Each week of the NFL season, we will identify fantasy football waiver-wire pickups specifically for those of you looking for streaming options in deeper formats (including IDP leagues). These are players available in a majority of ESPN Fantasy leagues (or close) who have enticing matchups in the week ahead that make them worthy of consideration for your lineups.
While you might notice some overlap with Field Yates' pickup column that publishes on Mondays, an important distinction is that the options mentioned in this column are focused solely on this week's matchup and not the players' values for the remainder of the season.
All roster percentages are updated each Friday. Players from Thursday's Broncos-Browns game have been taken out.
In the Week 6 edition of the Fantasy Football Cheat Sheet, I asked, "What will the Raiders look like offensively?" We got our answer in the rout of the Broncos. It was Carr's best performance since he threw for 386 yards and two touchdowns against the Dolphins back in Week 3. He completed 18 of 27 passes for 341 yards and two touchdowns. He's surrounded by playmakers, such as tight end Darren Waller, wide receiver Henry Ruggs and quarterback Bryan Edwards, and the only quarterback averaging more passing yards per game than Carr (324.3) is Tom Brady (344). (Friday update: He's been picked up in most leagues this week, but if he's still available in yours, I recommend streaming him against the Philadelphia Eagles.)
Over his last three games, Ryan has thrown for 868 yards, eight touchdowns and zero interceptions. With Calvin Ridley, Kyle Pitts and Russell Gage well rested, they will travel to Miami to take on a reeling Dolphins defense. Ryan is now the 8th most prolific NFL passer in history, per ESPN Stats and Info. With Miami's defense allowing the 8th most fantasy points per game to quarterbacks, he'll add to that total. (Friday update: He's the second-most-added player this week, so the ship may have sailed on grabbing him off your wire. Worth a look, though.)
It's important to evaluate rookies, especially quarterbacks, on a game-by-game basis. When you consider the Patriots' supporting cast, Jones has shown more positives than negatives this season. It was a pleasure to see him attack the Cowboys' defense downfield. All four throws of 20 or more yards downfield were completed successfully, resulting in 144 yards and two touchdowns. It will be a great matchup for Jones and the Patriots at home against the New York Jets defense, especially for their slot receiver and tight ends. Jones will be able to surpass his 186 passing yards against the Jets earlier this season now that he has more experience under his belt.
J.D. McKissic, Washington Football Team, (57.8% rostered; at Packers)
Antonio Gibson's shin injury doesn't appear to be improving as the season moves along. In fact, he received another MRI on his shin after he was sidelined during the fourth quarter. McKissic finished last week against the Chiefs with 18 opportunities (rushing attempts plus targets) to Gibson's 13. Like last week against Kansas City, McKissic thrives in negative game scripts and might be able to repeat that against the Green Bay Packers. This week, McKissic is a great option for RB3/flex due to Gibson's uncertain status.
Hardman is tied to a Chiefs offense that has averaged 40.3 pass attempts (fourth) and 308.5 passing yards per game (second). Over the past two games, he has accumulated 17 targets and also ran the second-most pass routes among all Chiefs wide receivers. Last week, Hardman caught 4 of 5 targets for 62 yards against Washington. Against a Titans secondary that continues to be exploited in the passing game, he's on the WR3/flex radar.
With Justin Fields at the helm, Mooney has averaged six targets per game. The target share he had last week ranked him seventh (28%) among receivers. In a negative game script scenario, Fields threw a career-high 27 passes last week. This week, on the road, the Bears could be in a similar situation against the Buccaneers. Mooney is a WR3 with upside against a Tampa Bay defense that gives up the fifth-most points per game to wide receivers.
Jamison Crowder, New York Jets, (21.8% rostered; at Patriots)
Crowder has only played in two games but leads the Jets with six red zone targets. Since returning in Week 4, he's caught 11 passes for 85 yards and a touchdown on 15 targets. On top of that, when Wilson targets Crowder, he has a passer rating of 109.0. There's no Jets receiver with a higher passer rating with three or more targets. The ability to get create separation for short passes and consistently make catches in the middle of the field have made Crowder a reliable option for any quarterback he's played with. Wilson continues that narrative so Crowder can be deployed as a WR3 against the Patriots.
It was a great debut for Bateman. On 66.6% of Lamar Jackson's dropbacks, he ran a pass route and caught 4 of 5 targets for 29 yards. Jackson tied with Mark Andrews for the team lead in targets and played 65% of offensive snaps with a 22% target share. He got thrown in the deep end of the pool and proved he could swim, putting him in position where he can be used in lineups as a WR3/flex against Cincinnati in Week 7 before the Ravens' bye.
Kirk has over 60 receiving yards in four of his six games this season and is a solid streamer this week against the Texans, even though the Cardinals have so many great options on offense. Kirk (31), DeAndre Hopkins (35), AJ Green (32) and Rondale Moore (28) have all been provided similar amounts of targets this season. Houston's defense has given up the 12th most fantasy points per game.
Zach Ertz, Arizona Cardinals (62.3% rostered; vs. Texans)
With Kliff Kingsbury at the helm, the Cardinals haven't used tight ends much in the passing game. However, Maxx Williams drew 16 targets between Weeks 2-4 before his season ended. The Cardinals rank seventh with 403 total yards per game, and Ertz will be facing the Texans this week, who give up the most points per game to tight ends.
Ricky Seals-Jones, Washington Football Team (43.4% rostered; at Packers)
Seals-Jones continues to have an every down role with Washington. Over the last two weeks, he has caught nine of 15 targets for 99 yards and a touchdown. Seals-Jones is an excellent streamer at a position with few reliable difference-makers, as Washington's No. 2 receiving option against a Packers defense that has allowed the 14th-most points to tight ends.
Uzomah caught 5 of 6 targets for 95 yards and two touchdowns against the Jaguars two weeks ago. Since then, he's caught just five passes for 31 yards and one touchdown. Despite that, Uzomah's outlook looks better in Week 7 when the Bengals try to keep up with a red hot Ravens offense averaging 421.7 total yards per game (4th) this season. It's worth taking a shot on him, as Baltimore's defense gives up the third most points to tight ends.
San Francisco 49ers (54.1% rostered; vs Colts)
Currently, the 49ers' defense is tied with Washington as the DST23. As a defensive unit, San Francisco is averaging 4.6 points per game and has a hard time forcing turnovers. That being said, against a Colts' offense that averages just 23.2 points per game (19th), the 49ers should be on the streaming radar. Against the Houston Texans last week, Indianapolis scored 31 points, a season-high, but it's unlikely history repeats itself against a tougher 49ers' D.
Las Vegas Raiders (24.9% rostered; vs. Eagles)
The Raiders are tied for 14th with the Bengals as a middle-of-the-pack defense. Despite not having too many sacks (16), Las Vegas has the most QB hits (53) and streaming them is a good option this week against an inconsistent Eagles' offense. Many expected Philadelphia to be one of the better offenses in the NFL this season, but it has only averaged 346 yards per game (19th). The Raiders are under the radar play for fantasy squads navigating bye weeks.
Atlanta Falcons (16.8% rostered; at Dolphins)
On and off the field, the Dolphins are a mess. Miami averages 290 yards a game; only the Jets (267) and Bears (246.2) are worse. Additionally, the Dolphins (16.5) rank 29th in points scored per game. The hot seat under head coach Brian Flores continues to heat up, especially after an embarrassing loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars. You may not like the idea of streaming the Falcons' defense, but for those in deeper leagues they may be the best option.
Younghoe Koo, Atlanta Falcons (48.9% rostered; at Dolphins)
Over the last three games, the Falcons offense has averaged 373.3 yards and 24.7 points. In those statistical categories, Atlanta ranks in the top half of the NFL. Over their last three games, the Dolphins have allowed 417.8 total yards. Koo will have ample opportunities to kick.
Mason Crosby, Green Bay Packers (39.1% rostered; vs. Football Team)
With an implied team total of 29.25 points, Crosby is on the streaming radar as the Packers are huge favorites at home against Washington. Washington has allowed the fourth-most points per game to kickers this season.
Individual Defensive Players (IDP)
Kyle Van Noy, New England Patriots (15.9% rostered; vs. Jets)
For the Patriots, Van Noy had the second-most pressures (3) behind Matt Judon and played 80% of the defensive snaps. A struggling Jets offense puts him in a good position for a big game.
Cory Littleton, LB, Las Vegas Raiders (13.7% rostered; vs. Eagles)
As you navigate Bye-mageddon, Littleton is an excellent LB3. As a weekly fantasy option, Littleton stands out with 55 tackles through six games. Week 6 saw him play only 69 percent of defensive snaps, which was a season low. Littleton, however, will find plenty of tackle opportunities against the Eagles.
Juan Thornhill, Kansas City Chiefs (0.6% rostered; at Titans)
There has been much criticism of the Chiefs' secondary this season. Daniel Sorensen has been benched in favor of Thornhill, and most of Sorensen's snaps will be in the box and around the line of scrimmage.