If you’ve played fantasy football enough you reach that point several times a season where a player listed as “probable” has a set back in warm ups or something crazy changes at the last second. It leaves you scrambling and searching through available free agents to find anything with even remote potential. Below are five possible players worth taking a chance on that are almost certainly available in your league if you get desperate.
1. Cleveland Browns Defense
Who in their right mind wants to pick up anything related to the Browns? The reality is the Browns defense is middle of the pack fantasy wise when it comes to defense. That and they’re playing the 4th worse ranked offense in fantasy football in 2014 in the New York Jets. The Jets are missing their starting quarterback Geno Smith, which might actually make starting the Browns defense less attractive. The matchup here should still yield good points, just don’t expect to hang on to this defense long.
2. Carson Palmer, QB, Arizona Cardinals
He was performing well before his ACL injury last year. Most people passed on drafting Palmer due to this being his first game back from a major injury. Palmer also looked a little shaky in preseason. That said, he’s going up against a Saints defense that ranked 31st in the NFL last year, though, that’s missing their two best secondary players in Jairus Byrd and Keenan Lewis. Oh, and they cut their best pass rusher Junior Galette this offseason too. We don’t know what kind of season Palmer will have but it’s a safe bet he’ll get off to a good start against the Saints.
3. Dorial Green-Beckham, WR, Tennessee Titans
Who will be the Titans go to passing option? No one really knows but Marcus Mariota has to throw to someone. Most seem to think Kendall Wright will be the primary target but in the red zone the rookie DGB figures to be a more targeted player than starters Wright and Harry Douglas. Wright and Douglas are speed receivers that are smaller in stature and Green-Beckham is 6’5″. He figures to be a red zone specialist. DGB also caught one more pass than Wright during the preseason.
4. Karlos Williams, RB, Buffalo Bills
It looks like LeSean McCoy is a go for Buffalo despite the hamstring injury that left his participation in question. But even if he plays he could be limited and put on a pitch count. The Bills may elect to give goal line carries to rookie Karlos Williams who has about 40 pounds on McCoy and saw red zone carries in preseason, including one touchdown.
5. Josh Hill, TE, New Orleans Saints
Jimmy Graham is gone and the Saints need a new red zone target. Hill is under the radar with Ben Watson currently listed as the starter. Hill has good chemistry with Brees and scored 5 touchdowns last season. He also scored one during the preseason. You should expect a 5 to 8 catch performance or anything, but you could very easily get a cheap touchdown out of him.