Waiver Wire Watch: Week 2 Fantasy Football Targets
Editor's Note: We're happy to have Brandon Niles on the Waiver Wire Watch this year. He'll work in conjunction with Senior Editor John Paulsen to compile the weekly list of pickups and generate recommended prices for FAAB leagues.
Here is a look at the top waiver wire pickups for Week 2. To be eligible for discussion, the player must be owned in 50% or fewer Yahoo leagues, though we’ll stretch the rules a bit for the RB position, which is usually very thin. We’ll also include suggested bid prices (with a $100 budget) for those leagues that use Free Agent Acquisition Budgets (FAAB). Of course, player value depends on league characteristics and team needs. Players are listed by position in order of importance. For extremely shallow or extremely deep leagues, be sure to review our Rest-of-Season Rankings (updated every Tuesday) to get an idea of how to value players not on this list.
Bradford took advantage of a vulnerable Saints defense on Monday night, throwing for 346 yards and three touchdowns. It was a good sign that though the Vikings led all game, Bradford still threw the ball 32 times and he completed an impressive 84 percent of his passes. This week, Bradford will face a Steelers defense that will put pressure on opposing quarterbacks but struggled to contain rookie DeShone Kizer in Week 1. Bradford should continue to be a solid streaming option.
I don’t know that Alex Smith is going to put up numbers like he did in Week 1 – 368 yards and four touchdowns – but I do know that he has incredible weapons to work with and a young QB with a big arm sitting on the bench behind him. Smith has never been a steady fantasy producer, but he’s definitely streamable now that it looks like the Chiefs opened their playbook for him. Still, let someone else pay top dollar for him, and continue to think of him as a streaming option instead of a full-season starter.
Goff shredded a horrible Colts defense on Sunday for 306 yards and a touchdown, including completing 72 percent of his passes! Goff won’t have as easy of a time against Washington next week, but he faces the 49ers in Week 3 and the Rams look to be improved over last season. He remains a cheap streaming option in most leagues, and fantasy owners should look for more improvement from Goff under new coach Sean McVay.
Cutler has an emerging line in front of him, a talented running back to keep the pressure off, and a promising group of targets to throw to. He looked in sync with DeVante Parker in the preseason and he already knows Adam Gase’s offense. On top of that, Cutler faces the Jets and Saints in two of the next three weeks. He’s a viable streaming option in all league formats with such a friendly upcoming schedule.
Bortles didn’t put up good numbers in a huge win over the Texans on Sunday, but he didn’t throw a pick and will keep his job. He has a strong arm and now has a running game to help take the pressure off him. The Titans gave up 262 yards and a pair of touchdowns to Derek Carr in Week 1, so if you need a streaming option, Bortles has some upside this week. Right now, I’m holding him as a backup in larger leagues, thinking the team will never really consider going to Chad Henne.
Kizer looked good in his regular season debut, throwing for 222 yards and a touchdown, while also running for 17 yards and another score. He threw a pick and looked like a rookie at times, but overall he showed the potential to develop into a solid starter. Kizer has a dream matchup against the Colts in Week 3, so if you’re looking ahead for streaming options, you might want to grab him now.
I’m not buying: I don’t expect big numbers in any given week from Joe Flacco, so I’m not giving him any consideration until he has an excellent streaming matchup. I still don’t have a lot of faith that Josh McCown and Brian Hoyer keep their jobs. I know Trevor Siemian accounted for three touchdowns on Monday night, but I don’t expect a repeat performance against Dallas this week.
Deep Stash Options: Mitch Trubisky should end up starting sooner rather than later and has some talent to work with in Chicago. Deshaun Watson looked like a rookie, but a good rookie, in limited action on Sunday. I don’t like his short-term schedule, but I’m still stashing him for later. Colin Kaepernick quietly accounted for 18 total touchdowns in 12 games last season for a horrible team. If someone gets hurt and he lands on a team with some talent around him, he could quickly become a steady QB option.
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