Fantasy Football Waiver Wire: WR - Week 4

by Ryan R. Bonini and Tim Heaney on September 30, 2009 @ 00:00:00 PDT

 


Free agents to pick up in your fantasy football league

If you are serious about winning your fantasy league football championship, it is important to stay on top of your fantasy football team throughout the course of the year.

Each week during the NFL fantasy football season, KFFL brings you its Fantasy Football Waiver Wire, which breaks down players to pick up in your league. Not being aggressive in picking up fantasy football free agents is not a wise move. Sometimes, even if you do not need the player for your starting lineup, it is wise to tuck the player away for depth as well as to block others from adding the player to their fantasy football team.

Fantasy football free agents: Priority additions

The following players should be high on your radar and are worthy of being added immediately to your fantasy football team.

Donnie Avery, St. Louis Rams

Donnie Avery, WR, St. Louis Rams
Avery good addition to your WR corps

The season-ending injury to Laurent Robinson (leg) halted one promising fantasy campaign and restored the chance to salvage another. Avery (ribs) is banged up in his own right but nonetheless solidifies his top-target title in the Gateway City. He has only caught four passes for 16 yards in the last two weeks but began in a promising fashion with 6-46-0 in Week 1.

He's averaging 7.33 targets per game so far. The speedster's early-season fumbling problems shouldn't deter you from bringing him aboard if he was discarded. He's still addable in about 41 percent of leagues.

Mike Sims-Walker, Jacksonville Jaguars

As stated in our Week 3 roundup, Sims-Walker has the chance to step up as the Jags' No. 2 wideout. In Week 3 he grabbed six passes for the second consecutive contest and has been looked at 19 times in the last two games - that's one more target than Jacksonville No. 1 emeritus Torry Holt. Do yourself a favor and see if your league is one of the 55 percent in which Sims-Walker remains unowned.

Sidney Rice, Minnesota Vikings

Quarterback Brett Favre went from game manager to gunslinger in Week 3, and he connected with Rice four times for 56 yards and a score. With the Vikings showing a very balanced offense now, we could see Rice's production increase moving forward. If defenses continue to focus on the Vikings' running game, Favre's arm is going to get more work - and so should Rice. The third-year wideout is seeing an average of 5.7 targets and one red zone look per week. Snag him off your waiver wire!

Pierre Garcon, Indianapolis Colts

His newfound je ne sais quoi has caught quarterback Peyton Manning's attention, and it looks like Garcon has all but locked up the No. 2 wideout job. Garcon hauled in three passes for 64 yards and a score this past Sunday - his 53-yard scoring grab followed one of 48 in Week 2. Garcon has been targeted almost five times per game so far, too. He should at least be a wide receiver depth option and is calling your name in about 62 percent of polled formats.

Fantasy football free agents: Look to acquire

Fantasy football leagues come in all shapes, so the following players will have greater significance in deep fantasy football leagues. In shallow leagues, they are not as high of a priority but should be considered based on your fantasy football team's needs.

Bryant Johnson, Detroit Lions

Detroit's passing game will be erratic as rookie quarterback Matthew Stafford matures. However, playing from behind will lead to Detroit putting the ball in the air. As defenses focus on Calvin Johnson, it will open more for Bryant Johnson, as we saw in Week 3 when he had four receptions, 73 yards and a score. He nearly had another touchdown, too. He is being targeted an average of 7.3 times per week, so the chances are there. With bye weeks upon us, he should be considered for depth.

Andre Caldwell, Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals' slot and third-down specialist has benefited from the hobbled Chris Henry (quadriceps) while molding a rapport with quarterback Carson Palmer. Through three games Caldwell ranks second among Cincy wideouts with 19 targets, three more than on-paper No. 2 Laveranues Coles. Even with Henry on the mend, it's hard to think this high-flying offense would ignore Caldwell even with another weapon eventually being phased in. You can find Caldwell available in almost every fantasy football league.

NEW - Keenan Burton, St. Louis Rams

Wideout Laurent Robinson (leg, ankle) was placed on Injured Reserve after suffering a fractured fibula and high ankle sprain. The move pushes Burton into the starting lineup. Robinson, while much more dynamic than Burton, was the recipient of 24 targets in his abbreviated three games of play. With Donnie Avery (ribs) likely serving as the deep threat, Burton should be the possession guy in St. Louis. Consider him in deep leagues or to cover bye weeks.

Fantasy football free agents: Watch list

These fantasy football free agents shouldn't be on your immediate list. They may have had a big week of production; they may show talent but are buried on the depth chart; they may have a chance to play sometime this season because of injuries. Still, fantasy football players must know who these players are for their potential contribution in the future.

NEW - Mike Wallace, Pittsburgh Steelers

Santonio Holmes was plagued by drops and also ran into Cincinnati Bengals cornerback Leon Hall last week, which likely paved the way for Wallace's eight targets (seven receptions for 102 yards). Wallace racked up 51 yards on one play, giving him a miserable 8.5 yards-per-reception average on his six remaining grabs. When the matchup appears tough for the two outside receivers, consider playing Wallace given the Steelers' propensity to involve their slot receiver in recent years. In fact, this week just may be one of those matchups....

NEW - Chaz Schilens, Oakland Raiders

Raiders wide receivers have 44 targets through three games. For the sake of comparison, the New England Patriots' Randy Moss has 41 targets. Oakland's first-round pick, Darrius Heyward-Bey, has just one catch on 13 targets. It's not certain if DHB or the more prolific Louis Murphy takes a back seat upon the eventual return of Schilens (foot). The Raiders' most productive receiver in the offseason, Schilens is making progress but remains uncertain for Week 4. Stash him in very deep leagues; the Raiders' feeble passing game, coupled with the time needed to get back into football shape, lends to keeping an eye on Schilens for now.

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About Ryan R. Bonini

Founding KFFL in 1996, Bonini now serves as VP of Fantasy Sports Solutions for USA TODAY SPORTS, KFFL's parent company. Bonini was named 2009 Fantasy Football Writer of the Year by the FSWA, received honors with the Best Fantasy Football Series in '10 and was named into their Hall of Fame in '13.

His work has been found in USA TODAY Sports, Yahoo! Sports, FOX Sports, CBS Sports, NFL.com, and many others. He has also been featured on numerous radio programs around the country. Bonini is a member of the PFWA, FSWA and FSTA.

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