Week 1 has come and gone in the fantasy football season, and as usual there were some disappointments, and some players that played better than expectations.
As we have all learned over the years, there are plenty of players that jump out with an incredible first week, not to be heard from again the rest of the season. So how do we decide which players will continue playing above their preseason expectations? Check out this list of the top waiver wire pickups for week 2!
Jared Goff – Los Angeles Rams
A few years ago Goff was not available in many leagues by this point of the season, but a couple of disappointing seasons for both him and the Rams have pushed many fantasy football players to leave him off of their teams.
In what is a run-first offense, he will not have some of those explosive numbers like Aaron Rodgers did this week, but he did put up 275 yards passing against the Cowboys on Sunday night.
The Rams are facing the Philadelphia Eagles this week, who allowed Dwayne Haskins to get 17 fantasy points in week 1, so look for Goff to have a good week 2. He is available in 32% of Yahoo leagues.
Ryan Tannehill – Tennessee Titans
On a team that just signed running back Derrick Henry to a 4-year extension, it is easy to dismiss Tannehill as a viable fantasy quarterback. Yet Monday night against a tough Denver Broncos defense, he showed that he was worth playing on your fantasy team.
Tannehill did not throw for 40 or more passes in any game last year, but he did just that in week 1, throwing for 249 yards on 29-43 passes and 2 touchdowns, good for 19.36 points in traditional scoring leagues. With Jacksonville up next Tannehill will be a hot waiver wire target this week. He is owned in 45% of Yahoo leagues.
Gardner Minshew – Jacksonville Jaguars
Speaking of the Jaguars, in one of the biggest surprises of the week, Minshew led the Jaguars to a shocking upset over the Indianapolis Colts. He only attempted 20 passes, but completed 19 of them, and 3 of them for touchdowns!
Even more important was the fact that the Colts look like the toughest test they will have early in the season. They have a Tennessee Titans team up next, followed by Miami, Cincinnati, Houston and Detroit. Pick him up now before somebody else does. Available in 74% of Yahoo leagues.
Other options (Rostered %):
Derek Carr (18%) will not be somebody you can count on every week, but facing a New Orleans team that may have a big lead early and have to play from behind. Jimmy Garapolo (52%) had a good game against Arizona this week, throwing for 259 yards and 2 touchdowns. The Jets are up next. Baker Mayfield (57%) had a horrible game against the Ravens, so look for him and the Browns to rebound when they face in-state rival Cincinnati.
Nyheim Hines – Indianapolis Colts
Normally I try to steer clear of messy backfield situation, but with Marlon Mack now out for the season, Hines definitely has fantasy value even with Jonathan Taylor in the backfield as well.
He only had 7 rushing attempts, for 28 yards and did get a touchdown on the ground, but he caught all 8 of his targets for 45 yards and an additional touchdown through the air. He should be the top waiver wire pick up this week, he is only owned in 21% of fantasy leagues.
Malcolm Brown – Los Angeles Rams
Malcolm Brown had a strong game against the Dallas Cowboys Sunday night, scoring twice and getting 18 rushes for 79 yards to go along with 3 catches for another 31 yards.
It looks like Cam Akers will be the Rams lead back at some point, but for the foreseeable future Brown will get platy of touches, especially on third down and goal line opportunities. Available in 72% of Yahoo leagues, he will be a big waiver wire pick up this week.
James Robinson – Jacksonville Jaguars
When Leonard Fournette was cut by the team, nobody was sure how the backfield would play out when the season started. Outside of Chris Thompson, there was not much experience left at the running back position.
In stepped James Robinson, who rushed 16 times for 62 yards, and added 28 yards on his only catch of the day. It was a tough defense he faced in the Colts, and he will have another one this week against the Titans, but he should be rostered at this point since it looks like he will be the lead back going forward. He is available in 44% of Yahoo leagues.
Keep an eye on (Rostered %) :
Adrian Peterson (46%) looked like he was 10 years younger Sunday, rushing 14 times for 93 yards, and caught all 3 of his targets for 21 additional yards. Frank Gore (4%) might be 37 years old, but with Le’Veon Bell missing some time and La”Mical Perine still out for now, somebody has to play. Joshua Kelley (13%) started the season as a handcuff for Austin Ekeler, but could have standalone value as shown on Sunday rushing 12 times for 60 yards and a touchdowns.
Anthony Miller – Chicago Bears
It is not often that you will see a Chicago Bears wide receiver on here, but I can see Anthony Miller’s stock rising after he helped the Bears make an incredible come back win against the Lions on Sunday (even if rookie running back D’Andre Swift dropped a game-winning catch for the Lions with under 10 seconds to play).
Allen Robinson is obviously the number one option in the offense, but with him getting the bulk of the attention from defenses, Miller will continue to grow, as was seen in his 6 target, 4 catch performance on Sunday for 76 yards and the game-winning touchdowns.
Available in 44% of fantasy leagues, so pick him up if you are hurting it wide receiver.
Sammy Watkins – Kansas City Chiefs
I could not believe when I saw that Sammy Watkins was still available in more than half of the Yahoo Leagues. Many are choosing second year receiver Mecole Hardman instead, yet Watkins had 9 targets on Thursday against the Texans, catching 7 of them, for 82 yards and a touchdowns.
For comparison’s sake, Hardman had 1 target in the game. Watkins should be rostered in a lot more leagues than he is now.
Allen Lazard – Green Bay Packers
Davante Adams was obviously the star of the game Sunday against the Vikings, with 17 targets. Lazard did finish with only 4 targets, catching all of them for 63 yards and a touchdowns.
I doubt that defenses let Adams have that kind of game every week, opening up the field for Lazard to have more targets. Only on 43% of Yahoo rosters, he will be a good flex option throughout the season.
Others to think about (Rostered %) :
Robby Anderson (32%) had a very nice game Sunday, with 6 catches for 115 yards and a touchdowns. That touchdown was 75 yards, so we will see if he can be consistent over the season. N’Keal Harry (32%) is high on my list, though the Patriots did not throw it much in week 1 against the Dolphins. Harry did catch 5 of his 6 targets, and is a starter for the Patriots. Marquez Valdes-Scantling (8%) caught 4 passes for 96 yards and a touchdown for the Packers on Sunday, but did have 2 drops, and Aaron Rodgers isn’t going to keep throwing the ball to receivers that drop passes, especially one that would have been a 61-yard touchdowns. Keep an eye on Scantling going forward.
Dallas Goedert – Philadelphia Eagles
Normally being behind perennial Pro Bowler Zach Ertz would be a bad thing for a tight end, but it was not on Sunday. Goedert caught 8 of his 9 targets, finishing with 101 yards and a touchdowns. He had two more targets than Ertz on Sunday, although both were open early and often throughout the afternoon against the Washington Football Team.
He is still available in 44% of the leagues, so if you are short on tight end definitely pick him up.
Jimmy Graham – Chicago Bears
Graham didn’t have the most impressive game on Sunday, only catching 3 of his 7 targets, but did find the end zone and did drop a second touchdowns.
The promising part of this game were the 7 targets, if he and Trubiski can continue to grow, he could have a decent year, especially in the red zone where the Bears have struggled in recent years. Graham is only on 5% of Yahoo rosters, so if you are hurting at tight end he may be a solution for you.
T.J. Hockenson – Detroit Lions
Hockenson looks healthy, after missing 4 games last season. He caught all 5 of his targets on Sunday, getting 56 yards and a touchdown along the way.
He is available in 26% of all leagues, and is definitely a TE1 for your team.
Worth Considering (Rostered %) :
Jack Doyle (26%) only had 4 targets, which he caught 3 of and turned that into 49 yards on Sunday. Give him time to connect with Philip Rivers and you may see those number go up. Jonnu Smith (60%) caught 4 of 7 targets against the Broncos on Monday night, with 36 yards and a touchdowns. If Tannehill is going to be throwing more this season that means more targets for Smith. O.J. Howard (18%) is playing behind Rob Gronkowski now, but given Gronk’s injury history he may have a chance to play with Brady as the leading tight end soon. Even with Gronk on the field, Howard caught 4 passes for 36 yards and a touchdown, while out-targeting the former Patriot tight end.
The Titans did not do anything special against the Broncos in their week 1 victory, but they did hold up strong, only allowing 14 points, and did get one fumble recovery. Up next is Jacksonville, who had a surprising win over Indianapolis on Sunday, but do not look for a repeat this week. Tennessee is available in 49% of all leagues.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Bucs had a rough showing against the New Orleans Saints on Sunday, which was to be expected, but will come home to face the Carolina Panthers this week. Expect a rebound game all around for the Bucs, who are only owned in 25% of leagues in Yahoo.
The Cardinals had a big win against division rival San Francisco on Sunday, partially because of the Cardinals defense who had 3 sacks and a blocked kick. Up next is the Washington Football Team, who had their own big win on Sunday against the Eagles, but I do not think they will be able to string together good games on offense. Arizona is only on 4% of rosters in Yahoo.
Potential Streaming Options (Rostered %) :
Cleveland (9%) plays Cincinnati this week, who is starting rookie quarterback Joe Burrow. Green Bay (12%) faces a Detroit team that is always vulnerable to mistakes, which Green Bay excels at exploiting. Los Angeles Rams (48%) had 3 sacks against the Cowboys on Sunday, and are facing a Philadelphia Eagles team that allowed 8(!) against the Washington Football Team in their match up on Sunday.
Well there you have it! How did your first week go? What positions are you trying to improve on the waiver wire this week? Let me know in the comments below! Good luck in week 2!