The Week 4 waiver wire is filled with some rookie running backs that have the potential to take flight. We now have three weeks’ worth of data and can start to form stronger opinions on the season-long fantasy football value of these players. With that in mind, let’s examine a couple of potential RB targets on the wire this week.
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Top RB Waiver Wire Targets in Week 4
De’Von Achane, Miami Dolphins (40% Rostered)
There is simply no way I could justify leaving De’Von Achane off this list after what he just did. Now, to be fair, the Dolphins did whatever they wanted against the Broncos in Week 3.
Whether it was WR Tyreek Hill, RB Raheem Mostert, Achane, or even QB Mike White and WR Robbie Chosen, it didn’t matter.
With that said, Achane arrived. Despite Mostert scoring four touchdowns, Achane finished as the overall RB1 with 51.3 PPR fantasy points. He ran the ball 18 times for 203 yards and added four catches for 40 yards. Achane scored four touchdowns.
The Dolphins certainly won’t be this prolific on the ground again, but Achane undoubtedly earned his keep. This is going to be a timeshare between him and Mostert, and Achane will have fantasy value, so pick him up now.
FAAB Recommendation: 30-35%
Elijah Mitchell, San Francisco 49ers (39% Rostered)
I understand why fantasy managers might have dropped Elijah Mitchell — he didn’t even touch the ball in Week 2. Still, he’s still the clear handcuff for Christian McCaffrey. We know Mitchell has legit RB1 upside if he’s in the lead role. He also did enough in Week 3 to be a desperation Flex play. Based on that upside alone, he’s worth putting on benches.
FAAB Recommendation: 5-10%
Tyjae Spears, Tennessee Titans (24% Rostered)
Tyjae Spears is not going to be fantasy-relevant as long as Derrick Henry is healthy, but the Titans are not a good team. There is a nonzero chance they move Henry at the deadline. Also, the former Alabama back could get hurt.
Spears is unquestionably the proper handcuff. He’s seen 10 targets in three games so far. There’s some semblance of desperation startable value here, too. He’s not a must-roster player, but he’s worth rostering as the last guy on your bench.
FAAB Recommendation: 5-7%
Kendre Miller, New Orleans Saints (34% Rostered)
RB Alvin Kamara is due back next week. It goes without saying that Kendre Miller’s time is not upon us just yet. With that said, Miller is undoubtedly superior to Tony Jones. With Jamaal Williams on IR, this should be a Kamara-Miller backfield.
If Miller’s time does come, it will likely be over the second half of the season. Now is the time to stash him cheaply, if you can.
FAAB Recommendation: 5-7%
Matt Breida, New York Giants (30% Rostered)
I have to include Matt Breida here because he operated as the Giants’ lead back on Thursday night. However, it wasn’t exactly exciting. Breida carried the ball four times for 17 yards and caught three passes for one yard. He just happened to fall into the end zone.
Saquon Barkley might be back this week. If not, he should be back next week. Regardless, you don’t need Breida.
FAAB Recommendation: 0%
Which RBs Should You Roster in Fantasy Football?
Should You Roster Matt Breida or Melvin Gordon?
Here, we have two veterans who are well past their prime, but injuries have forced them into potentially fantasy-relevant roles. Breida is operating as the Giants’ lead back for as long as Barkley remains out. Melvin Gordon has seen J.K. Dobbins, Justice Hill, and Gus Edwards go down in front of him, which forced him into meaningful action.
The Ravens tried everything they could to avoid putting Gordon on the field. They literally had no choice against the Colts. Gordon looked like … well … Gordon. He carried the ball 10 times for an incredibly inefficient 32 yards but was able to manage 23 yards on two receptions. Meanwhile, Breida saw an 82% snap share but had four carries and three targets.
I am nothing if not candid. My answer to this one is neither. I do not think either warrants a roster spot.
Breida’s time is coming to an end within the next 1-2 weeks when Barkley returns. He’s proven to be nothing more than a touchdown-dependent RB3, even without Barkley.
Gordon didn’t enter the game until after Kenyan Drake, who was just signed last week. Hill is expected back this week, and Edwards is likely to only miss a week or two. Fantasy managers are better off leaving both on the waiver wire.
Should You Roster De’Von Achane or AJ Dillon?
Whereas the first question was a “neither,” this one leaves no doubt. It’s the rookie.
Achane channeled his inner Jay Ajayi and exploded for over 200 yards rushing. I guess that’s a thing Dolphins running backs do.
It is unclear when Jeff Wilson might return from IR, but I don’t know how Mike McDaniel puts Achane back in the box. This should be a 60-40 split between Mostert and Achane the rest of the way. Given the prolific nature of the Dolphins offense, Achane can be an RB2 in that role.
On the other hand, if you want a little bit of a spoiler for this week’s cut list, AJ Dillon is on it. For a more detailed breakdown of why, be sure to check that out. But as a quick preview, Dillon has now had two weeks as the lead back without Aaron Jones and hasn’t even posted RB3 numbers.
He started ceding passing-down work to Patrick Taylor. If Dillon can’t produce without Jones, there’s no point in rostering him. If you can drop Dillon for Achane, do it.
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