Working the waiver wire is the best way to improve your team for the stretch run and find a weekly advantage. To aid in that, here are some of the top Week 13 waiver wire claims fantasy football managers should consider.
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Top Waiver Wire Pickups in Week 13
Deshaun Watson, QB, Cleveland Browns (43.1% rostered)
Deshaun Watson should’ve likely been picked up two to three weeks ago. Today the Cleveland Browns officially added Watson to their 53-man roster as he prepares to start against his former team, the Houston Texans.
Last we saw, Watson was one of the top three or four quarterbacks in the NFL and fantasy. Even if he does start with some rust (which is expected), at worst, he is a low-end QB1. I am sure Houston will get up for this game, as this is their Super Bowl. But Cleveland is just too talented offensively with Amari Cooper, Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt, Donovan Peoples-Jones, and David Njoku.
Between the deep ball and rushing ability, there will be zero surprises if Watson is a top-six QB for the remainder of the season. He’s a locked-in starter masquerading as a Week 13 waiver wire option. There is no logical reason Russell Wilson and Matthew Stafford are rostered in more leagues.
Trevor Lawrence, QB, Jacksonville Jaguars (59.2% rostered)
There are moments in a young player’s career when you can see things start to click. I can’t help but wonder if Trevor Lawrence had that moment on Sunday against the Ravens.
Helping to lead his team to a 28-27 victory, Lawrence completed 29-of-37 for 321 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions.
Lawrence showed total control of this offense, leading multiple scoring drives, including one with 14 seconds left to play to force OT. He was willing to push the ball down the field with five completions of 20 yards or more. And for the first time, it felt like Lawrence looked like the guy who was strutting around Clemson.
This matchup against the Lions is a barnburner. The oddsmakers think the same thing — the 51.5-point game total is the second-highest over/under of the slate, only behind the Chiefs and the Bengals. Lawrence is a high-end QB2 in Week 13.
Jordan Love, QB, Green Bay Packers (0.3% rostered)
Well, this wasn’t expected. I didn’t think I’d be talking about Jordan Love this year as a waiver wire target, especially not with the contract Aaron Rodgers signed, but here we are.
During the Sunday Night Football game, Rodgers suffered an oblique injury late in the game and did not return. He was already dealing with a fractured thumb coming into the game, and safe to say his status moving forward is up in the air. He is scheduled to undergo an MRI on Monday.
Full credit to Love — he did the job when the team needed him the most. Love completed 6-of-9 for 113 yards, including a 63-yard touchdown to Christian Watson, where he once again showed off his after-the-catch capabilities.
Love played the best football I have seen out of him since his junior year at Nevada. He put pace on the ball, hit the correct windows, and seemed to have complete control of the offense (which you would expect after all this time).
While we await more news on Rodgers, Love should be a speculative add from the waiver wire, especially in 2QB and Superflex formats.
Kenny Pickett, QB, Pittsburgh Steelers (7.2% rostered)
The first QB picked in the 2022 NFL Draft class, Kenny Pickett has started to turn around a little bit. Thanks to 51 rushing yards against the Saints, Pickett finished Week 10 as the QB12, and then Week 11 had 265 passing yards on 42 attempts to finish as the QB16.
There are undoubtedly concerns about how Pittsburgh is operating. Matt Canada prefers going east and west, and Pickett hasn’t been north of 7.0 yards per attempt since Week 4. But now that he’s taking some risks with George Pickens, those explosive plays might begin to take shape.
Atlanta undoubtedly will try to take the air out of the ball by running virtually every single play. That’s just what Arthur Smith does. Still, Atlanta is 29th in DVOA, 28th in EPA per dropback, and 29th in success rate. If Pickett is ever going to be a waiver wire option this year, this is the perfect matchup for him to do it.
Jared Goff, QB, Detroit Lions (29.2% rostered)
As I alluded to when talking about Lawrence, we expect plenty of points. That’s something the Lions haven’t had any issues with this season, and that remained the case on Thanksgiving against the Buffalo Bills. Although they came out with the loss, Jared Goff completed 23-of-37 for 240 yards and two touchdowns to finish with 19.6 PPR points.
I don’t need to tell you this, but Jacksonville isn’t the Bills. They are 30th in DVOA, 21st in EPA, 17th in success rate, and have allowed the third-most points to the position over the last four weeks. With Amon-Ra St. Brown playing well and DJ Chark and Josh Reynolds getting healthy (plus the pending addition of Jameson Williams), Goff feels like a perennial mention on the QB waiver wire targets for fantasy football.
Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, San Francisco 49ers (49% rostered)
Jimmy Garoppolo isn’t just a waiver wire target for Week 13; he’s a weekly low-end QB1. Since Week 5, Garoppolo is the QB10 overall and 12th in per-game scoring at 18.1 PPR.
He’s finished as a QB1 in four of his last seven starts. Even in a down game against the Saints, Garoppolo completed 26-of-37 for 222 yards and a touchdown.
He hasn’t committed a turnover in four straight games. He is surrounded by probably the most talented offense in football — from pass catchers Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk, and George Kittle to ball handlers Christian McCaffrey and Elijah Mitchell behind him and the fantastic offensive line in front of him.
The upcoming matchup against the Miami Dolphins is fascinating because Mike McDaniel has turned Miami into “San Francisco East.” But defensively, Miami is 25th in passing DVOA, 25th in success rate, and has allowed the second-most points to the position over the last four weeks. However, this comes with the caveat that teams have been forced to abandon the run while trying to play catch-up.
Mike White, QB, New York Jets (2.9% rostered)
We saw the Mike White experience last year over a four-game stretch filled with ups and downs. But Sunday was nothing but an absolute clinic. Taking over for Zach Wilson, White completed 22-of-28 for 315 yards, three touchdowns, and zero interceptions. He also added two yards on three attempts.
This was just as much an impressive game out of White as it was an indictment on Wilson. Not only did he play well and finally get Garrett Wilson and Elijah Moore involved again, but White also led the Jets to the first opening-drive touchdown of the entire season, which truly set the tone for the game.
I would still say he is best used in DFS with a matchup coming against the Vikings and then the Bills. But if White holds on, he will face the Lions, Jaguars, and Seahawks in the fantasy football playoffs. If he holds on to the starting job, he’ll be a waiver wire target for those weeks if you feel like risking your playoff hopes on the Jets.
Rachaad White, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (65.2% rostered)
There is no reason Rachaad White should still be out there on the waiver wire. After rushing for 105 yards on 22 carries in Week 10, White had 64 yards on 14 carries while adding 45 yards on nine receptions.
White got off to a hot start, rushing for 48 yards in the first quarter on four carries but had just 11 yards in the three following quarters. Leonard Fournette (hip) could return in Week 13, but until he is back, White is a weekly starter, even against New Orleans this week.
Zonovan Knight, RB, New York Jets (0.0% rostered)
Speaking of the Jets, while White injected life back into the Jets’ offense, second-year RB Michael Carter sprained his ankle, per coach Robert Saleh. According to reports, it appears to be a low-ankle sprain, but that still means missed time. Carter had eight touches and 36 total yards before his exit.
In his place, UDFA Zonovan Knight stepped up, rushing 15 times for 69 yards against the Bears. He also added 34 yards and caught all three of his targets, which shouldn’t surprise many as Bam was one of the best receiving back in this class coming out of NC State.
James Robinson (71.8%) will also be a name to monitor this week, but Knight is the more readily available player. That needs to change regardless of Carter’s health.
Kyren Williams, RB, Los Angeles Rams (19.4% rostered)
Kyren Williams was one of, if not my favorite, RB to watch film on this offseason. Unfortunately, poor testing and a lack of draft capital all but crushed his fantasy potential before he had a chance (along with an injury). But things change quickly in the NFL.
While Kyren saw an increased role due to the release of Darrell Henderson, he legitimately took snaps away from Cam Akers. In fact, he led the Rams’ backfield in total snaps (38 to 16) and edged Akers 21 to 15 on early downs. Between short yardage, third downs, and a two-minute drill, Williams nearly shut Akers out (17 to 1).
The former Notre Dame RB led the team with 11 carries, although he was inefficient with 3.2 yards per carry. However, every running back for the Rams has been inefficient this year. Williams also caught three passes for 25 yards to finish second on the team in receiving yards, which is as much about Williams’ capabilities as it is where the Rams are right now as a team.
This is not a one-time fluke either, as Williams played on 55% of the snaps with eight touches and 44 total yards the week prior. He’s not an explosive player, but with matchups coming up against Seattle, Las Vegas, and Green Bay, Williams should be claimed off the Week 13 waiver wire if you need running back depth for the end-of-season stretch.
Gus Edwards, RB, Baltimore Ravens (40.5% rostered)
Returning from a hamstring injury, Gus Edwards was back as the No. 1 RB for the Ravens, rushing 16 times for 52 yards and a touchdown. Meanwhile, Kenyan Drake split reps with Justice Hill as the two combined for four opportunities.
J.K. Dobbins could return at any time, but given how his surgically repaired knee has handled usage, I don’t see John Harbaugh being overly keen to get him back into the mix. With one of the best remaining schedules for running backs, Edwards is a top waiver wire target for Week 13.
Isiah Pacheco, RB, Kansas City Chiefs (58.8% rostered)
While Clyde Edwards-Helaire went on the IR, Isiah Pacheco had another solid outing. He dominated the snaps minus third downs and the two-minute drill, rushing 22 times for 69 yards and a touchdown while also catching one pass for 17 yards.
Kansas City on Monday added Melvin Gordon III to their practice squad, which is interesting as they still have two games to come against the Broncos (Weeks 14 and 17). Still, I don’t see Pacheco losing his job to someone who was cut. This is a depth move by a team staring down a long run in the playoffs and needed to fill the hole left by CEH. Pacheco is a need-to-add waiver wire target in Week 13.
Mack Hollins, WR, Las Vegas Raiders (12.5% rostered)
On Sunday, Mack Hollins recorded his third 50+ yard game in the last five weeks by catching four passes for 63 yards and a touchdown in the Raiders’ overtime win against the Seahawks. Hollins scored his third touchdown of the season, and he’s tied for 36th at the position with 531 receiving yards.
Where this becomes more interesting is when you look at the splits. In the five games without Hunter Renfrow, Hollins has averaged 7.2 targets, 4.6 receptions, and 64.8 receiving yards. Odds are, he’s going to have at least one more game without Renfrow and tight end Darren Waller. He’s been an under-the-radar target all season and will be a Flex option in Week 13 against the Los Angeles Chargers.
Treylon Burks, WR, Tennessee Titans (37.5% rostered)
Would you look at that? Who knew good things happen when you use your most athletic receiving option? Color me shocked.
Treylon Burks has put together back-to-back solid performances. After setting a career-high 111 yards last week, Burks hauled in four of his six targets for 70 yards against the Bengals and even scored his first touchdown. Unfortunately, it was classified as an “other” touchdown because it was a fumble recovery, so fantasy managers didn’t benefit from it.
Burks saw his highest snap share since Week 3, but he also played on 100% of the snaps in 11 personnel (1 RB, 1 TE). While I wouldn’t call him a locked-in starter, he can be depending on the situation. Although I don’t love him against the Eagles despite what we saw on Sunday night, Burks needs to be rostered rather than some of the dead weight you’re likely still carrying on your bench.
DeVante Parker, WR, New England Patriots (9.4% rostered)
To be clear, the only reliable players for New England have been Rhamondre Stevenson and Jakobi Meyers. DeVante Parker will not crack that list, but there is certainly an opportunity for him in Week 13 to be an interesting sleeper.
Playing in his first complete game in several weeks, Parker caught all four of his targets for 80 yards on Thanksgiving. Meanwhile, Meyers (shoulder) and Nelson Agholor suffered injuries during the game, likely leading to Parker’s increased involvement. X-rays on Meyers’ shoulder returned negative, allowing him to return to the field in a limited capacity.
Still, Parker finished as a WR4 or better in four of his previous five healthy games. And if the Patriots lack additional options, he’s got a shot at cracking the top 48 again in Week 13. Desperate times call for desperate measures this time of year when a win or a loss can make or break your playoff hopes.
Donovan Peoples-Jones, WR, Clevland Browns (42.3% rostered)
My drum is nearly broken for how long I have been banging it, trying to implore managers to add Donovan Peoples-Jones. If not now, when? Coming into Week 12, Peoples-Jones was the WR13 in per-game scoring since Week 4 and sat 11th in receiving yards. Additionally, he’s had 70 or more receiving yards in six of his last seven games.
That hot streak ended Sunday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, catching just two of his four passes for 16 yards in the 23-17 OT win. But as I noted earlier, he’s getting Watson and is about to face the Texans. There is still massive value if you snag Peoples-Jones ahead of Week 13.
George Pickens, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers (64.7% rostered)
After recording his first career receiving touchdown in Week 7, George Pickens has scored in back-to-back weeks (rushing TD in Week 10) after catching a 24-yard TD and finishing the day with four receptions on six targets for 83 yards. What’s lost in the box score? The dropped would-be 49-yard touchdown Pickens wishes he had back.
Pickens had three targets negated due to penalties, and he’s played on 75% or more of the snaps since Week 5. If the target share continues to climb (which should be expected), Pickens has top-25 upside.
Jameson Williams, WR, Detroit Lions (20.8% rostered)
This is one of those situations where it’s all or nothing. It’s similar to Odell Beckham Jr. — we’re shooting for the moon with Jameson Williams. Still recovering from an ACL tear sustained in his final game at Alabama, the Lions have opened up the practice window for Williams to return from the IR. He could be placed on the active roster as soon as this week.
Based on their trends this year, the Lions have been cautious regarding returning receivers from injury. DJ Chark played on 10 ten snaps in Week 11, and Josh Reynolds only played on six snaps last week.
This is not a move to make if you need a receiver right now, it’s one for the playoffs (assuming Williams is added and gets involved in the offense quickly).
Williams will face the Jets, Panthers, and Bears during the fantasy playoffs. That is about as good as it gets. While not a sleeper by name, Williams is worth rostering based on his potential upside and no risk involved.
Evan Engram, TE, Jacksonville Jaguars (31.4% rostered)
By no means is this based on Evan Engram’s last performance. He caught his lone target for four yards in the team’s 28-27 win. His one target tied a season low, but we’re playing the matchups.
Detroit isn’t far behind Arizona in how bad they are against TEs. They allow the fifth-highest catch rate, seventh in yards per reception, and fourth in fantasy points per game while also sitting 23rd in DVOA to the position. Add Engram as a borderline TE1 in Week 13.
Foster Moreau, TE, Las Vegas Raiders (35.5% rostered)
Foster Moreau earned his trip to the ice tub after playing on 100% of the Raiders’ 77 offensive snaps. Starting in place of injured Darren Waller, Moreau caught three of seven targets for 33 yards and a touchdown on Sunday.
He doesn’t come off the field, averaging 63.3 snaps on 99% of the Raiders’ offensive plays over the last six games. Volume is where Moreau’s value comes from, as he’ll never be the most efficient player.
With the likely return of Waller coming soon, Moreau is an intriguing waiver wire target for fantasy in Week 13 against the Chargers, who have allowed the third-most receiving yards, the most yards per reception, and the seventh-most fantasy points per game to the position.
Logan Thomas, TE, Washington Commanders (10.8% rostered)
Like defenses, tight ends usually come down to matchups and streaming unless you have an elite option. That’s why someone like Logan Thomas makes sense off the waiver wire. Coming into last week, Thomas had a 17.6% target share and 50% end-zone share since Week 9. Nonetheless, he had a quiet outing against Atlanta, catching one of three targets for seven yards.
Those ups and downs are to be expected when streaming TEs and playing the waiver wire. But Thomas is in a bounce-back spot in Week 13 against the Giants, who have allowed the sixth-most points per game, are 32nd in DVOA vs. TEs, and have surrendered the fourth-highest catch rate and receiving yards per game to tight ends. As a waiver wire target, he will be a higher-end TE2 in Week 13.
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