The Waiver Wire – Week 2
CAN YOU SMELL WHAT THE WAIVER WIRE IS COOKING!!! Welcome back to a little place I like to call home, The Waiver Wire (and spelled correctly this time!). Thanks for coming back and not being scared off by my luke warm takes last week. I am thrilled that you want to come along for another journey down the crazy rabbit hole which is the waiver wire. Last week you showed up in large numbers letting me know that you love the work we are doing here and were as excited for the football season to kick off as I was!
Week 1 is behind us and it was a quiet one for the studs you grabbed early in your draft Bell, Johnson, & Julio all disappointed and to top that off we had a few key injuries.
Allen Robinson – ACL, done for the year
David Johnson – sprained wrist with multiple different timetables on how much time he may or may not miss.
Kevin White – broke his collarbone and looks like he will need surgery which will end his 2017 season. That will make it 3 straight seasons for Kevin White on the IR. Rookie Season 2018 here we come!
Danny Woodhead – Hamstring pull that will have him out for a “significant amount of time”. Thanks Baltimore for such a clear timetable.
All of this means it’s next man up on the depth chart which is music to us waiver wire hawking GM’s!
It’s time to make sure we are targeting the best player off the waiver wire to help improve your team for interstellar domination (What Movie?). It’s time to win week 2 because without sacrifice there can be no victory. I hope you enjoy it and if you do, make sure to tell all your friends and share it on all your social media platforms!
1. Sam Bradford (ESPN 11% / Yahoo 24%) – Sir wizard sleeves himself looked like an elite quarterback at least for one week on Monday Night Football. Bradford torched the same old bad New Orleans Saints secondary to the tune of 346/3 and a completion percentage of 84%. I think the Vikings are going to surprise a lot of people this year and are a playoff team in the NFC. Bradford broke the completion percentage last year and just showed that when he has his full complement of weapons he is as efficient a quarterback as there is in the NFL.
2. Alex Smith (ESPN 28% / Yahoo 23%) – Holy shit who the hell was that quarterbacking the Kansas City Chiefs on Thursday night? Alex “Don’t call me a game manager” Smith was slinging the ball all over the place against a Patriots defense that didn’t have an answer. A 368 passing yards and 4 TD performance is what you have come to expect from the likes of Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, or Big Ben (At Home) but NEVER from Alex Smith a perennial waiver wire fill in guy. Smith has a tough matchup against Philly at home in Week 2 and then the Rams on the road in week 3 but you might want to take a chance and see if the new Smith sticks around for a few weeks or maybe even the entire season.
3. Tyrod Taylor (ESPN 29% / Yahoo 51%) – TyGod may be the most disrespected quarterback in fantasy football. All he does is produce but you can clearly see from those percentages that the fantasy community doesn’t respect him. I can understand why he looked bad in the preseason, the Bills organization traded away his best WR, he has a rookie WR as his primary target in Zay Jones and they have an offense that revolves around running the ball. Outside of that Tyrod finished as a top 10 fantasy QB in 2016 and started off the season with a nice 18 point outing at home. Tyrod isn’t an every week starter but he is as solid a backup option that you can have in fantasy. Don’t sleep on Taylor especially come fantasy playoff time!
Bonus: Jared Goff (ESPN 5% / Yahoo 6%) – Oh god I am going to be sick, I think I might throw up, oh my god here it comes…….(wipe mouth with a paper towel). Sorry guys but my stomach was upset after writing Jared Goff’s name down on this week’s waiver wire article. I can admit when I am wrong even if it was only one week but I have been all over Goff this off-season calling him the worst quarterback in the NFL (0-8 record helped) and well he went and had a great game. He looked like a real NFL quarterback and the new coaching staff has really simplified the playbook for the wonder kid out of Cal. I am not running to put Goff into my starting lineup unless you play in a 2 QB league but if you have deep benches he is not a bad stash to see what his ceiling can be. With Washington and San Francisco on deck in week 2 & 3 the good times in LA should roll on and he might be a good streaming option during that time. Congrats on your first win Mr. Goff. Oh god, it’s coming back up again.
1. Javorius (Buck) Allen (ESPN 1% / Yahoo 1%) – OMG Buck Allen is your number 1 RB to grab, not Cohen or Williams! Not like all the other Waiver wire articles out there telling you to take Cohen as your top prospect (which is fine if you want to) I want Buck Allen and I want all the shares I can get! Allen is a freak athlete who was given the lions share of the workload in the Ravens beat down of the Bengals. Allen saw more snaps and had more carries then West in route to a nice day. I thought Buck Allen was the best back in Baltimore and the injury to Woodhead might only expedite his ascendance to the top of the depth chart. He can be a three-down back with touchdown upside. Take Allen and please tip your waiter or waitress.
2. Tarik Cohen (ESPN 8% / Yahoo 13%) – As a Jordan Howard owner and a big believer in his talent I was shocked at the volume the Bears showed Cohen in his first game but he produced and showed the talent that got the coaches excited about him. Cohen is what you look for in a late round RB, a back with independent value and if an injury happens to the primary running back he instantly has RB1 upside. The Bears aren’t getting any better after the loss of Kevin White and that means the RB’s are going to be asked to shoulder the load all season long. I still think Howard is an RB1 with his touchdown upside but Cohen is for real and a must-own in all formats, especially PPR.
3. Kerwynn Williams (ESPN 1% / Yahoo 5%) – Lastly we get to Kerwynn Williams. As of the time I am writing this, we don’t know what is going to happen to David Johnson. Will he miss a week or two, will he miss no time, or will he miss 12 games? Either way, I am not a huge fan of Kerwynn and don’t think he can be relied on as a lead RB as he sits at 5’8, 198 Lbs. With rumblings that the Cardinals may bring back Chris Johnson and a late acquisition of D.J. Foster from the Patriots, it’s clear the Cardinals don’t see their primary RB on their current roster. Williams will see an increased role and is a better pick up in PPR than he is in standard formats
1. Kenny Golladay (ESPN 8% / Yahoo 18%) – OMG I knew Golladay was good but did you see that catch he had for a touchdown? I was thisssss close to putting Golladay in my week 1 waiver wire article of must grabs before the season started and for that, I apologize. It’s week 2 and Golladay is my MUST TARGET player of the week! Golladay saw 7 targets 5 more than Marvin Jones Jr. but was on the field for only 44 snaps compared to Jones’s 68. with a two-touchdown performance to open the season it’s only a matter of time until those snap counts are flipped. Golladay has a real shot of being this year’s Michael Thomas and we all know how good that turned out for fantasy owners last year.
2. Corey Davis (ESPN 90% / Yahoo 46%) – Davis was the number 1 pick of the Titans in this year’s NFL draft and his hype was muffled due to a hamstring strain that kept him out of most of training camp and the preseason but the world got to see why he was picked so high on Sunday. Davis who was out snapped by both Decker and Matthews still lead the team in targets (10) and was a touchdown away from having a top 10 fantasy WR day. The snap count numbers should rise and if the volume stays the same it could be a special year for Davis. *What did ESPN owners know that Yahoo owners didn’t? What a difference ownership percentage between the two platforms*
*What did ESPN owners know that Yahoo owners didn’t? What a difference ownership percentage between the two platforms*
3. Nelson Agholor (ESPN 5% / Yahoo 14%) – The year of Agholor might actually be happening. In the offseason, the Eagles decided to move on from Jordan Matthews opening up a void in the WR corp and 73 targets that needed to be handed out to someone else. Insert Agholor into the #3 WR position behind Alshon and Torrey Smith and we might finally get the breakout season we have all been waiting for. He looked good in week 1 and was able to convert on a crazy 58-yard catch & run for a touchdown and tied for the team-high in targets (8). Agholor’s red flags will be consistent end zone production but the target volume looks to be there.
BONUS: Marqise Lee (ESPN 20% / Yahoo 16%) – With the news that Allen Robinson will be out for the rest of the season after tearing his ACL, Marqise Lee, by process of elimination, is now the #1 WR on the Jacksonville Jaguars. That’s not a sentence that gets people very excited especially after they showed a change in offensive philosophy to a more run-heavy attack in Sunday’s win over the Texans but you can’t run away from volume. The big question is what can he do with it and how effective can Bortles be a week in and week out. I would take a flyer on Lee in deeper leagues and especially in PPR formats. You can also target Cooper Kupp but I am still not a believer in the Rams passing attack against good competition. Can a Bortles passing attack really be an upgrade over a Goff one?
1. Austin Hooper (ESPN 33% / Yahoo 55%) – Hooper only saw 2 targets but he turned them into 128 yards & 1 touchdown. I was all in on Hooper coming into the season and even though the target share was light I love what he was able to do with the ball when it was in his hands. Look for bigger target numbers for Hooper as the season moves forward. We want our pass catchers to be tied to good QBs and explosive offenses. Atlanta has the reigning MVP and one of the best offenses in football. Can’t do much better than that on the waiver wire.
2. Jared Cook (ESPN 15% / Yahoo 19%) – Too Many Cook’s is a personal punching bag of mine because I believe he is #BadatFootball but none the less he continues to pop-up on the fantasy radar. Look at last year when playing with the Packers and healthy he was a decent fantasy TE streamer option and again this year the same is true. Cook saw 5 targets and caught all 5 in a pass-happy attack in Oakland. I like the passing volume the offense produces week in and week out and think Cook is as good a TE streaming option as you can find in fantasy football this year.
3. Vance McDonald (ESPN 1% / Yahoo 4%) – Look away from the Jesse James light! Don’t be fooled into thinking he is going to be the Steelers starting tight end this year. The Steelers traded for McDonald who is a very good athlete 4.69 40, 109.8 height adjusted speed score and a 90th percentile SPARQ-x score per playerprofiler.com. McDonald needs time to learn the playbook but once he does they are going to unleash him in and you will be the owner reaping all the rewards as Jesse James is being dropped. Don’t be fooled by the gunslinger!
DEEP Waiver Grab: George Kittle (ESPN 1% / Yahoo 1%) – We just talked about Vance McDonald and his departure helped open up the starting tight end job in San Francisco to George Kittle. The 49ers TE wasn’t spectacular in his debut but his 6 targets show they trust him and he is going to be a focal point in the Kyle Shanahan offense. We are big fans of George Kittle here at the Gurus office and think he tremendous upside as the year moves forward.
1. Jacksonville Jaguars (ESPN 82% / Yahoo 36%) – 10 sacks in one game are you kidding me! The Jaguars came on late last year and boy did they waste no time munching on some sack lunches. They have a great test this weekend against Minnesota but I think this defense is for real with playmakers at every level.
2. Baltimore Ravens (ESPN 15% / Yahoo 47%) – Ravens turned the Bengals over 5 times and added 5 sacks! Shutouts are as rare as the Great White Buffalo and things stay easy as the Cleveland Browns and their rookie QB are up next for the Ravens in their home opener.
3. Philadelphia Eagles (ESPN 14% / Yahoo 25%) – My god the Eagles overpowered the Redskins offensive line all day Sunday. We don’t know if the Eagles are that good, the Redskins offensive line is that bad or a combination of the two but I am sold from what I saw. It will be interesting to see how badly the Ronald Darby injury impacts the defense next week in Arrowhead. Eagles are a good streaming option but if the matchup against Alex Smith on the road has you not sold, keep the Rams as they get the Redskins, that terrible offensive line, Aaron Donald back and at home.
1. Greg Zuerlein (ESPN 1% / Yahoo 3%) – Greg the freaking leg is a thing again and I love it! Zuerlein has a cannon for a leg and he gets a great matchup in Week 2 as the Rams play the Redskins. Caleb Sturgis is coming off a 3 FG game against the Skins and I think the offense keeps things going at least for one more week. I like Greg to finish as a top 5 kicker this week. #LetsMakeGregTheLegAThingAgain
2. Blair Walsh (ESPN 33% / Yahoo 27%) – Seattle’s home opener comes after a disappointing outing in Lambeau Field. I like the Seahawks to bounce back against the 49ers and it should give Walsh plenty of field goal opportunities.
3. Chris Boswell (ESPN 50% / Yahoo 59%) – In a big week 2 matchup the Steelers square off against the Vikings at home. Big Ben and company are very comfortable at the new ketchup bottle and that offensive efficiency should lead to a higher opportunity of stalled drives in the redzone. Will Lutz just had 4 FG’s against the Vikings defense due to a similar set of events.
That will do it for Week 2 of The Waiver Wire. Do you need EVEN more fantasy advice? You can find us on Twitter @TFFGurus or feel free to email us: TrophyTime@TFFGurus.com. I will see you all next Tuesday for another edition of The Waiver Wire and don’t you ever forget What we do in life echoes in eternity.