Scott Engel is in his 12th year as the official Fantasy Football writer and analyst for Seahawks.com. He is an inaugural member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association's Hall of Fame. Scott is a four-time FSWA award winner and a 13-time nominee. You can find more of his fantasy football analysis at The Game Day and fantasy football rankings at RotoBaller.com.
We get a break from the bye weeks in Week 12, yet there is still much work to be done as we get closer to the fantasy football playoffs. This week, I have added more waiver wire recommendations to address needed depth for the important stretch ahead, which includes more byes, as fantasy players attempt to qualify for the postseason. Injuries are a constant concern too, so having a solid bench is important in case you need to replace a starter at any time.
This week's column features lists of the best fantasy football waiver wire adds at running back and wide receiver. Analysis leans to Points Per Reception (PPR) formats.
Rookie QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson played well enough last week to help the Browns get past the Steelers. Cleveland gets a tough test this week against the resurgent Broncos, who have won four consecutive games. The Denver defense has forced 11 turnovers in its past three games, yet the unit is ranked last in the league against the run and ranks 25th in fantasy points per game allowed to RBs over the past four weeks. Expect Cleveland to lean on its RBs. Ford rushed for 107 yards in Week 10 and had a rushing TD in Week 11.
The undrafted Baltimore rookie is capable of scoring from anywhere on the field. Mitchell is averaging 10.3 yards per carry and has long runs of 60, 39, and 21 yards in his last three games while adding in a 32-yard reception during that span. In their most recent offensive line rankings, Pro Football Focus rated Baltimore's line No. 2 overall in the NFL. Mitchell bursts through the holes created and can take off quickly, and he is hard to catch once he gets in space. The Chargers rank 28th in Fantasy Points Per Game allowed to RBs over the past four weeks, so start Mitchell as an upside flex player.
Other RBs to Consider Starting in Week 12: Tony Pollard, Rachaad White, Jaylen Warren, Rhamondre Stevenson, Alexander Mattison
In John Boyle's news and notes from Pete Carroll’s Monday press conference, he included information that Carroll shared on the status of Kenneth Walker III, who left Sunday's game against the Rams with an oblique injury.
"Those are the kinds of strains that it takes a while to figure it out," Carroll said, and when asked if Walker can play Thursday, he said, "I don't know that."
Fantasy players can check back on Seahawks.com and on the player news feed on RotoBaller.com to stay up to date on Walker's status. Charbonnet is one of the top fantasy football waiver wire adds of the week, as he may continue to get a heavy amount of work as he did in Week 11 at Los Angeles. Entering last week's game, Charbonnet had played on over 50 percent of the snaps in three consecutive games, so he was trending to deliver increased fantasy production.
I had previously mentioned Charbonnet as a top pickup, as even when Walker is available, the Seahawks' second-round rookie will be a valuable fantasy football depth player. He is a dual threat who has caught 10 of his 11 targets in his last two games, and Charbonnet's excellent pass-blocking skills for a first-year player assure him of staying on the field often.
San Francisco has the third-best rushing defense in the NFL, but as Seahawks fans have already observed, Charbonnet is a determined physical runner who will battle hard for every yard, and he seeks out contact for extra yardage. If he has to take on an expanded role this week, start Charbonnet as a fantasy RB3 for the projected volume.
Carroll also indicated rookie Kenny McIntosh might be in the mix for Thursday's game, and he should be added in deeper leagues for fantasy roster depth.
Week 12 Fantasy Football Running Back Waiver Wire Rankings – Top 5
- Zach Charbonnet
- Ty Chandler
- Miles Sanders
- Tyler Allgeier
- Leonard Fournette
Michael Pittman Jr.
The Colts' No. 1 WR has caught eight passes in three consecutive games, and he has been targeted 33 times during that span. His matchup vs. Tampa Bay in Week 12 should be a fun one, as we will see Pittman, Mike Evans, and Chris Godwin all on the same field. Pittman will certainly provide his share of highlights, as the Buccaneers have allowed the most receiving yards and third-most catches to WRs over the past four weeks. According to Pro Football Focus, Pittman has a projected matchup grade of 88.4 when lining up as the right side WR this week, which is considered 'excellent."
I will stick with the Baltimore theme at this position, too, as we have to take advantage of the NFL's lowest-ranked pass defense as fantasy players. Flowers has registered double-figure PPR totals in seven of 11 games this season. The rookie also must be one of the Baltimore pass-catchers to step forward and contribute more with Mark Andrews out. Odell Beckham Jr., who hit the 100-yard mark for the first time as a Raven last week and may be available on your waiver wire, is also a quality start against a Chargers defense that ranks 27th in Fantasy Points Per Game allowed to WRs over the past four weeks.
Other WRs to Consider Starting in Week 12: Nico Collins, Diontae Johnson, DeAndre Hopkins, Brandin Cooks, Jaxon Smith-Njigba.
Here is another first-year player who demonstrates that having patience with rookies in fantasy football can pay off. Reed has five total TDs from scrimmage, as he scored on a 32-yard run in Week 11 and caught a TD pass in Week 10. He has been targeted five-plus times in three of the past four games and finished with 80-plus receiving yards twice during that span. Reed is emerging as a viable flex play and WR3 streamer for your fantasy playoff push.
Williams flashed his upside with a 32-yard TD reception in Week 11. He has a good opportunity to take advantage of, as he can seize the No. 2 WR role in the Detroit offense in the weeks ahead. Williams is an upside type and a potential difference-maker for the fantasy playoffs.
Week 12 Fantasy Football Running Back Waiver Wire Rankings – Top 10
- Josh Downs
- Jayden Reed
- Odell Beckham Jr.
- Tutu Atwell (if Cooper Kupp is out with an ankle injury, he can be started as a flex play).
- Demario Douglas
- Jameson Williams
- Jaylen Guyton
- Michael Wilson
- Khalil Shakir
- Zay Jones
Quarterbacks And Tight Ends
In his return from a thumb injury in Week 11, Fields rushed for 104 yards, and he can also provide quality passing totals this week. According to PFF, the Bears have the third-best pass-blocking advantage of any offensive line in Week 12.
One of the best stories of the 2023 season, Dobbs has functioned as a quality fantasy starter in his three games as a starter for Minnesota. He has rushed for TDs in five consecutive games overall and scored 24-plus fantasy points in three of his past four. The Vikings have the best pass-blocking advantage of any team for Week 12. The Bears rank 23rd in FFPG allowed to QBs. If you need a streaming starter, go with Dobbs again.
Andrews may unfortunately be done for the season with an ankle injury, and Likely now becomes one of the top pickups in fantasy football. The second-year TE has displayed his potential in the preseason and in the 2022 season finale, Likely caught eight passes for 113 yards. He does have the promise to contribute at least as a back-end fantasy TE1 in the weeks ahead.
Despite Cleveland dealing with some QB changes, Njoku has been very busy, with 13 receptions and 24 targets over the past two weeks. The Broncos have allowed the most FFPG to TEs this season.
For more fantasy football analysis from Scott Engel, visit The Game Day during the 2023 fantasy football season.
The Seahawks and 49ers face off on Sunday, Dec. 10, 2023. Kickoff is set for 1:05 p.m. PT. Take a look back through history at the Seahawks' matchups against the 49ers.