Welcome back to the Week 4 edition of the waiver wire insider column. Last week’s waiver pool wasn’t quite as robust as Week 2’s, but many of the names we discussed last week appear to be great long-term holds and, in some cases, instant impact players. My aim is to continue to bring you those names all season long.
A reminder of how this works… For this feature, I will be focusing exclusively on players rostered in less than 50% of both ESPN and Yahoo leagues.
If your league has a standard waiver system, then simply follow the order of my picks to determine your waiver priority. If your league has a FAAB system, I will assign each waiver pick a % of your FAAB budget I would be comfortable committing. You may see some repeat names from previous weeks, that would be because these individuals still are not rostered in 50% of fantasy leagues. Now, you may see some repeat names but please remember, this is my TOP 5 waiver adds. That won’t change just because I want to give you some fresh names.
Some really intriguing adds out there leading into Week 4. Let’s get into it!
- Chuba Hubbard (40% of FAAB budget) – With the injury to Christan McCaffrey, Chuba Hubbard immediately becomes the top waiver addition. A common mistake amongst the fantasy community is assuming the back up can slide right in, replace a Top 5 running back, and produce at the same level. Let’s not forget, McCaffrey is a generational talent, but Hubbard does have some pedigree. He rushed for over 2,000 in a season in college and ran well in McCaffrey’s absence during Thursday night. He may not be a Top 5 back while McCaffrey is out, but I can absolutely see Hubbard pushing for RB1/2 level production. He’s a great short-term band-aid fix if your team is hurting at RB. McCaffrey is not expected to go on IR, so if you’re 3-0, I would probably keep my powder dry but if you’re in desperate need of a win. Go get Chuba!
- Kirk Cousins (15% of FAAB budget) – Two straight weeks in which the QB4, at this point in the season, makes the list. Last time it was Daniel Jones (who’s now rostered in over 50% of leagues), this time it’s Kirk Cousins. Captain Kirk has been lights out through 3 weeks, averaging 24.1 FPPG and never scoring less than 22 points in standard scoring. He draws a tough matchup in Week 4 against a Cleveland D/ST that went off last week, sacking Justin Fields 9 times, but if you want to roster Kirk, this is probably the week you need to make your move. With the depth at QB, I don’t think he’ll command too much of your FAAB. After Cleveland in Week 4, he’s got a couple juicy matchups before the Vikings’ bye week in Week 7. YOU LIKE THAT (pick)?!
- Tim Patrick (15% of FAAB budget) – Three weeks in a row Timmy P makes the list. I’m beginning to think that over 50% of the entire fantasy community doesn’t read my column! Patrick is currently WR24 in standard scoring and has scored more fantasy points through Week 3 than any other Broncos pass catcher. Still somehow only owned in 21% of ESPN leagues, this is the week to make your move. With KJ Hamler going down for the year and Jerry Jeudy still a month away from returning, Tim Patrick’s stock has never been higher. He’s received for at least 98 yards or a TD each week so far this season, giving him an excellent floor. He should push for WR3 value until Jeudy comes back. I’m starting him over the likes of DJ Chark, JuJu Smith-Schuster, & Corey Davis moving forward. You should too!
- Emmanuel Sanders (10% of FAAB budget) – 6+ targets each week through three weeks in arguably the most prolific passing offense in the NFL? Say no more. We’ve been waiting for several years for Sanders to fall off a cliff, but he appears as spry as ever, holding off father time in convincing fashion. His next three matchups are against Houston, Kansas City, & Tennessee, giving Sanders immediate WR3 appeal, with upside. Fire up Sanders as a solid flex play in PPR formats or even your 2nd wide out if you’re in a pinch.
- Evan Engram (5% of FAAB budget) – I know, I know… Don’t fall into the trap of Evan Engram… Hear me out. Engram is mistake and injury prone, I’ll give you that, but his talent is undeniable, and the Giants clearly view him as a top receiving option. He garnered 6 targets in his first game back from a calf injury and I expect that’ll only increase as he gets healthier. The TE position is perennially a barren waste land in fantasy so if you’re telling me I can get a starting TE, who’s good for six targets and has the upside of Evan Engram, I’m taking it. There’s a case to be made for starting Engram over the likes of Robert Tonyan, Jonnu Smith, Jared Cook, and co., but I’d like to see one more week before putting my name behind that. He’s a solid stash for now if you have a non-Top 8 TE.
-Cory, Fox Fantasy Football Insider