Fight Fire with Fliers – Week 14

Fight Fire with Fliers is a weekly fantasy football series that discusses emergency free agent adds or stash candidates for deep rostered or 14-plus team leagues. The post publishes on Saturdays following typical weekly waiver runs, allowing forward thinking managers a last minute opportunity to roster players ahead of their breakouts.

As the playoffs draw near, several players still remain with low rostership percentages that warrant consideration. Almost none have the opportunity of Rashaad Penny, but most have reasonably accessible scenarios for effective use at the most crucial time of the season.

The Fliers Catalogue

Rashaad Penny takes the top spot on the greenlist, as Seattle will be missing Adrian Peterson and Travis Homer this week. While Alex Collins returns to the mix, there is nothing tying Pete Carroll to him and Penny profiles as a back that can find work in multiple roles regardless. There is also nothing wrong with a matchup at Houston, for that matter. Joshua Kelley and DeeJay Dallas are dismissed as opportunities appear bleak given the usage and organizational changes to the backfields. JaMycal Hasty and Samaje Perine make a leap to the promoted list as injury and illness threaten to bestow significant workloads upon them, although it seems likely that Jeffrey Wilson, Jr. and Joe Mixon will ultimately maintain volume ahead of each.

Week 14 Additions

Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) hands the ball off to running back Justin Jackson (22) in the fourth quarter against the Denver Broncos at Empower Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing
Justin Jackson and Justin Herbert, courtesy of Isaiah J. Downing – USA TODAY Sports.

Justin Jackson RB Los Angeles Chargers (Two percent, Yahoo!)
Pivoting from Kelley, Jackson appears to have the most likely path to valuable work behind Austin Ekeler. Jackson has a history of work with the offense and is most likely to at least enjoy a pass catching role in the event Ekeler is forced to miss time down the stretch. The Chargers rely heavily on versatile play from Ekeler and it is unlikely one player single-handedly usurps the entirety of his work, but it was only a couple years ago when both he and Jackson were considered neck-and-neck as fill-ins during the Melvin Gordon holdout.

Running back Peyton Barber #31 of the Las Vegas Raiders runs against the Miami Dolphins during the second half of a game at Allegiant Stadium on September 26, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Peyton Barber, courtesy of Chris Unger – Getty Images.

Peyton Barber RB Las Vegas (One percent, Yahoo!)
Barber is not the ideal flier. He is on a team that is 1-4 in their last five games and is about to add another loss in Kansas City this week. However, Josh Jacobs is now left with all of the backfield work after Kenyan Drake’s broken ankle, and his own litany of injury issues leads to a path for a potential high leverage opportunity with Barber. Following Kansas City, Barber would encounter Cleveland, Denver and Indianapolis (and Los Angeles Chargers in Week 18, for whom it applies). Although these aren’t perfect matchups, they are teams that are not vertically inclined and may well keep the game within reach of Las Vegas long enough to manifest the necessary attempts to give Barber startable upside.

Jason Astarita (@AstaritaJason) is a professional in the sports gambling industry. He has an MS in Psychology (Industrial and Organizational) from Southern New Hampshire University and completed his undergraduate degree in Psychology at the University of San Diego. His passion for fantasy sports is over a decade old, but has recently been theorizing on the novel format of Superflex Best Ball in the Dynasty Fantasy Football arena. Ever interested in draft theory and roster construction, feel free to reach out on twitter with any insights or queries! #superbestball

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