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Waiver Wire: Last-minute Fantasy shopping

Senior Fantasy Writer
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For the past several weeks we've been telling you to add three players, names you'll see listed here again in Russell Wilson, Colin Kaepernick and Dennis Pitta. All three were huge scorers in Week 15 and might have been difference makers for you in the Fantasy playoffs.

Wilson and Kaepernick were Top 5 Fantasy quarterbacks, and either one could have been a great replacement for the injured Robert Griffin III (knee). Pitta was the No. 1 tight end, and I started him in two semifinal victories.

Now, the waiver wire wasn't all rosy in Week 15. David Wilson was added in the majority of leagues with Ahmad Bradshaw (knee) out, but he was a huge disappointment with six Fantasy points as the Giants got blown out by the Falcons. Still, he had a great opportunity, which is what Fantasy owners are looking for at this time of year.

What will this week bring off the waiver wire? We still like Wilson, Kaepernick and Pitta, and the Chargers are now looking for a starting running back with Ryan Mathews (clavicle) out for the season. Fantasy owners also might need a receiver with Torrey Smith (concussion) injured.

As for the DST options in Week 16, we'd look at the Chargers (57 percent) at the Jets, the Dolphins (52 percent) vs. Buffalo, the Redskins (28 percent) vs. Philadelphia, the Panthers (22 percent) vs. the Raiders and the Colts (9 percent) at the Chiefs.

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: Colin Kaepernick, 49ers (72 percent), Russell Wilson, Seahawks (62 percent)
Maybe add: Sam Bradford, Rams (44 percent), Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins (20 percent)
Desperation add: Kirk Cousins, Redskins (5 percent)
The breakdown: The hope is that your quarterback situation is settled for the Fantasy playoffs, but some owners without Griffin or in two-quarterback leagues might still need help. As we've been saying for weeks now, Kaepernick and Wilson are worth owning in all leagues. And if you had the guts to start either one in Week 15 you were definitely happy. Wilson was the No. 1 Fantasy quarterback with 41 points and Kaepernick was No. 4 with 32 points. They square off in Week 16 in Seattle, which makes both risky starting options in standard leagues, but if you play in Week 17 you can start Kaepernick against Arizona or Wilson against St. Louis. ... Cousins would be considered a must-add quarterback if Griffin is out again. He played well in Week 15 at Cleveland with 25 Fantasy points, and this would be a favorable matchup in Week 16 at Philadelphia. If you own Griffin and he's out again then plan on adding Cousins and starting him. ... Bradford could also be a good replacement option at Tampa Bay in Week 16. He just had 33 Fantasy points against the Vikings, and the Bucs defense is clearly vulnerable to the pass. He's a nice sleeper in this matchup. ... Tannehill might also be worth consideration in Week 16 in deeper formats. He just had 25 Fantasy points against the Jaguars in Week 15 and faces a Bills defense that was just beaten up by Wilson.

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Running Backs

Must add: DeAngelo Williams, Panthers (76 percent), Beanie Wells, Cardinals (72 percent), Danny Woodhead, Patriots (55 percent), Mark Ingram, Saints (49 percent)
Maybe add: Ben Tate, Texans (58 percent), Ronnie Brown, Chargers (23 percent), Jackie Battle, Chargers (18 percent), LaMichael James, 49ers (7 percent), Curtis Brinkley, Chargers (0 percent)
Desperation add: Alex Green, Packers (60 percent), Montell Owens, Jaguars (34 percent), Mike Goodson, Raiders (12 percent), Mike Tolbert, Panthers (6 percent)
The breakdown: It's hard to overlook the production from Williams the past two weeks with Jonathan Stewart (ankle) out. He has 34 Fantasy points over that span against Atlanta and San Diego, and he should close the season on a high note with matchups against Oakland and New Orleans. As long as Stewart remains out then consider Williams as at least a flex option given his remaining schedule. ... Wells just had a three-touchdown game against the Lions and faces the Bears at home in Week 16. In his past two home games, Wells has five touchdowns against the Rams and Lions. And the Bears have allowed a running back to score in each of their past three road games. ... Woodhead might be in a featured role in Week 16 in a great matchup at Jacksonville if Bill Belichick decides to punish Stevan Ridley and/or Shane Vereen for their fumbles in Week 15 against the 49ers. We doubt that's the case, but you never know with Belichick. In any case, it might be worth adding Woodhead because if he gets the majority of carries against the Jaguars he'll be a No. 2 Fantasy running back. Against the 49ers, Woodhead had 20 Fantasy points with two touchdowns and 84 total yards. ... Ingram just scored for the third time in the past five games in Week 15 against Tampa Bay. He faces the Cowboys in Week 16, and Dallas has allowed four rushing touchdowns in the past five games. Just keep in mind that if Ingram doesn't score his Fantasy production will be minimal. ... Tate and James are worth adding in case the Texans and 49ers, respectively, decide to rest their starters in Week 17. Tate could start for Arian Foster in a great matchup at Indianapolis, and James would also have a favorable matchup against Arizona. Also, if Jacquizz Rodgers (73 percent) is available, consider him as well in Week 17 against Tampa Bay if the Falcons rest Michael Turner. ... Ryan Mathews miserable season ended in Week 15 with a broken clavicle, but the Chargers might be replacing him with three guys in Brown, Battle and Brinkley. Brown would be the No. 1 choice if healthy, but he missed Week 15 with a hamstring injury. If he's out then the Chargers would likely split carries with Brinkley and Battle, with Battle having slightly more upside.

Wide Receivers

Must add: Danny Amendola, Rams (86 percent), T.Y. Hilton, Colts (84 percent), Justin Blackmon, Jaguars (82 percent)
Maybe add: Brandon Gibson, Rams (24 percent), Rod Streater, Raiders (7 percent), Riley Cooper, Eagles (3 percent), Joe Morgan, Saints (1 percent)
Desperation add: Randy Moss, 49ers (20 percent), Leonard Hankerson, Redskins (6 percent), Brian Quick, Rams (3 percent), Travis Benjamin, Browns (0 percent)
The breakdown: There aren't great options at receiver this week for owners in 12-team leagues or larger, so we'll look at some receivers in 10-team formats or less. Amendola returned from his two-game absence from a foot injury in Week 15 against Minnesota and had six catches for 58 yards and a touchdown on 12 targets. As long as he's active he should be owned and started in most formats. ... Hilton had his third game with double digits in Fantasy points in his past five outings in Week 15 at Houston. He faces two mediocre pass defenses to close the season at Kansas City in Week 16 and a rematch vs. Houston at home in Week 17. ... Blackmon had six catches for 93 yards on 11 targets at Miami in Week 15. He now has 12 catches for 150 yards the past two weeks on 23 targets, but we like it that Blackmon now has a healthy Cecil Shorts (concussion) back on the field. In the two games before Shorts got hurt in Week 13, Blackmon had 42 Fantasy points, so he does well when he's not the No. 1 option. ... Gibson is someone to add in PPR leagues with his performance the past two weeks with 12 catches for 176 yards and a touchdown on 17 targets. He has a great matchup in Week 16 at Tampa Bay. ... Streater is closing the season as the best receiver for the Raiders. He has 12 catches for 258 yards and one touchdown over the past three weeks with 17 targets over that span. He has outperformed Denarius Moore and Darrius Heyward-Bey, and Streater should do well in Week 16 at Carolina. ... Cooper has a touchdown in two of his past three games and has taken advantage of DeSean Jackson (ribs) being out along with Nick Foles looking in his direction. He has 21 targets in his past three outings. ... Morgan isn't getting many catches or even targets, but he is producing for Drew Brees at a time when Jimmy Graham and Marques Colston have struggled. Now, we're not suggesting playing Morgan over those guys, but it's hard to ignore the production. Morgan has four catches for 167 yards and a touchdown the past two games at the Giants and against Tampa Bay on just five targets. He's a boom or bust receiver, but if you're looking for a home run this week he could be worth a flier.

Tight Ends

Must add: Dennis Pitta, Ravens (63 percent)
Maybe add: Tony Scheffler, Lions (17 percent)
Desperation add: Dwayne Allen, Colts (20 percent), Anthony Fasano, Dolphins (12 percent), Lance Kendricks, Rams (3 percent), Jeff Cumberland, Jets (0 percent)
The breakdown: We've been telling you for a while to add Pitta for his matchups the past two weeks, and he rewarded all the owners who added him with 34 Fantasy points combined against the Redskins and Broncos. He doesn't have the best matchup this week against the Giants, but we're still backing him as a must-start option. ... Scheffler failed to take advantage of Brandon Pettigrew (ankle) being out in Week 15 at the Cardinals with just three catches for 36 yards, but he had seven targets and should rebound in Week 16 against Atlanta as long as Pettigrew remains out. ... Allen, Fasano, Kendricks and Cumberland all scored in Week 15. Ho hum. You'd have to be in a dire situation to start any of these guys in the Fantasy playoffs.

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
Patriots' Devin McCourty: There's a 'chance that I might not be back'
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(9:22 pm ET) With the Patriots deciding to use their franchise tag on kicker Stephen Gostkowski, safety Devin McCourty knows his time in New England could be coming to an end. 

In an interview with ESPN's Josina Anderson, McCourty said he didn't have much information on what the Patriots would do and was going off of various media reports that came down to the organization deciding whether to franchise him or Gostkowski. 

Now that Gostkowski is ineligible from hitting the free agent market, McCourty will test the waters beginning on March 10. 

"I guess it's more realistic now that [there's] a chance that I might not be back there," McCourty said. "Or there's still a chance that I will, but I guess [there's] more of a chance now with the franchise tag going to Steve that I could be playing in a different place. Still, keeping an open mind and trying to enjoy the process."

In 2014, McCourty recorded 68 tackles and two interceptions. 


Report: Texans' Andre Johnson given permission to seek trade
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(8:42 pm ET) Wide receiver Andre Johnson has been given permission by the Texans to seek a trade, according to a report from the Houston Chronicle

The Texans told Johnson that he'd have a reduced role this upcoming season opposite of DeAndre Hopkins. Therefore, Johnson wanted out of his deal. If a trade cannot be made with a suitor, Johnson will be released

Johnson was the third overall pick in the 2003 NFL draft and is the greatest player in the history of the Texans. He's recorded 1,012 catches, 13,597 yards and 64 touchdowns in his career.

A trade could be difficult, however, based on Johnson's upcoming $16.1 million cap figure and $10.5 million base salary for the 2015 season. 


Colts RB Vick Ballard (Achilles) 'on schedule' with recovery
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(7:57 pm ET) Running back Vick Ballard is poised to be back in the Colts' plans for the 2015 season. 

Ballard, who has missed almost all of the previous two seasons due to injuries, hasn't suffered any setbacks with his recovery, according to the Colts' official website. Ballard tore his ACL in 2013 and suffered an Achilles tear before the 2014 season. 

“Vick’s doing well. He’s going through rehab right now. He’s on schedule,” Colts coach Chuck Pagano said. "He’s been working his tail. When the doctors say he’s 100 percent and ready to roll, then we’ll get him back on the field.”

Ballard led the Colts in rushing as a rookie in 2012 with 814 yards and two touchdowns. He only played in one game in 2013 before tearing his ACL in a practice the following week. His Achilles tear came during the 2014 preseason. 


Report: Jaguars looking for help at RB this offseason
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(7:39 pm ET) It appears Jaguars running back Toby Gerhart will have new role in 2015. 

According to NFL.com's Ian Rapoport, the Jaguars are planning to move Gerhart around on offense at H-back in addition to running back. This also means the Jaguars will be in the market for additional help at running back. 

Gerhart was plagued by injuries in 2014, which paved the way for Denard Robinson to assert himself as a potential starting running back down the road. Robinson, however, is injury prone himself, which goes back to his days as a standout quarterback in college at Michigan.

Robinson's 2014 season ended on injured reserve with a mid-foot sprain.

Gerhart's season ended with just 326 yards and a patry 3.2 yards per carry average. Robinson emerged late in the year and ran for 582 yards and held a 4.3 yards per carry average.  


Report: Titans parting ways with safety Bernard Pollard
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(6:51 pm ET) The Titans will release veteran safety Bernard Pollard, according to a report from The Tennessean

Pollard had previously requested for the Titans to release him. He's coming off a season that ended prematurely due to an Achilles tear in early October. He was slated to earn $3.5 million with the Titans this year if he stayed on. 

In the five games he appeared in during the 2014 season, Pollard recorded 27 tackles and one sack. 


Report: Browns looking to add another quarterback
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(4:52 pm ET) The Browns are not done just yet in their search for quarterback talent, according to ESPN.com. Cleveland is reportedly looking to add at least one more quarterback through the draft or free agency.

The Browns made their signing of Josh McCown to a three-year deal official last week, but appear to want another to go along with him and Johnny Manziel.


Report: Redskins will pursue Ndamukong Suh as free agent
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(4:49 pm ET) After the Lions chose not to use the franchise tag to retain DE Ndamukong Suh, it became more likely that he'll become an unrestricted free agent on March 10. 

When Suh hits the market, the Redskins will be interested in signing him, reported Dianna Marie Russini of DC's NBC 4, citing sources within the organization. 


Browns don't use franchise tag on Jordan Cameron
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(4:30 pm ET) The Browns won't use their franchise tag on any player, meaning that TE Jordan Cameron will become a free agent on March 10. 

Cameron had 24 catches for 424 yards and two touchdowns last season, at a salary of $1.431 million.


No franchise tag for Broncos' Julius Thomas
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(4:27 pm ET) The Broncos will not use their franchise tag on TE Julius Thomas. The team instead tagged WR Demaryius Thomas. 

Julius Thomas will be able to become a free agent on March 10. He had 43 catches for 489 yards and 12 touchdowns last year. Thomas made $645,000 salary last year. 


Report: Bills do not apply franchise tag to linebacker Jerry Hughes
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(4:26 pm ET) The Bills reportedly chose not to apply their franchise tag to linebacker Jerry Hughes Monday, according to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network.

Buffalo has been working on signing Hughes to a new, long term deal for the past month. The veteran linebacker racked up 10 sacks and totaled 54 tackles in all 16 games in 2014 for the Bills. 


 
 
 
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