Each week, we will run down the top waiver wire pickups with a focus on the coming week and rest of the season.
Brian Hoyer (vs Bills)
Last week - 25/38, 269 yards, 2 TDs
The Cleveland Browns are on a two-game winning streak and Brian Hoyer is a big reason why. Strange, but true. Hoyer has also been very good fantasy-wise throwing for 590 yards and five touchdowns. He also eliminated the big mistakes in his second start throwing no interceptions after tossing three in his first start. Even when Brandon Weeden is ready to return from a thumb injury Hoyer has put himself in a position to keep the Browns' starting job. You could do a lot worse as a bye week fill-in at this point.
Ryan Fitzpatrick (vs Chiefs)
Last week - 3/8, 108 yards, 1 TD
Fitzpatrick will be the Titans' starter for the next several weeks and potentially even the rest of the season depending on the severity of Jake Locker's hip injury. The Titans have been surprisingly good this year and there is potential for Fitzpatrick to put up solid numbers. He's got a few tough matchups ahead of him starting with Kansas City in Week 5 and Seattle and San Francisco also coming up before the team's Week 8 bye, but that could mean the Titans' are forced to go to the air if they find themselves behind.
Others to consider - Alex Smith (at Titans), Matt Cassell (Bye), Terrelle Pryor (vs Chargers)
Danny Woodhead (at Raiders)
Last week - 10 touches, 86 yards, 2 TDS
Woodhead may not get a ton of opportunities but he makes the most of his touches. After a big Week 4, you can count on the Chargers looking to keep him involved going forward. He's not going to score two touchdowns and has limited value in the run game but is a very big part of the Chargers third down offence. Philip Rivers loves his check downs and Woodhead is a very capable pass-catcher out of the backfield as evidenced by his 15 catches in the last three weeks. He is a solid bye week fill-in and has weekly flex-appeal in PPR formats.
Willis McGahee (vs Bills)
Last week - 15 carries, 46 yards
McGahee was a hot commodity on the waiver wire last week but was still available in over half of leagues at the end of Week 4 on Monday night. 46 yards on 15 Week 3 carries is nothing to write home about, but it was an improvement on his first game with the Browns. As McGahee gets more comfortable with the offence, his touches will continue to go up. He is a decent flex play against the Ravens this week and has RB2 potential down the line given his undisputed status as the top back in Cleveland. If you need a running back and he is available in your league grab him before someone else does.
LeGarrette Blount (at Bengals)
Last week - 14 touches, 65 yards
That's two straight games that Blount has run for 60+ yards and this week he added a score to his stat line. It's a full-on committee in the New England backfield right now and Blount has no role in the passing game, but he is running with a purpose and has been the most productive Pats running back two weeks in a row. He also showed surprisingly good speed on his 47-yard score on 3rd-and-19. He's not much more than a bye week plug and play, but hey, bye weeks are in full swing.
Rashad Jennings (vs Chargers)
Last week - 15 carries, 45 yards
Darren McFadden is down with a hamstring injury that could cost him a week or three. His backup Marcel Reece also went down in Week 4 and is likely to miss at least a few weeks with a knee injury. That opens the door for Jennings to see a fairly sizeable workload in the next few weeks. He hasn't looked the same since tearing his ACL in 2011, but if he can get close to 20 touches he will be a solid bye week filler until Reese and McFadden are able to return.
Others to consider - Andre Ellington (vs Panthers), Roy Helu (Bye)
Alshon Jeffery (vs Saints)
Last Week - 5 catches, 107 yards, 27 rush yards, 1 TD
Jeffery had the best game of his career in Week 4 and has clearly developed a solid bond with Jay Cutler. Brandon Marshall and Martellus Bennett are still Cutler's favourite targets, but Jeffery is on the rise. He has seen 19 targets in the last two weeks alone and has the luxury of facing single coverage most of the time thanks to Marshall's presence. He is on the WR3 radar.
Justin Blackmon (at Rams)
Last week - suspended
Blackmon's four-game suspension is over and he is back with the Jaguars. The good news is that Blackmon figures to be involved heavily right away given how badly the Jaguars have looked through the first four weeks. The bad news, Blaine Gabbert is his quarterback. Until the Jaguars make a switch to Chad Henne, Blackmon's upside is limited, but he's simply too talented to leave on the waiver wire. Remember that 236 yard game last November?
Nate Washington (vs Chiefs)
Last week - 4 catches, 105 yards, 2TDs
Many a fantasy owner has been burned by Washington before, picking him up off the waiver after a big game only to see him disappear the next week. This year might actually be different tough. He has back-to-back 100-yard games and with the complete disappearance of Kenny Britt, Washington looks to be firmly entrenched as the No.2 receiver in Tennessee. He also showed decent chemistry with Ryan Fitzpatrick last week after Jake Locker went down so the transition at QB shouldn't hurt his stock all that much.
Robert Woods (at Browns)
Last week - 4 catches, 80 yards, 1 TD
Woods is always on the field. A week after playing every single snap against the Jets, Woods was in for all but four against the Ravens. He has 18 targets in the last two weeks and managed to turn his looks into some seriously positive gains in Week 4 with four grabs for 80 yards and a score. Despite up and down play from EJ Manuel, Woods is establishing himself as a solid No.2 behind Stevie Johnson in Buffalo and is gathering steam for fantasy purposes.
Others to consider - Marlon Brown (at Dolphins), Keenan Allen (at Raiders), Terrance Williams (vs Broncos), Jerome Simpson (Bye)
Coby Fleener (at Jaguars)
Last week - 5 catches, 77 yards, 1 TD
He's been up and down so far with nine catches, 146 yards and two touchdowns in Weeks 2 and 4 but just three catches and 20 yards in Weeks 1 and 3. Still, Fleener is worth owning with Dwayne Allen out for the year. He will be hard to rely on for weekly production, but he is a big red zone target for Andrew Luck so there is strong TE2 potential here.
Heath Miller (Bye)
Last week - 6 catches, 70 yards
After a week to get his legs in Week 3, Miller played nearly every offensive snap last week against Minnesota and grabbed six catches for 70 yards. His knee looks like it is fully recovered and he should return to a prominent role in the Steelers' offence. The Steelers have a bye in Week 5, but now is the time to grab him if you need help at tight end because he likely won't be around this time next week.
Others to consider - Brandon Pettigrew (at Packers), Charles Clay (vs Ravens), Garret Graham (at 49ers)