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Five Best Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Pickups For Week 12

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - OCTOBER 13: Tight End Ryan Griffin #84 of the New York Jets celebrates a Touchdown against the Dallas Cowboys in the first half at MetLife Stadium on October 13, 2019 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images)
Dallas Cowboys v New York Jets | Al Pereira/Getty Images

The fantasy football playoffs are creeping closer. Here are five players who could give you that extra boost you need to secure a crucial win as everyone battles for a playoff spot. (All stats via ESPN standard PPR leagues)

1. Ryan Griffin, TE, New York Jets (Available in 98 percent of ESPN Leagues)

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - OCTOBER 13: Tight End Ryan Griffin #84 of the New York Jets celebrates a Touchdown against the Dallas Cowboys in the first half at MetLife Stadium on October 13, 2019 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images)
Dallas Cowboys v New York Jets | Al Pereira/Getty Images

The Jets have seen a bit of a resurgence from their offense over the last few weeks, even if it was against weak competition. Griffin has been one of the main beneficiaries of this resurgence, especially this past week, in which he caught five passes for 109 yards and a touchdown to total 21.9 fantasy points. Sam Darnold likes targeting his tight ends, and will be going up against another average unit in Oakland this week. Griffin will work in a pinch and has some upside.

2. Jeff Driskel, QB, Detroit Lions (Available in 95 percent of ESPN Leagues)

DETROIT, MI - NOVEMBER 17: Jeff Driskel #2 of the Detroit Lions runs the ball for a touchdown in the second quarter against the Dallas Cowboysat Ford Field on November 17, 2019 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images)
Dallas Cowboys v Detroit Lions | Rey Del Rio/Getty Images

It is definitely unusual to see a backup QB in a list like this, but then again, we live in strange times. Driskel mustered no fewer than 27.5 fantasy points this past week, good for fifth among all QBs. He's athletic enough to gain some yards on the ground and proved this week he understands the offense to the point where he can make the open throws. Most importantly, Detroit is playing the paltry Washington defense this week. If you're looking at a bye in a league where teams hoard QBs, this is the best available option on waivers.

3. Falcons Defense (Available in 98 percent of ESPN Leagues

CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA - NOVEMBER 17: Desmond Trufant #21 of the Atlanta Falcons makes an interception during the second quarter during their game against the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium on November 17, 2019 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)
Atlanta Falcons v Carolina Panthers | Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images

The Falcons' defense was one of the worst in the league heading into their Week 9 bye. Then something happened, and now they're playing as well as any defense in the league. They shut down Drew Brees in New Orleans before making Kyle Allen's day downright miserable in Carolina, racking up 23 fantasy points in the process. The reason you should grab them this week? They're going up against the Buccaneers and Jameis Winston, who threw four interceptions last week. Banking on Atlanta's ability to keep up their level of play is risky, but Tampa Bay represents an opportunity for far more production from a defense than normal.

4. Jakeem Grant, WR, Miami Dolphins (Available in 98 percent of ESPN Leagues)

MIAMI, FLORIDA - NOVEMBER 17:  Jakeem Grant #19 of the Miami Dolphins runs the ball during a kickoff against the Buffalo Bills during the fourth quarter at Hard Rock Stadium on November 17, 2019 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Buffalo Bills v Miami Dolphins | Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Given the fact that they no longer have any semblance of a run game without Kenyan Drake, the Dolphins have to air it out if they want to stay in the game. DeVante Parker remains the de facto No. 1 option, but Grant has a weekly opportunity to make a big play or two and put up some decent fantasy numbers. This past week, he had three catches for 32 yards along with one carry for seven yards and a TD. Not eye-popping numbers, but he's clearly involved in the offense, and Miami goes up against a reeling Browns team who just lost their best individual player on the defensive side of the ball. The biggest boom-or-bust prospect for this week.

5. Ross Dwelley, TE, San Francisco 49ers (Available in 89 percent of ESPN Leagues)

SANTA CLARA, CALIFORNIA - NOVEMBER 17: Tight end Ross Dwelley #82 of the San Francisco 49ers celebrates after scoring on a five yard touchdown reception against the Arizona Cardinals during the second half of the NFL game at Levi's Stadium on November 17, 2019 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Arizona Cardinals v San Francisco 49ers | Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

This pickup hinges entirely on George Kittle's health; he's missed the last two games with a variety of injuries and hopes to return this week, but if he doesn't, Dwelley is the man to nab. He had two touchdowns on four catches on Sunday afternoon and put up 17.4 fantasy points. San Francisco's matchup with Green Bay this week will be much tougher than Arizona, but Kyle Shanahan likes to spread the ball around. Dwelley is a good flex/low-end TE option should Kittle miss one more game.