Deeper Waiver Wire Sleepers: Players Who May Still Be Available

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Did you miss out on Tre Mason and Andrew Hawkins this week? Not to fear, I'm here with some deeper waiver wire pickups and sleepers for Week 8 and beyond. Let’s look at some of the guys that may be still sitting on the wire as we get closer to Sunday, as there are always those hidden gems sitting out there waiting to be added to your fantasy football teams.

 

Digging Deeper - Potential Week 8 Waiver Wire Sleepers

Bryce Brown - RB, BUF - 8% Owned in Fleaflicker

With the loss of Fred Jackson and CJ Spiller in 1 game, the Bills go from one of the better one-two punches to one of the most inexperienced.  Anthony Dixon and Bryce Brown are expected to carry the load for Buffalo until Jackson returns from his slight groin tear.  Dixon is probably the recommended add for next week, as he has been mentioned by beat writers and himself as the one that will receive the bulk of carries and red zone opportunities, however it’s not a secret that Brown is clearly the superior talent.

Brown was the #1 overall player in his high school class by somewhat of a significant margin (ahead of uber-talents like Reuben Randle, Trent and Sheldon Richardson), but never got a true opportunity at college due to transferring and bogus college suspensions.  He showed off his true game-breaking talent with the Eagles when McCoy went down with a concussion, rushing for 350 yards and 4 touchdowns in just 2 games, although losing 3 fumbles in the process (a problem for him).  He was traded to Buffalo as the future back once Jackson retires and Spiller elects free-agency.

Now that he has an opportunity, look for him to make the best of it as he did previously.  If he can use his physicality on the inside instead of being Spiller-esque and busting his runs to the outside, look for him to make a huge impact in the second half of the season in both the run and pass game.  Dixon will most likely struggle with a weak offensive line and passing game, so look for the Bills to experiment with Brown as the season progresses.  He makes for a very interesting add in 12 team leagues, and a must add in 14+ as well as PPR.

 

Jonas Gray - RB, NE - 2% Owned in Fleaflicker

It’s hard to recommend a Patriot running back given the massive inconsistency of usage at the position, but Gray just might help you this week in a game against the struggling Bears.  Without Henry Melton, they have been a mess defending the run, and this week should be no different against a surging Patriots team.  Gray got just 2 carries last week, but that number was more than Bolden, which shows that he’s at least ahead of him on the big back pecking order.

Shane Vereen is still the lead dog in the Patriots trio, but he was completely underutilized until Ridley went down, so we have to wonder if the Patriots will attempt to use him as a complementary piece if they are able to get production out of Gray.  This is pure speculation, but Gray did look quick for his size this past week, and the word is that he understands the playbook.  There are worse adds in deep leagues than Gray this week, and he could end up posting some solid numbers from time to time, just don’t expect anything more than a flyer at this point.

 

Seattle Seahawks Receivers

With the loss of Percy Harvin, every receiver on the Seahawks team clearly gets an immediate bump in our weekly rankings.  Of the Seahawks that may be available, I’d rank them in this order:

By Mike Morris (Flickr) [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons1) Doug Baldwin - 26% Owned in Fleaflicker - He shouldn't have been on any waiver wires prior to Percy leaving, and he makes for a sneaky WR3 play every week, as he’s been Wilson’s go-to target for three years now.

2) Jermaine Kearse - 6% Owned in Fleaflicker - Kearse is average in size, but he’s got some impressive athletic ability that the Seahawks love to use in the red zone.  He’s now in his third year in the league, and he finally has a starting job.  Look for his numbers to be obnoxiously inconsistent, but he’s probably one of the few receivers on the waiver wire that you can expect consistent snaps from.  He’s not necessarily a breakout candidate, but he will be fairly active in the Seahawks offense, so he represents an interesting opportunity in deep leagues.

3) Paul Richardson - 4% Owned in Fleaflicker - A supreme talent that came out of the draft last year, Richardson has drawn comparisons to Harvin for his ungodly speed, but he doesn’t have even half the strength of his predecessor.  He could make a nice PPR FLEX option in potential shootout games in the near future, and the Seahawks will certainly need his game-breaking ability every now and then.  His snaps were encouraging this past week with Harvin gone.

4) Ricardo Lockette - 2% Owned in Fleaflicker - I’ve seen people praise Lockette and say that he’s ready for a bigger role, but I’m not ready to get on board with that just yet-- apparently, neither are the Seahawks.  Lockette is a big receiver who has made some impressive plays so far, but he struggles with getting off the line of scrimmage and getting open.  He needs to be more physical and develop more polish on his routes before he can make true contributions.  That said, he’s not the worst dynasty stash in the deepest of leagues.

 

Robert Griffin - QB, WAS - 56% Owned in Fleaflicker

I want to keep this short.  I’m in six leagues this year, and RGIII was a free agent in two as of last week. Let’s just say he’s now on my bench in both of them.  With Kirk Cousins playing himself out of a job, Griffin is guaranteed the starting job on his return.  In Jay Gruden’s scheme, that’s a good thing.  Look for the Redskins to possibly ease him in for the first two quarters of his first game back, and then unleash him.  He’s a safe QB1 that could give you some huge numbers in the fantasy playoffs (Rams, Giants, Eagles).

 

Martavis Bryant - WR, PIT - 4% Owned in Fleaflicker

Bryant finally made it to the field, and had a huge grab this Monday against the Texans that helped the Steelers come back and win the game. With Big Ben’s trust in Wheaton fading quickly, look for Bryant’s snaps to increase dramatically over the next few weeks. The Steelers are desperate for a big playmaker opposite Antonio Brown, and Bryant may be that guy.

Bryant is an athletic freak who is insanely fast for his size, but he’s always lacked hands, physicality and a head on his shoulders.  I wouldn’t trust Bryant as a starter as he slowly gets assimilated into the offensive, but he’s not the worst desperation add as a WR5 that could work himself into FLEX consideration in potential shootout games. He’s at least going to be a red-zone target for a Steelers team that desperately needs one.