Week 2’s Best Waiver Wire Options

The first Waiver Wire of the season is in many ways the most critical, and difficult. Unlike subsequent weeks, when favorite targets and injury replacements are rather evident, this week is mostly reserved for correctly nabbing players poised to be contributors. Will a quarterback target the same unexpected receiver on a regular basis? How long will a certain running back or two be placed in fumble detention? These are the questions to think about.

As it turns out Week 1 did not produce as many surprise fantasy darlings as we’ve seen in recent kickoff weeks. But a few are worth adding to your rosters if you need help. Or better yet to utilize my favorite fantasy strategy – blocking your opponents.

All players listed are owned by less than 50% of fantasy players, according to FleaFlicker.com.

Players to consider:

Joique Bell, Detroit RB (38% owned): Detroit may be Reggie Bush country now, but Detroit’s goal line is Bell country as evidenced by his two scores Sunday.  On top of the scoring, Bell finished with 5 catches for 67 yards. Great pickup for both PPR and Standard formats.

Willis McGahee, Free Agent RB (11% owned): If you have a roster spot to play with, McGahee is a great flier pick-up. He is working out for the Giants and if signed could be used heavily while David Wilson works on his fumbling issue. Or McGahee could be signed and only garner a few touches if the Giants want to give Wilson another chance. Still some interesting potential there.  DO NOT PICK UP BRANDON JACOBS. PLEASE.

Julius Thomas, Denver TE (36% owned): Here’s an easy one. I’m not sure what is more shocking: Thomas’s 5 catches, 110 yards and 2 of Peyton’s 7 touchdowns in Week 1 or the fact that so few owners drafted the starting tight end on a Peyton Manning team. Joel Dreessen may come back from his knee injury soon but Thomas, via some tough catches, has more than earned himself a good chunk of targets. Also, bear in mind that a breakout tight end might usually receive specialty coverage from opposing secondaries, but with the added threats Wes Welker and Demaryius Thomas, that’s unlikely to happen.


Kenny Stills, New Orleans WR (17% owned): Stills’ debut may not pop out on paper to the casual viewer: 2 catches for86 yards. But he was targeted five times and is clearly the deep target for Drew Brees, as evidenced by one of his grabs being 67-yards.  Stills benefits from a QB whose 35 pass attempts Week 1 will be among his lowest this season.

Eddie Royal, San Diego WR (2% owned): The notion of adding a San Diego receiver not named Antonio Gates since Vincent Jackson left is a bit nausea-inducing. But Royal looked fast and healthy. He was targeted five times and finished the game with only 24 yards but did manage an all-important two scores. Royal is by no means a slam dunk play but could be a nice replacement for underperforming WRs like Greg Jennings and Kenny Britt.

Leonard Hankerson Washington WR (4% owned): The Redskins basically played one half of offense last night and Hankerson still finished with five catches, 80 yards and two touchdowns. He was a surprise target of Griffin’s last season, and there’s no reason to believe Hankerson won’t continue to get a healthy dose of targets moving forward.

Rueben Randle, New York Giants WR (31% owned): Randle was supposed to be a breakout star in 2012. That didn’t happen but he already looks to be a major factor this season. With 5 catches (six targets) and 101 yards, Randle is looking like a nice, productive compliment to Victor Cruz and Hakeem Nicks in a heavy pass offense.

Julian Edelman, New England WR (11% owned – hey, his number!): Edelman had a nice Week 1 with 79 yards and 2 TDs. And things are only looking up as Danny Amendola is likely to be out this week, and none of the rookies proved to be reliable targets for Tom Brady. I don’t love Edelman as a long-term prospect – assuming Rob Gronkowski returns, as does Amendola – but for now he’s clearly Brady’s best option.