Waiver Wire Week 16: Tony Pollard a streaming option this week?

It’s come down to this. We now enter the championship round of fantasy football leagues in Week 16. In a do-or-die situation for all teams now, every single roster move can be the difference between winning your league or finishing runner-up. We’ll talk about the waiver wire pickups to target for Week 16, including Cowboys’ running back Tony Pollard and Eagles’ quarterback Jalen Hurts. Let’s look at them as well as the other waiver wire targets to put claims in for this week.

Week 16 Waiver Wire: Quarterback pickups to target for your fantasy team

Jalen Hurts (Philadelphia Eagles)

Hurts has seemingly set the world on fire in his first two career starts for the Eagles. After leading them to an upset over the New Orleans Saints with his 100+ yard rushing performance, Hurts was even better in his follow-up performance. He would throw for 338 yards, three touchdowns and run for another 63 yards and a score.

Related | Week 16 WR Rankings: Tyreek Hill headlines sleepers, must starts, busts

Hurts has all the makings to be a league-winner for those who can still pick him up. He faces the hapless Cowboys in Week 16 and will be a top-10 quarterback. Hurts is one of this week’s top waiver wire targets.

Marcus Mariota (Las Vegas Raiders)

Stepping up in the wake of Derek Carr’s injury, Mariota turned back the clock with a reliable performance. He threw for 226 yards and a touchdown but had 88 yards and another touchdown on the ground. On a team that has struggled for consistent playmakers outside of Darren Waller and Josh Jacobs, Mariota added a new element to that offense. Carr’s injury was deemed “significant,” and it’s unlikely he’ll be ready to play in Week 16. Mariota’s ability with his legs gives him a very solid floor and top-12 upside even in a tough matchup against the Miami Dolphins.

Running back waiver wire pickups to target in Week 16

Tony Pollard (Dallas Cowboys)

Pollard had been consistently outplaying Ezekiel Elliott over the second half of the season. With Elliott missing his first-ever game due to injury in Week 15, Pollard showed what he’s capable of. He rushed for 69 yards and two touchdowns on 12 carries, with another 63 yards receiving on six receptions. He was used as a workhorse, and he had a top-five performance against a strong 49ers’ run defense. Whether Elliott returns next week remains to be seen. Regardless, Pollard has shown that the Cowboys need him. He’ll be an RB1 if Elliott sits and a high-end RB3/FLEX if Zeke suits up.

Le’Veon Bell (Kansas City Chiefs)

Bell’s stock fell hard this season between playing on the pathetic Jets’ squad and then joining the Chiefs as a committee back. Bell had been playing second fiddle behind Clyde Edwards-Helaire, but he appears to be in line for more work following Edwards-Helaire’s injury.

Related | NFL Week 15 Recap: David Montgomery, New York Jets highlight NFL action

Edwards-Helaire appears to be on course to miss time, and Bell would be the team’s lead back in that case. He would have a solid matchup against a Falcons team that just gave up two rushing touchdowns to Leonard Fournette over the weekend. He’s a high-end RB2 if Edwards-Helaire is inactive.

Salvon Ahmed (Miami Dolphins)

After missing the last three games, Ahmed returned without missing a beat. He handled 23 carries for 122 yards and a touchdown as the clear starter for the Dolphins. Ahmed’s Week 16 outlook will depend on whether Myles Gaskin is able to be cleared from the reserve list. If Gaskin is activated and is able to return, then we will likely see a committee approach between Gaskin and Ahmed. Should Gaskin not be cleared and is inactive again, Ahmed would be a lock for 15+ touches against the Raiders. He’d be in line for another mid-tier RB2 ranking should Gaskin remain out.

Jeff Wilson Jr. (San Francisco 49ers)

Wilson found himself with a 16-carry workload in Week 15 following Raheem Mostert’s ankle injury. When Mostert exited (and didn’t return), Wilson secured all but three carries. He has shown that he is the clear next man up in Mostert’s absence. Wilson would be set up for the lion share’s worth of running back touches if Mostert sits and be a high-end RB2 in the 49ers’ run-focused offense.

Wide receiver fantasy football pickups in Week 16

Tyron Johnson (Los Angeles Chargers)

With both Keenan Allen and Mike Williams clearly less than 100%, Johnson turned in his second straight game of 50+ yards and a touchdown. Overall, Johnson has 50+ receiving yards in four of his last five games. He was valuable as a chain-mover and big-play threat for Justin Herbert and the Chargers. Depending on who suits up in Week 16, Johnson could have some WR3/FLEX appeal.

Keke Coutee (Houston Texans)

Since Will Fuller’s suspension, Coutee has 16 receptions for 218 yards and two touchdowns on 19 targets (three games). He has operated as the team’s number one/two wide receiver with Brandin Cooks and continues to see substantial volume in an offense that passes the ball plenty.

Related | NFL Power Rankings Week 16: Ravens getting hot at the right time

In a Week 16 matchup between the Bengals, neither team is playing for a playoff spot. We should expect to see two teams with poor defenses put up a potentially exciting game. Coutee will be a WR3/FLEX in this game.

Chad Hansen (Houston Texans)

Like Coutee, Hansen has benefitted from Fuller’s suspension. He has 14 receptions for 212 yards and a touchdown on 17 targets. Quarterback Deshaun Watson has thrown 38 or more attempts and 340+ yards in two of his last three games, so we can expect to continue seeing the Texans pass the ball plenty. Hansen has three straight games of 50+ receiving yards despite his capped ceiling. He’ll be a low-end WR3/FLEX but could see an uptick in targets after David Johnson had an unsustainable 11 receptions in Week 15.

Week 16 tight end waiver wire pickups

Tyler Higbee (Los Angeles Rams)

Outside of his three-touchdown performance in Week 2, Higbee has mostly been a disappointment in fantasy football this season. There is some hope, though, as he has two games with five or more targets and a touchdown over his last three. In a primarily run-heavy offense that relies on its’ defense, the Rams find themselves going up against a high-powered Seahawks offense. Higbee also had a season-high 60 receiving yards in the teams’ first matchup in Week 10. Higbee will be a top-15 tight end in Week 16.

Jordan Reed (San Francisco 49ers)

Reed’s inclusion on this list is entirely dependent on George Kittle’s status for Week 16. If Kittle were to suit up, Reed becomes almost entirely fantasy irrelevant. However, if Kittle is once again inactive, Reed has streamer appeal. He has five or more targets in four of his last five games and has a touchdown in two of his previous three games. Reed will be a top-18 tight end should Kittle not return in Week 16.

Want more fantasy football analysis and news?

Be sure to follow us on Twitter: @PFN365 to stay up to date with all things around the NFL and the 2020 fantasy football season. Also, continue to visit Pro Football Network for NFL news and in-depth analysis while also visiting our fantasy football section for more coverage and up-to-date rankings.

Doug Moore is a fantasy football writer for Pro Football Network. Follow him on Twitter at @DMooreNFL.

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