Fantasy Football: Waiver Wire Week Three

Last week, I cautioned against overreacting to Week 1 stats and explained that I had a hard time advising people to drop their players for dudes like Kevin Ogletree. This week, in a game where Tony Romo threw the ball 40 times, Ogletree saw just one target.

I hope you didn’t drop anyone good for Ogletree, Stephen Hill, or Alshon Jeffery because all three followed up eyebrow raising Week 1′s with absolute stinkers in Week 2. In any case, there is a new slew of adds for Week 2. Here they are, in approximate order of the priority in which I would add them, with their percentage ownership in Yahoo leagues next to them.

1. Danny Amendola (STL WR) 48%

For those of you in competitive leagues, Amendola is probably owned, but just in case, make sure he’s owned in your league! He followed up a solid Week 1 outing in which he had 5 catches for 70 yards, with a dominant Week 2 performance where he caught 15 out of his 16 targets for 160 yards and the score. This guy just went from a late round flier to a solid WR2.

2. David Wilson (NYG RB) 45% and Andre Brown (NYG RB) 11%

This is a confusing situation for Ahmad Bradshaw owners because we don’t know how long Bradshaw will sit out, and we don’t know who to handcuff him to. Bradshaw is believed to have a neck sprain but there is very little information on the injury.

With the Giants on a short week with a Thursday Night Football duel set against the Panthers, it’s looking very likely that Bradshaw will miss at least one game, but we really don’t know whether he’ll be back next week or miss a month. When Bradshaw was ruled out, Andre Brown took over as the lead back, running the ball 13 times for 71 yards and a TD, while adding 2 catches and a two point conversion.

On the other hand, the nominal #2 and preseason darling, David Wilson, carried the ball just 3 times for 6 yards. It’s hard to tell whether the Giants have made a decision to stick with Brown, or whether Wilson is simply still in the doghouse after last week’s costly fumble that made Wilson cry on the sidelines. ;( If I had to start one guy on Thursday, it would have to be Brown, but I’d also want to own Wilson because he has the talent to make an impact should Bradshaw miss extended time.

3. Brandon LaFell (CAR WR) 33%

As the Panther’s established #2 WR, LaFell saw some preseason hype and he’s living up to it. It’s like I said over and over on the podcast last Tuesday, I want to see it again before I believe it. And for LaFell, he’s done it twice in a row so it’s time to buy.

In Week 1, LaFell grabbed 3 balls for 65 yards and a TD. This weekend, he rushed for 25 yards, and caught 6 balls for 90 yards on 8 targets. That is double the targets that Steve Smith saw this weekend. I’m not saying that LaFell is now better than Smith, but it shows that when defenses double cover Smith, LaFell will see a lot of action.

4. Mikel LeShoure (DET RB) 35%

LeShoure was officially reinstated into the league on Monday, and there are already rumors swirling that he’ll take over the starting gig. From what I’ve seen from Kevin Smith however, Smith is going to have to lose the job before LeShoure will become fantasy relevant. This could easily happen in a single play, should Smith get injured.

But Smith had a tremendous Week 1 against the Rams and had a solid rushing effort against the dominant 49ers run defense on Sunday. So add LeShoure as a lottery ticket, but I don’t expect him to see a majority of the Lions’ carries until and unless Smith gets injured.

5. Brian Hartline (MIA WR) 4%

As I said with LaFell, I gotta see it twice. Brian Hartline has now done it twice. Aside from Reggie Bush, not a single Dolphins offensive player was drafted in fantasyland. Well it’s time to add one more fantasy relevant Fin.

Hartline led the team in Week 1 with 8 targets, 3 catches, and 50 yards. Against the Raiders on Sunday, Hartline caught 11 out of his 12 targets for 111 yards. As a point of reference for Hartline’s 12 targets, Davone Bess was 2nd in targets with just 6. Hartline could be an every week flex option before long!

6. Martellus Bennett (NYG TE) 34%

Bennett has also done it twice now. In the incredible comeback against the Bucs, Bennett caught 5 balls for 72 yard and the game-winning TD, on 10 targets. I do like Bennett quite a bit, but to be fair, Eli won’t throw the ball 51 times every week, nor will he throw for 510 yards. Still, if you just lost Aaron Hernandez, Bennett will be a perfect fill-in.

The Pats have a bye in Week 9 and Hernandez is projected to miss about 6 weeks, so it’s likely he won’t be back until Week 10. Guess what: Bennett won’t have a bye until Week 11, so at no point will you have to carry three TEs, while Hernandez is injured and Bennett’s on a bye.

7. Daryl Richardson (STL RB) 5%

Steven Jackson was mysteriously benched on Sunday and many thought it was because of his spiking the ball, but it turned out it was because of a groin injury. Now, the Rams are saying SJax is fine and he could have returned to the game if necessary.

Until I see SJax in practice, I’ll be a little worried though and I’ll feel much better with Richardson on my roster. Rookie Isaiah Pead was thought to be the handcuff for SJax, but that speculation appears to be wrong. In Jackson’s absence, Richardson ran 15 times for an impressive 83 yards. However, if you subtract his one run of 53 yards, Richardson’s 5.5 YPC shrinks to 2.1.

Remember last year when SJax missed a game, we rushed to add the handcuff, Cadillac Williams, who kinda stunk it up. This could be deja vu, so even if Jackson misses one week, I’m not going to recommend Richardson as a start.

8. Brandon Myers (OAK TE) 1%

Myers hasn’t found the endzone yet so there are plenty of available TEs with more fantasy points, but I like Myers because TDs are more unpredictable and Myers has the stats that count: receptions and yards. In Week 1, Myers caught 5 balls for 65 yards.

In Week 2, Myers caught 6 balls for 86 yards. He’ll have to compete with Heyward-Bey, Denarius Moore, and DMC for targets, but so far he’s been doing just fine.

9. Donnie Avery (IND WR) 5%

Last Week, Reggie Wayne was dominant and looked to be the only WR that Andrew Luck could see on the field. This week, the former Ram, Donnie Avery, stepped up big with 9 catches for 111 yards as the Colts pulled off the W. I’d like to see it again, but deep leaguers would be smart to add Avery now.

10. Andrew Hawkins (CIN WR) 11%

Andy Dalton looks to be taking a step forward in his 2nd season, and we fantasizers wonder whether any receiver will step up to compliment A.J. Green. There are several guys making a few plays, but if I had to own one, it would be Hawkins. In Week 1, Hawkins caught 8 balls for 86 yards, and in Week 2, he caught 2 balls for 56 yards and a score.

Two receptions don’t jump off the page, but if you watched that score, you know that it jumped off the screen. He made incredible moves to make a slew of defenders miss him. I’d add him for the chance that his talent translates to fantasy success.

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