We are already reaching the halfway point for some of you in the fantasy football regular season. It is either time to panic or boost your bench for the stretch run. While there aren’t any diamonds in the ruff on the waiver wire this week, there are a few guys that you may be able to plug and play during your bye weeks to sustain your momentum or turn it around.
Nick Foles, Philadelphia Eagles - Who wouldn’t want a QB in this offense? Vick is out at least for a week if not more. Foles is nowhere near the scrambler Vick is but all he needs is a couple TDs to make it work. He had 197 yards and 2 TDs in relief work (although it was against the Giants). He has a decent matchup against Tampa Bay this week and a great one against Dallas if Vick remains on the sidelines in Week 7.
Danny Woodhead, San Diego Chargers - I will admit that I was a little late to this party. My wishful bias as a Ryan Matthews owner refused to allow me to see the light of Woodhead. Woodhead has become a bigger part of the offense than any other Chargers running back. He now has back to back double digit points and has a sweet matchup in two weeks with the Jaguars. If he is still around I’d hop on the bandwagon and grab him.
Zac Stacy, St. Louis Rams - I am not overly excited about Zac Stacy but he is a starting running back in an offense that would like to run the ball. If you are like me and your run with Bilal Powell is over, Stacy makes a perfect pickup for your drop. Stacy isn’t a guy you’d use every week but you may play a matchup here and there. More importantly he gives you depth. He had an impressive game this week but it was the Jaguars. Time will tell if he is the real deal but if you wait, you may miss out.
Marcel Reese, Oakland Raiders - Reese is the next man up in Oakland. With McFadden and Jennings hurt, Reese could be the bell cow next week. Keep in mind that Reese is a guy that could have no value moving forward but if you have a back on bye this week, you could do much worse. If you do pick him up watch the injury report this weekend because if McFadden does play you aren’t playing Reese.
Brandon Bolden, New England Patriots - I am not a huge fan of owning any Patriots running backs but if you were going to own any, Bolden would be your guy for now. The upside here is that Gronk is expected back at any time. Defenses are bound to play the pass and give up more runs once he returns to the lineup. It’s obvious that the Pats have no interest in giving Blount the load with Bolden playing 40 snaps to Blount’s 22 on Sunday. Bolden will be that guy and could get more playing time in shootouts (pass-heavy games) than Ridley going forward.
Justin Blackmon, Jacksonville Jaguars - Plenty of savvy owners already drafted Blackmon but I was surprised to see how available he is throughout the ESPN leagues. Anyone who watched this kid in college knows how talented he is. On another team the kid would have the ability to be Dez Bryant. Yet even in Jacksonville he can shine. He had a nice game this last week but it was the Rams so please keep that in mind. I see him as more a matchup guy but if you can get him he’s a great play during some critical bye weeks. The Jags are going to need to score a ton of points to keep up with the Broncos Sunday. Blackmon could be a hot play, especially in garbage time in Week 6.
Keenan Allen, San Diego Chargers - Allen isn’t what I’d call a sexy name but he is a guy that is a part of a high-powered offense. The Chargers defense stinks and they will always need to throw to stay in games. Rivers is back to Pro Bowl form and now that Eddie Royal is getting attention, Allen is getting more opportunities. He has had two great weeks in a row and continues to play in two-wide receiver sets. He certainly isn’t someone I’d play every week over the usual starters but as a bye week substitute he is pretty good.
Garrett Graham, Houston Texans - Graham immediately pops up on the wire now that Owen Daniels will be sidelined for 4-6 weeks. Schaub likes to throw to tight ends (in between throwing to DBs) which makes Graham an intriguing pickup. While the Rams matchup sounds intriguing the Rams defense has actually played pretty well against tight ends. I’d grab him but look for other options this week if you have them.