Fantasy Sports

Fantasy Football: Week 13 Waiver Wire Pickups

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Fantasy Football: Waiver Wire Pickups For Week 13

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12 weeks of the 2013 NFL season are now nearly in the books, with this week’s result for a lot of fantasy football owners still to be determined Monday night when the San Francisco 49ers take on the Washington Redskins.

Week 13 is the final week of the regular season in the majority of fantasy leagues, outside of the increasingly rare league that uses Week 17 to decide a champion. Still, keeping an eye on the waiver wire can make a difference even at this late stage when playoff seeds are decided and wins and losses take on greater importance.

Once again, and as faithful readers have surely come to expect by this point, I have focused on players who are available in over half of Yahoo! leagues with this week’s list of waiver wire recommendations with only rare exceptions. Looking at long-term impact obviously has decreased importance at this stage, but I still have attempted to look ahead to critical weeks for fantasy owners to find players I think can make an impact beyond a single week.

Week 13 will start on Thanksgiving Day, with six teams (Green Bay Packers, Detroit Lions, Dallas Cowboys, Oakland Raiders, Baltimore Ravens, Pittsburgh Steelers) in action throughout the day. So fantasy owners face a shortened window when perusing the waiver wire and setting their lineups this week, and having players from six teams unavailable after Thursday may make a difference for some.

Without further ado, and as we prepare to give thanks this week, here are my “Waiver Wire Pickups” for Week 13.

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Mike Glennon, QB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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Glennon had 247 passing yards and two touchdowns without an interception against the Detroit Lions on Sunday, and he now has multiple passing touchdowns in three of his last four games with just one interception in his last six games. A tough stretch of matchups is coming, as three of Tampa Bay’s next four opponents (Week 13-Carolina Panthers, Week 15-San Francisco 49ers, Week 16-St. Louis Rams) came into Week 12 in the top 10 of the league against opposing quarterbacks (ESPN scoring), but Glennon did have some success against the Panthers back in Week 8 (275 passing yards and one touchdown). Somehow he is still available in 79 percent of Yahoo! leagues, but Glennon is still a solid choice as a QB2 in 12-team leagues.

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Ryan Tannehill, QB, Miami Dolphins

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Tannehill threw for 310 yards along with four carries for 36 yards against the Carolina Panthers on Sunday, and he now has double-digit fantasy points (ESPN scoring) in seven straight games and all but one game all season. Only one team on Miami’s remaining schedule entered Week 12 in the bottom half of the league against opposing quarterbacks, and the Dolphins play the New York Jets twice (Week 13 and Week 17). Week 15 against the New England Patriots also looks favorable, particularly because it will be a home game for Miami without the possibility of winter weather. Tannehill had success in a tough matchup against Carolina in Week 12, so he is a viable under-the-radar QB2 in 12 and 14-team leagues down the stretch.

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Dennis Johnson, RB, Houston Texans

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Johnson had 13 carries for 74 yards along with two catches for 13 yards on Sunday against the Jacksonville Jaguars, as Ben Tate was ineffective for the most part (seven carries for one yard, five catches for 26 yards). Tate’s rib issue may finally be limiting his effectiveness, which means Johnson could see a bigger workload going forward. Four of Houston’s remaining five opponents entered Week 12 in the bottom half of the league against opposing running backs, and the only one that did not (the Indianapolis Colts in Week 15) has allowed at least 20 fantasy points (ESPN scoring) to the position in each of their last three games. Tate’s health one way or the other will have an impact on Johnson’s fantasy value over the rest of the season, but the rookie is worth at least a speculative add in 12-team leagues.

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Rashard Mendenhall, RB, Arizona Cardinals

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Mendenhall had 13 carries for 54 yards and a touchdown along with one catch for 24 yards on Sunday against the Indianapolis Colts, and he now has a rushing touchdown in back-to-back games. A Week 13 matchup with the Philadelphia Eagles is fairly favorable, but Arizona’s following two opponents (Week 14-St. Louis Rams, Week 15-Tennessee Titans) came into Week 12 in the bottom 10 of the league against opposing running backs (ESPN scoring). Mendenhall is likely to continue to share time fairly equally with Andre Ellington, which puts a ceiling on his already limited upside, but he should be owned more widely than he is right now (51 percent ownership in Yahoo! leagues).

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Nate Burleson, WR, Detroit Lions

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Burleson returned from a broken arm on Sunday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and had seven catches (on 10 targets) for 77 yards and a touchdown in the game. A favorable stretch of matchups is coming, starting on Thanksgiving Day against the Green Bay Packers, as each of Detroit’s next three opponents came into Week 12 in the bottom half of the league against opposing wide receivers (ESPN scoring). I expected Burleson’s ownership percentage to rise more dramatically last week ahead of his return to action, but he is still available in over 70 percent of Yahoo! leagues and is a worthy addition in PPR leagues.

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Rod Streater, WR, Oakland Raiders

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Streater had five receptions for 93 yards against the Tennessee Titans in Week 12, and he now has 11 catches (on 17 targets) for 177 yards and a touchdown over the last two games with Matt McGloin starting under center for the Raiders. Four of the next five games for Oakland come against teams that entered Week 12 in the bottom half of the league against wide receivers (Week 13-Dallas Cowboys, Week 14-New York Jets, Week 16-San Diego Chargers, Week 17-Denver Broncos), so even with a potentially ill-timed tough matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 15 Streater has a chance to be an under-the radar contributor in deep leagues based on volume alone.