Welcome one and all to the Waiver Wire Wonders!! I look forward to once again organizing the weekly wonders for consideration to be picked up off your waiver wire. Thank you and welcome back to our regular readers and also to those that are just finding this column!
Now that the drafts are over, it is never too early to get a peek at who is available. Many leagues have open free agency before the first regular season game, check your league rules to see if you can jump in and replace that player that blew out their knee the day after your draft completed.
Though this column usually lists pick up potentials in order of relevance, we start the season grouping the players by position. As always, we list those players that are available in more than half of the online leagues. This week that rules out running backs such as Jamaal Williams, Jeremy Hill, and Jamaal Charles. Wide outs Kevin White, Zay Jones, and Sterling Shepard also do not get a mention in this space, while tight ends Antonio Gates and Jared Cook are owned in many, but not all leagues. Do check your waivers and if those guys are available then they need to be owned.
A handful of flyers are listed to choose from this week, on to the wonders!
QB Joe Flacco, Baltimore
The Ravens have been taking their time with Flacco’s preseason back injury, and besides, what is a veteran quarterback going to accomplish in these games anyway? On Saturday, he was on the practice field, confirming what has been reported all along that he will be ready for the regular season opening game. Flacco is an accomplished veteran, and his injury status has scared many fantasy owners away from him (he is available in a little less than half the online leagues). He is a capable backup fantasy quarterback, stash him now to cover your starter’s bye week.
QB Brian Hoyer, San Francisco
Every year, there is a quarterback or two that is overlooked on draft day that performs to the level of being a low end fantasy starter. Available in more than half of the online leagues, Hoyer is shaping up to be that player in 2017. With little to nothing else at the position on the San Francisco roster, Hoyer will be the starter for the 49ers all season. Overall the team is not looking great, which for the quarterback can be a bounty with the team playing from behind most of the season and passing more than they run. Either as a backup fantasy QB, or as a QB3 stash, Hoyer is worth a look especially for those that did not end up getting a top echelon quarterback on draft day.
RB Dion Lewis, New England
In general so far this season, it has been my policy to avoid the plethora of players that the Patriots have at the running back position. New England brought in Mike Gillislee to run on first down, James White has emerged as the passing down back, and Rex Burkhead is also lurking. Bill Belichick has been known to have completely different game plans from week to week, where a running back used one week may find himself on the sideline the entire following week. The difference here, Lewis has done the job for New England in the past, and coming off injury he has been well under the fantasy radar. With injuries bound to come up to any of the three in front of him, Lewis is worth stashing at the bottom of your fantasy roster as it is possible he will emerge as the season progresses.
RB Chris Carson, Seattle
Newly signed Eddie Lacy has not set the world on fire in Seattle, proving that the Packers may have been right to part ways with him. With starters Thomas Rawls and young gun C.J. Prosise sitting out with injury during the preseason, Carson has had the opportunity to display his talents on the field in game situations. Worth a look in deep leagues and for those in need at the position, Carson is worth a bottom of the roster stash.
RB James Conner, Pittsburgh
The Steelers cleared up their depth chart by releasing a handful of backs, leaving Conner as the backup to Le’Veon Bell. Simply put, that propels Conner into the conversation as a player that needs to be owned in all formats.