Wait On the Waiver Wire
Posted Sep. 14 at 04:30 AM
For some NFL players, this is the most popular week they'll ever enjoy. People will be talking about them at work and on message boards, and television analysts will discuss their potential. Fantasy owners will consider them cogs in their championship wheel and it will seem like the new season revolves entirely around their playing time and production.
For this week, anyway. Please welcome your week 2 waiver wire scrubs!
Yes, these fine gentleman seem integral to your team. You need them and can't wait to put in a claim for their services. Never mind that you and everyone else passed on them 15 straight times (or more) at the draft. Forget that they could have been yours for the low, low price of one auction dollar just a few weeks back. Now is their time and your future depends on adding them to the team.
Yes, I'm exaggerating. But the waiver wire process after week 1 is a cesspool of disappointment, overreaction, frustration and projection. You're fighting for guys who might seem really valuable today, but how will they look in a few weeks? Are they going to live up to even a fraction of your expectations?
Who cares, you say? You're dumping some terrible players to take a chance on someone, so there's no risk involved. But is that true? Are you sure the guys you're ditching aren't going to work out? If you acknowledge you could be wrong about who you're picking up...could you be equally wrong about who you're ditching?
Just like you, I know the waiver wire is an important part of being an active owner, improving your team and reacting to opportunities. But for every new chance you take, you have to give up on someone you thought was worthy of a spot on your roster. Are you confident they no longer deserve that spot? Maybe giving your players more than 60 minutes of football is more prudent than fighting for a guy nobody wanted a few days ago.
Of course, there are times when it's a no-brainer. Unless it's a dynasty league, you won't have much use for a guy who likely won't play this year. But for everyone else, give careful thought to what moves you're making. You might be picking up a valuable player, but you might be cutting one as well. There's an opportunity cost to that move, and you might not know the final price for a few weeks.
And in some cases, it might cost you immediately. Aside from transaction fees (not a big deal), some leagues allow you to preserve your waiver wire priority until you use it (a very big deal). If you play in one of those leagues, you might "waive" goodbye to a true starter by being impatient and using your priority on a mediocre opportunity. Not making a move -- and hanging on to that priority -- might be the best move you can make.
Remember, these waiver wire guys are like the NIT champions in NCAA basketball: The very best of the not good enough, the most popular of the unwanted and the most startable scrubs in your league. That makes them noteworthy, but it doesn't make them very good. Please be careful about who earns your waiver wire selection, and who deserves their walking papers in week 1.
One last thought: There's a guy who brags to his buddies about the time he turned around his entire season by using a waiver wire pick on DeAngelo Williams. Williams went from scrub (early in the season) to superstar (for the rest of the year) and his fantasy team cruised to victory. I know he's telling the truth because I'm the one who cut Williams due to poor performance. I wanted that spot because I had a chance to pick up a real difference-maker; a guy who would turn around my season. I remember Williams scoring touchdowns and racking up fantasy points late in the year, but for some reason I can't even remember the name of the guy I picked up in his place. Hopefully you'll be more patient than I was. Good luck this week.
Are there any "must-have" players that are available in your league, or do you have funny waiver wire stories to share? Share your thoughts below. You can also reach Michael Murillo at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted by Jason Spann | Sep. 14 at 05:55 AM
Why not mention some names that may deserve attention? For example, I think Jabar Gaffney has some potential and is worth adding.
Posted by Michael Keeley | Sep. 14 at 12:12 PM
I like the idea of adding the "no-brainer"pickup suggestions. One has to think guys like Cam Newton or Cadillac Williams might be worth the move?
Posted by MICHAEL MURILLO | Sep. 14 at 03:00 PM
I tend to shy away from actual recommendations because Ian handles that stuff better than I would and each league's scoring system would factor into it, as well as who you already have. Cadillac Williams makes sense if you have an available roster spot and really need a fill-in next week. Jackson isn't supposed to miss more than one game, so you're giving up someone for one shot to use a player. And I don't think he has an awesome matchup, anyway. Regarding Newton, that's likely to be his best game all year. In a two QB start league he's probably rostered already. If not, he might be better than your existing backup. It would depend on the team, but I wouldn't necessarily carry an extra QB just to have him. But it also depends on who have have on your roster. If you somehow took a backup TE, sure. Newton is more valuable. And this is all redraft talk, because in dynasty he's long gone and his owner won't be trading him anytime soon. See? I'm making myself dizzy.
Posted by Steve Pollnow | Sep. 15 at 12:15 AM
Aaron Hernandez...just picked him up. Undrafted and ranked in the Fantasy Index as #4 TE or higher. Unreal, hope he pans out like in week one!
Add a Comment
Already a registered user? Please sign in to add comments.
To add comments, you must become a registered user of our site. To register, please click here.