And then, there were three. Whether you’re trying to secure a first-round BYE or simply a berth in your league’s playoffs, time is of the essence as only three weeks remain in the fantasy football regular season. As these next three weeks unfold, it’s important to remember the fact that fantasy football truly is a weekly game. So, even though the past 10 weeks have given us all a solid idea of what’s what, what lies ahead really is a mystery.
Last year, players like Dion Lewis, Keelan Cole, and Kenyan Drake overcame slow starts to become late bloomers that led many to Titletown. But who fits the profile for 2018? While no one knows for certain, it’s my belief that the players below have as good a chance as any.
So, let’s get to it. Here are 4 deep league waiver wire additions for Week 11 and beyond.
Lamar Jackson—Baltimore Ravens
After a week’s worth of speculation, it looks like Ravens QB Joe Flacco will miss Baltimore’s Week 11 stint against the Bengals with a hip injury. In other words, it’s Lamar Jackson time in Baltimore.
Continue to hear it is very unlikely Joe Flacco plays Sunday. Barring a very unexpected, last-minute, Willis Reed-like situation, Lamar Jackson in line to start. Rest and recovery have been prescribed for Flacco's hip injury
— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) November 16, 2018
So far this season, the Ravens have taken somewhat of a Taysom Hill approach with Jackson as they’ve sprinkled him onto the field in specific situations. But now, the sky is the limit. With his big arm and rushing ability, the 2016 Heisman Winner will immediately add another dimension to what has been a middling offense in Baltimore.
After averaging 30+ PPG over the first four games of the season, the Ravens haven’t surpassed 23 points in any game since. If Jackson finds a way to light up the Bengals this Sunday (which could very well happen), coach John Harbaugh will have a big decision to make as his team makes one final push for the postseason. And the Ravens remaining schedule? It couldn’t be better for fantasy purposes, with matchups against the Chiefs, Buccaneers, and Chargers in weeks 14-16. If Jackson is available in your league, add him now before his potential breakout game this Sunday.
Josh Reynolds—LA Rams
This week’s edition of #GoingDeep includes two members of the LA Rams, and for good reason. For starters, Sean McVay runs essentially the same personnel package on close to every offensive possession. And in the wake of Cooper Kupp’s season-ending ACL injury, a whopping 20% target share has suddenly made itself available (PlayerProfiler). That’s great news for Josh Reynolds, who will immediately step into the WR3 role on LA’s offense. In the two games Kupp missed earlier this season, Reynolds turned 6 targets into 4 receptions for 61 yards and 2 TDs. With LA’s upcoming clash against the Chiefs that features one of the NFL’s highest point totals in years, Reynolds is someone who should be added immediately.
Tyler Higbee—LA Rams
Our second Ram to discuss is TE Tyler Higbee. While fellow TE Gerald Everett is also in the picture, there’s evidence that Higbee will prevail as the TE of preference moving forward. Over the past three weeks, Higbee has run 39 routes while playing an average of 76% of the offensive snaps. Everett, meanwhile, has run just 29 routes while playing an average of 25% of the offensive snaps. In other words, in Higbee, we’re looking at a lead TE who’s dominating snap share on the NFL’s third highest-scoring offense.
Although the fantasy production hasn’t quite been there, TE has been a barren landscape all season long. At the very least, we can count on Higbee seeing the field. If you’re an owner who just lost Jimmy Graham to a broken thumb, run to your league’s waiver wire and add Higbee ahead of Monday night’s showdown with the Kansas City Chiefs.
Jonnu Smith—Tennessee Titans
Entering Week 7, Tennessee Titans TE Jonnu Smith had a whopping three receptions for 33 yards on the entire season. But in the three games since, Smith has come on strong with 7 receptions for 89 yards and 2 TDs. That spike in production has coincided with QB Marcus Mariota’s return to full health, who had been nursing an elbow injury that had rendered him ineffective through the first half of the season. With a potentially high-scoring affair with the Indianapolis Colts on tap, Smith could find himself in the end zone for a third straight week this Sunday.
That’ll do it for this week’s edition of #GoingDeep. Whether you loved or hated this article, I’m always down to talk fantasy football on Twitter @phclapp. Good luck to all this week, and thanks for reading!