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Waiver Wired
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Add Isaiah McKenzie, Josh Palmer on Week 17 Waiver Wires

by John Daigle
Updated On: December 29, 2021, 1:00 am ET

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Welcome to the Week 17 edition of Waiver Wired for the 2021 season. With Championship Week finally upon us, we’ll pass on prioritizing stashes altogether and focus on winning the most important matchup of the season. We’ll also discuss injury and COVID situations to monitor ahead of Sunday.


The Drop List

Shed weight like you're going to the beach. If you have two viable starting tight ends, for example, but your opponent is already stacked at that spot, it's in your best interest to separate from whichever player isn't making the cut in order to block your opponent from picking up someone of need. This week's 'Drop List' is truly a case-by-case scenario since it varies depending on your matchup. If a player on your bench isn't starting, though, consider him on the outside looking in.



Overall Top 5

1. Isaiah McKenzie
2. Josh Palmer
3. K.J. Osborn
4. Jordan Howard
5. Boston Scott

Deep League Top 5

1. Isaiah McKenzie
2. Josh Palmer
3. Dare Ogunbowale
4. Mo Alie-Cox

5. Derrick Gore

For those looking to roster the best available player(s) regardless of position, the rankings above take into account every factor from the positional lists minus players’ actual positions for both recreational and deep league (FFPC, NFFC, 20-player rosters, etc.) formats, the latter which have far fewer viable players available with every passing week. These are listed in the precise order I would prioritize waiver claims in those leagues ahead of Week 16. Adjust accordingly for what you need on your roster to win this week and over the course of the fantasy playoffs.


End-of-Roster Top 10

1. Derrick Henry
2. Justin Jackson
3. DeeJay Dallas
4. Derrick Gore
5. Samaje Perine
6. Peyton Barber
7. Devontae Booker
8. Ke’Shawn Vaughn
9. Khalil Herbert
10. D’Ernest Johnson

The time has come to stop rostering backups to our own starters and, rather, target reserves with the most potential opportunity if a door or two randomly opened. That’s why the above list was carefully assembled to highlight league-winners (available in a majority of leagues) in the event the player ahead of them misses any time. Presumed snaps, carries, targets, and the play-calling each are tied to have been factored in. They’re chronologically listed in the precise order I would stash them for Week 18, though managers should obviously feel free to adjust accordingly.



1. Trey Lance
2. Taysom Hill
3. Tua Tagovailoa
4. Tyler Huntley
5. Nick Foles

Running Backs

Darrel Williams rostered in 61 percent of Yahoo leagues. No. 1 RB add if available.

1. Jordan Howard
2. Boston Scott
3. Dare Ogunbowale
4. Rex Burkhead
5. Derrick Gore

Wide Receivers

1. Isaiah McKenzie
2. Josh Palmer
3. K.J. Osborn
4. Rashod Bateman
5. Marquez Valdes-Scantling
6. Allen Lazard
7. Braxton Berrios

8. Tyler Johnson
9. Breshad Perriman
10. Chester Rogers

Tight Ends

1. Gerald Everett
2. Mo Alie-Cox
3. Cole Kmet
4. Foster Moreau
5. Austin Hooper
6. James O’Shaughnessy
7. Daniel Brown

Defense/Special Teams

Philadelphia D/ST rostered in 70 percent of Yahoo leagues. No. 1 D/ST add if available.

Chargers D/ST rostered in 69 percent of Yahoo leagues. No. 2 D/ST add if available.

Miami D/ST rostered in 63 percent of Yahoo leagues. No. 3 D/ST add if available.

1. Chicago Bears
2. Carolina Panthers

3. Seattle Seahawks
4. Las Vegas Raiders






1. Trey Lance, 49ers — Lance has recorded a carry on 25.8% of his snaps this year, far more than Cam Newton (18.4%), Lamar Jackson (16.4%), or Taysom Hill (15.2%). Friendly reminder that he was a stone-walled 4th-and-goal sneak away from finishing as the overall QB11 in Week 5.

2. Taysom Hill, Saints — Averaged 11 carries per game in three starts prior to being slapped on New Orleans' COVID list. This is where I would rank Hill if he clears protocols.

3. Tua Tagovailoa, Dolphins — Tagovailoa's 75% completion rate across his last five starts gifts him a risk-averse floor since he refuses to take chances deep.

4. Tyler Huntley, Ravens — This is where I would prioritize Huntley if he clears COVID protocols and Lamar Jackson (ankle) is yet again ruled out.

5. Nick Foles, Bears — The Giants have permitted 28 points per game over the last month and are the only team that has failed to register a single interception in that time.



1. Jordan Howard, Eagles — Howard suffered a stinger behind Miles Sanders (broken hand, out) on Sunday, which allowed Boston Scott to come off the bench and play 22 snaps to Kenneth Gainwell's two. Whomever starts between Howard and Scott (in that order) should be viewed as the priority among running backs.

2. Boston Scott, Eagles — See Jordan Howard.

3. Dare Ogunbowale, Jaguars – Even with Nathan Cottrell active behind him, Ogunbowale logged 82% of Jacksonville's snaps in place of James Robinson (torn Achilles'), out-carrying Tavon Austin 17-3 the rest of the way against New York.

4. Rex Burkhead, Texans – Season-highs in carries (22) and touches (24) without David Johnson (COVID) on Sunday.

5. Derrick Gore, Chiefs – Averaged 5.5 carries behind Darrel Williams (rostered in 61% of Yahoo leagues) in four games without Clyde Edwards-Helaire (collarbone) earlier this year. Should not be started unless you're absolutely desperate for 3-6 carries.



1. Isaiah McKenzie, Bills – Has averaged 10.5 targets and a 24.5% target share in his last two starts for Cole Beasley (COVID, questionable for Week 17).

2. Josh Palmer, Chargers – 97% snaps and a route on 98% of Justin Herbert's dropbacks in place of Mike Williams (unvaccinated, out for Week 17) and Jalen Guyton (COVID) on Sunday.

3. K.J. Osborn, Vikings – Stepped back in as a full-time player for Adam Thielen (ankle re-aggravation), accruing an 18.4% target share against the Rams.

4. Rashod Bateman, Ravens – Has run a route on 91 of Baltimore's 97 dropbacks the past two weeks.

5. Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Packers –  12 targets to Allen Lazard's nine in their last two games together. MVS remains on Green Bay's COVID list but is expected to clear protocols mid-week.

6. Allen Lazard, Packers – The pivot if Marquez Valdes-Scantling does not clear COVID protocols.

7. Braxton Berrios, Jets – Team-high 27.2% target share sans Jamison Crowder (calf) on Sunday.

8. Tyler Johnson, Buccaneers – Ran the third-most routes among Tampa Bay's receivers in place of Chris Godwin (torn ACL) but did not record a single target.

9. Breshad Perriman, Buccaneers – Cleared from Tampa Bay's COVID list on Monday. Expected to replace Cyril Grayson on the boundary.

10. Chester Rogers, Titans – Tennessee's de facto No. 2 receiver with Julio Jones and Nick Westbrook-Ikhine currently on the COVID list.



1. Gerald Everett, Seahawks — 5.4 targets per game out of Seattle's bye.

2. Mo Alie-Cox, Colts — Season-high 90% of Indianapolis' snaps with Jack Doyle battling through ankle and knee injuries Saturday.

3. Cole Kmet, Bears — 7.4 targets per game across his last five starts. Kmet is merely a high-floor option without a ceiling since he won't score a touchdown while perpetually being replaced inside the red zone by Jimmy Graham.

4. Foster Moreau, Raiders — Nearly an every-down player for Darren Waller the past three weeks, averaging 6.3 targets on 97% of Las Vegas' snaps in that span.

5. Austin Hooper, Browns — Baker Mayfield's safety blanket with a comfortable 5.5 targets per game in his last two starts.

6. James O’Shaughnessy, Jaguars — The team's only receiving tight end as long as Dan Arnold and Chris Manhertz remain on the COVID list.

7. Daniel Brown, Jets — The only tight end on New York's roster after Tyler Kroft, Ryan Griffin, Trevon Wesco, and Kenny Yeboah were placed on the COVID list.



1. Chicago Bears – Have you watched Mike Glennon play football?

2. Carolina Panthers – This is where I would rank the Panthers if Ian Book were starting again.

3. Seattle Seahawks – Jared Goff.

4. Las Vegas Raiders – Colts could be without 4-of-5 starting o-linemen including Quenton Nelson.



Only a fool wouldn’t pass the ball to Michael Jordan in his prime, so it only makes sense that I pull each week’s kicker streamers from Denny Carter’s column and #adjust them accordingly. For in-depth analysis, you can read his entire piece here:


Coming soon...


John Daigle

John Daigle is an Emmy and FSWA award winner who has been covering the NFL and fantasy football for over a decade, working with NBC Sports EDGE for almost four years. He enjoys watching golf and Jon Moxley, not necessarily in that order. You can follow him on Twitter @notJDaigle.