Sports Magazine

Football Fantasyland: Week 2 Waiver Wire Pick-Up (Sunday Edition)

By Brettclancy @thebrettclancy

With Sunday kickoff for week 2 just a few hours away many of you probably already have your waiver claims made and your line-ups set, but for those of you looking for some last minute adjustments, I’m here to help. In order to make the pick-up list I try to make sure a player isn’t owned in more than 40% of league’s on both NFL and ESPN, but there are exceptions due to the disparity in ownership percentages between the two leagues. Players are categorized by position, but not listed in any particular order. I’ll list the ownership percentage in parenthetical next to a player’s name as well as why I recommend picking them up and if I see them as a one week fill-in or long term answer. I’ll also put out a ‘last call’ on players who don’t meet the pick-up qualifications, but are still available in some leagues and should be considered priority adds. Streaming options will be at the bottom of the article for QB and TE for anyone interested. Any questions or comments? Let me hear them.

Last Call:

Tevin Coleman, RB, ATL (52.4% on NFL)(61.7% on ESPN) This is just a last call on Coleman who’s owned in over 50% of leagues, but should probably be rostered in all of them. All preseason long Coleman split first team reps with Devonta Freeman, and week 1 showed us that Coleman will be involved and have plenty of value while Freeman is healthy and has top 10 potential should Freeman miss time.

Will Fuller, WR, HOU (57.0% on NFL)(78.9% on ESPN) Putting out a last call on Fuller for those who still see him available in their league.The fact that Fuller isn’t a natural hands catcher bothers me, but he developed a strong rapport with Brock Osweiler during the preseason and it seems to have made him the unquestioned #2 target in the passing game and a hot commodity on the waiver wire. As long as he maintains his starting spot across from DeAndre Hopkins he’ll see plenty of single coverage and all the targets that go along with it.

Tajae Sharpe, WR, TEN (13.5% on NFL)(58.5% on ESPN) Last call for ESPN owners and a wake up call for those playing on NFL.com. The rookie out of UMass is the real deal, lining up all over the formation and has quickly become Marcus Mariota’s favorite target, he looks to be a reliable WR3 with upside and should be owned in nearly all leagues.

Michael Thomas, WR, NO (3.4% on NFL)(61.8% on ESPN) The disparity in ownership is striking, though is mostly due to where Thomas fell in each sites pre-draft rankings. He is a complete receiver in a pass happy offense, and while he was well behind the yardage totals of Willie Snead and Brandin Cooks in week 1 he still turned 6 targets into 6 catches for 68 yards. If week 2’s match-up with the Giants is as big a shoot out as analysts believe Thomas will likely be the top add in NFL leagues come Wednesday.

Running Backs: 

Travaris Cadet, NO (0.2% on NFL)(3.2% on ESPN) With the release of CJ Spiller, Cadet finds himself as the unquestioned passing down back for a very pass friendly offense. Tim Hightower is still the handcuff for Mark Ingram owners, but Cadet can carve out a nice role for himself, especially if Coby Fleener continues to struggle. There’s a chance for quality production as early as this week in the expected shootout with the Giants.

Shane Vereen, NYG (5.4% on NFL )(33.4% on ESPN) The other passing down back in the Giants/Saints game, Vereen turned 9 touches into 61 yards against the Cowboys in week 1, which is impressive considering the limited time of possession the Giants had in that game. Rashad Jennings is still the starter, but Vereen has value as the passing down back on a team that will be looking to throw a lot, especially in week 2. He won’t be a stud, but he’s got flex appeal, especially in PPR leagues.

Jalen Richard, OAK (9.7% on NFL)(12.8% on ESPN) After an impressive week 1 Richard looks like the back to own if you want to handcuff Latavius Murray, and he could see an increased workload as Oakland’s change of pace back after his explosive 75 yard touchdown run. I’d like to see what he does in week 2 before fully endorsing him, but he’s been praised by coaches, ran well in the preseason and has a legitimate chance to earn a larger role in the offense, though Latavius Murray may have something to say about that. If you have a roster spot to stash Richard and watch how the backfield unfolds, he could pay nice dividends.

Alfred Morris, DAL (11.6% on NFL)(30.1% on ESPN) After averaging five yards per carry against the Giants defense, Morris should be considered a must add for Ezekiel Elliott owners and a smart stash for anyone with an available bench space as he is just one Elliott injury away from a major role in this offense. Unlike Richard there’s really no way for Morris to earn significant carries while Elliot is healthy, but he’ll continue to make the most of his spell work.

Wide Receivers:

Victor Cruz, NYG (25.2% on NFL)(40.6% on ESPN) Despite not having played since 2014 Cruz was able to pick up right where he left off with Eli Manning. Four catches for 34 yards and a touchdown doesn’t blow you away, but Dallas dominated time of possession limiting the Giants offensive snaps. There will be weeks Cruz will have to fend off rookie Sterling Shepard for targets, but it’s safe to expect big numbers in week 2 against the Saints.

Davante Adams, GB (4.4% on NFL)(13.4% on ESPN) The fantasy community is reluctant to trust Adams after a disastrous injury marred 2015, but he’s probably one of the best free agents still out there in most leagues. We know the Packers can support 3 fantasy wide receivers and Rodgers showed a ton of trust in Adams targeting him 7 times, including an impressive off balance TD throw. The Packers have looked committed to Adams as the third receiver all preseason and he did nothing to hurt himself week 1.

Tyrell Williams, SD (2.8% on NFL)(42.5% on ESPN) At 6’4, 205 lbs and blazing speed, this is a guy I know Chargers fans are excited about, who is being talked up by his QB and is stepping into a role we know carries fantasy value as the Chargers deep threat. Oh, and he lead the team in receiving yards in week 1 (71 yards on 2 catches and 5 targets.) Still not convinced? The Chargers next four opponents are Jacksonville, Indianapolis, New Orleans and Oakland. ESPN users have caught on, but he’s still out there in nearly all NFL.com leagues.

Eli Rogers, PIT (5.2% on NFL)(28.2% on ESPN) Once again we see a young player show that his preseason success wasn’t a fluke. Rogers is an intelligent route runner with good hands, and he seems to have earned some trust from Roethlisberger, as a reliable go-to on that rare occasion Antonio Brown is covered. He could lose some targets once Le’Veon Bell comes back, but this Steelers offense is more than capable of supporting two receivers and right now Rogers clearly stands above the competition.

Streaming Plays of the Week:

Joe Flacco, QB, BAL (11.1% on NFL)(25.2% on ESPN) The analysis doesn’t go much deeper than you think here, he’s playing the Browns. Flacco should be able to take advantage of an under talented an inexperienced Browns defense, and Josh McCown’s play against the Ravens last year suggest this could be a sneaky shoot out. I also think this could end being a big ‘welcome back’ game for TE Dennis Pitta, more on him in a moment.

If Flacco isn’t available: Trevor Siemian, QB, DEN (2.9% on NFL)(5.5% on ESPN) is available in nearly all leagues and should put up solid numbers against a Colts secondary that will be missing top corner Vontae Davis.  Carson Wentz, QB, PHI (7.4% on NFL)(19.3% on ESPN) also has a pretty promising match-up against the Bears defense. It is however Wentz first away game and first appearance on Monday night, but I like him to rise to the challenge.

Tight End

Dennis Pitta, TE, BAL (3.6% on NFL)(3.7% on ESPN) This is less about picking on the Browns and more about learning to trust Pitta again after an extended absence. For those who don’t remember Pitta was one of the more prominent Tight Ends before a 2014 injury sidelined him and threatened his career. He still has the trust of Joe Flacco and I can see him racking up catches and getting into the end zone in this one.

If Pitta isn’t available: I have a good feeling about Virgil Green, TE, DEN ()(10.8% on ESPN) He’s seen as more of a blocker, but is actually an impressive athlete who was a Kony Ealy tipped pass away from a touchdown last week. The Colts struggle against tight ends, and Green may be deployed more as a passer against a lesser pass rush.

Kicker:

Mike Nugent, K, CIN (17.1% on NFL)(5.5% on ESPN) In this day and age you can sort of pick any kicker and feel pretty good about it, but I like Nugent this week. He always seems to be one of the top available kickers week in and week out, he has the trust of his team, and I should be able to net double digit points for the second straight week.

Defense/Special Teams:

Philadelphia Eagles D/ST (28.7% on NFL)(27.3% on ESPN) Much like Carson Wentz it’s a little difficult to know what to think about a quality performance against the Browns, but the Eagles have a very good defensive line, against a not so good offensive line for the Bears, which should mean sacks and turnovers, and there’s always the chance of a punt return touchdown.

If the Eagles aren’t available: Maybe the Seahawks offensive line is just that bad but the Miami Dolphins D/ST (4.9% on NFL)(5.5% on ESPN) put in a much better effort than I think anyone was expecting. The Patriots offense has proven a tall order, but could still be without Gronkowski in week 2 and the division rival aspect of this game could play in the Dolphins favor. I’d like this match-up a lot better if it were in Miami, but I’m still expecting solid production.


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