I’ll be digging through the trash for your next waiver stash. These 3 guys are barely owned. They might not be huge contributors to your squad right now, but could possibly be useful down the road. Here goes:
1. Brandon Powell, WR, Detroit Lions
(2.5% owned in FFPC leagues)
Vs Chicago, Vs Los Angeles Rams, @ Arizona
Powell was an undrafted player out of Florida. Standing at 5’8” and 181lbs, he was mainly featured in the slot and also returned kick offs and punts. During the preseason, he was targeted 20 times in 4 contests. He displayed his quickness and physicality and ended up snagging 16 receptions for 103 yards. His most talked about play was his punt return against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in week 3. Powell fielded the ball towards the left sideline, ran towards the middle of the field and juked a few defenders before sprinting towards the right side of the field for an 80 yard score. Even with his heavy usage in the preseason, Powell was cut and then signed to the practice squad.
Golden Tate took the rookie under his wing and helped him since his addition to the practice squad and even praised Powell more than once when speaking to the media. With Golden Tate traded to Philadelphia at the trade deadline, the Lions have turned to T.J. Jones as the next man in line for the slot receiver duties. As of right now, Jones has underwhelmed by only catching 5 passes for 42 yards in the 4 games played without Tate. Powell has only seen the field as a receiver in one of them (week 10 against the Chicago Bears). He played 25 snaps (a 32% snap share), was targeted 3 times and caught one reception late in the game for 6 yards.
The past 2 weeks, Powell was inactive due to the addition of free agent wide receiver Bruce Ellington. Ellington appears to have taken this role from T.J. Jones as he seen an 82% snap share in week 12 and has caught 12 passes for 80 yards the past 2 weeks. As you can see, there is definite PPR value in this position on the Lions team. This season appears as if it could be a wash for Powell. Ellington seems to be the key here. If the Lions end up bringing Ellington back, it honestly could mean that Powell won’t get his shot. However, if Ellington either gets hurt or signs elsewhere, Powell could be a worthy stash for your dynasty roster, or he could be banana peel that has been sitting your garbage can for days. You have to love fantasy football and it’s unpredictability.
2. Jeff Driskel, QB, Cincinnati Bengals
(0.0% owned in FFPC leagues)
Vs Denver, @ Los Angeles Chargers, Vs Oakland
Driskel was drafted in the 6th Round in 2016 out of Louisiana Tech by the San Francisco 49ers. He has a decent arm and is not afraid to run the ball (he ran a 4.5 40 yard dash at the Combine). In his first training camp Driskel lost out to Christian Ponder for the 3rd String Quarterback and was placed on waivers. The Bengals scooped Driskel up and he served their 3rd string QB behind Dalton and A.J. McCarron in 2016. In practice during the 2017 preseason, Driskel broke his hand was placed on IR.
He was brought back in 2018 to battle for the backup quarterback position with Matt Barkley and with strong play in the preseason (34/58 for 58.6% completion rate, 448 yards, 2 td’s 1 INT), he landed the job. Driskel has since been plugged in for duty in a few separate occasions this season. The first appearance of Driskel was in mop-up duty against the Chiefs in week 7. Driskel ended up throwing 4 passes (all completed) for 39 yards. In another blowout vs the Saints in week 10, he was again sent in for mop-up duties. In this contest, however, he would score a nice touchdown run. On a 4th and 1 from the 27 yard line, Driskel faked a handoff up the middle to running back Mark Walton and confused the entire defensive line. He would go untouched down the left sideline for a score. His final stat line of that game read 2/3 45 yards, 2 rushes, 35 yards and a touchdown.
This past week against the Cleveland Browns is when Driskel would actually be pressed into duty due to an Andy Dalton injury. After Dalton injured his thumb, Driskel was sent in and played fairly well. In the 3rd quarter on the 27 yard line on a 1st and 10, Driskel found Tyler Boyd running down the middle for a quick strike that would go for a touchdown. Then, in the 4th quarter on a 1st and goal, Driskel called his number and took it up the middle (with help from Joe Mixon) for a rushing touchdown. After helping his team score 2 touchdowns, he almost led them to a comeback, but they just fell short. Driskel ended his day going 17/29, 155 yards, 1 touchdown and 3 rushes for 9 yards and another score. He did throw an interception in this contest, but it was called back after a roughing the passer call went his way that wiped it out.
Driskel is serviceable for you Dalton owners (Dalton was just placed on IR). Driskel is definite Trash Pile material as he is another player that will be free for all you FAAB cheapskates.
3. Jason Croom, TE, Buffalo Bills
(1.05% owned in FFPC leagues)
@ Miami, Vs New York Jets, Vs Detroit
We finalize the Trash Pile this week, appropriately, with a tight end. As many of you know, tight end is a wasteland this season. If you don’t have the top 5 guys, you basically are plugging in nuts and bolts to try to get basically anything from the position. Croom played college ball for the University of Tennessee, where he was used sparingly and only scored 6 touchdowns in his collegiate career. Going undrafted, the Buffalo Bills signed him in 2017. After being placed on the IR for a short amount of time in the preseason of 2017, he was then cut. Then in November of that same year was finally signed to the practice squad.
After a large chunk of a season learning from Charles Clay, Croom finally showcased his skills in week 3 of the preseason vs the Bengals. In this game, Croom ran a tight end screen pattern and Nathan Peterman found him and Croom did the rest. From 18 yards out, Croom weaved away from a tackler, ran down the right sideline and jumped between 2 defenders for a score. This solidified his role as the backup to Charles Clay. Croom was on the opening day roster and has since had some success.
In week 3 against the Vikings, Josh Allen found Croom on a play action pass down the right sideline and he ran it in for a 26 yard touchdown (untouched). Croom has also been heavily targeted in a few matchups. Against the Chargers in week 2 he had 4 targets and against the Bears in week 9, he had 5 targets (catching 3) for 36 yards. With Charles Clay being often injured and the only other tight end on the roster being a converted quarterback in Logan Thomas, Croom could have some dynasty value.
This value could be limited though, but most tight end value this year is limited. If you have a larger roster, Croom might be a name to look into. Basically Croom is a player sitting on the curb with a piece of cardboard with sharpie on it that says “FREE”. How much do you like picking up free trash?