Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Pickups for Week 2   

It is waiver wire time!

By: Rishi Patel

Welcome to this new NFL column where I will be preaching my advice about which fantasy players you should pluck off your waiver wire each week during this NFL season. My name is Rishi Patel, I’m a sportswriter who’s dabbled across many sites and hopes to be the king of fantasy football advice one day.

During each NFL season, there are usually sleepers that emerge who you should pick up off the waiver wire due to various reasons, such as better performances than expected, injuries, etc. It’s important to make good use of the waiver wire as players from here could sometimes be good depth and even a starter for your team in critical stretches. Let’s look at some players you should consider for this week:

Emmanuel Sanders, Buffalo Bills

Veteran WR Emmanuel Sanders is no longer a fantasy stud, but he could certainly remain in the flex conversation going forward after putting up four receptions for 52 yards on eight targets in Week 1 with his new team, the Buffalo Bills. The veteran should be in contention for the WR2 role behind Stefon Diggs as the season progresses. He’s worth adding for now and potentially starting down the road if he shows out. 

Mark Ingram II, Houston Texans

The Texans have quite a jumbled backfield with a few backs fighting for touches, but Mark Ingram stood out in Week 1. Is he a starting play going forward? That’s probably something that doesn’t have an answer as we will have to wait and see if he takes the majority of touches in the coming weeks.

But he did well in Week 1 as he had 26 carries for 85 yards and a score. Meanwhile, Phillip Lindsay had only eight carries and David Johnson had three. Ingram’s a great player to stash on your bench for now. 

Elijah Mitchell, San Francisco 49ers

Mitchell will be one of the most popular pickups this week given that 49ers starting RB Raheem Mostert will be out for the season with a knee injury. When Mostert went down in Week 1, the rookie out of Louisiana stepped up big and took 19 carries for 104 yards and a score. 

Mitchell is a good candidate for the RB1 role going forward after this performance. He’s worth picking up in fantasy and could eventually become a good starting play if he shows consistency. For now, it’s best to add him only. 

Jimmy Garoppolo, San Francisco 49ers

Look, the calls for Trey Lance may keep picking up as the season progresses, but Jimmy G had a thing or two to show during Week 1’s close win over the Lions. The embattled QB put up 314 yards and a score on 68% completion. As long as the QB plays efficiently and turnover-free, it would be hard for coach Kyle Shanahan to bench him. Jimmy G. could certainly warrant streaming consideration if he plays like this in the upcoming games. 

Jamaal Williams, Detroit Lions

Former Packer Jamaal Williams, though expected to be the RB2 in Detroit behind D’Andre Swift, played like a RB1 in Week 1. Williams took nine carries for 54 yards and a score (compared to Swift’s 11 carries for 39 yards) and also chipped in in the passing game to the tune of eight receptions for 56 yards on nine targets. While Swift did have 65 yards receiving as well, the numbers for the two backs were more similar than many may have thought.

If Williams can keep up these types of numbers in the passing and rushing game, he would be a decent flex play each week. For now, he’s worth adding to your bench. 

Rondale Moore, Arizona Cardinals

While it’s evident QB Kyler Murray and WR DeAndre Hopkins are studs for Arizona, the team will need another WR to step up and play at an elite level. While Christian Kirk shined in Week 1, he hasn’t really stood out during his brief NFL career, but rookie Rondale Moore could start off his career with a bang.

Moore finished Week 1 with four receptions for 68 yards on five targets and looked fantastic in his NFL debut. While it remains to be seen if he can keep up these numbers, he’s certainly worth adding as depth. 

Tim Patrick and K.J. Hamler, Denver Broncos

The Broncos suffered a huge blow when Jerry Jeudy went down with a high ankle sprain in Week 1’s win over the Giants. Now, Jeudy will be out for roughly four to six weeks and Denver needs another WR to step up alongside Courtland Sutton.

The likely candidates to do that are Tim Patrick and K.J. Hamler. While none of these guys had a standout performance (Patrick: 4/39/1 and Hamler: 3/41/0) in Week 1, it’s expected both of these guys will see more targets now that things will be opened up a bit. Both are worth stashing right now. 

NFL Week 1: Previewing rookie quarterbacks

Which new faces will shine the brightest?

By Calvin K (Twitter: @Calvin_SGF)

After a long and tumultuous offseason, Week 1 of the NFL season has finally arrived. There will certainly be plenty of storylines to unpack from the 15 remaining games on Sunday and Monday, not least of which will be the performances of this year’s rookie QBs. Five quarterbacks were selected in the first round of this year’s NFL draft, and three of them will start right away for their teams, bearing the burden of fan optimism from day one. In this article, I’ll be previewing those three games, analyzing the quarterbacks, and giving my final score predictions for each.

1. Jaguars vs. Texans (Trevor Lawrence)

Lawrence was the clear choice at number one overall for Jacksonville, and he’ll get to start his career with perhaps his best possible opening matchup, the dismal Houston Texans. There are no bright spots on this Texans defense, so Lawrence should definitely be able to make some noise in Week 1. Houston’s trade of starting cornerback Bradley Roby to the Saints further exacerbates their secondary problems, and it’s clear by now that the Texans’ year has been lost before it’s even begun.

Lawrence will have three solid WRs at his disposal, with Marvin Jones, D.J. Chark, and Laviska Shenault leading a group that could put up decent numbers this year. Running back James Robinson was the lone bright spot for Jacksonville last year, and if he can continue his level of play from last year, the Jags’ running game could be a problem for opposing defenses. Houston isn’t likely to get much done on offense, either, with a journeyman starting QB in Tyrod Taylor and a hodgepodge of mediocre RBs and WRs (outside of their one solid weapon, 27-year-old Brandin Cooks). The divisional rivalry could potentially add some atmosphere to this game, but viewers of this matchup are likely in for a slog, with the Jags taking victory with relative ease.

Prediction: Jaguars, 21-10

2. Jets vs. Panthers (Zach Wilson)

Wilson, this year’s number two overall pick, will also have an opportunity to succeed in Week 1, as this Panthers secondary became one of their biggest issues last year. The addition of cornerback Jaycee Horn with the eighth pick in the draft will certainly help matters, but it’s unlikely that Horn makes a big impact in his first career game. That will leave Wilson with a chance to pick apart Carolina’s defense, and with a reliable Corey Davis and explosive Elijah Moore at his disposal, he could rack up some good stats and potentially even win this matchup.

Wilson was one of my favorite prospects in this entire draft class, and my quarterback rankings actually predict him to have the best career out of all 2021 rookie QBs. His ability to launch bombs from anywhere on the field is undoubtedly the best in his draft class, and he has an underrated ability to consistently make good decisions from both inside and outside the pocket. This Jets defense will be hurt by the loss of young edge rusher Carl Lawson, but this is still a well-coached unit led by a defensive-minded HC in Robert Saleh. Carolina will certainly be a threat with Christian McCaffrey, D.J. Moore, and Robby Anderson leading this offense, but I’ll predict that Sam Darnold continues his struggles and is unable to lead the Panthers to a victory.

Prediction: Jets, 27-21

3. Patriots vs. Dolphins (Mac Jones)

Jones was selected at number 15 overall by the Patriots, and with the release of Cam Newton, it’s now clear that he has earned the right to be New England’s starter from the beginning. He’ll have easily the toughest matchup out of all three of these QBs, facing a Dolphins team that has a tough, emerging young defense.

Cornerback Xavien Howard’s contract situation has been resolved, and he is back with the team and ready to play in 2021. This is crucial for the Dolphins, as they now get back a top-five NFL corner with the ability to lock down practically any elite receiver. Miami’s defensive line is led by edge rusher Emmanuel Ogbah (nine sacks in 2020), and Raekwon Davis and Christian Wilkins should also be serviceable starters. Jerome Baker has also been able to get sacks from his inside linebacker spot (seven last year), and this secondary also has additional solid pieces, such as Byron Jones, Jason McCourty, and an interesting second-year talent in Noah Igbinoghene. This defense will make it hard for Jones to put up monster passing numbers, but Jones’ ability to consistently make good reads could mean he still has a good game. He’ll likely be relying on tight ends Jonnu Smith and Hunter Henry as establishing underneath presences, and WRs Nelson Agholor and Jakobi Meyers should be involved as well. This game will certainly be an exciting one to watch, but I’ll take Miami over New England in this one, although it should be close.

Prediction: Dolphins, 23-20

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