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Fantasy Football: Week 11 Waiver Wire Pickups

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2012 Fantasy Football: Week 11 Waiver Wire Pickups


Week 10 of the NFL schedule will come to an end on Monday night, so it is now reaching a critical time for fantasy football owners with the playoffs on the horizon. But Week 11 is the final week of bye weeks for this season, so fantasy owners will not have to deal with that any longer after the week’s games are done.

The New York Giants, Minnesota Vikings, Tennessee Titans and Seattle Seahawks are idle this week, with leaves plenty of fantasy options unavailable to their owners. Notable names like Adrian Peterson, Eli Manning, Victor Cruz, Marshawn Lynch and Chris Johnson have the week off, thinning the starting options for plenty of owners in a pivotal week.

The list of suitable waiver additions is narrowed slightly by this point, as players who are healthy and have favorable matchups this week or down the road immediately become worth consideration depending on league format and league depth. In any case, it is not worth hanging onto any player that is purely taking up space on a fantasy roster if an upgrade of any sort can be found.

I have again focused on players who are available in more than half of Yahoo! leagues, and thus should be available in a similar percentage of leagues regardless of league host. I have also tried to look ahead and recommend players with the best chance to make a long-term impact for fantasy owners, with a particular look toward the fantasy playoffs at this stage of the season.

Here are my “Waiver Wire Pickups” for Week 11.

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Sam Bradford, QB, St. Louis Rams


Bradford went 26-for-39 for 275 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions against the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday, and now has double-digit fantasy points (ESPN scoring) in five straight games. Week 11-Week 13 don’t look incredibly favorable (New York Jets, Arizona Cardinals and the 49ers), but Week 14-Week 16 (Buffalo Bills, Minnesota Vikings, Tampa Bay Buccaneers) brings three games against teams that entered Week 10 in the bottom five of the league against opposing quarterbacks (ESPN scoring). With injuries on Sunday potentially creating depth concerns for some fantasy owners, Bradford has the look of a very good QB2 during some crucial weeks.

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Nick Foles, QB, Philadelphia Eagles


After a lot of recent speculation about when he would start a game, Foles took over for an injured Michael Vick (concussion) on Sunday against the Dallas Cowboys and performed solidly (22-for-32 for 219 yards, one touchdown and one interception). With Vick’s status clearly in doubt for Week 11 against the Washington Redskins, and perhaps beyond, Foles could easily make his first NFL start in a very favorable matchup next Sunday. The Redskins came into Week 10 alllowing the fourth-most fantasy points to quarterbacks (19.0 per game, ESPN scoring), including 19 passing touchdowns (second-most in the league). Foles’ appeal to fantasy owners is clearly tied to Vick’s health, but those who are in deeper leagues can consider taking a flier on him.

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Marcel Reece, RB, Oakland Raiders


Reece had 13 carries for 48 yards and seven receptions for 56 yards against the Baltimore Ravens in Week 10, as he stepped in as Oakland’s primary option in the backfield with Darren McFadden and Mike Goodson out. If McFadden and Goodson are both sidelined again in Week 11 against the New Orleans Saints, Reece could again have a productive day in a favorable matchup. The Saints entered Week 10 allowing the second-most fantasy points to opposing running backs (24.0 per game, ESPN scoring), and Reece's role in the Oakland passing game would enhance his potential. After that some good matchups are on the slate against theCincinnati Bengals (Week 12), Cleveland Browns (Week 13), Kansas City Chiefs (Week 15) and Carolina Panthers (Week 16). All four of those teams came into Week 10 in the bottom half of the league against opposing running backs, so Reece has a chance to maintain some fantasy value going forward. Everything depends on the status of McFadden and to a lesser extent Goodson, but Reece is well-worth adding in 12-team leagues right now. Owners in PPR leagues should consider him a virtual must-add.

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Chris Ivory, RB, New Orleans Saints

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Ivory had seven carries for 72 yards and a touchdown along with one catch for 13 yards on Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons, and now has a touchdown in back-to-back games. A very favorable matchup is coming in Week 11 against the Oakland Raiders, who entered Week 10 allowing 22.1 fantasy points per game to opposing running backs (ESPN scoring, fifth-most in the league). The Saints’ running back rotation is unpredictable to say the least, with Pierre Thomas and Mark Ingram also in the mix for touches, but with Darren Sproles (hand) likely out for at least another week there should be some opportunities for Ivory. Fantasy owners looking to add a running back that is trending the right direction can do a lot worse this week.

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Emmanuel Sanders, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers

Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE

Sanders had two catches for 20 yards and a touchdown against the New York Giants in Week 9, and is line for an increased role with Antonio Brown (ankle) out for at least Monday night against the Kansas City Chiefs and perhaps beyond. Starting in Week 11 against the Baltimore Ravens, the only team remaining on Pittsburgh’s schedule that entered Week 10 not allowing at least 18 fantasy points per game to opposing wide receivers (ESPN scoring) is the Dallas Cowboys in Week 15. Sanders’ target and catch total will be one thing worth watching for fantasy owners during Monday night’s game, but those in search of wide receiver depth in deeper leagues should already have him on their radar.

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Danario Alexander, WR, San Diego Chargers


Alexander had five receptions for 134 yards and a touchdown against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday, giving him eight catches for 195 yards over the last two games as he has started both contests. Chargers’ head coach Norv Turner promised a big role for Alexander a couple weeks ago, and there’s no reason that should not continue going forward. There are no clear-cut favorable matchups on San Diego’s upcoming schedule, but anyone with an increasing role at this stage belongs on the radar of fantasy owners. Those who are in deep leagues can put Alexander near the top of their list of potential additions for this week, particularly since he is still widely available (three percent ownership in Yahoo! leagues).

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Connor Barth, K, Tampa Bay Buccaneers


Barth went 2-for-2 on field goals and 4-for-4 on extra points against the San Diego Chargers on Sunday, and has now attempted multiple field goals all but two of nine games this season along with going 22-for-22 on extra points over his last five games. A very favorable matchup is on the slate in Week 11 against the Carolina Panthers, who entered Week 10 having allowed the most field goal attempts (24) this season and opposing kickers have missed only two field goals all season against them. Against Carolina back in Week 1, Barth went 3-for-3 on field goals with one extra point and a repeat is not out of the question with the Tampa Bay offense going well in recent weeks. Some far tougher matchups are coming after next Sunday, but fantasy owners who have had an underachieving kicker can find a lot to like with Barth.

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Cincinnati Bengals, Team Defense

Frank Victores-US PRESSWIRE

The Bengals’ defense had an excellent performance in Week 10 against the New York Giants, as they allowed just 13 points while forcing four turnovers and sacking quarterback Eli Manning four times. They have now forced multiple turnovers in three straight games heading into a favorable matchup with the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 11. The Chiefs have yet to play in Week 10, but they came into the week having turned the ball over 29 times this season and have not scored more than 16 points in any of their last four games. After that a few potentially favorable matchups are coming from Week 13-Week 15 against the San Diego Chargers, Dallas Cowboys and Philadelphia Eagles, as all three of those teams entered Week 10 in the bottom 10 of the league in terms of fantasy points allowed to opposing defenses (ESPN scoring). Fantasy owners should not necessarily expect elite production here, but those looking for a defense with a favorable Week 11 matchup at minimum can consider adding the Cincinnati defense.