Fantasy Playoffs Waiver Wire Pickups: Target Tua Tagovailoa, Jimmy Garoppolo, Jared Goff, More Week 16 Adds

Fantasy Playoffs Waiver Wire Pickups: Target Tua Tagovailoa, Jimmy Garoppolo, Jared Goff, More Week 16 Adds article feature image
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Getty Images. Pictured: Lions QB Jared Goff, 49ers QB Jimmy Garoppolo and Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa

Week 15 was one of the most chaotic weeks in the NFL that I can recall.

The week was mired by COVID-19 outbreaks among numerous teams that caused major uncertainty around the statuses of multiple Week 15 games and individual players. Several outbreaks ultimately led to the postponement of three games involving some of the hardest-hit teams.

Additionally, we lost other star players throughout the week for non-COVID-19 reasons. Cardinals wideout DeAndre Hopkins is done for the NFL regular season with a knee issue while Lions tight end T.J. Hockenson is done for the year with a thumb injury.

Amid the chaos, the Lions upset the Cardinals 30-12 and the Buccaneers were shut out by the Saints 9-0 at home. All in all, a confusing mess for the first week of the fantasy playoffs for most leagues.

Whether you need replacements for Hopkins, Hockenson, Joe Mixon, Chris Godwin or Leonard Fournette, or a Week 16 streamer, make sure to check out The Action Network’s top targets at each position — all of which are available in at least 50% of Yahoo! leagues — that you should prioritize come Tuesday night.

Note: Yahoo! roster percentages are reflected in parenthesis and as of Monday. 

Fantasy Waiver Wire Pickups

JUMP TO
QB | RB | WR | TE

Fantasy Waiver QBs to Target 

Tyler Huntley, Ravens (4% rostered)

Rest-of-season schedule: at Bengals, vs. Rams, vs. Steelers

Huntley shined in his spot start for star quarterback Lamar Jackson, who was a late scratch against the Packers. Though the Ravens lost the game 31-30, Huntley made a Jackson-esque comeback attempt and completed 28 of 40 passes for 215 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions. He also tacked on 13 carries for 73 yards and two rushing touchdowns and is currently the QB1 for fantasy with four games left to play. It’s unclear as of writing this on Monday whether Jackson’s bone-bruised ankle will keep him out of the Ravens’ AFC North showdown against the Bengals. Huntley should be considered a low-end QB1 if Jackson sits due to his high rushing upside.

Priority: High.

Tua Tagovailoa, Dolphins (47%)

Rest-of-season schedule: at Saints, at Titans, vs. Patriots

Tagovailoa was one of my favorite streaming options for Week 15, but was a bit disappointing against the Jets. He tossed two touchdowns and two interceptions and finished with 16 fantasy points. He gets two plush matchups in a row against the Saints and Titans, who rank ninth- and sixth-worst in the NFL in fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks. He will hopefully have star wideout Jaylen Waddle back for this game, which should be a major boost. Tagovailoa is once again a viable streamer in Week 16.

Priority: Medium.

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Jimmy Garoppolo, 49ers (41%)

Rest-of-season schedule: at Titans, vs. Texans, at Rams

Garoppolo also disappointed in what should have been a solid Week 15 matchup against the Falcons. He completed 18 of just 23 attempts for 235 yards, one touchdown and one interception as the team leaned heavily on its run game. The game script didn’t necessitate a lot of passing, which I think is unlikely to be the case against the Titans. Tennessee’s defense is bottom six against the fantasy quarterbacks, vaulting Garoppolo back into the streaming conversation once again.

Priority: Medium.

Jared Goff, Lions (7%)

Rest-of-season schedule: at Falcons, at Seahawks, vs. Packers

Goff brought his A-game on Sunday and led the Lions to their second win of the season. He was near perfect — even without his two top weapons in T.J. Hockenson and D’Andre Swift — and completed 21 of 26 attempts for 216 yards, three touchdowns and zero interceptions against a tough Cardinals defense. He could definitely be stream-worthy against Atlanta, whose defense ranks second-worst in the NFL in fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks, though he was placed on the COVID-19/reserve list on Monday. If vaccinated, he would have a chance to return in time for Week 16.

Priority: Low to medium.

Fantasy Waiver RBs to Target 

Ronald Jones II, Buccaneers (34% rostered)

Rest-of-season schedule: at Panthers, at Jets, vs. Panthers

Jones tallied eight carries for 63 yards and caught two of eight passes in the Buccaneers’ Sunday night shutout loss to the Saints. The Bucs also lost three of their star playmakers in the effort: Leonard Fournette, Mike Evans and Chris Godwin. Evans will reportedly be fine, but Godwin will miss the rest of the year with a torn ACL and Fournette is expected to miss a couple of games. Jones should be next in line to shoulder the majority of the work out of the Buccaneers’ backfield, especially with Giovani Bernard on injured reserve until at least Week 17. Jones vaults immediately into the must-start RB2 conversation based on workload and situation — even with the Panthers’ run defense on deck in two of the Buccaneers’ next three games.

Priority: Highest.

Samaje Perine, Bengals (13%)

Rest-of-season schedule: vs. Ravens, vs. Chiefs, at Browns

Perine tallied five points in half PPR for the third consecutive week. He should have a chance to break that streak (in a good way) if star running back Joe Mixon misses any time. Mixon injured his ankle during the Bengals’ Week 15 game against the Broncos. It’s unclear how long Mixon may sit out, but Perine would be the next man up and would immediately have low-end RB2 value based on workload.

Priority: High.

Justin Jackson, Chargers (5%) 

Rest-of-season schedule: at Texans, vs. Broncos, at Raiders

Jackson had a surprisingly nice day for fantasy in Thursday night’s overtime loss to the Chiefs. He saw 13 carries for 86 yards and caught a pass for 13 yards, while Austin Ekeler — who was questionable entering this matchup — saw 12 carries for 59 yards and a touchdown and tacked on four catches for 23 yards; Joshua Kelley saw seven carries for 21 yards. It’s unclear if the Chargers intended this to be a timeshare moving forward, but it might not matter with Ekeler ending up on the COVID-19/reserve list on Monday. If Ekeler is vaccinated, he could have a chance to return for this Sunday’s road game against the Texans, but his status is certainly in jeopardy. Jackson would likely be in line for 20+ carries if Ekeler sits, making him a high-end RB2 against Houston’s bottom five defense against fantasy running backs.

Priority: High.

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Craig Reynolds, Lions (13%)

Rest-of-season schedule: at Falcons, at Seahawks, vs. Packers

Reynolds shined as the Lions’ clear-cut alpha back in a game that was not expected to favor the run. He saw 26 attempts for 112 yards, trailing only Jonathan Taylor in rushing this week. He benefitted from both D’Andre Swift (shoulder) and Jamaal Williams (illness) missing this contest, which could be the case again in Week 16 against the Falcons. Regardless, the former undrafted free agent — who was just inked to the Lion’s 53-man roster — has probably earned some playing time with two solid games in the rearview mirror.

Priority: High.

Duke Johnson Jr., Dolphins (2%)

Rest-of-season schedule: at Saints, at Titans, vs. Patriots

Earlier in the week, Johnson was expected to see an expanded role with most of the Dolphins’ running back room on the COVID-19/reserve list. Myles Gaskin was removed from the list ahead of the team’s Week 15 matchup against the Jets, however, and was expected to resume his role as the No. 1. Miami had other plans — Johnson saw 22 carries for 107 yards and two touchdowns and tacked on a 20-yard catch while Gaskin saw 10 carries for 54 yards. It’s unclear how the Dolphins plan to wield this backfield moving forward, but it’s likely Johnson — who was just signed to the active roster — plays some kind of role. His rest-of-season schedule is less than ideal with Miami facing the top two defenses against fantasy running backs, but he could be worth an add in deeper leagues.

Priority: Medium.

Rex Burkhead, Texans (10%) 

Rest-of-season schedule: vs. Chargers, at 49ers, vs. Titans

Burkhead saw a whopping 16 carries in Week 15, but you wouldn’t know it from his production. He tallied just 41 rushing yards and caught a pass for six yards against the Jaguars. He ekes his way into this column based on his workload and the matchup against the Chargers, who rank bottom six in fantasy points allowed to running backs this year.

Priority: Low to medium.

Devontae Booker, Giants (22%) 

Rest-of-season schedule: at Eagles, at Bears, vs. Washington

Booker posted another solid day for fantasy in the Giants’ NFC East showdown against the Cowboys. He outperformed Saquon Barkley and saw eight carries for 74 yards and caught two passes for eight yards; Barkley saw 15 carries for 50 yards and caught four of eight targets for 24 yards. He remains the clear-cut understudy, but has enough of a role now (and potential upside if Barkley were to suffer an injury) to warrant a bid in deeper formats.

Priority: Low.

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Fantasy Waiver WRs to Target 

Amon-Ra St. Brown and Josh Reynolds, Lions (29%, 10% rostered) 

Rest-of-season schedule: at Falcons, at Seahawks, vs. Packers

St. Brown shined once again in Sunday’s shocking upset over the Cardinals. He caught eight of 11 targets for 90 yards and found the end zone for the second time in three games while Reynolds caught all six of his targets for 68 yards and a touchdown. St. Brown has been on fire of late, tallying at least 11 targets and 73 receiving yards in each of the last three weeks. He has a good chance to extend his hot streak with the Falcons on deck in Week 16. Atlanta’s defense ranks fourth-worst in the NFL against fantasy receivers, though St. Brown’s and Reynolds’ upsides could be capped if Tim Boyle or David Blough get the start.

Priority: High for St. Brown, low to medium for Reynolds.

Gabriel Davis, Bills (19%)

Rest-of-season schedule: at Patriots, vs. Falcons, vs. Jets

Davis was a popular waiver add last week and delivered big time for savvy managers in round one of the fantasy playoffs. He caught five of seven targets for 85 yards and two touchdowns — his fourth in three weeks. Emmanuel Sanders was inactive for this game due to a knee injury, which could keep him sidelined in Week 16. This isn’t an ideal matchup against the Patriots, though Davis did manage to find the end zone in the Bills’ last meeting with the Patriots in a sloppy Monday night affair. He should be considered a potential flex option and stash for Week 17 with the Falcons on the horizon.

Priority: High.

Tyler Johnson and Scotty Miller, Buccaneers (1%, <1%)

Rest-of-season schedule: at Panthers, at Jets, vs. Panthers

Johnson saw a season-high seven targets and caught four passes for 41 yards while Miller caught two of three targets for 18 yards in the Buccaneers’ shocking 9-0 loss to the Saints. Both will likely see a small bump in targets with Chris Godwin done for the season and Mike Evans’ status up-in-the-air, though Antonio Brown is due to return after his false vaccination card incident.

Priority: Medium for Johnson, low to medium for Miller.

Laquon Treadwell, Jaguars (2%)

Rest-of-season schedule: at Jets, at Patriots, vs. Colts

Treadwell delivered another solid fantasy performance in Week 15 against the Texans. He caught six of nine targets for 57 yards — his fourth consecutive game with at least four catches and 53 receiving yards. His upside is capped due to the Jaguars’ offensive struggles, but he is a safe option for Week 16 with the Jets on deck.

Priority: Low to medium.

Marquez Callaway, Saints (23%)

Rest-of-season schedule: vs. Dolphins, vs. Panthers, at Falcons

Callaway posted a stellar Week 15 against the Buccaneers. He led the team in targets and caught six of nine passes for a season-high 112 yards. The next most-targeted receiver was Tre’Quan Smith with three targets in the effort. He is a high-risk, high-reward type player and worth an add in deeper leagues.

Priority: Low to medium.

Fantasy Waiver TEs to Target 

James O’Shaughnessy, Jaguars (2% rostered)

Rest-of-season schedule: at Jets, at Patriots, vs. Colts

The tight end pickings under 50% rostered are slim this week, but O’Shaughnessy stands out as a widely available option for those in desperate need of a streamer. He reeled in all four of his targets for 60 yards against the Texans — good enough for eight fantasy points in half PPR, which is basically all you can ask for out of a tight end these days. He gets the Jets next week, who have allowed the seventh-most fantasy points to tight ends this year.

Priority: Low to medium.

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