Welcome to the fifth edition of Waiver Wired for the 2015 season. As is always the case, this column will be your guide to the best players available in at least 50 percent of Yahoo fantasy leagues. Some of those players will be plug-and-play options who can help this week while others will be stashes who may become useful in the future.

Each profiled player comes with a recommendation of what size league they should be owned. This does not mean they cannot be owned in shallower leagues, but they are not must-adds in the smaller formats. Also, a watch list will follow every position group. These are players who could be useful in deeper formats, but they are not yet must own players in shallower leagues. Finally, the deep cuts section highlights running backs and wide receivers who are owned in less than five percent of Yahoo leagues. Now that the explanation is out of the way, let’s move on to the action.

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Quarterbacks
1. Jay Cutler
2. Blake Bortles
3. Alex Smith
4. Michael Vick

Running backs
1. Ronnie Hillman
2. Duke Johnson
3. Thomas Rawls
4. Darren McFadden
5. David Johnson
6. Antonio Andrews

Wide receivers
1. Leonard Hankerson
2. Nelson Agholor
3. Allen Hurns
4. Dorial Green-Beckham
5. Willie Snead
6. Rueben Randle
7. Brandon LaFell

Tight ends
1. Gary Barnidge
2. Derek Carrier
3.
Richard Rodgers
*Antonio Gates owned in 54 percent of Yahoo leagues. My No. 1 pickup if available.

Defense/Special Teams
1. New York Giants
2. Jacksonville Jaguars
Looking Ahead: Minnesota Vikings

Kickers
1. Chandler Catanzaro
2. Nick Novak
Looking Ahead: Robbie Gould

QUARTERBACKS
1. Jay Cutler, Bears – Owned in 25 percent of Yahoo leagues
With Tyrod Taylor and Andy Dalton finally jumping the 50-percent barrier, the quarterback wire is looking bare this week. After gutting his way through a 281-yard, two touchdown performance Week 4 against Oakland, Jay Cutler is at the top of the list. Cutler has averaged 16.7 fantasy points in the two games he has finished this year, and he should be getting Alshon Jeffery back this week. Cutler has to go on the road the next two weeks before the bye, but he gets good matchups against the Chiefs and Lions, who have given up the most and 11th most fantasy points per game to quarterbacks respectively through four weeks. Cutler should be able to score in the high-teens to low-20s in those games, making him a low-end QB1 streaming option over the next two weeks.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 12-team leagues.

2. Blake Bortles, Jaguars – Owned in 18 percent of Yahoo leagues
Blake Bortles has not been good in real life, but he has scored 21.6, 17.4 and 19 fantasy points in each of the last three games on the back of big passing plays and his running ability. According to Pro Football Focus, Bortles has attempted a pass more than 20 yards downfield on 19.9 percent of his throws, the top mark among qualifying quarterbacks, and 40.6 percent of his passing yards have come on deep targets. As long as he keeps chucking it deep to Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns and kicking in 30 yards a game on the ground, he can hang around in the streaming class. Bortles’ real football play makes him difficult to trust, but he is a solid streaming option this week against Tampa Bay.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 12-team leagues.

3. Alex Smith, Chiefs – Owned in 25 percent of Yahoo leagues
Alex Smith does not carry the week-to-week touchdown upside to be a consistent starter, but he can be useful as a one-week streaming option in good matchups. Smith has a great one this week against a Bears’ pass defense which has given up the second-most fantasy points per pass attempt. A porous defense has forced Smith to throw 85 times total the last two weeks, and the Bears’ offense with Jay Cutler and Alshon Jeffery back should be able to put up points even in Arrowhead. That should force Smith close to 40 attempts again, making him a solid streaming option this week.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 12-team leagues.

4. Michael Vick, Steelers – Owned in 18 percent of Yahoo leagues
Michael Vick did not have the strongest of debuts Thursday night against the Ravens, but it would have been unwise to expect him to come in and shine just four days after unexpectedly becoming the starter. With a full week plus some change of practice under his belt and Martavis Bryant back in the fold, Monday night against the Chargers will be the real test of Vick’s ability to be a fantasy contributor while Big Ben is sidelined. He remains a stash and see in redraft, and he could be a solid GPP play in DFS this week. The Chargers’ banged up secondary gave up 22.2 fantasy points to Josh McCown in San Diego Week 4.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 14-team leagues.

Watch List: Andrew Luck (shoulder) looks destined to play, but Matt Hasselbeck could be worth a spot start against the Texans’ leaky defense Thursday night if Luck is forced to miss. … Ryan Fitzpatrick is unlikely to have a week-winning game, but he provides a steady 15 points each time out. That is valuable in two-quarterback formats. … He is not starting this week, but it would be surprising if Brian Hoyer does not make another start in the next month. … Volume has made Jameis Winston’s fantasy performance look respectable so far, but he is going to have a Rex Grossman-like meltdown at some point this season. … Nick Foles had two passing touchdowns total heading into Week 4 despite playing Washington and Pittsburgh, who have given up 14 passing touchdowns total this season, in the first three weeks. Color me doubtful his three-touchdown game against Arizona is a harbinger of things to come.


RUNNING BACKS
1. Ronnie Hillman, Broncos – Owned in 34 percent of Yahoo leagues
Ronnie Hillman appears to have pulled ahead in his battle with C.J. Anderson for carries in the Broncos’ backfield on the back of a huge run Week 4 against the Vikings. Early in the second quarter, Hillman took a pitch off the left side, found a crease and raced down the sideline for a 72-yard touchdown. It was the longest run by any player this season, and the longest run for a Bronco since Mike Anderson in 2000. The run was exciting, but it aside Hillman was not any more effective than Anderson against the Vikings, gaining just 31 yards on his other 10 carries. That said, I believe Gary Kubiak when he said Hillman will get more touches, and Hillman at least offers a big-play threat Anderson has yet to display. Hillman should be the 1A in the backfield against Oakland this week, and that makes him a borderline RB2 and must add in all leagues.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 10-team leagues.

2. Duke Johnson, Browns – Owned in 31 percent of Yahoo leagues
It would be easy to view Duke Johnson’s placement as an overreaction to a big game, but his steadily increasing role in the offense has made him one of my top pickups every week this season. Johnson played 45 snaps to Isaiah Crowell’s 27 against the Chargers and has out-snapped Crowell in each of the last three games. More importantly, he has 17 targets total over the last two weeks and flashed the receiver skills against the Chargers which make him extremely dangerous out of the backfield. The Browns have given up at least 27 points in 3-of-4 games this season, and as long as the defense continues to struggle, Johnson will continue to get opportunities to catch the ball. Johnson can be used as a FLEX option even in a tough matchup this week against the Ravens.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 10-team leagues.

3. Thomas Rawls, Seahawks – Owned in 48 percent of Yahoo leagues
Thomas Rawls was not particularly successful against the Lions on Monday night, but with Fred Jackson’s (ankle) and Marshawn Lynch’s (hamstring) statuses for Week 5 against Cincinnati completely up in the air, Rawls needs to be owned in every league. The Bengals did a good job shutting down Justin Forsett two weeks ago, but they gave up a big game to Melvin Gordon Week 2 and 145 total yards to Jamaal Charles last week. If Rawls is again the starter, he will be a low-end RB2 this week.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 10-team leagues.

4. Darren McFadden, Cowboys – Owned in 31 percent of Yahoo leagues
Darren McFadden does not have more than 10 carries in any game this season and is averaging 3.5 yards per carry, but he at least does not ignore explicit instructions from his coaches. Joseph Randle apparently does, and the decision got him benched for most of the game against New Orleans. Randle should remain the lead back in Dallas, but there is enough uncertainty to warrant adding McFadden even in shallower leagues.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 12-team leagues.

5. David Johnson, Cardinals – Owned in 44 percent of Yahoo leagues
With Andre Ellington on the way back and Chris Johnson established as an effective lead back, David Johnson’s role in the offense was always going to be questionable, but he certainly did not help matters with his performance against the Rams. Johnson fumbled the opening kickoff, dropped a touchdown pass and caught just four of his 10 targets. Bruce Arians put it best when he said Johnson “played like a rookie.” Johnson made up for the mistakes by getting wide open down the seam for a touchdown late in the fourth quarter to put the Cardinals down by just two, and he is still averaging 9.25 yards per offensive touch this season. Johnson will not be usable while CJ?K and Ellington are healthy, but that scenario is unlikely to last very long. He needs to be held in deeper leagues.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 14-team leagues.

6. Antonio Andrews, Titans – Owned in 9 percent of Yahoo leagues
With Tennessee on bye last week, it is easy to forget Antonio Andrews was the Titans’ clear lead back ahead of Bishop Sankey Week 3. The perch atop the Titans’ running back depth chart is as perilous as any in the NFL, but Andrews sits there right now. As long as that is the case, he is worth owning in deeper leagues.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 14-team leagues.

Watch List: With Karlos Williams questionable with a concussion, Bobbie Dixon is next in line for carries in Buffalo. He is unlikely to be very successful, but he is all Buffalo has left. … Christine Michael was active for the first time as a Cowboy and should see an expanded role with Lance Dunbar (knee) done for the year. … Chris Thompson played over 30 snaps for the second week in a row and has scored 32.3 PPR points over that span. He is clearly the third-down back in Washington, and he needs to be added in PPR formats. … Theo Riddick caught five passes against the Seahawks and now has 18 receptions the last three weeks. He needs to be owned in PPR formats. … Bishop Sankey was the clear second fiddle to Antonio Andrews Week 3, but that could change in an instant. … Andre Williams has the 34th most carries in the league after four weeks. Charles Sims played 39-of-79 offensive snaps Week 4 and scored his second receiving touchdown in as many weeks.

Deep Cuts: Matt Forte is dominating touches, but there are persistent rumors the rebuilding Bears could deal their star back. If Forte gets moved, rookie Jeremy Langford would immediately vault into fantasy relevance. … Zach Zenner saw just two carries Monday night, but he should be the “big back” while Joique Bell is sidelined. Ahmad Bradshaw visited the Colts on Monday and could be signed if he proves healthy. Bradshaw caught 38 passes and scored eight total touchdowns in 10 games with Indy last year before breaking his leg in November. … Charcandrick West has jumped Knile Davis as Jamaal Charles’ primary handcuff. … Roy Helu took over every-down work when Latavius Murray was benched following a second-half fumble. … Khiry Robinson has at least six touches in every game this season and a touchdown in the last two. … Jonathan Stewart has been underwhelming and has found himself on the injury report each of the last three weeks. If he goes down, Cameron Artis-Payne and Mike Tolbert would have value. … Lorenzo Taliaferro was limited last week, but he should have short-yardage value all season.


WIDE RECEIVERS
1. Leonard Hankerson, Falcons – Owned in 19 percent of Yahoo leagues
The changing of the guard is official in Atlanta. Leonard Hankerson saw eight targets Week 4 against the Texans and now has 25 total over the last three games. Over the same span, Roddy White has just five targets. Hankerson is clearly the No. 2 receiving option behind Julio Jones, and that gives him a ton of value in an offense averaging over 35 pass attempts a game. He needs to be owned everywhere.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 10-team leagues.

2. Nelson Agholor, Eagles – Owned in 49 percent of Yahoo leagues
Nelson Agholor had an up-and-down game Week 4 against the Redskins. Agholor got open deep down the middle of the field in the second quarter and made a one-handed grab for what was at the time the longest pass for the Eagles all season. The next play Agholor fumbled on an end around, and on the next series he committed an illegal formation penalty which cost Philadelphia a touchdown. The good news is the mistakes did not cost Agholor any playing time. He saw 54-of-56 snaps against Washington and has now played over 93 percent of the offensive snaps each of the last two weeks. The better news is Sam Bradford finally decided to push the ball downfield in the second half. If Bradford continues to let it fly, Agholor should be a big beneficiary.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 12-team leagues.

3. Allen Hurns, Jaguars – Owned in 18 percent of Yahoo leagues
As I discussed earlier, Blake Bortles is pushing the ball downfield more than any other quarterback this season, and Allen Hurns has been his target on several of those deep throws. Hurns has been targeted more than 20 yards downfield six times through four games. He has turned those looks into 109 yards and a touchdown. Hurns will likely have some down weeks, but he has at least 60 receiving yards in every game this season and showed his ceiling by posting an 11-116-1 line against the Colts. He will be useful as a WR3 most weeks.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 12-team leagues.

4. Dorial Green-Beckham, Titans – Owned in 18 percent of Yahoo leagues
Not much has changed on Dorial Green-Beckham over the bye week. He is still the most talented option the Titans’ have on the outside, and he should continue to eat into the ridiculous snap total of Harry Douglas, who has 53 yards on 16 targets so far this season. DGB cannot be started until the Titans’ show they are willing to use him, but he is a high-upside stash even in shallower leagues.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 12-team leagues.

5. Willie Snead, Saints – Owned in 3 percent of Yahoo leagues
Willie Snead played his way onto the Saints’ roster in training camp, earning praise from coach Sean Payton along the way. Not it appears Snead has played his way to the top of the depth chart. Snead has seen his snap count increase in each of the first four weeks of the season, and he ended up playing eight more snaps than Marques Colston and 28 more than Brandon Coleman Week 4 against the Cowboys. Snead has just four fewer targets than Brandin Cooks over the last three weeks and is averaging 12.9 PPR points over that span. With Drew Brees back and healthy, Snead could sneak onto the WR3 map.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 12-team leagues.

6. Rueben Randle, Giants – Owned in 38 percent of Yahoo leagues
Rueben Randle scored to make his fantasy day look good, but he caught just 50 percent of his targets and had less than 35 yards for the third time in four games. The Giants are desperate for someone besides Odell Beckham to step up in the passing game, and that means they will continue to funnel targets Randle’s way. He will likely continue to be inefficient with the work, but the opportunities make him a must own even in shallower leagues. If I could get a WR3 on the back of Randle’s two touchdowns in two games, I would make the deal.   
Recommendation: Should be owned in 12-team leagues.

7. Brandon LaFell, Patriots – Owned in 28 percent of Yahoo leagues
We have not heard much about Brandon LaFell’s recovery, but the receiver seemed confident he would be able to return Week 7 when he was placed on the PUP list in early September. The offense has been humming along nicely without LaFell in the lineup, but no receiver has really stamped their authority on the outside receiver role LaFell dominated last season. The job should be LaFell’s once he returns, and he could regain WR3 value. There are worse ways to use an open roster spot.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 14-team leagues.

Watch List: Ted Ginn happened to catch two touchdowns, but he saw the fewest targets of the season and will remain a boom-or-bust option moving forward. Devin Funchess has played just 44.5 snaps this season on a team with Ginn and Philly Brown as starters. … Ty Montgomery did not make much happen on the stat sheet, but he did play all but one snap against the 49ers. … Michael Floyd played 54-of-75 snaps and saw seven targets Week 4. The Cardinals are beginning to get him more involved in the offense, but he needs to prove he can be effective with the work. … One of Kamar Aiken, Marlon Brown or newly-acquired Chris Givens should see a lot of targets with Steve Smith (back) sidelined. My money is on Kamar Aiken. … Brian Quick played just five snaps in his season debut, but he should become a bigger part of the offense moving forward. I am not interested in chasing Tavon Austin points, especially considering his big day still did not put him above 10 yards per reception. … Doug Baldwin caught a touchdown and Tyler Lockett had five targets, but I continue to doubt the Seahawks’ offense can support two fantasy pass catchers. Jimmy Graham owners are doubting it can support one. … The wide receiver roulette behind Jarvis Landry continued Sunday in London. This week it was Kenny Stills, but DeVante Parker and Rishard Matthews should see the most targets moving forward. … Eddie Royal scored a touchdown and was inches away from another. Alshon Jeffery coming back will limit his targets but could dramatically increase his efficiency. … With Lance Dunbar out, Cole Beasley should see a bump in targets. He could be relevant in PPR leagues.

Deep Cuts: Dwayne Harris was very clearly the Giants’ slot receiver against the Bills. It led to six targets, which is the same number Preston Parker saw each of the first two games of the season. … With Cecil Shorts (shoulder) out and Nate Washington (hamstring) very questionable, Keith Mumphery and Jaelen Strong could see a lot of snaps this week. Mumphery is the better dart throw. … Devin Smith has played 76 percent of the Jets’ offensive snaps the last two weeks. … Chris Conley was a full-time player with Albert Wilson (shoulder) sidelined. … Jamison Crowder and Ryan Grant played significant snaps with DeSean Jackson (hamstring) out and Andre Roberts benched. Crowder is the more interesting fantasy option. … Stefon Diggs caught 6-of-10 targets for 87 yards with Charles Johnson (ribs) out. Johnson does not look close to returning. … Dontrelle Inman saw five targets with Stevie Johnson (hamstring) and Malcom Floyd (concussion) out. … Marquess Wilson had a solid game against the Raiders, but he will struggle to find targets with Alshon Jeffery returning. … Wes Welker worked out for the Giants last week and reportedly looked “very quick.”


TIGHT ENDS
1. Gary Barnidge, Browns – Owned in 9 percent of Yahoo leagues
A week after exploding onto the scene with 105 yards and a touchdown against the Raiders, Gary Barnidge kept the party going with six catches for 75 yards and another score Week 4 against the Chargers. He also had the catch of the game when he tipped the ball to himself, pulled in the juggling catch and got his knee down just before going out of bounds at the one-yard line. He scored his touchdown two plays later. Barnidge now has at least five targets in 3-of-4 games and is averaging 14.7 yards per reception. It is stunning a player who entered the season with 44 career catches in seven years is breaking out in his age-30 season, but that appears to be what is happening. He needs to be owned.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 10-team leagues.

2. Derek Carrier, Redskins – Owned in 0 percent of Yahoo leagues
The Redskins added Derek Carrier at the end of training camp for a moment such as this. Jordan Reed suffered a concussion, sprained ankle and sprained knee late in the Redskins Week 4 win over the Eagles. The concussion is the biggest concern. Reed has suffered at least five concussions dating back to his time at the University of Florida, and two concussions in three weeks forced him to miss the final six games of 2013. Reed should be expected to miss at least a week, and he could be out longer. While receivers Ryan Grant and Jamison Crowder could soak up some of Reed’s 8.5 targets per game, Carrier should see the majority of that work. A converted wide receiver who ran a 4.5 40-yard dash with a 40-inch vertical leap at his Pro Day coming out of Beloit in 2012, Carrier has the athletic upside to make the most of those looks. He is a pure projection add, but one I will feel comfortable streaming Week 5 against the Falcons.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 12-team leagues.

3. Richard Rodgers, Packers – Owned in 18 percent of Yahoo leagues
With Andrew Quarless sidelined, Richard Rodgers saw the most snaps (68) and targets (6) so far this season and caught his second touchdown in the last three weeks. Rodgers is never going to be better than third in the pecking order for targets in the Packers’ offense, but the uncertainty at the third receiver spot could allow him to see 6-plus targets a game. Considering he is a red-zone factor on a team quarterbacked by Aaron Rodgers, even that target load gives him value in deeper leagues.
Recommendation: Should be owned in 14-team leagues.

Watch List: There is a good chance Dwayne Allen (ankle) is back this week, but if not Coby Fleener would become the No. 1 pickup. … Crockett Gillmore (calf) would be a better add than Richard Rodgers if he is able to make it back this week. … It will be interesting to see how big of a role Ladarius Green plays with Antonio Gates back. He is a hold where possible. … Eric Ebron exited Week 4 against the Seahawks with a knee injury. With Brandon Pettigrew (hamstring) still hobbled, Tim Wright could find himself in a big offensive role next week against the Cardinals. … Larry Donnell played 69-of-74 snaps with Daniel Fells (injured reserve, ankle) out. He did next to nothing with the work. … Josh Hill caught a touchdown. He had one other target the rest of the game and has just seven total on the year.

DEFENSE/SPECIAL TEAMS
1. New York Giants – Owned in 8 percent of Yahoo leagues
The Giants’ defense is somewhat surprisingly a middle of the pack fantasy unit so far this season which has forced the eighth-most turnovers in the league. This week they get Colin Kaepernick, who cannot throw it accurately more than five yards downfield, at home in primetime. They are easily the best streaming option.

2. Jacksonville Jaguars – Owned in 1 percent of Yahoo leagues
The Jags were obliterated by New England Week 3, but they have been fairly solid on defense except for that performance. Jacksonville has not allowed a team besides the Patriots to score more than 20 points this season and have given up 18.7 points a game in their other three contests. They also have at least two sacks in every game. This week they get Jameis Winston, who has thrown a total of six interceptions in two home games so far in his career. It is a good spot for the Jags.

Looking Ahead: The Vikings are on bye this week, but they get the Chiefs’ shaky offensive line at home after the break. Kansas City has given up 12 sacks total the last two weeks while the Vikings have forced six of their own in that time. Minnesota should be a good start in that matchup. 

KICKERS
1. Chandler Catanzaro, Cardinals – Owned in 21 percent of Yahoo leagues
Chandler Catanzaro did me right last week, and I am going right back to the well again. Catanzaro is not at home this time, but he does get to kick in the comfy confines of Ford Field. The Cardinals’ high-powered offense gives Catanzaro a nice PAT floor every week, and if the offense is not scoring touchdowns, it should at least move the ball well enough to set up field goal tries, much like what happened against the Rams. Catanzaro is a weekly starter moving forward.

2. Nick Novak, Texans – Owned in 9 percent of Yahoo leagues
Nick Novak missed his lone field goal attempt in his Texans debut, but he made all three extra points against Atlanta. This week he gets a Colts team at home who has given up the third-most field goal attempts through four games. Inside in a game which should have a decent total, Novak is a solid play.

Looking Ahead: Robbie Gould gets the Lions at Ford Field Week 6. Gould has attempted three field goals in every game which has not taken place in Seattle so far this season. He is 9-for-9 including three makes from 50-plus yards. He will be a good play in two weeks. 

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