IDP Dynasty Fantasy Football Waiver Wire: Week 12

Jason King

It’s Thanksgiving week, and before getting into those deep dynasty league options for this week’s waiver wire runs, let’s take time to give thanks for some of the bounty that the IDP waiver wire has yielded so far this season. Here’s an All-IDP Dynasty Waiver Wire Team: IDPs widely available at various points in the pre- or regular season. Some of these IDPs not only have every-week starter appeal right now; they also have dynasty value beyond 2022.

All-Thankful Team, Dynasty IDP Waiver Wire Edition

Baron Browning, Edge DEN

I drafted many a share of Browning in 2021 rookie drafts, and I was downtrodden to say the least when word leaked that Denver was moving him to outside linebacker. At that time, he looked to be pretty low on the depth chart, certainly behind Bradley Chubb and Randy Gregory, and in the mix with Malik Reed, Jonathon Cooper and second-round pick Nik Bonitto for rotational backup work. As typically happens in crowded position rooms, things have a way of working themselves out. A hip injury cost him three weeks, but he looked shot out of a cannon in weeks five and six, when he compiled two-and-a-half sacks, eight total tackles, and an interception.

Zaire Franklin, LB IND

Franklin’s emergence as an LB1 may be the surprise of the IDP season. Maybe we should have seen it coming, with Shaquille Leonard’s somewhat-mysterious nerve impingements and resulting surgeries on his back and ankle. Leonard, of course, recently had a second surgery on his back, and comments out of Indianapolis (the team is “hopeful” the issue is solved) don’t sound great. With Bobby Okereke approaching free agency and Leonard’s NFL future in doubt, Franklin could play a three-down role again in 2023 as long as he cleans up some recent missed tackle woes.

Frankie Luvu, LB CAR

Affectionately known in IDP circles as Frankie “Love You,” this Panther is a poor man’s (OK, broke man’s) Micah Parsons, providing big play upside as an edge rusher and tackle floor as a stack linebacker. Luvu’s not an every-down linebacker on a weekly basis, but he’s typically on the field for 75 percent or more of the defensive snaps. Carolina’s linebacker outlook for next season is murky, with Shaq Thompson and Damien Wilson candidates for release given their current contract numbers; Cory Littleton entering free agency; and rookie Brandon Smith being flat-out terrible. Coaching staff and a scheme change could change a lot, but for now Luvu’s looks good as a versatile defender playing in the box or on the line of scrimmage.

Uchenna Nwosu, Edge SEA

Nwosu never made much of a name for himself during his four years as a Charger. His free agency landing spot did him no favors in the eyes of the IDP community, with Pete Carroll favoring a heavy rotation along the defensive line. The 2018 second-rounder has had a breakout season though, registering seven sacks on 35 pressures (per Pro Football Focus), and he’s been a low-end Edge1 in fantasy.

Jack Sanborn, LB CHI

Sanborn is a pretty recent addition to the list, having surfaced as a startable option following Roquan Smith’s Halloween day trade to Baltimore. The rookie has the look of a run-down thumper rather than a three-down, all-around linebacker, but similarly slow-footed ’backers like T.J. Edwards have come around with their coverage responsibilities. If he makes a good impression over the second half of the season, there’s a good chance he sticks in a starting spot in Chicago.

Grover Stewart, IDL IND

Tell me before the season that an Indianapolis defensive tackle is a high-end fantasy DT1, and you’ll get no argument. DeForest Buckner is a well-known commodity. But Stewart? Sure, he’s been a fine player, but for the past two years has done it playing as a nose and manning the “A” gaps – not exactly a position that leads to statistical production. Stewart has reaped the rewards of a schematic switch under Gus Bradley that allows him to line up over the “B” gap more often, and his tackle totals have exploded. I don’t think there’s a ton of carry-over value into future seasons, as he’s not generating much pressure and he could always get pushed back to nose duty.

Safeties Galore!

Each season yields nice safety production from the wire. It’s not always easy to know where it’s coming from, but S1 production is always there for the taking – that’s why the safety position is relatively devalued in dynasty terms. Why pay a premium for a Derwin James when you know a Talanoa Hufanga is going to emerge, and you can obtain him for cheap? That said, we’re rounding out this squad with a smorgasbord of safeties that we’re thankful for!

  • Deshon Elliott, DET – He was never consistently worthy of a roster spot in Baltimore, but Detroit provided him with opportunity. Elliott has had a few huge weeks, and even rebounded from a concussion in week ten with eight solo tackles on Sunday.
  • Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, PHI – C.J., Ceedy Duce, CGJ, whatever you want to call him, he’s been a key component of Philadelphia’s elevation to elite status. A slot defender in New Orleans, Gardner-Johnson has excelled as a versatile safety. He’s cast as a cornerback on MyFantastyLeague, providing a bit of an unfair advantage on that platform.
  • Damar Hamlin, BUF – Hamlin hasn’t been the same scoring level as some of these others, but he has more dynasty upside than Jackson, Owens or Wilson, and looks ready to step into a spot reserved for Jordan Poyer or Micah Hyde for the past several seasons. Hyde’s early season injury, of course, opened the door for Hamlin’s emergence, but Poyer has also missed several games due to injury, and both veterans are 31 years old.
  • Talanoa Hufanga, SF – Jaquiski Tartt’s departure in free agency opened the door for Hufanga, who got his season off to a blistering start with 11 total tackles and an interception in the season opener. He’s in the second year of his rookie contract, and probably cemented for another couple of seasons as a starting safety with strengths as a box player.
  • Eddie Jackson, CHI – I don’t even know how to describe Jackson’s re-emergence to fantasy relevance, as he’s a deep safety for the most part. But he’s easily on pace to set a career high in tackles, and has four interceptions on the season – second-most of his six-year career. Sometimes it just all comes together.
  • Julian Love, NYG – We’re thankful for Frankie “Love You” at linebacker, and some real Love at safety. I wasn’t counting on the sub-200-pound Love playing at an elite level as a tackler, or outproducing the more highly regarded Xavier McKinney. But he’s been quietly great this season at an opportune time with free agency about to hit.
  • Jonathan Owens, HOU – A 27-year-old with 18 total tackles to his name coming into the season, the Texans surprisingly stuck him in the starting lineup to start the year, and at one point he was on pace to top 200 combined tackles. Briefly benched, Houston has mostly stuck with Owens – likely because Eric Murray is his closest competition. He’s probably nothing more than backup material long-term, but enjoy this waiver wire gift before the newness rubs off.
  • Donovan Wilson, DAL – Wilson’s had a nice comeback season, perhaps partially due to Jayron Kearse’s inability to play early in the season due to injury. The Cowboys have stuck with him even after Kearse’s return to the lineup, using a lot of three-safety looks.

That’s it! I’m sure in more shallow leagues, there are plenty of other more well-known or established options. But as usual, I gear this column more toward 14- and 16-team dynasty setups, or 12-team setups with fairly large roster limits (65 spots or so).

And for a this-point-in-time dynasty outlook, check out my top 150 rankings. I keep the rankings updated, even if I can’t keep up with comments for everyone in-season.

OK – now on to the week 12 recommendations.

Edge Rushers

John Cominsky, DET

Hailing from a small school (the University of Charleston in West Virginia), Cominsky generated some draft buzz back in 2019 with nice size and athleticism. At 6-foot-5 and 285 pounds, Atlanta seemed determined to use him as a three- or four-tech, but Detroit has given him more opportunities outside the tackle. He had a whopping ten pressures (per PFF) through two weeks before suffering a wrist injury that sidelined him for the Lions’ next three games. Since returning in week seven, his defensive snaps have been on the rise, topping out at 57 on Sunday when he registered a sack to go along with three solos (two in the backfield) and a pass defensed.

I’m not expecting the moon here, but in deep leagues Cominsky is worth taking a shot on. Plus, his 27th birthday is Tuesday – and I’m sure he’d like nothing better than to be added on waivers in lots of IDP leagues.

Jonathon Cooper, DEN

The second-year outside linebacker has been solid since returning from an early season hamstring injury. His statistics have certainly not been gaudy in the five games since his return – at least until week 11’s effort that included five solo tackles, two assists and one hit on Raiders quarterback Derek Carr. As long as Randy Gregory remains on injured reserve with a knee injury suffered in week four, Cooper remains somewhat viable from a rosterability standpoint. I certainly wouldn’t want to have to start him.

Curtis Granderson, NO

The Grandy Man had a huge outing with a sack-and-a-half on two quarterback hits, plus three solo tackles and four assists, with ironman Cameron Jordan missing his first game (in a 12-year career!) with a fractured orbital bone. That sounds unpleasant and difficult to play with, so we’ll see if Jordan is able to return for week 12. If he remains sidelined, Granderson remains a viable option.

Food for Thought

  • Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, HOU – The former Ram has been seeing a decent snap share for the Texans, but he’s been generating little pressure and hasn’t yet registered a sack on the season. He’s hit good tackle numbers (14 combined) over the past two weeks, but he’s best left on the wire given his lack of pass-rush chops.
  • Jason Pierre-Paul, BAL – The 33-year-old is still kicking, and had his most productive outing of the season with a sack, two tackles for loss and an interception of Baker Mayfield to end a miserable three-point performance for the Panther offense.

Revisits from Previous Weeks

  • Micheal Clemons, NYJ – I wrote up Clemons in week ten’s column, and he’s still someone to keep an eye on. He’s ultimately a fringe dynasty asset given his standing as a backup rotational edge, but he did notch his second career sack against the Patriots to go along with three defensive solo tackles, making him the most productive of the Gang Green edge rushers.
  • Deatrich Wise, NE – He’s been somewhat quiet since week six, so perhaps someone’s bailed on him in a smaller league. Wise rebounded with a vengeance this week, sacking pitiful Zach Wilson and tallying five total sacks (two for loss) and defending a pass to Jets running back Michael Carter. Wise remains a low-end DE1.

Interior Defensive Linemen

Greg Gaines, LAR

Is Gaines back in our good graces? After 2021’s breakout campaign, Gaines has had a less-than-pedestrian season, with just one sack going into week 11. He had double that production against the Saints with a pair of sacks of Andy Dalton. Of course the Rams dropped another game, and to add injury to insult, A’Shawn Robinson hurt a knee and didn’t return. Robinson’s loss means Gaines is locked into heavy snap volume. He’s not totally trustworthy and you won’t need a bye-week fill-in this week, but if you’re desperate at defensive tackle all the same, Gaines is worth a gamble.

Linval Joseph, Ndamukong Suh and Milton Williams, PHI

Williams hasn’t been getting big snaps this season as a part of the Eagles’ defensive line rotation, but since Jordan Davis’ injury, Williams has seen a larger percentage of snaps inside the offensive tackles. The change has helped his production: four solos and four assists in week ten, and a sack and four total tackles (two for loss) in week 11. He’s only in his second year, and I think has some future DT1 potential – particularly if the Eagles lose Javon Hargrave in free agency.

Joseph and Suh, meanwhile, made their Philly debuts on Sunday, splitting a sack and tallying a handful of tackles. I don’t think either is going to be reliable enough to consider for your starting lineup, but you can consider adding them in leagues that require two defensive tackle starters.

Off-Ball Linebackers

Krys Barnes, GB

Say this for Barnes: He’s been efficient. This week on 44 snaps (67 percent), he registered a sack, six solo tackles and six assists. Don’t count on this type of production once De’Vondre Campbell returns, but until that happens, Barnes should be rostered. And if you need linebacker help, you can drop him in as an LB3 or LB4.

Tyrel Dodson, BUF

Standing in for injured starter Tremaine Edmunds, Dodson crushed week 11 with nine solo tackles and four assists against Cleveland. I’m going to assume Edmunds will be back in the lineup in week 12, but if not, Dodson is the guy. Moving forward, if you’re heavily reliant on Edmunds to fill out your lineup, it’s not a bad idea to stash Dodson as a handcuff.

Kaden Elliss, NO

So much for a quick return for Pete Werner, who had ankle surgery and seems doubtful to return this season. I dogged Elliss a bit in the week 11 article, so I’ve got some crow to eat after watching him stuff the stat sheet with one-and-a-half sacks on two quarterback hits to go along with five solos, five assists and a pass defensed. He’s starting material at linebacker as long as Werner remains on the mend.

Revisits from Previous Weeks

  • Derrick Barnes, DET – I see you with your five solos and one assist, Derrick, but I’m not trusting you. It’s too soon from the hurt I felt from your week ten letdown.


Food for Thought

  • Joshua Kalu, TEN – Kalu had a productive week 11 with six solos. He’s served as a nickel/dime defender for the Titans this season, and has gotten some good run due to all the injuries in the Tennessee secondary. I wouldn’t count on consistent production though, and I’m assuming either Amani Hooker or slot defender Elijah Molden has a chance to play this week. Pass.


Cam Taylor-Britt, CIN

Chidobe Awuzie’s torn ACL thrust Taylor-Britt into the lineup at outside cornerback, and the rookie has not been good. And that’s good news for fantasy, as evidenced by Taylor-Britt’s nine solo tackles and three assists vs. Pittsburgh. I’m plugging him into my lineup with confidence.

Detroit Lions Cornerbacks

Buffalo’s a nice matchup for opposing corners, and given the quick turnaround to play Buffalo on Thursday, it seems doubtful that Jeffrey Okudah clears concussion protocol in time. That leaves Jerry Jacobs (six solos against the Giants), Mike Hughes (two solos, one assist) and Amani Oruwariye (two solos) to man the outside spots, with Will Harris (five solos, three assists) playing the nickel defender. Harris carries a default safety designation on MyFantasyLeague, but if he’s labeled a corner in your league, he’s the primary add where available. Otherwise I’d side with Jacobs, and maybe one of the other two provide Okudah’s out for the week.

New York Giants Cornerbacks

Keep an eye on the status of starters Adoree’ Jackson, who did not return Sunday after suffering a knee injury in the second quarter, and Fabian Moreau, who left the game with a rib injury. This seems ominous for the secondary given the quick turnaround and road game at Dallas on Thanksgiving.

Darnay Holmes (four solos) is locked in as the primary slot defender, but who might step up to fill the void of either or both of Jackson and/or Moreau seems up in the air. The current options are Cordale Flott (one solo, one assist, one pass defensed and one forced fumble on 16 snaps), Nick McCloud (three solos – one for loss – on 39 snaps) and Rodarius Williams (four solos on 27 snaps in his season debut). I’m liking Dak Prescott’s chances against that lot.

Food for Thought

  • Bryce Callahan, Michael Davis and Asante Samuel, LAC – Chargers corners will get tested in week 12 against Arizona. Marquise Brown – if healthy enough to play – plus DeAndre Hopkins and Rondale Moore have all seen heavy target volume on the season, so fire up those Los Angeles corners.
  • Stephon Gilmore, IND – Pittsburgh has been golden for cornerback production. Kenny Moore’s taken, so Gilmore’s the next best bet.


Enjoyed this video? If so, please be sure to LIKE this video and SUBSCRIBE to our channel for more awesome, FREE analysis all year long!
jason king
IDP Dynasty Fantasy Football Waiver Wire: Week 12