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Waiver Wire: Who are the must-add options?

Senior Fantasy Writer
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When we got to Week 12, we were supposed to be making plans for the Fantasy playoffs. We were past the bye weeks and the hope was healthy reinforcements were on the way.

Boy, were we wrong.

Week 11 brought some devastating injuries, including Willis McGahee (knee) and Rob Gronkowski (forearm) possibly being lost for the rest of the Fantasy season. LeSean McCoy (concussion) is likely out for Week 12 and Julio Jones (ankle) may have suffered a setback.

On the other hand, there was some good news with the emergence of Justin Blackmon and Chad Henne, the continued production from Danario Alexander and Brandon Myers and the expected return of Beanie Wells in Week 12. It all sets up to be a busy week on the waiver wire.

Look for Bryce Brown and Ronnie Hillman to be the most added players this week with Blackmon, Alexander and Myers to see huge spikes in ownership. We'll also see if owners buy into Wells and we might have a quarterback controversy in San Francisco following a breakout performance from Colin Kaepernick.

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: Russell Wilson, Seahawks (42 percent), Jake Locker, Titans (21 percent), Colin Kaepernick, 49ers (5 percent)
Maybe add:, Sam Bradford, Rams (49 percent), Brandon Weeden, Browns (26 percent), Chad Henne, Jaguars (1 percent)
Desperation add: Nick Foles, Eagles (30 percent), Jason Campbell, Bears (3 percent), Brady Quinn, Chiefs (2 percent), Charlie Batch, Steelers (0 percent)
The breakdown: 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh hinted Kaepernick might remain his starting quarterback after he led a rout of the Bears with 22 Fantasy points. If that happens, even for Week 12 alone, Kaepernick is worth adding in all leagues with a matchup at the Saints. And if he remains the starter for the rest of the season ahead of the injured Alex Smith (concussion) then Kaepernick could continue to be Fantasy relevant in all leagues. … Wilson has been great at home (at least 20 Fantasy points in his past three games in Seattle) compared to on the road (only one game with more than 11 Fantasy points in five outings). But his matchup with the Dolphins in Week 12 is enticing and he's a sleeper in all leagues. … Locker faces a Jaguars defense that just allowed 527 passing yards and five touchdowns to Matt Schaub and Locker is another sleeper in Week 12. … Henne has the chance to help owners after 38 Fantasy points against the Texans and he also has a favorable matchup against the Titans, who are among the league leaders with 20 passing touchdowns allowed.

Running backs

Must add: Mark Ingram, Saints (52 percent), Beanie Wells, Cardinals (44 percent), James Starks, Packers (42 percent), Ronnie Hillman, Broncos (28 percent), Bryce Brown, Eagles (5 percent), Jalen Parmele, Jaguars (0 percent)
Maybe add: Cedric Benson, Packers (37 percent), Shane Vereen, Patriots (17 percent), Bilal Powell, Jets (5 percent), Lance Ball, Broncos (1 percent), Lance Dunbar, Cowboys (1 percent)
Desperation add: Lamar Miller, Dolphins (4 percent), Philip Tanner, Cowboys (4 percent), Cedric Peerman, Bengals (3 percent), Knowshon Moreno, Broncos (3 percent), Justin Forsett, Texans (2 percent)
The breakdown: If you're ranking the running backs for this week only, put them in this order: Brown, Hillman, Parmele, Wells and Ingram. If you're looking for the rest of the season, then put them in this order: Hillman, Parmele, Wells, Ingram and Starks. … The reason we like Brown this week is he should get all the carries in a favorable matchup against the Panthers if McCoy is out as expected. … Hillman is a close second with a tremendous matchup against the Chiefs, but he will share carries with Ball and maybe even Moreno. Put Ball and Moreno on your radar in deeper formats, but Hillman should benefit the most with McGahee out. … Wells makes his return after being out since Week 4 with a toe injury. He will likely share playing time with LaRod Stephens-Howling, but Wells should play a prominent role right away. … Parmele appears to be the Jaguars' featured rusher until Maurice Jones-Drew (foot) returns, but who knows when that will happen. Parmele moved ahead of Rashad Jennings on the depth chart and finished with eight Fantasy points against the Texans. … Ingram has taken advantage of Darren Sproles (hand) being out and he should continue to get carries even when Sproles returns this week. Chris Ivory might be the odd man out -- which is disappointing -- but the Saints don't need to carry four running backs. … Starks is the starter for the Packers moving forward until Benson (toe) returns, which looks like Week 15. Starks is not exciting, but he can give you about seven Fantasy points on a weekly basis, making him a flex option in standard formats. … Powell did a great job with two touchdowns against the Rams, but he remains behind Shonn Greene on the depth chart. We wouldn't invest heavily in Powell unless Greene got hurt. … If you want to speculate on a running back then add Miller. The Dolphins are struggling with Reggie Bush and Daniel Thomas and might give Miller a chance at increased playing time in the near future. … Keep an eye on Dunbar and Tanner, who might be the only healthy running backs in Dallas. DeMarco Murray (foot) and Felix Jones (knee) are injured, although Jones hopes to play on Thanksgiving. If he suffers a setback in practice then Dunbar or Tanner could get an increased role.

Wide receivers

Must add: Cecil Shorts, Jaguars (72 percent), Golden Tate, Seahawks (47 percent), Danario Alexander, Chargers (37 percent), Justin Blackmon, Jaguars (36 percent), T.Y. Hilton, Colts (26 percent), Julian Edelman, Patriots (1 percent)
Maybe add: Pierre Garcon, Redskins (70 percent), Jeremy Kerley, Jets (51 percent), Davone Bess, Dolphins (36 percent), Brandon LaFell, Panthers (36 percent), Brandon Gibson, Rams (26 percent), Mohamed Sanu, Bengals (4 percent)
Desperation add: Plaxico Burress, free agent (1 percent), Harry Douglas, Falcons (1 percent), Aldrick Robinson, Redskins (1 perent), Riley Cooper, Eagles (0 percent), Juron Criner, Raiders (0 percent), Chaz Schilens, Jets (0 percent)
The breakdown: There are a lot of receivers to covet this week, but Shorts should be added in all formats. He now has double digits in Fantasy points in four of his past five games and is worth starting in Week 12 against the Titans. Blackmon might not be a starter in all leagues, but he is worth adding with the hope that Henne can continue to get him the ball. The two hooked up on seven catches for 236 yards and a touchdown against the Texans. … Alexander could finish the season as the best receiving option for the Chargers, including Antonio Gates. In only three full games in San Diego he has 15 catches for 291 yards and three touchdowns. He also has a great matchup against Baltimore at home in Week 12. … For the second time in three weeks, Hilton took advantage of an injury to Donnie Avery (concussion) with double digits in Fantasy points. If Avery is out in Week 12 against Buffalo then consider Hilton a sleeper. … The same goes for Tate who, like Wilson, is better at home than on the road, but he's also worth owning in all leagues since he has six touchdowns on the season, including one at Carolina in Week 5. The Dolphins also have struggled with secondary receivers this year. … Edelman could benefit with Gronkowski's injury and he also might have passed Brandon Lloyd on the depth chart. Edelman had seven targets and finished with five catches for 58 yards and a touchdown and one run for 47 yards against the Colts. The Patriots might continue to use him and Wes Welker together, which they have tended to avoid in the past. … I hope Garcon can get back to 100 percent, but I'm skeptical. Still, he's worth adding if you have the roster space since he returned in Week 11 after being out since Week 5 with a toe injury. … The last time Kerley faced the Patriots in Week 7 he had seven catches for 120 yards on 11 targets. … Sanu now has two touchdowns in his past two games. He's someone to monitor with the hope this continues. … LaFell had 15 Fantasy points against the Buccaneers in Week 11 and has favorable matchups ahead against Philadelphia and Kansas City. Hopefully he can close the season strong after cooling off following a hot start. … It looks like Burress is going to sign with the Steelers with Antonio Brown (ankle) and Jerricho Cotchery (ribs) injured. Given their quarterback situation, Burress is only worth adding in the deepest of leagues.

Tight ends

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Must add: Jermichael Finley, Packers (74 percent), Brandon Myers, Raiders (62 percent)
Maybe add: Dustin Keller, Jets (62 percent), Jared Cook, Titans (50 percent), Dwayne Allen, Colts (30 percent), Marcedes Lewis, Jaguars (15 percent), Dallas Clark, Buccaneers (11 percent), Logan Paulsen, Redskins (10 percent)
Desperation add: Tony Moeaki, Chiefs (3 percent), Benjamin Watson, Browns (1 percent), Garrett Graham, Texans (1 percent), Visanthe Shiancoe, Patriots (0 percent)
The breakdown: Aaron Rodgers said during the bye in Week 10 he worked on some things with Finley and it showed in Week 11 at the Lions. Finley scored for the first time since Week 1 and his 66 yards was the highest output of the season on three catches. We hope that's something to build on in Week 12 against the Giants. Finley scored against New York in the regular season last year. … Myers continues to post quality stats yet still isn't owned in every league. He now has three touchdowns in his past three games with 33 Fantasy points over that span. He has at least seven targets in five of his past six games and he has at least five catches in seven outings this year. With all the problems at tight end, he should be a starting option in all formats until he proves otherwise. … If Coby Fleener (shoulder) remains out then look for Allen to remain a starting Fantasy option. He has a favorable matchup against the Bills in Week 12 and Allen has at least six catches for 69 yards in two of his past three games. … After those three tight ends you should look at the matchups in Week 12 with these next five options: Keller vs. New England, Lewis vs. Tennessee, Cook at Jacksonville, Paulsen at Dallas and Clark vs. Atlanta. The Patriots allow the third-most Fantasy points to opposing tight ends and Keller had seven catches for 93 yards and a touchdown against them in Week 7. … Lewis just scored two touchdowns against the Texans and the Titans allow the fourth-most Fantasy points to opposing tight ends. Maybe Lewis can get things going with Henne. … The Jaguars just allowed two touchdowns to Graham, their first two touchdowns of the season to tight ends, but Cook is also the only tight end to score against the Dolphins in Week 10. … Paulsen continues to do well as the starter for the Redskins and scored his first touchdown in Week 11 at Philadelphia. The Cowboys just gave up two touchdowns against Benjamin Watson. … And Clark has done a solid job of late with 17 Fantasy points in his past two games. He had 11 targets in Week 11 at Carolina and finished with seven catches for 58 yards and a touchdown. The Falcons allow the fifth-most Fantasy points to opposing tight ends. … Watson is only an emergency replacement option even though he scored twice. The Steelers should be able to limit him this week. … Shiancoe would only have increased value if Aaron Hernandez (ankle) doesn't return in Week 12 at the Jets. But Shiancoe is worth monitoring with Gronkowski now out.

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
Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas to practice this week
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(5:43 pm ET) Seahawks coach Pete Carroll told SiriusXM NFL Radio that cornerback Richard Sherman (elbow) and safety Earl Thomas (shoulder) will practice this week and should be "good to go" for the Super Bowl. Both got hurt in the NFC Championship Game.

Seattle is a 1-point underdog to the Patriots after opening as a 2.5-point favorite.


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(4:48 pm ET) A lot of people inside the NFL are optimistic Jaguars receiver Justin Blackmon is "overcoming his issues" and will be back in the league in 2015, reports Fox Sports. Blackmon got suspended in November 2013 following his third violation of the league's substance-abuse policy.

He checked into a treatment facility last September. General manager Dave Caldwell said recently he hopes Blackmon wins reinstatement, but is not counting on it.


Reports: Josh Gordon tests positive again, facing 1-year ban
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(3:55 pm ET) Browns wideout Josh Gordon tested positive for alcohol and "now will be subject to a one-year banishment," sources told ESPN's Adam Schefter. Gordon was suspended for the first 10 games this season for a repeat violation of the league's drug policy.

Pro Football Talk reports that because of Gordon's past DUI, alcohol was one of the substances for which he was being tested. The website said a one-year suspension is likely a "done deal."

The Browns also suspended Gordon for missing a Saturday walkthrough before the regular-season finale, and CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora reported then the Browns might be ready to part ways with the ultra-talented 23-year-old.

The Browns released the following statement regarding the news: 

"Clearly we are very disappointed to hear the latest report regarding Josh. At this point, due to the confidential nature of the NFL’s substance abuse policy, we have not been made aware by the league of a failed test. We are in the process of gathering more information and will provide further comment at the appropriate time."


Report: Jordan Cameron expected to leave via free agency
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(3:14 pm ET) Browns tight end Jordan Cameron is set to become an unrestricted free agent, and ESPNCleveland.com does not expect him to re-sign with Cleveland. A concussion and shoulder injury limited Cameron to 10 games this season.

The 26-year-old caught 24 passes for 424 yards and two touchdowns after a breakout 2013 season in which he made 80 grabs for 917 yards and seven scores.


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(1:53 pm ET) Patriots starting center Bryan Stork, who missed the AFC title game with a knee injury, practiced Sunday and "continues to show no noticeable signs of injury," reports ESPN.com. The rookie is on track to play in the Super Bowl.

New England is a 1-point favorite over Seattle after opening as a 2.5-point underdog.


Seahawks to make CB Byron Maxwell a free-agency priority
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(1:29 pm ET) Seahawks general manager John Schneider told the Seattle Times that one of his first priorities will be re-signing corner Byron Maxwell, who is headed for unrestricted free agency. "Now I think he, like a lot of our other unrestricted guys, I think he is going to be highly sought after and he should be," Schneider said.

"But we would at least like to have the opportunity to retain him."

Maxwell, 26, who starts opposite Richard Sherman, had 39 tackles and two interceptions in 13 regular-season games.


Packers' Sam Shields thinks Dez Bryant caught the ball
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(10:11 am ET) Along with the Cowboys, Packers cornerback Sam Shields said he also believes wide receiver Dez Bryant made the catch during the fourth quarter of the NFC divisional game, reports ESPN.

While Shields initially said 'The refs made a good call on that,' he now admits Bryant secured the ball properly.

"It was a catch," Shields said. "But the new rule and at the last minute what happened, that's what the refs came up with. I never said he didn't catch it. He made a helluva catch I was in great coverage. Like I said, it was good on good and he came up with the catch."


Brian Hoyer wants to compete for starting QB role in Cleveland
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(9:36 am ET) Quarterback Brian Hoyer is open to returning to the Browns in 2015, if he is given a chance to compete for the starting role, Hoyer's agent Joe Linta told NBC Sports.

Hoyer started the first 13 games of the season and went 7-6. However, he was replaced by Johnny Manziel.

"I think the only thing that would make him not [want to] come back is if they said Manziel or whoever we take in the draft or whoever we sign in free agency is going to be the starter and you will only be the backup," Linta said.

Hoyer is set to become a free agent in the offseason and Linta added he expects to meet with the Browns soon to discuss their options.


Colts' Andrew Luck considered skipping Pro Bowl
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(1/24/2015) After losing 45-7 to the Patriots in the AFC Championship Game, Colts quarterback Andrew Luck admitted he thought about not playing in the Pro Bowl, reports The Indianapolis Star.

Luck felt embarrassed after the championship game and had to think about turning around and playing a week later.

"I mean, it is a privilege, but I am hurting in a sense," Luck said. "But I realize it's an honor to be voted in and the fans really enjoy it. So, I did it."

While Luck was proud of his team for advancing to the championship game, he said this season’s playoff loss was worse than the previous two.

"I think every loss in the playoffs leaves a really, really terrible taste in your mouth," Luck said. "But this one has been worse than the other two because we did get so close. And the way we lost, it was just embarrassing."


NFL warns Marshawn Lynch with 15-yard penalty for obscene gesture
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(1/24/2015) The NFL has issued a warning to Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch if he decides to make his obscene gesture in the Super Bowl, vice president of officiating Dean Blandino told ESPN Saturday. If Lynch performs his gesture, Seattle will be assessed a 15-yard penalty.

Meaning if Lynch makes his gesture after scoring a touchdown, the kickoff will be from the 20 yard line. Lynch was fined $20,000 for making his gesture after scoring a touchdown in the fourth quarter of the NFC Championship game last week.


 
 
 
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