By Jennifer Eakins, 4for4
Special to Yahoo Sports
As we inch closer to the fantasy postseason and teams are jockeying for playoff berths, it’s crucial to be on top of your rosters starting with the elite players down to the last bench spot. Getting rid of underperformers or players with role changes is essential in your team’s success moving forward.
I’m here to help you rip off that proverbial band-aid and decide who’s no longer serving your fantasy team the way fresh blood has the potential to.
In this weekly article, I comb through underwhelming performances to see who’s droppable in favor of some waiver wire magic. There are many variables in determining a player’s rest-of-season fantasy value, including their own production, offense and health, to name a few. All will be taken into consideration when determining each week’s drops.
James White, RB – Patriots (rostered in 62% of leagues)
White joins teammates Cam Newton and Julian Edelman in making this column. With Newton at the helm, White’s role as a pass-catcher out of the backfield is all but gone, leaving us with nothing but sweet PPR memories. Even while trailing for most of their Week 8 contest, the Patriots only threw 25 passes, of which White was the target of just four.
The 28-year-old back only has 14 carries in five contests this season, and is relegated to being a pass-catcher on a team not throwing the ball. Do your roster a solid and send White to the waiver wire this week in favor of a back with greater potential down the stretch like Zack Moss or Gus Edwards.
Tyler Higbee, TE – Rams (rostered in 61% of leagues)
Productive tight ends are a rarity in 2020, so putting Tyler Higbee on this list is painful, but he’s just not living up to his side of the deal in output. The fifth-year Ram was the fantasy TE7 heading into the season with an early-seventh round ADP — he is averaging a mere 7.7 half-PPR points as the fantasy TE16 on the season.
Normally keeping a TE2 isn’t the worst idea, but considering Gerald Everett is receiving more targets — nine to Higbee’s four in Week 8 — it seems Higbee is now the TE2 on his own team. While the landscape at the position isn’t pretty, there are better options out there like Eric Ebron, Ross Dwelley, or Logan Thomas.
Tevin Coleman, RB – 49ers (rostered in 39% of leagues)
The 2020 Tevin Coleman experience has come to a complete stop, watch your ego as you exit the ride. Fantasy managers who had been patiently awaiting his return after a month off with an MCL injury were punched in the gut again with an early exit in Week 8. The 27-year-old Coleman is responsible for a whopping 9.9 half-PPR fantasy points so far and currently sits at RB94 in half-PPR points per contest.
At this point in the season, unless you are slaying opponents and have the extra bench space, you need points now and Coleman is just not bringing home the bacon. Cut him loose and pick up someone healthier and with greater potential to add to your roster moving forward.
Henry Ruggs, WR – Raiders (rostered in 47% of leagues)
Well, there’s always next year for that big breakout from Ruggs. His lack of usage is now a legitimate concern, as he’s seen three, three, and four targets, respectively, in the three weeks since returning from a soft tissue injury. Couple his anemic volume with the fact Derek Carr doesn’t take too many downfield shots, and you’ve got a player destined to remain on your bench.
Be proactive now and swap Ruggs out for a wideout with a higher floor, along with a better schedule like Corey Davis or Jalen Reagor, as the Raiders face five defenses in the top half of the league in schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed (aFPA) in the final eight weeks of the fantasy season.
Mike Gesicki, TE – Dolphins (rostered in 66% of leagues)
Similar to Higbee above, it’s tough to recommend dropping any starter at tight end, but Mike Gesicki is just not producing enough to warrant a roster spot moving forward. He’s only put up double-digit half-PPR fantasy points twice this season and Miami has been sliding into a committee of sorts at the position over the past several contests.
Since Week 2, the third-year tight end has eclipsed one catch only once and even went without touching the ball at all in Week 6. It’s time to let go of your summer dreams with Gesicki as a late-round sleeper and grab a tight end who’s actually involved in their team’s offense.
A proud alumna of the UGA Grady College of Journalism, Jennifer Eakins has been working in the sports industry for well over a decade. She has had stints with CNN Sports, the Atlanta Hawks and the Colorado Rockies. Her first fantasy football draft took place in 1996 where she selected Ricky Watters with the first overall pick, and she has been a fantasy degenerate ever since.