Week 12 Waiver Wire: Latavius Murray, Treylon Burks Lead

Treylon Burks, WR, Tennessee Titans
Treylon Burks, WR, Tennessee Titans
Photo: USA Today Sports Images

NFL Week 12 - There are no byes this week, with every team in action on Thanksgiving weekend. We have just three weeks left of the fantasy regular season, with most league's playoffs beginning in Week 15. Here are some waiver wire options to help you make a playoff push and/or bolster your lineup for the championship push.

Quarterback

  • Ryan Tannehill – TEN (8.0% rostered ESPN; 16% Yahoo!)
    • Tannehill is QB8 over the last two weeks after missing two games due to an ankle injury. He’s finished as QB9 and QB12 in those two games against the top-12 pass defenses of Denver and Green Bay. He’s thrown for 588 yards, including his first 300-yard passing game of the year in Week 11, and two touchdowns in each. The passing volume has been up recently, as well, having thrown the ball 63 times over the last two gamew, ten more than any other two-game stretch this year. He’s attempted 27+ passes in both games, after having thrown it 27 times just twice through his first six games. Having Treylon Burks healthy helped the passing game against the Packers and should help propel Tannehill into fantasy-starter territory the rest of the year. He has a tough test in Week 12 vs. the Bengals but is worth consideration if searching for help at the position.
  • Marcus Mariota – ATL (37.6% rostered ESPN; 33% Yahoo!)
    • Mariota has turned in another decent fantasy performance on Sunday, finishing as the QB14 with 28 points. Since Week 5, he’s QB6 overall and QB12 in points per game, making him a back-end QB1. He has three top-10 finishes and five top-16 finishes, with only one game in single-digits. Mariota hasn’t rushed for 50+ yards since Week 6, but he’s still productive on the ground, having 24+ yards in every game since, including three with 30+, and a couple rushing scores. There are no teams on bye for Thanksgiving week, but if you’re in need of quarterback help, Mariota is a viable streamer in Week 12 against the Commanders’ improved, but beatable pass defense (16th in pass defense DVOA).

 

  • Other QB <50% rostered worth considering
    • Deshaun Watson – CLE (36.0% ESPN; 48% Yahoo!)

Running Back

  • Isiah Pacheco – KC (43.7% rostered ESPN; 64% Yahoo!)
    • Pacheco is still available in over half of ESPN leagues and over one-third of Yahoo! leagues. A week after receiving 59% of the backfield opportunities in Week 10, he received 63% of the opportunities in Week 12. Pacheco took 15 carries for 107 yards, his first 100-yard game as a pro. He didn’t receive any targets, and Jerick McKinnon recorded six carries, but Pacheco is the clear-cut starter on the league’s top offense. Further benefiting Pacheco, Clyde Edwards-Helaire is dealing with a high-ankle sprain and may go on IR. Ronald Jones will likely play for the first time this year, but we’ve seen what the Chiefs think of him. Pacheco is in line for a big finish to the fantasy season, with one of the easiest playoff schedules for running backs.  
  • Latavius Murray – DEN (34.2% rostered ESPN; 25% Yahoo!)
    • In a somewhat suprising move, the Broncos released running back Melvin Gordon on Monday. With Chase Edmonds expected to miss multiple weeks with an ankle injury, Latavius Murray will lead the Broncos backfield. He handled 21 touches in Week 11, taking 17 carries for only 49 yards but catching all 4 of his targets for 23 yards. He found his way into the end zone and finished as the PPR RB12 on the week. The Broncos offense has been the most consistent this year, but it’s been consistently bad. However, we know volume is king, and with only Marlon Mack behind him (though Mike Boone may return from IR soon), Murray should be in line for a nearly every down role.
  • Rachaad White – TB (34.4% rostered ESPN; 61% Yahoo!)
    • White got his first start of the season prior to the Bucs’ Week 11 bye and had the best game of his rookie campaign. He ran the ball 22 times for 105 yards while playing 64% of offensive snaps. He matched Leonard Fournette with two carries inside the 10-yard line, but it was Fournette who reached the end zone. It was a little disappointing to see him get 0 targets after receiving 2+ targets in all but one game prior to this weekend, but his 14 routes run were more than double Fournette’s. Fournette did still see 14 carries before being injured, and he’s expected to be ready for Week 12’s game against the Browns. But White’s usage should remain down the stretch, and he has a dream matchup this week against the Browns’ league-worst run defense in DVOA.

 

  • Other RB <20% rostered worth considering
    • Samaje Perine – CIN (3.8% ESPN; 9% Yahoo!)
    • Isaiah Spiller – LAC (2.4% ESPN; 4% Yahoo!)

Wide Receiver

  • Treylon Burks – TEN (22.7% rostered ESPN; 20% Yahoo!)
    • Burks may be the hottest pickup of the week after his breakout game in Week 11. The rookie caught seven of eight targets for 111 yards against Green Bay. While his route participation decreased in his second game back from IR (66% from 76%), he saw a 30% target share and was targeted on 38% of his 21 routes run, a rate higher than the likes of Davante Adams, Tee Higgins, and Amari Cooper. Ryan Tannehill has looked better since returning from injury, which only helps Burks’ outlook moving forward. He as a couple tough matchups against the Bengals and Eagles but faces the Jaguars to finish the regular season, then the Chargers, Texans, and Cowboys in the fantasy playoffs.
  • Donovan Peoples-Jones – CLE (38.5% rostered ESPN; 45% Yahoo!)
    • DPJ didn’t reach 71 yards for the first time since Week 5, but he did total 61 yards AND scored his first touchdown of the season. Amari Cooper overshadowed him, going 8-113-2 on 12 targets, but DPJ ran four more routes than Cooper, leading the team in route participation. He leads the team in receiving yards since Week 4. He and Cooper have nearly identical yards per catch and air yards per catch over that span, and Cooper has just eight more targets, so there’s room for both to continue producing. The looming return of Deshaun Watson, plus some favorable matchups down the stretch, will lift his ceiling.
    • Demarcus Robinson – BAL (5.8% ESPN; 5% Yahoo!)
      • Robinson led the Ravens in targets, receptions, and yards, catching all nine of his targets for 128 yards. His 128 yards were more than double the next closest pass catcher. He ran a route on 81% of dropbacks and has now led the Ravens wide receivers in targets in three straight games. Devin Duvernay won’t normally see just one target on 95% route participation, so Robinson won’t dominate the receiver room every week, but the consistent recent involvement makes him flex-worthy. Robinson has seen 21 targets over Baltimore’s last three games since Rashod Bateman was lost for the season and has 64+ yards in two of those three. He’s worth an add with the Jaguars on tap in Week 12 and Baltimore has favorable matchups against the Browns and Falcons to begin the fantasy playoffs in Weeks 15 and 16.

         

        • Other WR <20% rostered worth considering
          • Quez Watkins – PHI (0.4% ESPN; 0% Yahoo!)
          • Terrace Marshall, Jr. – CAR (16.1% ESPN; 11% Yahoo!)
          • Julio Jones – TB (22.4% ESPN; 18% Yahoo!)

        Tight End

        • Juwan Johnson – NO (19.2% rostered ESPN; 31% Yahoo!)
          • Johnson has finished as a top-8 TE in PPR formats each of the last three weeks and four times in the last five weeks. He’s the TE3 since his two-TD game in Week 7 vs. Arizona and has scored a touchdown in three straight. In Week 11, Johnson tied for the team lead in routes run and saw just two fewer targets than Chris Olave. He’s now seen 4+ targets in four of the last five and is tied for sixth among tight ends with four Red Zone targets over that span. Johnson has worked his way into every week starter territory.
        • Logan Thomas – WAS (6.5% rostered ESPN; 6% Yahoo!)
          • Thomas may not be dead after all. He led the Commanders in Week 11 with five catches for 65 yards after totaling just 12 yards on 7 targets in two games after returning from injury. He was second on the team in targets, with just one fewer than Terry McLaurin. He ran a route on 68% of dropbacks and was targeted on 32% of his routes run. The 32% TPRR is on pace with TJ Hockenson, Pat Freiermuth, and Travis Kelce. Thomas also saw two Red Zone targets, though he couldn’t score on either. One game does not a starter make, especially given the tight end landscape but Thomas is worth a speculative add in case the usage continues.

         

        • Other TE <40% rostered worth considering
          • Trey McBride – ARI (7.4% ESPN; 17% Yahoo!)
          • Austin Hooper – TEN (6.1% ESPN; 12% Yahoo!)
          • Foster Moreau – LV (24.8% ESPN; 40% Yahoo!)
             

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