Bears

Fantasy Football: 10 waiver wire pickups for Week 6

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Fantasy Football: 10 waiver wire pickups for Week 6

Hopefully Week 5 didn't come at you like a wrecking ball after some more key players went down with injuries. Because Eli Manning sure got pushed around in Week 5.

Poor, Eli. That just looked so awkward. 

Let's make sure that your Week 6 isn't as weird as that tackle by helping you be smart and active on the waiver wire. 

1. Charcandrick West, RB, KC

His name may be as tricky as the situation he's in with the Chiefs. Jamaal Charles' ACL tear has sent fantasy owners scrambling and debating between West or Knile Davis. Initially it may seem like a RBBC situation but West has gotten more touches than Davis with or without Charles in the lineup. Andy Reid apparently sees some similarities in West's game to Charles' so there's a pretty good chance West could see the majority of the carries. If your RBs are struggling (let's be honest, we all need RBs) go put in a claim for West. (John "The Professor" Paschall)

2. Willie Snead, WR, NO

Much like Travis Benjamin, Snead is proving that a hot start wasn't just that. The rookie from Ball State caught six passes for 141 yards last week, and with Marques Colston dealing with a separated shoulder it's time to scoop up Snead. He looks like the Saints' No. 2 WR moving forward behind Brandin Cooks, and could be your team's WR3 the rest of the year. (Mark Strotman)

3. Doug Baldwin, WR, SEA

While Seattle will never have a high-volume WR in its offense, Baldwin has caught 23 of 27 targets this season for 268 yards and a pair of scores. And with Marshawn Lynch's shaky health, there's a chance Russell Wilson is forced to air it out more as the season goes along. That can only mean good things for the Seahawks' most talented wide receiver. I've put Baldwin on this list before, and I own him in multiple leagues. The (big) breakout is coming shortly. Make sure you're able to join me in the celebrations. (Strotman)

4. Marquess Wilson, WR, CHI

It took three years, but Wilson is finally more than just an intriguing name with fantasy potential. With a depleted Bears' wide receiving corps, Wilson has stepped in and posted a combined 12 receptions and 165 yards with one touchdown in his last two games. The third-year pro out of Washington State has established a trust with Jay Cutler, and continues to be a focal point of the offense. The floor for Wilson, as long as Alshon Jeffery and Eddie Royal remain sidelined, is as a high-end Flex or modest WR2. If Wilson draws another start, make sure he's on your roster and in your lineup in Week 6. (Scott Krinch)

5. Ty Montgomery, WR, GB

You've certainly seen him on this list before, so if he's somehow still available in your league you need to pounce on him. The Packers continue finding different ways and areas to use their third-round pick, and the results have been telling. Montgomery scored from 31 yards out last week, finishing 4/59/1 vs. the Rams. Davante Adams' eventual return may slow his growth, but from an upside perspective alone he needs to be owned in just about every league. Green Bay wants to find a way to use him every week; your fantasy team should, too. (Strotman)

6. Blake Bortles, QB, JAX

Just because the Jaguars aren’t winning doesn’t mean Bortles isn’t doing well (see Jay Cutler last year). Bortles is all over the downfield passes to guys like Allen Bros. (Hurns & Robinson). He’s a little banged up but he’s got a good matchup this week against a horrendous Texans team at home so if you are finding your QB on a bye or injured, Bortles is a nice get this week and potentially going forward. (Paschall)

7. Jay Cutler, QB, CHI

Without Alshon Jeffery for two games and Eddie Royal for one, Cutler has posted respectable fantasy numbers of 17.2 and 17.6 points in his last two contests. As always with Cutler, you'll have to live with the turnovers, but he has enough upside and targets in the passing game in Matt Forte, Martellus Bennett, Marquess Wilson and the aforementioned two injured receivers when they return to be a streaming QB1 option as a bye week filler. Cutler doesn't need to be a high-priority waiver claim this week, but if he slips through waivers then go ahead and grab him, and plug him in against a dreadful Lions defense. (Krinch)

8. Knile Davis

Fantasy owners have been waiting to see Davis get his chance for a few years now. Well, for those who thought he would get No. 1 duties after Jamaal Charles tore his ACL, it appears they'll have to wait a little longer. Chiefs coach Andy Reid has identified Charcandrick West as the No. 1 running back in wake of Charles' season-ending injury. However, Davis has shown to be an effective fantasy player when given the opportunity in the past, and he's still a must-own in all formats going forward. (Krinch)

Why coming to the Bears was the right opportunity for Harry Hiestand to leave Notre Dame

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AP

Why coming to the Bears was the right opportunity for Harry Hiestand to leave Notre Dame

There wasn’t a single game Harry Hiestand coached while at Notre Dame — 77 in total — in which he didn’t have a future top-20 pick starting at left tackle. 

Zack Martin (16th overall, 2014) was followed by Ronnie Stanley (6th overall, 2016), who gave way to Mike McGlinchey (9th overall, 2018). Hiestand also developed Quenton Nelson, who went on to be the highest interior offensive lineman drafted (6th overall, 2018) since 1986. Nelson and McGlinchey became the first pair of college offensive line teammates to be drafted in the first 10 picks since 1991, when Tennessee had tackles Charles McRae and Antone Davis go seventh and eighth. 

“It wasn’t surprising because the kind of guys they are, they absolutely did everything the right way, the way they took care of themselves, the way they trained, the teammates that they are and were,” Hiestand said. “They just did it all the way you wanted them to do it. So it was. It was a good moment.”

Hiestand said he had a sense of pride after seeing his two former players be drafted so high, even if he wasn't able to re-unite with either of them. The Bears, of course, didn’t have a chance to draft Nelson, and had conviction on using the eighth overall pick on linebacker Roquan Smith (as well as having tackles Charles Leno and Bobby Massie in place for the 2018 season). 

Anecdotally, one former Notre Dame player said (maybe half-jokingly) that Nelson and McGlinchey were fighting each other to see who could get drafted by the Bears to play with Hiestand again.

“There’s nobody that I’ve been around in this game that’s more passionate about what he does,” McGlinchey, now with the San Francisco 49ers, said of Hiestand at Notre Dame’s pro day in March. “There’s really only two things that are important to him, and that’s his family and then his offensive linemen. There’s a lot to be said for that. 

“In this game, everybody’s always trying to work an angle to up their own career — he doesn’t want to do anything but coach O-line, and that’s what really sticks out to us as players. He cares for us like we’re his own. Obviously he coaches extremely hard and is very demanding of his players, which I loved — he pushed me to be the player that I am.

“I’m standing in front of all you guys because of Harry Hiestand. But the amount of passion and care that he has not only for his job but his teaching abilities and his players is what sets him apart.”

Hiestand could’ve stayed as long as he wanted at Notre Dame, presumably, given how much success he had recruiting and developing players there. But six years at one spot is a long time for a position coach, especially at the college level, where the grind of recruiting is so vital to the success of a program. It’s also not like every one of the blue-chip prospects Hiestand recruited to South Bend panned out, either. 

So Hiestand knew he wanted to get back to the NFL after coaching with the Bears under Lovie Smith from 2005-2009. It’s a new challenge for him now, not only to develop second-round pick James Daniels but to continue the growth of Cody Whitehair and Leno while getting the most out of Kyle Long, Massie and the rest of the group (back during his first stint with the Bears, Hiestand had the luxury of coaching experienced, more ready-made offensive lines). 

As one of the more highly-regarded offensive line coaches in the country, though, Hiestand could’ve jumped back into the NFL whenever, and nearly wherever, he wanted. And for him, coming back to the Bears was the perfect fit. 

“That’s an awesome, awesome place, a great franchise,” Hiestand said. “It was something, I always wanted to go back, I didn’t know where I would get the opportunity. So I’m just very fortunate it just happened to be back at the same place that I was before. There are a lot of things that are different but there’s also a lot that’s the same. 

“But it’s one of the — it is the greatest organization. Historically, this is where it all began, and being part of it — and the other thing, and I told those guys when I got here, when we get it done here, you guys are going to see this city like you’ve never seen it. And I remember that. That’s what we’re after.” 

On a scale of 1-10, Tarik Cohen says his dangerous level is 12

On a scale of 1-10, Tarik Cohen says his dangerous level is 12

Don't be fooled by Tarik Cohen's height. He has towering confidence and he's setting up to have a big role in coach Matt Nagy's offense in 2018.

“On a scale of 1-10, the dangerous level is probably 12,” Cohen said Wednesday at Halas Hall about the impact he can have in the Bears' new system. “Because in backyard football, it’s really anything goes, and it’s really whoever gets tired first, that’s who’s going to lose. I’m running around pretty good out here, so I feel like I’m doing a good job.”

Cohen proved last season he can thrive in space. He made an impact as a runner, receiver and return man and will have a chance at an even bigger workload this fall, assuming he can handle it.

With Jordan Howard established as the starting running back, Cohen knows his touches will come in a variety of ways.

“It might not necessarily be rushes,” he said. “But it’s going to be all over the field, and that’s what I like to do. Any way I can get the ball or make a play for my team, that’s what I’m looking forward to doing.”

Cohen averaged 4.3 yards-per-carry as a rookie and led all NFL running backs in the percentage of carries that went for at least 15 yards. He's a big play waiting to happen.