The fantasy football 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.
Introducing “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 percent of Yahoo! leagues to qualify for inclusion
- At least one player listed must be rostered in at least 65 percent of leagues
Turn away and slam the door
These players should be dropped
Nyheim Hines, RB, Colts
Hines is a talented player, but this was the game script in which he’s supposed to thrive. The Colts were losing the whole game to a fellow potential playoff team. They were down two scores throughout the third quarter, and down eight for all but the last 48 seconds of the fourth quarter. Yet, despite the theoretically perfect game script, Hines only saw four targets, all of them behind the line of scrimmage. Marlon Mack was the dominant ball-carrier, as expected, though the 25-to-4 was more extreme than Hines supporters wanted. Hines now looks like a player who will only be worth starting in the rare instances where he scores a touchdown.
Derrius Guice, RB, Washington
This one stinks. He looked great as a pro prospect, but injuries have been cruel to him. He was set to lead the Washington backfield after missing all of last season with a torn ACL, but couldn’t make it through a single game before he suffered a new injury on his other knee. I’d try to hold on until the weekend, as it is possible Guice receives an optimistic recovery timeline — in the best cases, a meniscus injury can sideline a player for three weeks or fewer. But, absent actively good news, feel free to drop him Sunday morning. Meniscus injuries can linger, and missing half or all of the remaining 15 games is in play. When he does return, it could be as a backup, and it will be on one of the worst offenses in the league. No one will blame you for holding on while you wait for better information, but he is an easy drop if someone like Malcom Brown or Alexander Mattison is available.
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
Robby Anderson, WR, Jets
Let’s be honest. The best case here was always, “he’s the No. 1 pass-catcher on a bad team, which will be good enough to make him a high-end WR3.” Well, he’s not the No. 1 pass-catcher. He’s not even No. 2, with Le’Veon Bell getting more targets. Jamison Crowder – who is the same age, more talented, and has had a much better career so far – out-targeted Anderson 17-to-7.
Anderson is the big-play guy, and he will have some explosive weeks. Despite 10 fewer targets, Anderson more than doubled Crowder’s air yards. Occasionally, he’ll help some DFS GPP lineups. If you’re someone who likes to take big risks with your flex spot, fine, hold on to Anderson. But you’re never going to feel safe starting him. When the season is over, I expect Anderson to finish inside the cumulative top-40 for total WR production (assuming he stays healthy). Technically speaking, that’s worth a roster spot. But on most teams, he’s never going to leave your bench. You’re better off with almost any of the players getting recommended following Week 1 breakouts.
Here they stay
This player is going to get dropped in many leagues, but is worth holding for at least one more week
Geronimo Allison, WR, Packers
Week 1 was a disaster. Unequivocally. He’s an auto-drop if he goes catchless again in Week 2. But ask yourself: do you really think the Packers are going to be a bottom-five offense this season? Do you think they’ll finish second-to-last in yards, and third-to-last in points and first downs? Because you probably answered “heck no” (or perhaps a less publication-friendly word than “heck”).
If you think that the Packers’ Week 1 performance is a gigantic aberration, then why are you considering dropping an eighth- or ninth-round draft pick based on that information? When Aaron Rodgers plays a full, healthy season, his No. 2 WR averages the equivalent of top-15 production. It looks like Marquez Valdes-Scantling is that No. 2 guy right now, but it’s not like he had a great game. Breaking open a gigantic play is part of the WR job description, and MVS deserves credit for his 47 yard play — but his other five targets resulted in three catches for five yards. Allison’s zero targets are absolutely discouraging, but he was still third in snap share among Packer WRs. The upside here is too high, and Week 1 was too much of an outlier. I’m not dropping Allison anywhere that I have him.
Follow Alex on Twitter @Rikleen