There are zero must-have guys sitting on the waiver wire this week. However, if you’re in need of a position to fill, there are a few options who you can plug in this week.
Buck Allen (more valuable in PPR)
Currently 57% owned on Yahoo, so he’s more of a honorable mention that I think is very important to mention. If he’s on your waiver wire, he’s the top priority add if you’re in a PPR league. In a standard league, he can help you in the flex and can definitely help you if Terrance West’s soft tissue injury lingers. Allen had a great game this past week, touching the ball 19 times to West’s 10. His 5 catches, and the expectation of him getting tons of dump-offs from Joe Flacco, is the reason why his floor is so high in PPR leagues. Allen looked good in the run game as well, averaging 4.7 yards per carry; his 37-yard run definitely helps that number.
After Eddie Lacy was a healthy scratch, the game started with a crowded backfield of Thomas Rawls, Chris Carson, and C.J. Prosise. Chris Carson emerged out of that backfield victorious, and the clear lead back. Rawls fumbled early, went 4 yards on 5 carries, while Carson had 20 carries for 93 yards. Carson has the ability to catch the ball as well, but don’t expect him to take over for Prosise on 3rd down. With Prosise’s injury history, however, he’s a candidate to gain even more opportunity as the season progresses. Carson is the #1 RB add in standard leagues over Buck Allen, because of the sheer number of touches he should get on a per-game basis. The offensive line in Seattle isn’t good, but Carson has shown he can produce with what he has so far since the preseason.
Bruce Arians said that Chris Johnson could see a bump in the depth chart for Week 3, meaning he should be the starter and get most of the RB touches for the Cardinals for the foreseeable future. Johnson did pretty well last week, but it was against the defenseless Colts. He should see 15+ touches a game, so he’s worth an add and start in your flex.
LeGarrette Blount isn’t a thing anymore in Philly, as he only saw one touch the entire game. Sproles led the team with 10 carries and a total of 12 touches and Smallwood had 4 touches. Sproles is the clear leader in this backfield and he should see a majority of the touches just like we saw last year. He’s more valuable in PPR since this team is very pass-happy; they passed on 81% of plays in Week 2.
Rob Kelley appears to have avoided a rib fracture, and is diagnosed with a rib cartilage injury, so Perine might not get all the opportunity we think he will. Kelley was ripping off some chunk runs before he left the game in Week 2, but Perine was not able to do much outside of volume. If Kelley is out for Week 3, I’m] very okay with plugging Perine in my lineup because he will definitely get touches, and might even catch a few passes, since he’s a lot more capable of that than Kelley. I wouldn’t waste a high waiver priority on Perine though, since it seems like Kelley’s injury won’t keep him out for more than a game, if that.
Rashard Higgins (More valuable in PPR)
With Corey Coleman on IR with a broken hand and Kenny Britt not interested in playing for the Browns, their needs to be a new #1 in town, and it seems to be Rashard Higgins. Higgins saw 11 targets, and caught 7 of them for 95 yards. He ran routes on 86% of passing plays and Britt was second with 64%. Higgins’ target share from Kevin Hogan and (mostly) Deshone Kizer, was a whopping 28%. Higgins is a good route runner and will likely see a healthy share of targets for a team that is going to be in a ton of game scripts that favor passing the ball. Higgins doesn’t offer quite the upside Corey Coleman does, but out of the slot, he will offer a solid floor in PPR leagues.
Marqise Lee (More valuable in PPR)
Allen Hurns had the bigger fantasy day because of his touchdown, but Marqise Lee saw the majority of targets in Week 2. Lee had a 40%(!) target share with 12 targets and caught 7 of them for 76 yards. I’m not one to trust Blake Bortles, but Lee showed he can get it done for us in PPR last year, and with Allen Robinson gone, Lee will absorb a lot of those targets.
Nelson has shown that he has rapport with Carson Palmer, even in limited playing time. With John Brown out, Nelson has taken advantage of the targets thrown his way, and caught 5 of his 7 targets for 120 yards and a TD. With Brown playing in Week 1, he caught 5 of 6 targets for 43 yards and a TD. Assuming that the running game will struggle, there will be more targets available down the field, and that means more opportunity for Nelson.
If you’re in a standard league, Hurns is the better pickup over Lee. Hurns has more of a chance of getting big plays, picking up chunk yardage, and getting touchdowns. He probably won’t have high reception totals, and the passing volume will likely move towards the mean as they want to run the ball more and play defensive football. We saw Hurns be very valuable in 2015 in Bortles’ incredible fantasy season, so expect something in between.
Kendall Wright (More valuable in PPR)
We wondered who was going to get the majority of targets in Chicago after Kevin White went down for the year, and the answer is Kendall Wright… for now. With the Bears down all game, Wright caught 7 catches on 10 targets for 69 yards, which resulted in a team-high 22% target share. Tarik Cohen and Zach Miller tied for second on the team with 9 targets each. The Bears are going to have to pass the ball a lot this year, especially when they play away from home and if they have to play without Jordan Howard. Wright should have a a 20%+ target share per game as long as he stays healthy by default, since he’s the best receiver they have on the roster, and since his ADOT (average depth of throw) is so low and the underneath passes are all Mike Glennon seems to want to throw at this point.
Brown got the highest target share at 31%, but never seems to be on the same page as Carson Palmer when you compare him to Larry Fitzgerald and J.J. Nelson. With that share, however, those targets have to turn into catches at some point. He caught 4 of his 11 targets for 73 yards, and if he can catch a few more of those, he can have some big days. Brown is more of a hit-or-miss guy with a high ceiling.
This just in: Jermaine Kearse is the best receiver on the New York Jets. Also, the Jets might not be the worst team in New York. Kearse has three touchdowns in the first two games, had a 21% target share, so he is someone you can throw in your lineup and expect him to get production. The other WRs are very young and raw, so Kearse is the only legitimate option for Josh McCown at this point. Once Bryce Petty takes over, I expect that role to shift to his BFF Robby Anderson, but until then, expect Kearse to get the most looks while the Jets fight back every single game.
Kupp didn’t produce like he did in Week 1, but had a huge target share of 27%. Sammy Watkins’ share was 9%, and I’m assuming the team will make sure to address that. It’s important to note that they only threw the ball Jared Goff only threw the ball 25 times, so the passing volume is very low. For now though, Kupp is Jared Goff’s favorite receiver, and him coming out of the slot seems more intuitive for Goff to get him the ball. It’s hard to trust this offense, and 6 targets isn’t something to hang your hat on, but Kupp is a good receiver who can be an asset in PPR leagues this year.
Ben Watson (More valuable in PPR)
We know that Joe Flacco loves to target his tight end; Dennis Pitta had 86 receptions last year. Watson caught all 8 of his targets for 91 yards, and saw a 26% target share. That’s legit usage, and I think we found Flacco’s new favorite tight end.
Miller tied Tarik Cohen for second on the Bears with 9 targets and caught 6 of them for 42 yards. The increase for targets from Week 1 to Week 2 make sense, since Miller is one of the more talented pass-catchers on that roster, and Kevin White is gone for the season. Miller would be a volume play, but if the Bears ever get close to the end zone, he should be a favorite target.
The lack of playmakers on the Jets, the fact that the Jets are going to be passing a ton trying to catch up in games, and glowing reports from training camp about ASJ make him a nice flier pickup if you have a volatile tight end on your roster. He’s not someone I’m picking up and starting, but I’m holding on to him to see if he blows up. This is likely the last chance of his career, he’s supposedly a “changed man,” but we’ll wait to find out.