The Week 2 waiver wire has a little bit of everything for fantasy owners in need.
The waiver wire is the place to be. Few times match the Week 2 waiver wire, which occurs fresh in the aftermath of coaches leaving it all on the field with surprise names and schemes. Below, let’s review the best pickups and zoom in on several every owner should target.
Week 2 Waiver Wire Pickup Targets
Pickups to Know
Andy Dalton, QB, Cincinnati Bengals (19.1 ownership percentage)
Now would be the time to put the Andy Dalton disrespect to bed, folks.
There’s really no excuse for Dalton to have such a low ownership percentage in the first place. He leads an offense featuring A.J. Green, and defenses have better things to worry about, such as a back by the name of Jeremy Hill.
Dalton backed up this logic this past Sunday by acting as fantasy’s ninth-highest scoring quarterback before the Monday games. He scored 18 points on 269 yards and two touchdowns in large part thanks to the emergence of tight end Tyler Eifert, who caught nine passes for 104 yards and two scores.
Which is the rub—the best weapon selection of his career sits on Cincinnati’s roster, highlighted by Eifert, one of the most gifted players in the league (and who just missed the cut here with a 43.0 ownership percentage).
Even going into weeks with a tough matchup, all Dalton has to do is spread the ball out in a quick-hitting offense and let his players do the work. It’s similar for owners—all they have to do is let Dalton do the work as his week-to-week production should be quite consistent.
David Johnson, RB, Arizona Cardinals (37.3 ownership percentage)
Fantasy owners have two options when it comes to the backfield in Arizona.
David Johnson or Chris Johnson?
It’s best to turn away from CJ?K and look at the rookie out of Northern Iowa, who exploded onto the scene with 11 points in this past weekend’s encounter against the New Orleans Saints.
In fact, Johnson clinched an insurance touchdown for his team with impressive wheels, per the NFL:
Normally one big play wouldn’t be enough to get a mention, but astute fantasy owners have already muttered the question—game on the line, why was Johnson in over Andre Ellington?
Ellington went down with a scary noncontact injury, which Mike Jurecki of Fox Sports 910 classified as a “PCL injury.”
An owner’s job is to play the projection game. Here, one can presume Chris Johnson will see snaps in a committee, but so too will David Johnson after the highlight above. Waiver-wire pickups are about upside, and it’s hard to find more this week than with the explosive rookie.
Brandon Coleman, WR, New Orleans Saints (16.8 ownership percentage)
This is a pickup sleeper articles have tabbed all offseason.
Now there’s proof. New Orleans’ rookie wideout Brandon Coleman took on an Arizona secondary led by Patrick Peterson and came away with four catches for 41 yards and a score. In the process, he tied for the third-most targets on the team.
Call it projections fulfilled. As ESPN’s Field Yates pointed out, Coleman had major support from within the organization this preseason:
The Saints lost Kenny Stills (85 targets in 2014) and Jimmy Graham (124) this past offseason, so the bulk of those lost targets have to go somewhere. It wasn’t hard to see it would be Coleman with just Brandin Cooks and Marques Colston to compete with on the depth chart.
In a pass-happy offense, Coleman might turn out to be as reliable as Stills was last season. Sometimes it’s better to wait and see if a breakout like this wasn’t just a Week 1 fluke, but this isn’t one of those cases.
Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (24.1 ownership percentage)
A second-round pick in the 2014 draft, it’s not hard to see why owners overlooked Austin Seferian-Jenkins of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
ASJ saw action in just nine games last year and scored twice. Now he sits in a better quarterback situation with Jameis Winston under center and has matched his touchdown total from last year after just one game.
In fact, ASJ went for 23 points with five catches on seven targets for 110 yards and the two scores, staggering numbers when Joe Kania of Buccaneers.com put it into context:
While Vincent Jackson led the team in targets with 11, ASJ wasn’t far off, and the opportunities don’t figure to cease all season. Tight ends might drive fantasy owners to hair-pulling measures, but they happen to be a rookie quarterback’s best friend.
Before the Monday games, ASJ finished sandwiched between Rob Gronkowski and Eifert—and above Travis Kelce, Jason Witten and more. It’s not bad company for the sophomore, and it’s a position he might be able to keep, so owners will want to have ASJ on the mind when they hit the wire.
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