Fantasy football waiver wire WR pickups, Week 4
Joshua Palmer, Los Angeles Chargers (6 percent rostered)
Unfortunately, the Chargers just lost stud wide receiver Mike Williams for the season after he tore his ACL in the team’s Week 3 victory against the Vikings. Williams’ injury leaves a huge void in a high-powered offense already down one of their most important playmakers in Austin Ekeler with an elite quarterback under center in Justin Herbert. With Williams now out of the picture and Ekeler still without a timetable to return per The Athletic’s Daniel Popper, who covers the Chargers, Palmer has a legitimate opportunity to be Herbert’s second option in the passing game.
Palmer has stepped in for Williams and Keenan Allen over the last couple of seasons while the two have dealt with their fair share of injuries and shown flashes, starting 16 of 36 games in his young career. Last season, he hauled in 72 passes for 769 yards and three touchdowns. Not only has he shown flashes of being a solid NFL receiver when given a chance, but also proven he can be a reliable fantasy option. Per Footballguys’ Alex Caruso, Palmer has averaged double-digit fantasy points as a starter throughout his career.
Despite the Chargers spending a first-round selection on rookie wide receiver Quentin Johnston, Palmer has remained the preferred option of the two in three-wide sets and he also out-targeted Johnston once Williams left the game in Week 3 while playing more snaps. Palmer earned seven targets to Johnston’s three while playing 61 percent of the offensive snaps compared to Johnston’s 24 percent.
Palmer should be rostered in nearly every league once waivers are processed this week.
Tank Dell, Houston Texans (33 percent rostered)
Nathaniel “Tank” Dell has certainly lived up to his nickname thus far through his first three games in the NFL. Despite falling to the third round of this year’s draft due to his 5-foot-10 and 165-pound stature, Dell has not allowed his size to define him. Dell has formed a great connection with his rookie teammate and signal-caller CJ Stroud, who personally asked for the Texans to draft Dell in the third round after working together during the NFL Combine.
After going undrafted in a vast majority of fantasy football leagues this summer, Dell is currently the WR13 in PPR leagues in total points. In Week 2, he caught 7 passes for 72 yards and a touchdown. He followed up the impressive performance with a special Week 3, recording 145 yards and a touchdown on five receptions. His connection with Stroud continues to grow in an ascending offense that has defied expectations thus far.
Dell averaged 29 yards per reception and 20.71 yards per target in Week 3, highlighting his big-play ability. Per Dwain McFarland of Matthew Berry’s Fantasy Life, Dell posted an 84 percent route participation rate while accounting for 56 percent of the Texans’ air yards. Dell also had a first-read target share of 31.6 percent in Week 3 per Fantasy Points Data, a 10 percent increase from Week 2.
Dell is here to stay as a weekly WR3 in fantasy leagues given his playmaking ability and budding connection with Stroud in an offense that looks like it will continue to outplay any expectations anyone had for them.