The waiver wire is a zero-sum game. For every exciting upside addition, there must be a disappointing release of a player you once gladly added to your roster. Yet, the entire fantasy football realm seems to focus only on the first half of the add-drop exchange.
Welcome back to “let it go”. The curmudgeonly counterpart to all your overly-enthusiastic waiver wire pickup columns. We’re here to kill your already-dying dreams, but in doing so help you cut loose the dead weight holding back your rosters.
And, since drops are often agonizing, all categories are named for lyrics from “Let It Go”. The pain of your difficult drop decision is nothing compared to the pain of getting that song stuck in your head.
The ground rules:
- A player must be rostered in at least 30% of Yahoo leagues to qualify for inclusion
- At least one player listed must be rostered in at least 60% of leagues
The two lists at the top address players who have been listed in earlier weeks’ columns
I’m never going back, the past is in the past
Players listed in previous weeks who should still be dropped
Dante Pettis, WR, 49ers
Darrell Henderson, RB, Rams
Nyheim Hines, RB, Colts
Derrius Guice, RB, Washington
Robbie Anderson, WR, Jets
Antonio Brown, WR, free agent
Mitchell Trubisky, QB, Bears
Corey Davis, WR, Titans
Adrian Peterson, RB, Washington
Latavius Murray, RB, Saints
Peyton Barber, RB, Buccaneers
Test the limits
Players listed in previous weeks who, if you’ve held on this long, it’s OK to hold another week – but are still safe to drop
Turn away and slam the door
These players should be dropped
Nelson Agholor, WR, Eagles
There’s no reason to believe it’s going to get any better. Agholor has played with Carson Wentz for years, so the problem here isn’t chemistry or unfamiliarity. And if Agholor has a combined one catch on four targets over two weeks when DeSean Jackson (abdomen; questionable) is out, it’s only going to get worse when Jackson is back in the picture. Sure, Agholor led the team in targets and catches when both Jackson and Alshon Jeffery were out, but Jeffery has been back for two games now and Agholor’s workload has returned to the almost-nonexistent one he had in Week 1. It’s tough to let go, especially for those of us who spent a fair chunk of FAAB on him and were rewarded with two TDs in Week 3, but, as the song says, the past is in the past.
Raheem Mostert, RB, 49ers
The 49ers ran for 275 yards in their 31-3 blowout of the Browns on Monday night. Mostert accounted for just 34 of those. But it was actually worse than that – Mostert had just two rushes for 10 yards in the first 52 minutes of the game. Only then, when the 49ers were up 28-3, did they give him more regular usage, and even then he was still splitting carries with Tevin Coleman. Mostert, like another name listed below, is a distant third on this depth chart behind Coleman and Matt Breida. If either of those two get hurt again, you can pick Mostert back up as a low-end handcuff or an in-case-of-emergency flex play. But as long as Coleman and Breida are playing, Mostert is completely unusable.
Darrel Williams, RB, Chiefs
Williams is the last name in this section on purpose. If you have room on your bench to hold onto Williams, there is some justification to holding on – the Chiefs’ offense is so good that anyone with a steady role in it could become valuable at a moment’s notice. The problem is, now that the running back corps has returned to something resembling full health, Williams is a distant third in the RB pecking order. Damien Williams saw the overwhelming majority of the RB touches, while Darrel received neither a target nor a carry. LeSean McCoy saw the same number of snaps as Darrel, but McCoy logged 23 yards on two catches, and has more than twice as many carries and yards this season. If you have a deep bench, then it’s ok to hold onto Darrel Williams, but for most managers – anyone in a standard sized league with five or six bench spots – feel free to drop him for someone who might actually help you survive the bye weeks.
I don’t care what they’re going to say
This section is for a player rostered in almost every league, but should still be dropped
Eric Ebron, TE, Colts
Ebron is absolutely not worth holding through his Week 6 bye. He’d probably get featured here even if the Colts had a favorable TE matchup in Week 6, but the off week clinched it. Ebron has seen the same number of targets as fellow TE Jack Doyle, but Doyle has more catches. More important, Doyle has more than 50% more snaps than Ebron. Ebron has just a single catch in three of their five games, only logging eight yards in two of those. The entire TE position is gross, and Ebron will have matchups when he is usable as a streamer – the targets he does see are often deep, and he’s actually second on the Colts in air yards despite his limited target share, though that’s in part inflated by injuries to the receiving corps. But Ebron is a week-by-week streamer, not a have-and-hold weekly option. The next time you should even consider starting him in a standard league is Week 10 against the Dolphins. Four weeks on your bench plus time-share TE equals time to drop.
Here they stay
This player is going to get dropped in many leagues, but is worth holding for at least one more week
Golden Tate, WR, Giants
There has already been a flurry of Tate drops after his disappointing Giants debut, totaling just 13 yards. But, as that sentence just said, this was his Giants debut. He saw six targets and they were facing a difficult Vikings defense. Spoiler alert: Tate’s line might disappoint in Week 6, too, since the Giants face the even-better Patriots’ secondary. But things get a lot easier from there, beginning with a must-start matchup against the Cardinals in Week 7. Tate topped 1,000 yards in three of the last five seasons, and he was the Giants’ biggest free agent acquisition. He’s a very good player. Don’t overreact. If he’s available in your league, go add him.