Top 10 waiver wire pickups for Week 6
Alex Smith (SF): Smith has only put up one dud fantasy performance so far this season, and it was when the 49ers slaughtered the Jets and had no reason to pass the football. As long as he's not facing a completely inept offense, Smith should remain a low-risk fantasy play. He likely won't light up the scoreboard like he did on Sunday very often, but he's been a more consistent fantasy option than guys like Tony Romo and Joe Flacco.
Christian Ponder (MIN): Ponder was on my waiver wire list two weeks ago, and he followed up with a poor game against the Lions. However, he bounced back against the Titans with 258 yards and two touchdowns. He now has three very good games and two bad games on the season. Heading to Washington next week to face the league's 31st ranked pass defense, I'd say he's more likely to have another one of those very good games.
Kirk Cousins (WAS): Robert Griffin III suffered a concussion on Sunday, and though head coach Mike Shanahan says RG3 is "feeling good," that's not necessarily enough to pass the tests required for him to play in Week 6. Cousins threw for 111 yards and a touchdown after Griffin was sidelined, and though he threw two interceptions, he's likely to be better this week when he's not being thrown into the fire.
Rashard Mendenhall is owned in most, but not all leagues. If he's available, he's far better than the following options.
Alex Green (GB): Cedric Benson is out a minimum of eight weeks with a Lisfranc injury, which could hold him out the whole season should it require surgery. Though it was reported that the Packers would consider starting James Starks in his place, Starks has been inactive through the first five weeks and the organization has been open about their frustration with him. Alex Green ran nine times for 55 yards (6.1 per carry) after Benson left Sunday's game. Even if Starks does start, he'll be on a very short leash with Alex Green heavily in the mix. If you can't get Green, Starks does have some upside as well.
William Powell (ARI): The only reason this isn't a must-have running back is because of how terrible the Cardinals offensive line is. Starting running back Ryan Williams is out for the season with a shoulder injury, and Powell now figures to get most of Williams' workload. Powell was also the no-huddle running back even before Williams got hurt. If the Cardinals' offensive line can step up their game, Powell could be a good pickup, but they haven't been able to open holes for any runner so far this year.