to start. 

Through his eight-year career, Jones-Drew has amassed 1,818 carries and 342 catches. He'll be 29 years old when the season starts and turns 30 in March 2015. 


Eddie Lacy off to sensational start in camp
by Dave Richard | Senior Fantasy Writer
(9:24 am ET) The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel says the lowlight of Eddie Lacy's training camp thus far was dropping a pass thrown from his position coach during a sideline drill. Everything else about Lacy's camp "couldn't have looked any better."

Lacy figures to remain as the Packers' primary running back, so long as he stays healthy.  


 
 
 
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