Workin’ the Wire: Week 1 Waiver Wire

Broncos Phillip Lindsay

It is time to attack the Week 1 waiver wire. These players often find permanent home on your rosters and in your lineups. Getting in early let’s you maximize value and avoid paying a huge FAAB or trade capital.

Who should you target this week?

Running Back

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Phillip Lindsay
Yahoo – 4% Owned
ESPN – 2% Owned

Despite going undrafted, Phillip Lindsay proved to be a priority waiver wire target after Week 1. He had 47.2% of RB touches in their game against the Seahawks. Royce Freeman and Lindsay each had 15 carries for 71 yards. Lindsay also caught 2 of his 3 targets for 31 yards and a score.

I expect Lindsay to continue to get work going forward even with Royce Freeman in the fold. The Broncos are a good team that should have plenty of opportunities to run the ball.

Austin Ekeler – Los Angeles Chargers
Yahoo! – 16% Owned
ESPN – 11% Owned

In the short term, it seems that Austin Ekeler can be viable bye week fill in or flex option this season. And if something were to happen to Melvin Gordon, the value could be astronomical. On Sunday, he carried the ball 5 times for 39 yards. Ekler also caught 5 balls for 87 yards and a score.

Rivers targeted the RB 18 times on Sunday and I don’t think this is a fluke. They continually targeted RBs in different ways with the game close and when KC got up big.

TJ Yeldon – Jacksonville Jaguars
Yahoo – 15%
ESPN – 8%

Leonard Fournette the Week 1 contest against the New York Giants with a hamstring issue. Yeldon took over, running the ball 14 times for 51 yards. He also caught 3 of his 7 targets for 18 yards and a TD.

If Fournette misses any time, Yeldon becomes the lead dog in this backfield. He can be a factor on the ground and in the passing game. He can be a valuable weapon with the Patriots and Titans in the the next two weeks.

James White
Yahoo – 49%
ESPN – 70%

In PPR leagues, White should be rostered even if it’s just for the next three weeks. Tom Brady needs targets in short to intermediate are with Julian Edelman suspended. White was targeted nine times on Sunday. He caught 4 of those passes for 38 yards and a TD. White also toted the rock 5 times for 18 yards. If he can be in the 10-15 touch range, the value will be there.

Drop

Samaje Perine and Rob Kelley | Washington Redskins

Adrian Peterson, at least for now is the clear cut feature back. He saw 28 of the 42 touches that went to the running back. The game script favored a heavy dose of AD which helped him have such a heavy market share. In less friendly game scripts, it will be Chris Thompson getting the bulk of the touches.

Ronald Jones | Tampa Bay Buccaneers

This one stings a bit but everything that happened down in Tampa, pointed to things not going well for the rookie. Jones was inactive for Week 1. Peyton Barber on the other hand had 82.6% of the RB touches in a game that went in a very different direction then we all imagined. There is a chance that Jones gets a shot to earn touches and if you can afford to stash him it can pay off but as of now he is a clear cut for me.

Dovontae Booker | Denver Broncos

With Royce Freeman and Phillip Lindsay shouldering the load in Denver, Booker is an easy drop in all formats. Cut him and make room for the hot waiver wire add.

Wide Receiver

Bucs DeSean Jackson

LOREN ELLIOTT – Tampa Bay Times

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DeSean Jackson – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Yahoo – 25%
ESPN – 42%

DeSean Jackson was an overlooked option in many fantasy drafts often going late or not at all. Sunday however, he reminded us how talented he is. The two touchdowns he scored are awesome but the reason I have him on here is the five targets. Only Mike Evans saw more targets that D-Jax.

Going forward, I’d expect the Bucs to be in less favorable game scripts which should lead to Ryan Fitzpatrick throwing north of 35 times per game. This should mean more big plays are in his future.

If you want a more consistent option on a week to week basis, Chris Godwin is a great option. He is owned in around 35% of ESPN and Yahoo leagues. Jackson has the higher floor on a week to week basis but Godwin has a higher floor on a weekly basis.

Mike Williams | Los Angeles Chargers
Yahoo – 60%
ESPN – 35%

Mike Williams is a great option target on the waiver wire this week if you need WR help that can provide impact all season long. He caught 5 of his 6 targets for 81 yards.

With the Chargers defense is banged up and is forcing the offense to throw and keep pace. Williams is a big, physical WR that can produce both big plays and in the red zone.

Quincy Enunwa
Yahoo – 7%
ESPN – 9%

The New York Jets offense was impressive in Week 1. Maybe the Lions are a trainwreck and the Jets caught at them at the right time. Maybe not. Either way, I’m here for a healthy 2018 for Quincy Enunwa.

He caught 6 of his 10 targets for 63 yards and a TD. He was far and away the favorite option on Monday night. He is a widely available option that can help you in the short and long term.

Brandon Marshall and Tyler Lockett | Seattle Seahawks
BM Yahoo – 8%
BM ESPN – 6%
TL Yahoo – 51%
TL ESPN – 53%

Both Brandon Marshall and Tyler Lockett are interesting waiver wire targets this week. Doug Baldwin is dealing with an MCL issue in his knee and will miss some time.

Lockett is a big play threat that makes sense in standard leagues or ones that reward big plays. Marshall should see more volume and should be a primary red zone option for QB Russell Wilson.

Phillip Dorsett | New England Patriots
Yahoo – 4%
ESPN – 5%

As long as the Patriots are without Julian Edelman or any reliable option not named Rob Gronkowski, Dorsett can have value. He saw 7 targets on Sunday catching all of them for 66 yards and a TD. With games coming against the Lions, Dolphins and Colts, Dorsett can feast over the next few weeks.

Jakeem Grant | Miami Dolphins
Yahoo – 1%
ESPN – 0%

Looking to dig deep in PPR leagues? Jakeem Grant may be the option for you. He was targeted a team leading 7 times on Sunday catching 5 for 38 yards. He is also involved in the kick return game and showed the wheels taking one to the house. The multiple weather delays made this game weird but Grant was constantly involved. He can help this season.

Drop

Josh Doctson | Washington Redskins

Josh Doctson was garnering buzz as a sleeper and breakout candidate but I’m wondering if we are hoping for something that just isn’t happening. Doctson only catches 45% of the balls thrown his way. He isn’t ideal for an Alex Smith led offense only being target 3 times despite running 52 routes between the preseason and Week 1. If you need to make a drop and Doctson is your best option, bombs away!

DeVante Parker | Miami Dolphins

Much like Doctson, DeVante Parker is a guy we are still waiting to “happen.” Kenny Stills proved in Week 1 he is still very much the guy. Beyond Stills, Albert Wilson, Danny Amendola, and Jakeem Grant are locking down the WR corps. We don’t know how soon Parker will even be on the field. Once again, bombs away!

Tight End

49ers George Kittle

John Hefti – Associated Press

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George Kittle | San Francisco 49ers
Yahoo – 75%
ESPN – 37%

Despite entering Week 1 dealing with a few nagging injuries and facing a really tough matchup, George Kittle was a stud in Week 1. The crazy part? He could have done so much more including dropping what seemed to be a sure fire long TD. Kittle caught 5 of his 9 targets for 90 yards. He is going to be a huge part of this offense. If you need to replace Greg Olsen or Delanie Walker after Week 1, Kittle is a great option.

Ben Watson | New Orleans Saints
Yahoo – 35%
ESPN – 39%

Ben Watson was a favorite late round TE option of mine during drafts. He has experience in the Saints offense and with Drew Brees. Despite the Saints throwing a ton, Watson only put up 44 yards on 4 catches. I still believe he can be a usable option most weeks and is worth adding in deeper formats.

Jared Cook | Oakland Raiders
Yahoo – 50%
ESPN – 28%

Jared Cook was one of the few good things in the opener for the Oakland Raiders. He caught 9 of his 12 targets for 181 yards. He was a huge part of the passing game all night long.

Derek Carr aka the king of the checkdown should continue to look Cook’s way early and often. If you need consistent volume especially in PPR formats

Jonnu Smith | Tennessee Titans
Yahoo – 1%
ESPN – 0%

What we all feared came to fruition today as Delanie Walker was declared out for the 2018 season. Second year TE Jonnu Smith flashed during his first season in Nashville and now has the chance to emerge in year two.

DONT CHASE

Will Dissly | Seattle Seahawks

It’s easy to get excited when you see the 105 yards and a TD from a widely available TE but you must avoid this land mine. While Dissly made an impressive play that lead to a TD, this add is fools gold. He ran a route on 40% of Wilson’s dropbacks per Scott Barrett, while Vannett ran a route on 46% of Wilson’s drop backs. I wouldn’t trust the Seahawks to target him consistently especially with how few routes he will actually run.

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