Fantasy Football Week 2 Waiver Wire Advice and Pickups

Do. Not. Overreact.

If there’s one piece of advice I can give you following Week One, that’s it.

If a player on your roster had an off week (yeah, I’m talking to you DeAngelo Williams), ask yourself whether you would dump them if they did the same thing in the middle of the season.  If so, cut away.  Otherwise, trust your draft research and strategy for another week or two.  Now, if you took a few late-round fliers and see someone on the waiver wire you like more, go for it.

If you missed the $250 MSF Week 1 Freeroll Challenge at FanDuel, shame on you.

Click here to sign up at FanDuel to play the best weekly fantasy football game around and so you don’t miss the next MSF Freeroll (likely Week 3)!

fantasy football week 2 waiver wire advice and pickups

As always, I’m looking only at players owned in less than 50 percent of Yahoo! leagues.

Fantasy Football Week 2 Waiver Wire Pickups: Quarterback

Ryan Fitzpatrick (46%), Buffalo

No team laid a bigger egg than the Chiefs on Sunday, and Fitzpatrick took full advantage, throwing for 208 yards and four touchdowns.  Keep in mind that he got off to a hot start once he became the starter last season, throwing for 11 TDs in his first four games.  The other 12 scores came over a nine-game span, so consistency isn’t necessarily his strong suit.  Still, Fitzpatrick has Oakland next up on the schedule, which makes him an option if your other matchups are bad or you had the misfortune of drafting Peyton Manning.

fantasy football week 2 waiver wire advice and pickupsCam Newton (33%), Carolina

When you see gaudy yardage totals like the 422 passing yards that Newton hung on Arizona in his first game as a starter, you may be inclined to chalk it up to garbage time.  Not the case here, as Newton was effective and productive throughout before coming up just short on the final drive.  In addition to the passing yards, Newton was used at the goal line on consecutive runs, the second of which he converted after diving over the pile like a running back.  A date with Green Bay next week may provide some “Welcome to the NFL” moments, but Newton has solidified his status as a QB2 and potential matchup play against the right opponent.

Rex Grossman (6%), Washington

Grossman has been basically a pigskin punchline, but over his last four games with Washington, he’s thrown for 1145 yards and nine touchdowns.  Who knows how long he remains the starter for the ever-fickle Mike Shanahan, but for now, it’s Rex’s gig.  Grossman faces the Cardinals next week – yes, the same Cardinals defense that gave up 422 yards to a rookie QB making his first start.  That’s fantasy gold for those in two quarterback leagues as well as those desperate for a starter in other formats.

Update: Since we pride ourselves on getting this out early, I submitted the Week 2 waiver wire advice column prior to the Monday night games. When applicable, I will submit updates to the column with any waiver-worthy players from Monday night.

So don’t start going Ron Jaworski on me and cussing about missing these games! I’ve got you covered.

As luck would have it, only one man stood out among the fantasy neglected on Monday night. And that man was none other than…Chad Henne of the Miami Dolphins.

Fantasy Football Week 2 Waiver Wire Advice: Running Back

Ben Tate (43%), Houston

With Arian Foster inactive, both Tate and Derrick Ward ran for touchdowns against the Colts.  Ward tweaked his ankle, so Tate got the bulk of the carries and finished with 116 rushing yards.  Foster is expected back next week against the Dolphins, but he’s one more hamstring issue away from missing a significant portion of the season.  It’s also not inconceivable that Gary Kubiak eases Foster back into the mix, which means more work for Tate and/or Ward.  With such a large lead, the Texans took the cautious approach with Ward this week, so the true extent of his injury is unclear.  However, if I’m going after one of these guys, it’s Tate at this point.

Deji Karim (10%), Jacksonville

I listed Karim last week due to my lack of faith in Maurice Jones-Drew’s knees.  That’s still a factor here, but even with MJD at full strength (albeit on some kind of snap count), Karim had 17 touches.  He ran 14 times for 33 yards and caught all three of his targets for 39 more.  The Jags ran the ball over 40 times, and if they continue to use that game plan (not a bad idea with Luke McCown at QB), Karim should see double-digit touches on a weekly basis.  Next week’s date with the Jets isn’t ideal, but his involvement in the offense proves Karim is worth owning in more than 10 percent of leagues.

Cadillac Williams (7%), St. Louis

Steven Jackson got the Rams’ season off to a quick start with a 47-yard TD scamper on their first play from scrimmage.  Unfortunately, he injured his quad in the process, which opened the door for Cadillac Williams to roll up 140 total yards.  He ran 19 times for 91 yards and caught six passes on a team-high 10 targets for 49 more.  If Jackson misses any time, Williams is in line to be the workhorse.  That workload only increases if Sam Bradford’s finger injury puts him on the shelf.  Next week the Rams take on the Giants, who surrendered 97 total yards and a TD to Tim Hightower in their first game.

Earnest Graham (1%), Buccaneers

This one is only for those in the deepest of PPR leagues, but Graham had eight receptions for 58 yards to go with 13 rushing yards in Tampa Bay’s loss to the Lions.  After falling behind, the Bucs went to a pass-heavy attack which rendered LeGarrette Blount virtually useless.  Graham has established himself as the team’s third-down back and was targeted nine times, mostly on short dump-off passes.  Keep an eye on him in the coming weeks to see if he’s able to sustain this kind of involvement in the offense.

Fantasy Football Week 2 Waiver Wire Advice: Wide Receiver

Devery Henderson (22%), New Orleans

It’s getting tough to find healthy wideouts for the Saints these days with Lance Moore missing the opener with a groin injury and Marques Colston out for at least a month with a broken collarbone.  Enter Devery Henderson, who most fantasy owners have rostered at one point or another, thinking he’s finally ready to become a consistent producer.  Many of you may even be in some Devery Henderson-related support group at this point based on the way he’s treated fantasy owners over time.  Anyway, he led the Saints with 100 receiving yards and a TD in the opener, and even if Moore is back this week, Henderson will remain a factor against Chicago.  Fellow wideout Robert Meachem missed the cut here since he’s owned in 54 percent of leagues, but he’s another strong waiver option if he’s still out there in your league.

Jacoby Jones (19%), Houston

The Texans didn’t need to throw it much against Indy on Sunday, but it’s worth noting that Kevin Walter has apparently broken his shoulder and is out for at least a few months if not the season.  Someone is bound to benefit from all the attention directed at Andre Johnson, and that would seem to be Jones.  He’s shown flashes but has been largely inconsistent over the course of his career.  Jones did catch at least five passes in the last four games last year, and he’s an excellent return man in leagues that use return yards.

Antonio Brown (27%), Pittsburgh

The bad news: Brown had just two catches for 14 yards, and Emmanuel Sanders caught Pittsburgh’s lone TD.  The good news: Brown was targeted nine times.  He simply isn’t startable in fantasy leagues at this point, but if you stick with him during the growing pains, it could pay dividends later this season.

Anthony Armstrong (5%), Washington

Armstrong finished with just two receptions for 24 yards on Sunday, but there is reason for optimism.  First, one of those grabs was a nice six-yard TD.  Second, he dropped a couple bombs that could have pushed his yardage total over the century mark.  Armstrong displayed good chemistry with Grossman toward the end of last season, and that continued today.  If you’re desperate for help at wide receiver, you could do worse.

Kevin Ogletree (0%), Dallas

Let’s look at a few things.  1) Dallas has virtually no depth at wide receiver.  2) Dez Bryant already got banged up with a quad bruise and leg cramps in the opener against the Jets, and the biggest question heading into this season surrounded his health.  3) The Cowboys are going to throw it a ton.  So all that said, Ogletree becomes a guy to put on your watch list just in case.

Greg Salas (0%), St. Louis

Danny Amendola dislocated his elbow and is out for a while, which leaves a huge hole in the Rams passing game.  While Mike Sims-Walker should benefit, don’t count out Salas, a rookie from Hawaii.  He caught one pass for 21 yards on Sunday, but if he slides into the slot with Amendola sidelined, he’s worth a look in PPR leagues.

Fantasy Football Week 2 Waiver Wire Advice: Tight End

Lance Kendricks (34%), St. Louis

I won’t sugarcoat it.  The stat line was ugly.  The drops (one of which would have been a TD) were ugly.  But Bradford wasn’t afraid to go back to him, and with Amendola injured, Kendricks may see even more targets.  I’m going down with the ship on this one.

Jermaine Gresham (15%), Cincinnati

There weren’t too many people investing heavily in the Cincinnati passing game heading into this season, and there wasn’t a ton I saw from either Andy Dalton or Bruce Gradkowski to make me reconsider that stance.  Except for their second-year tight end who hauled in six catches for 58 yards and a score.  He was targeted eight times and doesn’t have a murderer’s row coming up on the schedule.  Just another example of how deep tight end is this year.

Ed Dickson (2%), Baltimore

Take a wait-and-see approach here, but Dickson, who was a terrific tight end at Oregon, acquitted himself well in his first start.  He caught all five of his targets for 59 yards and a TD.  Dickson was unable to gain much separation from fellow TE Dennis Pitta in the preseason, but this performance could be enough.  Consider him a TE2 at best for now.

Fred Davis (1%), Washington

After catching a TD in each of the final two games last season, Davis and Rex Grossman picked up right where they left off, hooking up five times for 105 yards.  Davis saw twice as many looks than veteran Chris Cooley, and it’s worth noting that Davis did a terrific job when filling in for an injured Cooley in 2009, catching five TDs over one four-game stretch.  Again, he can’t be considered more than a TE2, but the upside is there.

Scott Chandler (0%), Buffalo

It seems like every year a tight end goes off in the first week that make everyone go “Who the hell is this guy?”  Chandler is that guy this year after catching five passes for 63 yards and two scores.  He entered the game with one reception for eight yards in his career.  Is it possible he’s a breakout candidate?  I suppose, but it’s more likely that the Chiefs were just that horrendous.

Streaming Defense(s) of the Week

I am a huge fan of streaming defenses based on matchups, so each week I will try to throw out one or two for those of you in the same boat.

Houston (23%)

It was hard to get a true read on just how improved this defense was given the junior varsity nature of their opponent’s play, but there is reason to be intrigued, particularly against the Dolphins.

Cleveland (23%)

Save for a TD pass to A.J. Green when the Browns had just started to break the huddle and a late TD to Cedric Benson, the Cleveland defense wasn’t terrible.  You know who was terrible?  The Colts, who Cleveland plays in Week Two.


Have any questions or feedback?  Leave them in the comments below or hit me up on Twitter (@andybottoms).



About Andy Bottoms

While Andy was born and raised in Indiana, he would like to point out that he grew up shooting hoops in his driveway and not against the side of a barn like you see in all the March Madness promos or in the middle of a field like Jimmy Chitwood. Andy ranks among the top bracketologists according to the Bracket Matrix and has provided his projections to Fox Sports for the past three seasons. When not compiling excuses for missing work during the NCAA Tournament, Andy enjoys spending time with his wife and two daughters. He is a proud IU graduate and co-hosts The Assembly Call postgame show following every IU game. Twitter: @AndyBottoms


  1. waiverwireman says:

    This is one of my favorite sites to look through for good WW pickup advice, but I gotta say, this article was clearly written before the Monday Night games.

    Chad Henne should without a doubt be listed alongside those QBs (416 yards passing, most of which was NOT garbage time – akin to Cam Newton, minus the rookie status, plus playing against New England D). On the same note, consider reevaluating Miami's offense for the Houston matchup in D/ST.

    • Andy Bottoms says:

      Thanks for commenting, you are correct that I wrote this prior to Monday night. We like to get the posted early and hopefully beat some other sites to the punch. My plan is to drop a quick update in here at some point today, which would include Henne. Another commenter mentioned the Houston D thing, but I am sticking to my guns on it. You can check out my reply to him to see if you agree.

  2. Are you not feeling Jordy Nelson?

    If you had the choice – D. henderson or J. Nelson ppr. .. i have colston so i need a filler for a few weeks.


    • Andy Bottoms says:

      I like Nelson but if memory serves he's owned in around 70% of leagues so couldn't include him here. I'd lean toward Nelson of those two.

  3. what do you think of Dexter McCluster? is he worth putting in a flex spot after his performance on sunday?

    • Andy Bottoms says:

      I toyed with putting him in the column this week but couldn't pull the trigger. The Chiefs were such a mess that it was hard to figure out their plan. Obviously the ultimate answer depends on your other options, but I am taking a wait-and-see approach with McCluster for at least another week.

  4. I always look forward to Tuesdays during the season because of the awesome waiver wire advice. Thanks for that.

    I need some advice though. I'm in a PPR league and I was offered Blount for Reggie Bush straight up. My other RB is Gore and I have Jerome Harrison and Ryan Grant on my bench. Should I do this?

    • Andy Bottoms says:

      I agree it's a decent time to buy low on Blount, but I'm not sure I do this deal. As we saw on Sunday, Blount is clearly out of the mix when it comes to passing downs, so any thoughts of him seeing a bump in receptions are out the window. I don't love Bush as a feature back, but they clearly intend to get him the ball, and the difference in yardage and TDs will be erased by his receptions. I think they are relatively close, but Bush may well be the more consistent of the two. I also agree you need some help at RB, so maybe angle for getting Blount plus another guy for Bush if you can swing it.

  5. I would never play the Texans defense going up against Miami. That is some bad advice if I ever heard some. That game will be a shoot out and by the end of the game both defenses will get you no points!

    • I'm sure Andy will have a response, but I'll jump in here. All he said was that it's "reason to be intrigued"…and when you're going up against an offense that struggles in the red zone, has no consistent running game to speak of, and only one true playmaker on the outside, I'd say there is intrigue. Now, I'd hope to have another option, but for those who stream defenses, I agree that there is potential here. Miami put up a bunch of points last night because of the shootout-style game it was. I don't anticipate the HOU-MIA game being THAT up and down crazy. Even if it is, as a Dolphins fan, I think I speak for the entire fan base when I say that while Chad Henne played much better last night, I'd like to see him do it in back to back games before I'm going to trust it.

    • Andy Bottoms says:

      I played New England's defense last night and still came up with six points. I would argue that Houston has a better pass rush, and I like Jonathan Joseph against Brandon Marshall. Also, Henne put up solid numbers last night, but haven't we seen that before with him? I'm just not sold he's a guy defenses are scared of, and with Reggie Bush miscast as a feature back, there isn't a huge run game to rely on.

  6. Who would you start this week——Big Ben or Schwab

    • Andy Bottoms says:

      I think both are good starts, but I would lean toward Schaub. You could easily see the Steelers get out to a big lead and run the ball quite a bit against Seattle. Miami is reeling from Brady lighting them up, and they are certainly vulnerable through the air. Jon should have his rankings out in the next couple days, so you can check those out for another opinion.

  7. So after watching Charles' horrible game against, of all teams, the Bills, I'm starting to question if he's worth starting against a Lions defense that managed to hold Tampa's entire run game to very low yardage. Any thoughts on possibly sitting Charles for the week?

    • Andy Bottoms says:

      Well, as a fellow Charles owner I share your concern. I think the answer depends largely on your other options and whether it's a PPR league or not. If it's a PPR league, I don't see how you sit him. Earnest Graham put up decent PPR numbers and Charles would see more touches than he did. I will check back here if you want to reply with your other options.

      • Well, my other options are Felix Jones in his place, or just sticking with two RBs and going with Austin, Britt, and Lloyd to fill fill the flex spot. My two other starters for this week are Foster and Jones-Drew. It's not a PPR league either.

        • Andy Bottoms says:

          I like Jones this week, and it sounds like Foster is going to play (based on practice reports from today at least). Also hearing a few rumor about Lloyd's groin so keep an eye on that situation. So of that set of 7 guys this week, I would go with Foster (assuming reports remain positive, Charles, Jones, Austin, and Britt. I worry that MJD gets shut down by the Steelers. That's my opinion at least. Good luck!

  8. Should I drop Cassel to pick up Grossman? I have Freeman but I'm intrigued by Grossman's matchup against the Cards.

    • Andy Bottoms says:

      I would. Grossman has a number of good matchups coming up against the likes of Arizona, St. Louis, Carolina, Buffalo, San Fran, Miami, and Seattle – all through Week 12. Cassel has been awful ever since Charlie Weis left, and I didnt see much reason for hope from KC in week one. Either way, I don't see anyone running out to grab Cassel, so you will likely have the chance to get him back if things change.

  9. Do I drop Jerome Harrison, Greg Little, or Steve Smith (Phi) for Dexter McCluster or Jabar Gaffney in a 0.5 PPR league? McCluster is a WR/RB on yahoo, btw.

    • Andy Bottoms says:

      I could see dropping Little and Smith for both guys. I almost put Gaffney and McCluster in the column this week, and I think both are prospective adds. Little has some upside, but if you are in a redraft league, I am not sure you reap the benefits of that until late this season if at all. I still like Harrison due to injury concerns with Best.

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