2019 Waiver Wire – Week 3
Week two was brutal for some future Hall of Fame quarterbacks with both Big Ben and Drew Brees suffering major injuries. But just as we saw the league’s ghost of quarterback past, we were also shown how bright the position’s future will be as Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson combined for 845 all purpose yards and six touchdowns! With all the changes around the league over these two weeks and the amount of injuries piling up, our column grows in number. Puzzled on what it all means for your fantasy football squad and what potential adds you could make? We’ve got you covered.
This is Big Travy and Chris Thomas’ weekly column on speculative waiver wire adds. Remember that for this article we only highlight players owned in 40% or less in both Yahoo and NFL or with high variance between the two. This article is designed to highlight most, if not, all the justifiable adds this week, but it is your responsibility to understand which, if any, would be best for your squad.
We have recently added some tiers to qualify how a prospective player should be viewed. A “Streamable” player is someone who has the ability to contribute to your team right now but may not provide that same allure after a few weeks. Someone who is a “Patchwork Player” has the talent and circumstance to slide into your lineup multiple weeks, dependent on matchup. “Season-Long Upside” is the most straightforward. These players may take some time to develop but could be weekly starters over time, and they provide the most upside to your championship chances. Finally, we have the “Stash-Worthy”. You won’t play these guys right now but by the time you want to, they will likely be gone. If you have the depth, be proactive and grab these guys!
Streamable (1-2 Week Use)
Tyler Eifert, TE – CIN (9% in Yahoo and 9.8% owned in NFL) As denoted by the category, we are not expecting Eiefert to gangbusters here, but he will provide some streamable value at an always depleting position – at least as long as A.J. Green stays sidelined. Last week, Eifert managed 3 catches on 5 targets for 9 yards, but he did snag a touchdown, which is gold for a tight end! Eifert also sits at 3rd in targets for the Bengals through 2 weeks with 9. Don’t sell the farm or drop a usable player for this guy, but if you’re desperate for a tight end, Eifert is a possibility.
Frank Gore, RB – BUF (8% in Yahoo and 35.5% owned in NFL) Heyyyy it’s Franklin! Much like our childhood hero Franklin the Turtle, Frank Gore is old and streamable. Gore has been the starting back thus far and turned in a 19/68/1 rushing line an additional 15 yards through the air. Devin Singletary had been taking a hold of the backfield until his hamstring injury Sunday. Gore is in line to lead the backfield against a Bengals team that was just abused by the 49ers rushing attack. In the event that Singletary misses time, Gore would find himself in an RB2/Flex role.
J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, WR – PHI (1% in Yahoo and less than 1% owned in NFL) Whiteside comes with a huge disclaimer. His value is directly derived from the status of his teammates ahead of him on the depth chart: Alshon Jefferey and Desean Jackson. That being said, Whiteside was one of the most talented WR prospects to come out of the NCAA in the 2019 Draft. Now while his production thus far this season is nothing to write home about, the Stanford product now has a nice opportunity if Jackson or Alshon miss even more time. Whiteside is a big target and could provide nice touchdown upside in the short term.
Jeff Wilson, RB – SF (0% in both Yahoo and NFL) Wilson becomes just another name in the revolving door of running backs for the San Francisco 49ers. After spending most of the offseason and even week one on the Niners’ practice squad, Wilson was activated and ran for only 34 yards on 10 carries. That kind of volume is why he finds himself in this category, but he did manage 2 touchdowns. His usage at the goal line this past Sunday earned him, at the very least, a spot in our article. #goals
Will Dissly, TE – SEA (3% in Yahoo and .7% owned in NFL) Dissly had a slow start to the season in week 1 but rebounded with a 5/50/2 receiving line in week 2. Dissly was gaining some momentum last year as a rookie before suffering a season ending knee injury. Dissly is a big target in the red zone and could provide streamer value as a TD dependent tight end fill in.
Devin Smith, WR – DAL (0% in both Yahoo and NFL) Similar to the Whiteside take, Devin Smith’s outlook is most likely contingent on the health of his teammate Miachel Gallup. As of this writing, Gallup is slated to have his meniscus shaved in an effort to rejoin Dallas sooner than later. The timeline is 2-4 weeks for Gallup. Last week, Dak Prescott connected with Smith on a 51 yard touchdown bomb and ended his day, as of this writing, the WR16 in half-ppr formats. Smith could be the streamable vaccination your team needs to combat the injury bug.
Randall Cobb, WR – DAL (24% in Yahoo and 17.7% in NFL) As a Packer fan, I’ll admit, it continues to be weird to see Cobb in a Dallas Cowboy jersey. But as weird as it may be, Cobb had a heck of a debut in Dallas in week one. He was not able to capitalize this past week against the Redskins’ secondary, so it seems that there’s a caveat: Cobb may need a perfect matchup to produce for you fantasy team. Luckily for Cobb and those who may add him, Dallas plays the Dolphins next week.
Rex Burkhead, RB – NE (14% in Yahoo and 27% in NFL) As crazy as it may sound to add yet another Patriots running back, Sexy Rexy earned his way on this list; however, because of the stable of backs at the Patriots’ disposal, Burkhead is merely on the streamable list. Burkhead had a strong performance on opening night against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Rex has been effective in both the rushing and passing game for New England as he has now caught 7 balls for 88 yards and has gained 65 yards on the ground via 13 carries. Burkhead could disappear in any given week, but it is worth noting that Burkhead is one of Belichick’s favorite players and gives the Patriots a dangerous advantage of being multidimensional on offense.
Patchwork Players (2-4 Week Upside)
Deebo Samuel, WR- SF (14% in Yahoo and 2.5% owned in NFL) Despite all of the Dante Pettis offseason hype, this year’s 2nd round pick is the 49ers best producing WR. Deebo caught 5 of 7 targets for 87 yards and a touchdown. With the dearth of options around him, Samuel could find himself in the Season-Long Upside category with another performance like this.
Demarcus Robinson, WR – KC (7% in Yahoo and 1% owned in NFL) Mahomes fired off 4 TD’s this week – the post Tyreek era is not so bad. Robinson and Mecole Hardman split Hill’s snaps and both saw success. Robinson’s 6/172/2 receiving line cannot be ignored; however, do not expect this level of production in a loaded offense, especially when Hill returns.
Mecole Hardman, WR – KC (40% in Yahoo and 12.8% owned in NFL) Any player in a chiefs uniform warrants fantasy intrigue. In the absence of Tyreek Hill, Hardman posted a 4/61/1 line. The rookie was overshadowed by teammate Demarcus Robinson but posted a respectable line to accompany his 2nd round draft pedigree. Both receivers will be boom/bust in a loaded offense but have weekly explosion potential.
Geronimo Allison, WR – GB (32% in Yahoo and 41.6% owned in NFL) Allison is likely still owned heavily in your league, but if by chance an impatient GM dropped him after his poor week one performance, go swoop him up if you are needy at WR. Allison was not a favorite target of Rodgers on Sunday against the Vikings, but he did manage a score. His big body and ability to dominate the team slot snaps make him a waiver worthy player. We have seen that if Rodgers establishes a clear #2 option in his offenses, they can be extremely valuable. Allison is worth the add and could pay off handsomely for those deep and patient enough to wait and see.
Marquise Goodwin, WR – SF (20% in Yahoo and 8.8% owned in NFL) With all the press and hype most of the other new additions in the San Fran have garnered, it is easy to forget about Goodwin. Last year, however, Goodwin was Garoppollo’s training camp darling. In an offense that projects to be and has been much improved in 2019, Goodwin is worth a grab as a flier who, given his rapport with Jimmy G, could end up as the number one target in this offense behind Kittle.
Nelson Agholor, WR – PHI (15% in both Yahoo and 2.4% owned in NFL) Given the attrition that has hit the WR corps in Philly, Agholor makes his way on our list. As the Eagles saw injuries pile up on Sunday night to Dallas Goedert, Desean Jackson, and Alshon Jefferey, Agholor flashed some dependability and big play ability as he gobbled up 8 catches on 11 targets for 107 yards and a touchdown. If you grab Agholor, monitor the health of his receiving teammates as his target share and big play upside would be limited in a big way if Jackson or even Jefferey were able to return.
Raheem Mostert, RB – SF (17% in Yahoo less than 1.2% in NFL) After showing flashes at the end of last season and having an encouraging preseason, Mostert was forced into action during week one and emerged as a focal point of the Niners running game in week two. Mostert had 13 carries for 83 yards, adding 3 catches for 68 yards and a touchdown. There are a few disclaimers with this Mostert: Coleman has been ruled out with a high ankle sprain (2-5 weeks) and with Jeff Wilson flashing some juice in week two, Mostert’s ceiling may be a bit capped. Nevertheless, Mostert finds himself another solid performance away from climbing tiers next week.
Josh Allen, QB – BUF (40% in Yahoo and 26.7% owned in NFL) The second year pro advanced his team to 2-0 over the weekend. Allen is looking much more poised and making plays with his cannon arm and underappreciated legs. His scramble ability gives him a high floor, and, with an enhanced skill position group, he has the ability to break open games through the air. He has the ability to provide QB1 numbers on any given week.
D.J. Chark (Doo-do-doo-doo), WR – JAX (13% in Yahoo and 4.8% owned in NFL) A second round pick a year ago, Chark is soaring up a convoluted Jaguar receiving core. It helps the QB he practiced with all offseason (Mr. Swagger Minshew) is delivering the ball, but here we are. Chark has a TD in both games and is leading the Jags in targets. This is the formula for a breakout.
Terry McLaurin, WR – WAS (16.5% in Yahoo and 52% owned in NFL) McLaurin flashed the wheels in week one and added to his value as the Redskins #1 receiving option in week two as he scored again and gained 62 yards on 5 catches, being targeted 9 times by Case Keenum. McLaurin now has 20% of the Redskins target market share through 2 weeks, amassing 17 targets. Look for McLaurin to continue his chemistry with Keenum this year
Golden Tate, WR – NYG (35% in Yahoo and 21.8% owned in NFL) We know Golden Tate, you know Golden Tate. This man can produce. He is finishing his 4 game PED suspension, but will be thrust into an offense that will throw often. This blurb is a reminder that Tate still exists and should be owned before it’s too late.
Preston Williams, WR – MIA (2% in Yahoo and .5% owned in NFL) Disclaimer: We do not usually endorse any player on the Dolphins. However, Williams, who shined in the preseason, has translated that production into the regular season. He scored a TD week 1 and led receiving with 63 yards in week 2. He is primed to take the WR1 role in an offense that will be forced to throw the vast majority of the season. Williams has shown talent and should have the opportunity to establish himself.
Chris Thompson, RB – WAS (48% in Yahoo and 32% in NFL) Thompson is not the most gifted runner on the Redskins roster, but it really isn’t about his rushing chops. Chris Thompson was a force in the Redskins passing game. CT racked up 68 yards on a whopping 10 targets in week one and 48 yards on 8 targets in week two. With Guice now slated to miss at least a couple weeks due to an injury to his non-surgically repaired knee and only Adrian Peterson ahead of him on the depth chart, Thompson should continue to play a major role in the Redskins offense.
Jaylen Samuels, RB – PIT (35% in Yahoo and 35.5% owned in NFL) As of this writing on Monday, a lot of James Conner owners were able to let out a collective sigh of relief when the news broke that his knee injury was not considered very serious. That being said, if he were to aggravate said injury and miss time, Samuels would immediately elevate to an every week RB with a flex floor.
Gio Bernard, RB – CIN (41% in Yahoo and 13.8% in NFL) Gio finds himself in this category, similarly to Samuels, as the understudy to a 1st round back with a nagging injury. Bernard would slide right into RB2 potential should Mixon miss anymore time with injury. So if you have the stash worthy roster spot, grab Bernard quick.
Ronald Jones, RB – TB (34% in Yahoo and 27% in NFL) We haven’t been the most vocal about Ronald Jones’ upside, but he was able to put together a considerably strong performance in week one against the 49ers. On that day, Jones only had one catch for 18 yards but ran for 75 yards on only 13 rushes and was one of the few bright spots for a dismal Tampa Bay offense. Despite that performance, it was Jones’ running-mate Peyton Barber who stole the show in week two. Barber usually does enough to stay on the field for the Buccs, but if Jones can flash more brilliance in week 3, he has some great potential season-long value.
Why you so defensive, bro?
Dallas Cowboys, vs MIA The Dolphins are tanking. You know, they know it, we all know it. As we are writing this, the Phins have traded away Minkah Fitzpatrick from their secondary. They are not trying to compete this year and now have to travel to Dallas to face the SB contender Cowboys. Fired up the D in Big D.
New England Patriots, vs NYJ If by some off-chance the Pats are still available in your league, grab them immediately. They host the 3rd string QB Jets. Juicy matchup.
Seattle Seahawks, vs NO By now, you know that Drew Brees is expected to miss up to 6 weeks with a thumb injury. This means Teddy Bridgewater will start for the Saints as they travel to Seattle to play the Seahawks. I like the Seattle defense this at home.