Fantasy Football leagues can be won and lost in so many different ways. They can be won or lost at the draft or through mid season trades, but there are always a couple of diamonds in the rough that we don’t know about until we get into the meat of the season. An injury or a demotion to an everyday starter can happen at any point, creating a mad dash by owners to the waiver wire. A wise strategy is to make preemptive strikes on prospective players that could break out if given the chance and use a couple of bench spots to hold onto them, giving you the edge in your leagues. Let’s take a look at some candidates to stash on benches for the time being.
Marlon Mack – Indianapolis Colts
Mack is the backup running back to 34 year old Frank Gore, and is seeing his usage increase week by week. Last week he got into the end zone against San Francisco, so he’s not exactly under the radar anymore. If he is available in any league, he should be picked up immediately. Mack is clearly the better player at this point, as Gore isn’t getting any younger. The Colts will most likely be on the outside looking in when it comes to the playoff picture, so they will have to see what they have in their promising rookie running back.
Josh Doctson – Washington Redskins
Docston has been marred by injuries in his young career, but has managed to stay healthy in 2017. He an elite athlete and in a high powered offense and just needs a chance to show his skills. He caught a long touchdown in week 3 and has seen his snaps increase lately with injuries to Jordan Reed and Jamison Crowder. Terrelle Pryor has struggled thus far as well so expect Doctson to get in the mix more and more as the season goes on. He’s been compared to A.J. Green by scouts, which would be nice to get off the waiver wire for free.
Mike Williams – Los Angeles Chargers
The Chargers selected Williams #7 in the NFL draft this year, but he suffered a back injury in the offseason and has been sidelined ever since. The encouraging news is he’s been practicing in pads since week 2 and has been buried in the play book according to his coaches. He is slated to make his debut this Sunday against the Raiders, and could make an immediate impact. I expect Williams to be an alpha receiver in the NFL on short order. Get Williams before your opponents have the chance to.
D’Onta Foreman – Houston Texans
This situation has already become a timeshare between Foreman and starter Lamar Miller. It would probably require an injury to Miller to really shift the balance into Foreman’s favor, but Miller has had trouble in years past sta
ying healthy for the entire season. The Texans offense is all of a sudden very dynamic and high powered thanks to the ascension of Quarterback Deshaun Watson. If Foreman could get a stranglehold on this backfield, he could be a league winner.
Rex Burkhead – New England Patriots
The Patriots backfield has always been a conundrum for fantasy, as they use different guys in different roles based on matchup and game flow. Mike Gillislee was brought in to replace LeGarrette Blount as the lead/goal line back, but has not lived up to expectations yet. Burkhead has been nursing broken ribs since week 2, but is due to return this Sunday against the Jets. I can see him surpassing Gillislee if given the opportunity. He is the most versatile back the Patriots have, and is worth picking up and seeing what he does for a couple of weeks.
Other Stashes: Corey Davis, John Ross, Matt Breida, C.J. Prosise, Charcandrick West, James Conner, Alfred Morris, Darren McFadden, Dion Lewis