Running Backs Waiver Wire - Week 11 Pickups and Adds

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If you're a believer in the All-RB bench strategy, you may consider acquiring multiple players on this list. We have no idea how much value players like Jamaal Williams or Rex Burkhead will have in another week or two, but the off-chance that they play significant roles on their respective teams during the fantasy playoffs should make them far more valuable than any interchangeable WR3 or WR4 that's out there.

This article will aim to highlight Week 11 waiver wire adds for running backs, players that you should consider targeting on your league's waiver wire if available. Running backs will be split up into three tiers - from most desirable, to most desperate.

I will also include RBs at the bottom of this list that you might consider cutting in order to make room for your new additions and a suggested percentage of your FAAB to spend on each player.

Editor's note: Purchase any NFL Lineup Optimizer pass (including daily DFS cheat sheets), and you also get access to NBA and NHL Optimizers and DFS cheat sheets.

 

Frontrunners for Week 11 - Waiver Wire Running Backs

Jamaal Williams, Green Bay Packers - 4% owned (7-10% FAAB)

Another new starter in Green Bay's backfield? When Aaron Jones left the game early, Ty Montgomery made the biggest impact but exited late, and Jamaal Williams wound up with the most touches. Williams wasn't overly effective, carrying 20 times for 67 yards and catching just one pass. He could be the de facto RB1 as last man standing, though. This pickup is far less exciting with Aaron Rodgers still sidelined, but any starting running back that's virtually unowned should be a high priority add.

Rex Burkhead, New England Patriots - 10% owned (4-8% FAAB)

I know, another Pats RB... All of a sudden, Rex Burkhead is the focal point of New England's offense, just to confuse us all. He scored a touchdown early in the first quarter and nearly scored again in the second quarter when the Pats seemingly force-fed him the ball near the goal-line. He finished with 63 total yards, but the scoring potential makes him relevant in both standard and PPR. The interesting thing is that he didn't just serve as a pass-catcher. Burkhead was on the field for 36 offensive snaps; Dion Lewis came in next with 21 snaps. His ceiling is limited and his usage extremely unpredictable, but that's the case with pretty much all these players.

Austin Ekeler, Los Angeles Chargers - 2% owned (5% FAAB)

Chargers fans might not remember Ekeler too fondly for his late fumble that allowed the Jags to eventually claim victory in overtime. Fantasy owners only care about the two touchdowns and 119 total yards that made Ekeler the second-leading RB scorer in Week 10. If Melvin Gordon were hurt, this would be an obvious situation of a backup whose value is tied to the starter's status. But Ekeler did all his damage with Gordon perfectly healthy and ineffective. Ekeler won't supplant Gordon any time soon, but he should definitely be worked into the offense more after he showed off breakaway speed. He joins the group of PPR flex-worthy options that are boom-bust on a given week.

 

In The Running - Week 11 Waiver Wire Running Backs

Latavius Murray, Minnesota Vikings - 43% owned (3-5% FAAB)

17 carries, 68 yards and one touchdown on the ground, nothing through the air. Not an overly exciting line, but it did show that Murray will continue to be involved in the offense for one of the top teams in the NFC. His value is certainly higher in standard leagues than PPR, as he's somewhat touchdown-dependent. With so few running backs assured of such a dedicated role, he still remains a widely available free agent.

Andre Ellington, Arizona Cardinals - 9% owned (3% FAAB)

Sure, it was a meaningless touchdown that Ellington scored, but it's something. He was stymied on Thursday night, catching three of six targets for 26 yards and running for just four yards, but it was against the Seattle defense. If Blaine Gabbert becomes the new starting QB in Arizona, expect a steady diet of checkdowns. He is far less exciting than he was a few weeks ago, but there's still some potential for a few cheap points.

Theo Riddick, Detroit Lions - 42% owned (2% FAAB)

In many competitive PPR leagues, Riddick has been owned since draft day. He hasn't been worth rolling out in your starting lineups, however. Riddick finally scored for the first time since Week 1, although he only saw seven touches on the day. His value will continue to have a definite limit as long as Ameer Abdullah stays healthy, but with the way the Lions offense is rolling, there could be more touchdowns in his future.

Honorable Mentions: Devontae Booker (8% owned), DeAndre Washington (9% owned)

 

Dark Horses - Week 11 Running Backs Waiver Wire

Rod Smith, Dallas Cowboys - 27% owned (1% FAAB)

So, it turns out Rod Smith is no Ezekiel Elliott. Alfred Morris got first run as expected and did a fair job. Smith was relegated to fourth quarter duty when it was obvious the Cowboys were going to lose and he managed just 14 yards. His role could hypothetically grow over the next couple weeks, but if you need immediate help he'll be of no value. The Cowboys face the best run defense in the league in Week 11, that of the Philadelphia Eagles. Their schedule doesn't ease up much leading to Zeke's next hearing, so expectations need to be seriously tempered for Smith and Morris.

Lance Dunbar, Los Angeles Rams - 0% owned (0% FAAB)

Dunbar was supposed to be the third-down back coming into the season, but he suffered a knee injury in the preseason and was just activated. He took some carries late in the blowout win against Houston, but wasn't needed as a pass-catcher. He could work his way into the backup role that had been occupied by Malcolm Brown, which still makes him no higher than a handcuff. If you're a Gurley owner, you may want to replace Brown with Dunbar. If you're looking to stash RBs just in case worst-case scenarios come true, he's a dark horse.

Honorable Mentions: Charles Sims (1% owned), J.D. McKissic (3% owned), Corey Clement (8% owned)

 

Time To Say Goodbye

Tarik Cohen, Chicago Bears - 54% owned

It's finally time to cut bait, if you haven't already, on this year's first waiver wire darling. Cohen burst onto the scene with eight catches in each of his first two games and 100+ total yards in two of his first three. In the last four games, he's seen a total of 11 targets and 135 combined yards. He had a mere two touches in Week 10 and has seen Benny Cunningham take over his job as the pass-catching back. Regardless of how much you spent to acquire him, you aren't losing anything by clearing up roster space to make room for someone who will actually get you points instead.

Aaron Jones, Green Bay Packers - 83% owned

This one hurts too. Fantasy owners who thought they found waiver wire gold with Jones a few weeks ago were disappointed the last couple of weeks and now face the prospect of waiving him for good. The initial diagnosis was a sprained MCL, but we should find out more soon. Either way, look for Jones to be out of action while the above-mentioned Williams get a chance to take over, with Montgomery still in the mix, if healthy.

Rob Kelley, Washington Redskins34% owned

It is with great sadness that I must finally part ways with the obese one. Kelley just can't stay healthy and it isn't the same recurring injury. Kelley is like a human Operation board, only needing a broken funny bone before his nose lights up red. It appears the Skins don't need a RB to plunge in near the goal-line, as Kirk Cousins just did it himself twice in Week 10. Samaje Perine just isn't very good and is not worth adding. Wait until next year when the team finds their running back of the future in the draft.

 

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