Let's take a quick look at a few linebackers, defensive linemen, and defensive backs who are either good grab-and-stash types or those that you should target in trades. Hope you enjoy the article and it opens your eyes to some of the gems that can be found on your leagues' waiver wires!
Reggie Ragland (NYG): With Blake Martinez out, Ragland has been steady for the Giants. He won’t gobble up tackles in mass quantities the way Martinez does, but he did have a pass breakup last week, which is nice to see out of a linebacker who’s usually just good for stops. Cheap source of tackles now that bye weeks are upon us.
Malik Reed (DEN): With Bradley Chubb sidelined, Reed has put up a couple of solid efforts, notably last week against the Steelers. If you’re in a deeper, big-play league, Reed is worth a look this week against the reeling Raiders. He could prove useful a few more weeks this season, too. Still just 25, he’s worth a look if you’re really struggling at the linebacker spot.
Jalen Reeves-Maybin (DET): Jamie Collins Sr is gone, and while we recognize that Derrick Barnes probably has higher upside, JRM has been on dynasty gamers’ radars for a few years now, and he’s getting a shot. Alex Anzalone dominates the snap count for the Lions' linebackers but has a pretty low ceiling. Reeves-Maybin is only 26 and could see his snap counts rise as the season goes on, especially if Barnes disappoints.
Muhammad Al-Quadin (DE – IND): The fifth-year pro from Miami has 5-solo efforts against two run-heavy teams. This bodes well for his rest-of-season outlook, especially considering he also has a total of two sacks as well. He’s effectively outplayed the rookie Kwity Paye and is holding steady with Tyquan Lewis in terms of snaps for the Colts’ ends.
Charles Harris (DE – DET): With the Okwara brothers injured and/or struggling, Harris has stepped in and chipped in with four sacks already this season. He’s come up with three solos per outing in the last two weeks, too. The ex-Mizzou Tiger is still just 26 so there are some useful years left here, especially if the likes of Trey Flowers and the Okwaras struggle. Worth a shot, especially in leagues that reward big for sacks.
DaRon Payne (DT – WFT): Payne has appeared on this list before, and we’ll add him here again after a game where he was a force, with 3 solos, a fumble recovered, and a sack. Anyone on this WFT line is going to have some value since they all create opportunities for one another. Payne has pedigree and size on his side. Expect the tackles to rise a bit as the season goes on.
Desmond King (CB – HOU): King has always filled the box score with tackles. If opposing defenses would throw his way more he could chip in with pass breakups. That just hasn’t happened much this season. Still, we like King as a higher-volume tackler. Upcoming contests are certainly in his favor in terms of tackle potential, so if you are looking for a high-upside DB, King fits the bill.
Chidobe Awuzie (CB – CIN): Awuzie was solid as a Cowboy, and he returned in Week 5 for his new Bengal team to put up 5 solos, a pick, and two pass breakups. Expect him to put up solid numbers again against the Lions, Ravens, and Jets over the next three weeks. Awuzie has size and has proven he can be productive, especially in leagues that break apart CB from the DB position.
Julian Blackmon (S – IND): Blackmon’s game is super hot-and-cold, so you kind of have to pick the right week to play him. His biggest efforts come against run-heavy squads, so looking forward two weeks, the Niners will be a good opponent for him to rack up some tackles. If you’re looking ahead to Week 7 for a bye week fill, Blackmon is a good play. He has other solid matchups to wrap the season up, too.