Facebook Pixel

    Should you add Godwin Igwebuike or Craig Reynolds on the waiver wire in Week 15?

    Can Godwin Igwebuike or Craig Reynolds prove to be worthwhile fantasy additions off the waiver wire for Week 15 and beyond?

    After months of careful decision-making and a bit of luck, we have reached Week 15, the start of the fantasy football playoffs. For those still in the hunt for an elusive title, congratulations — but the work is only beginning. It starts right now with the waiver wire and two of the more surprising names in Godwin Igwebuike and Craig Reynolds of the Detroit Lions. Is it possible to trust a Lions RB with your fantasy future on the line? Could either Igwebuike or Reynolds prove to be a worthwhile addition off the waiver wire for Week 15 and beyond?

    Craig Reynolds goes from no-name to fantasy darling in 60 minutes

    It seems like every week, we have a guy who comes out of nowhere and shines for fantasy managers. Reynolds is the latest player to add his name to the list.

    With D’Andre Swift (shoulder) and Jamaal Williams (COVID-19) inactive, many fantasy managers assumed Jermar Jefferson or Igwebuike would take the lead role. But it wound up being Reynolds. For a guy who has never played a single snap, he made the most of his opportunity. 

    Reynolds had a team-high 83 yards on 11 carries while also adding 2 receptions for 16 yards. His 11.9 PPR points were enough to secure a spot inside the top-24 on the week as the RB23. 

    Reynolds also led the Lions’ backfield in snaps with 29, but he finished second in routes run with 16 in Detroit’s 38-10 loss to the Denver Broncos. With the Lions now officially eliminated from the NFL playoffs, we could see head coach Dan Campbell opt to use Reynolds in the future rather than risking injury to Swift.

    Godwin Igwebuike has a quiet day in Week 14 despite a wide-open backfield

    With both Swift and Williams out and Jefferson active but dealing with the flu, initial assumptions pointed to Igwebuike as the Lions RB likely to see the highest volume. Well, you know what they say about assumptions. They make … you know what, never mind.

    Igwebuike has seen minimal usage this year, but at least he was a semi-known name. In Week 10, for example, he posted 56 yards and a touchdown against the Steelers. Last week, he played on 28 of 63 snaps (44%) and saw 8 carries. However, he wasn’t able to do much with them, as he rushed for 25 yards and fumbled the ball once. He did run more routes than Reynolds, but he failed to see a single target. 

    Some fantasy managers scrambled and picked up Igwebuike out of desperation on Saturday night. They believed they had a starting RB only to be surprised by not only the success of Reynolds as the No. 1 but by Igwebuike’s lack of usage in the receiving game. And unfortunately for fantasy managers, I don’t see this changing anytime soon.

    Igwebuike appears to be fourth on the depth chart, which might be on the high side. Jefferson, a 2021 seventh-round pick out of Oregon State, likely would have had a prominent role if not for his midweek illness. 

    Should either Godwin Igwebuike or Craig Reynolds be fantasy waiver wire claims in Week 15?

    I can make a case for Reynolds, but not so much for Igwebuike. Even in a game with limited options, Igwebuike’s lack of utilization leads me to believe he should not be on fantasy rosters. It would take multiple injuries or a rash of inactives — perhaps due to COVID, which is running rampant in the league — for him to see any noticeable workload. 

    As for Reynolds, I believe he is worth a fantasy waiver wire claim as long as expectations are kept in check. Picking up Reynolds is a purely speculative transaction based on the off chance that Swift does not come back this season or Williams misses more time.

    In the playoffs, it’s wise to roster any primary backup RB. For the Lions, that appears to be Reynolds. With 62 players testing positive for COVID-19 in the last 48 hours, you cannot be sure anyone will suit up. This is where the value of Reynolds’ fantasy relevance lies, but it’s muted given the state of Detroit’s offense. 

    The downside for Reynolds, or any Lions RB, is the potential for a negative game script — which happens more times than not for Detroit. That is especially the case for this week as they face the Arizona Cardinals, who likely will blow out the Lions and are solid against the run, ranking 10th over their last four games against the opposing RBs.

    Listen to the PFN Inside Access Podcast!

    Listen to the PFN Inside Access Podcast! Click the embedded player below to listen, or you can find the PFN Fantasy Podcast on iTunes, Spotify, and all major podcast platforms.  Be sure to subscribe and leave us a five-star review!

    Related Articles