The pending return of Percy Harvin (hip) is good news, but the Seattle Seahawks lost another wide receiver on Monday night with Sidney Rice going down for the season with a torn ACL. Harvin reportedly had a setback with his hip last week, so exactly when he’ll play is now unclear. Seahawks’ offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell has already suggested Doug Baldwin, who has predominantly played in the slot, will see more snaps as an outside receiver with Rice out. Could he become a solid option for fantasy football owners?
Baldwin has exactly one catch in four of eight games this season, including each of the last two games. But when he has gotten more opportunities he has been productive, including seven receptions for 91 yards against the Carolina Panthers in Week 1 and five catches for 80 yards in Week 5 against the Indianapolis Colts, and he appears to have some chemistry with quarterback Russell Wilson.
Seattle will face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 9, who have been up-and-down against opposing wide receivers this season in terms of fantasy points allowed, but after that the Atlanta Falcons (Week 10) and Minnesota Vikings (Week 11) are on the slate, and both come into this week in the bottom 10 of the league against opposing wide receivers (ESPN scoring).
Baldwin’s ultimate impact down the stretch for fantasy owners is tied closely to Harvin’s health and how much he is able to play once he returns to action, but there may be room for both to be productive with few other options in the Seahawks’ passing game. I think Baldwin is worth considering as a waiver wire addition in 12 and 14-team PPR leagues for owners that need an option over the next few weeks and can afford to speculate a bit, but anything more than that feels like a reach at this point.
Brad Berreman is a contributing writer at Rant Sports.com. Follow him on Twitter @bradberreman 24.