And we are OFF! Just like that, week one is in the books, time to turn to some Waiver Wire Wonders to bolster fantasy rosters all over the land.While it is not time to dump your high draft pick that did not do well, is it a perfect time to change direction and dump that late round flier for some of this week’s hottest commodities.
As a brief reminder, we split up the column into four categories. The Smokin’ Hot listing is the grouping of the top players available this week. These are players that can have both an immediate and long term fantasy impact. The Solid Pickups are players that are on the cusp of moving into the top category. They might be only a week away from making headlines, so those of you buried at the bottom of the waiver wire can look here to get a jump on next week’s prime time players.
After that, the On the Radar types are those that are starting to make some noise. A shuffling of an NFL team’s depth chart might get them a mention in this listing. These are speculative adds to consider before they blow up and become consistent fantasy contributors. Finally, the Deep and/or Dynasty Only players are just that, only for those in leagues with deep rosters or dynasty leagues. The players listed here are weeks, if not an entire season away from making a fantasy impact.
As always, thanks for reading, best of luck and onto this week’s wonders!
RB Phillip Lindsay, Denver
The Broncos opened the season with a three headed monster that also included Devontae Booker and Royce Freeman, but it was Lindsay that made the most noise. He finished the day rushing for 71 yards on 15 carries, and though he did not factor into the passing game, this writer has seen enough to make him one of the top waiver adds this week. If nothing else, he and Freeman are the clear 1 and 1A over Booker. Backs that get handed the ball 10+ times per game are a rare find on the waiver wire, though he will probably have his ups and downs, there are sure to be more ups in the future here.
WR Ted Ginn Jr., New Orleans
To put it mildly, the Saints defense had a difficult time containing Ryan Fitzpatrick. Let that sink in for a minute. Ryan Fitzpatrick led all fantasy scorers in week one, throwing for 417 yards and tossing four touchdowns. He also ran for another. Dramatic pause. Ryan Fitzpatrick. He also did not throw an interception. This in turn forced the New Orleans offense to go to the air early and often, and when not clicking with Michael Thomas 16 times (!), Drew Brees connected with Ted Ginn five times for 68 yards and a touchdown. Defenses are going to key on Thomas, leaving Ginn available for more passes and with the Saints needing to put up 40 points per game to have a chance, the New Orleans offense is something fantasy owners will want to get involved in. Ginn is worth an add in all formats.
RB T.J. Yeldon, Jacksonville
Last season, Leonard Fournette had an ankle injury that lasted much longer than was initially reported. In the opening game, Fournette left with a hamstring injury and did not return. In his absence, Yeldon was the lead back, and held his own tallying 69 yards of total offense on 17 touches. If Fournette is unable to go, the Jaguars will lean on Yeldon as their workhorse, making Yeldon a strong add this week off the waiver wire.
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WR Geronimo Allison, Green Bay
The Packers may have found their third wideout in Allison. In an opening week that saw Aaron Rodgers in and out of the lineup, Allison hauled in five catches for 69 yards including a touchdown score. Once again this year it looks like Green Bay is going to have difficulty running the ball, making all three of their starting wideouts value fantasy adds this week.
RB Austin Ekeler, Chargers
Normally when a running back posts numbers to the tune of 5 catches for 87 yards while adding another 39 yards on 5 carries, that is enough to get him into the weeks’ highest category. We are not suggesting that these number are entirely a fluke, but this was a day where the Chargers offensive game plan involved getting the ball to their running backs against a weak Kansas City linebacking core. Ekeler did excel, but he is still the backup to Melvin Gordon. Worth an add for sure, but we would wait and see on dropping him into your starting lineup neXt week.
QB Joe Flacco, Baltimore
Flying under the radar in most leagues, the veteran Flacco had a business like game in the Ravens opening win over Buffalo. He completed 25 passes for 236 yards, including three touchdowns in a week one laugher. He will not have that many big weeks, but he is solid week in and week out. A mid-week tilt against the Bengals this week is enticing, but mostly he is a valuable add as a fantasy backup and bye week fill in.
PK Cody Parkey, Chicago
After stints in Cleveland and Miami, Parkey is in a situation where he is playing for a Bears team that can score points and get into field goal range. Week one can often be a good indicator of a team and kicker combination providing excellent fantasy value, and that is the case here. He connected on all three of his attempts in the opening weekend, and also was true in both of his extra point tries. Parkey is worth an add in a Bears offense that will give him plenty of opportunity.
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