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Week 10 Quarterback - Waiver Wire Adds and Pickups

Outside of Nick Mullens big Thursday Night performance, it was a rather quiet week for waiver wire quarterbacks. Some of the studs like Drew Brees and Matt Ryan had huge games, but there weren't many emergent names or standout performances in the middle tiers other than Mullens.

Four teams are on bye this week, with Deshaun Watson and Kirk Cousins being the two prominent quarterbacks that won't play in Week 10. Baltimore and Denver are also on bye, but they don't have standard league caliber quarterbacks. We've got quite a few tough matchups from studs as well. Jared Goff takes on the Seahawks, on the other side of that game Russell Wilson has to contend with the Rams. Andrew Luck draws the Jaguars, Matthew Stafford gets the Bears, and Carson Wentz takes on the Cowboys. Owners of those quarterbacks may at least want to peruse the waiver wire to see who is available.

In standard one-quarterback leagues, the waiver wire is usually pretty rich with talent at the position, unless the league is full of owners that like to hold backup quarterbacks. In two-quarterback leagues, nearly every starter is rostered and the waiver wire tends to be quite barren for quality arms. That’s why a few quarterbacks owned in 15% of leagues or less have been included, so even owners in deep leagues have someone to consider. Ownership is based on Yahoo leagues and is current as of November 4.

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Week 10 Waiver Wire Quarterbacks

Andy Dalton – CIN vs. New Orleans Saints – 62% Owned

Normally this article only includes quarterbacks owned in fewer than 60% of leagues, but Dalton is worth an exception this week because he has a great matchup and is coming off a bye, therefore he may have been dropped by owners in a bye week bind. Dalton has had a dream schedule since Week 4 starting with the Falcons and has mostly delivered in these matchups. His 7.92 point dud against the Chiefs in Week 7 was Dalton’s only big disappointment. Going into play Sunday New Orleans had been allowing the third most fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks and are allowing the fourth highest net yards-per-attempt on passes. Cincinnati’s defense is on a similarly bad level and this should be a back-and-forth game between two good offenses.

Week 10 may be Dalton’s last stream-able week for a while, as the fortunate matchups stop in Week 11 with a matchup against Baltimore. Between Week 11-13 Cincinnati takes on Baltimore, Cleveland, and Denver, all top-12 defenses against quarterbacks. His Week 15 matchup against Oakland is enticing, but Dalton has had most of his good matchups already and will return to middling QB2 status soon after this week.

Baker Mayfield – CLE vs. Atlanta Falcons – 38% Owned

Mayfield’s schedule has been as good as Dalton’s beginning in seven, and he draws another great matchup next week against the Atlanta Falcons. The Falcons were allowing the second most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks going into play Sunday and allowed 306 yards to Alex Smith in Week 9, Smith’s first 300 yard game this season. Mayfield isn’t likely to be a big scorer, but he can live in the 17-20 point range in matchups like these and help owners in need of a replacement. Like many of their games this season, Cleveland could be chasing points in this one and Mayfield would be forced to throw often.

At this point in his career, Mayfield is strictly a matchup play in standard leagues, which is why he is droppable after Week 10 because Cleveland has a Week 11 bye. After the bye, the schedule gets tougher for Mayfield, who has benefited from an amazing string of matchups between Weeks 7-9 and another in Week 10. Only a pair of matchups against the Bengals in Week 12 and Week 16 are good enough to consider streaming Mayfield, otherwise, he is a one-week-only play in standard leagues.

Alex Smith – WAS @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers – 43% Owned

Smith had his first 300-yard game in Week 9 against the Falcons and will look to build upon that performance in another easy matchup Week 10 against the Buccaneers. Even with the yardage this still wasn’t a great game from Smith, since it took him 46 pass attempts to get to 306 yards and he only had one touchdown along with one interception. Smith is purely a matchup only option, and matchups don’t get much better for quarterbacks than Tampa Bay. Going into play Sunday Tampa Bay was allowing the most fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks along with the most passing touchdowns, fewest interceptions, and third most passing yards per game. Smith has been quite underwhelming this season, which is why Andy Dalton or Baker Mayfield would be preferable to him, but if neither is available in your league we can always pick on Tampa Bay. Washington’s schedule gets much tougher after this week and Smith is not a recommended play after Week 10.


Deeper League and Two-QB League Options

Nick Mullens – SF vs. New York Giants – 3% Owned

Mullens surprised everyone on Thursday Night Football, tossing three touchdown passes in the Niners’ 34-3 beatdown of the Oakland Raiders. He had a near perfect 151.9 passer rating and was named the starter for Week 10 against the Giants. San Francisco has a bye in Week 11, but barring injury or an utter meltdown, it seems likely that Mullens will hang onto the starting job after the bye week. Mullens, an undrafted free agent in 2017, played under current Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive coordinator Todd Monken at Southern Mississippi. Mullens was notably the Conference-USA offensive player of the year in 2015, his junior year. His Week 9 performance will probably his best-played game of the season, as it came against a checked-out Raiders’ defense playing on short rest. Still, Mullens is the starter here and for that reason worth picking up in deep leagues or two-quarterback leagues.

His Week 10 matchup against the Giants is middle of the road, as the Giants have allowed the 20th most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season. They downgraded from Eli Apple to B.W. Webb at cornerback after a trade with the Saints, but still have great talent in Janoris Jenkins and Landon Collins in their secondary. Mullens is not someone that should be eagerly targeted in standard leagues as a bye week fill-in, but in two-quarterback leagues, he is a great add.

Josh Rosen – ARI @ Kansas City Chiefs – 3% Owned

Rosen had the best game of his young career in Week 8 against San Francisco, throwing for a career-high 252 yards and posting his first multi-touchdown game. Arizona had a bye week after this game and Rosen’s performance flew under the radar because of it. That game doesn’t undo the bad we’ve seen from Rosen so far, but it is the first step in the right direction. Perhaps new offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich will help Rosen succeed more than the previous coordinator Mike McCoy, or perhaps it was because Rosen finally had a decent matchup. Since becoming starter Rosen has only faced one bottom-ten defense against quarterbacks, and it was the 49ers twice. Otherwise, he had to take on Seattle, Denver, and Minnesota for his other starts. Not easy for a rookie quarterback on a bad team.

Arizona takes on Kansas City next week and they will, in all likelihood, get blown out of the water by the Chiefs. That being said, Rosen will get lots of garbage time reps in against a weak Kansas City pass defense. Going into Week 9 the Chiefs were allowing the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks. Rosen could be a good desperation play in two-quarterback leagues or deep leagues where is still available. This week will tell us a lot about where Rosen is headed for the rest of the season. If he plays well he could be a useful, if high-risk streamer. If he plays poorly he will be relegated to the waiver wire regardless of matchup.

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