Waiver Wire: Pre-Week 1
We haven’t hit week one yet, but there has been a ton of NFL roster moves. Moves that can potentially move the needle. The good thing about pre-week one waiver moves is that they are inexpensive. A zero or a one-dollar bid in FAAB leagues can often do it. However, waiting too long on some of these players could result in a one-dollar bid turning into fifty percent of your budget, or a top waiver claim.
I recommend going aggressive for the week one waiver wire, but for this purpose, I would save and go cheap, and maybe add one of these names, as their price will go up.
Moving forward, you can expect this to be the FIRST waiver wire article out in the entire industry each week. You won't lose any sleep stressing it, I got you!
Jameis Winston, Quarterback, New Orleans Saints, 25% rostered on ESPN
A lot of fantasy managers, myself included, only draft one quarterback, or maybe a very late second. There are some quarterbacks on the waiver wire that can easily top 4,000 yards. Jameis Winston is one of those players.
Winston is a couple of years removed from a thirty touchdown season with 5,109 passing yards. Yes, thirty interceptions happened too, but now Winston is on a new team and new system. In Tampa, he had all-pro wide receivers, but right now he seems to be connecting well with Marquez Calloway and gets Michael Thomas later in the season. Let’s not also forget he has Alvin Kamara. There is a possibility with the volume he finishes as a QB1.
Zach Wilson, Quarterback, New York Jets, 15% rostered
The window is about to slam shut for the rookie quarterback. Zach Wilson, who has looked extremely impressive this preseason. Analysts such as Tony Romo have given him the Patrick Mahomes ceiling. Is Wilson going to have a Mahomes type season? Highly likely not, but the possibility of a 4,000 yard passing season is not out of the question.
Tua Tagovailoa, Quarterback, Miami Dolphins, 49% rostered
Tua Tagovailoa has had an offseason where the Desean Watson rumors flew left and right. Tua played last season coming off a hip injury and not having the experience of a full NFL offseason.
This season, Tua is healthy and they added a familiar target in Jaylen Waddle for him. Don’t be surprised if Tua comes out strong against a Stephon Gilmoreless New England defense in week one. He also gets Will Fuller week two.
Rhamondre Stevenson, Running Back, New England Patriots, 16% rostered
Rhamondre Stevenson, the fourth-round rookie, has impressed this summer for the Patriots. He is the main backup to Damien Harris. With James White, the pass-catching back, and the departure of Sony Michel, Stevenson is the main backup running back.
With Cam Newton leaving New England, the running backs take a big boost with the goal line carries being vacated. Cam Newton had 22 carries inside the five-yard line last season, which now are all vacated.
Damien Harris projects to be the starter, but Stevenson is going to see time after having a very impressive preseason where he finished as the NFL leader in rushing yards (217) and touchdowns (5).
Ty’Son Williams, Running Back, Baltimore Ravens, 17% rostered
With the JK Dobbins injury, and the Ravens not bringing in another veteran running back, yet. Gus Edwards is the starter in Baltimore. However, the Rutgers product has not had a full workload before and acted as a complementary back to Dobbins. As of this writing, the Ravens have brought in Le’Veon Bell and DeVonta Freeman, but with news of Justice Hill out for the season, I wouldn’t put much stock into Ty'son Williams losing his role.
Williams now becomes the backup to Edwards. The undrafted second-year player out of BYU now has fantasy relevance. Edwards is not known as a pass-catching back, which gives Williams a shot for flex consideration. If he is on the field for 20% or more of the plays, or if Edwards were to miss time, Williams would become an RB2 for fantasy purposes.
Ty Johnson, Running Back, New York Jets, 5% rostered
The New York Jets backfield is a crowded mess. Tevin Coleman is the projected starter with Michael Carter. La’Mical Perine also factors in. Josh Adams was elevated to the active roster as well. Ty Johnson is the Jets running back gaining the most steam. He looked good last year in the Adam Gase offense (which speaks volumes).
This summer he has also looked good. Tevin Coleman has durability issues, which could give Johnson the chance to take a role. With 4.4 speed, Johnson has skills in both the running and passing game. He has a chance to carve out a role at some point this season.
Tony Jones Jr, Running Back, New Orleans Saints, 3% rostered
Alvin Kamara has never been a full workload type running back. He’s had complimentary backs such as Mark Ingram and Latavius Murray. Murray remains on the roster but was on the roster bubble this summer, which shows the Saints aren’t sold on him. Enter Tony Jones, the undrafted rookie.
This preseason, Jones saw more first-team carries than Murray, and even Sean Payton has stated he sees Jones as an RB2 in New Orleans over Murray. Ingram and Murray both had standalone value while splitting time with Kamara. Last season, Murray saw over 30% of the total carries. If Jones can hit that, as well as goal-line carries, we are talking RB2 value for fantasy.
Jermar Jefferson, Running Back, Detroit Lions, 1% rostered
Every pre-week 1 waiver wire we try to determine who is going to be the unknown player to burst onto the scene week 1. With the D’Andre Swift injury, and his status for week one up in the air, Jamaal Williams lines up to be the starting running back.
Jamaal Williams has never had a full workload, so the possibility of another back complimenting him is realistic. Enter Jermar Jefferson. Jefferson, the seventh-round rookie, has impressed the Lions staff this summer.
As the Lions' offensive line struggled in the third preseason game, Jefferson rushed 11 times for 43 yards and added a five-yard reception. He is a deep flier, but one that could pay off. In a league such as Scott Fish Bowl or Warrior Bowl, he’s well worth a flier.
Elijah Moore, Wide Receiver, New York Jets, 39% rostered
Elijah Moore did not play this preseason but flashed a ton of playmaking ability this summer. The rookie second-round pick is expected to start Sunday at Carolina. When he was in camp, Moore and fellow rookie Zach Wilson were having a lot of connections.
Jamison Crowder is on the COVID list, and his status for Sunday is in question. It seems as if he will play, but Moore is going to have a chance to showcase his skills. If he is somehow available, he needs to be added in all formats before he begins to breakout.
Rondale Moore, Wide Receiver, Arizona Cardinals, 19% rostered
Rondale Moore is another rookie that makes the list. He is fast, explosive, and landed in one of the best possible spots in Arizona. Currently, DeAndre Hopkins and AJ Green are the starting outside receivers, and it seems Christian Kirk is his only other threat, but he hasn’t run away with the job.
Moore is going to lineup all over. The slot is the main target point, but expect him to be involved in jet sweeps. I see Deebo Samuel 2.0 here. He is going to be catching passes from Kyler Murray, and I can see him immediately becoming a WR2/Flex play in fantasy.
Nico Collins, Wide Receiver, Houston Texans, 4% rostered
Nico Collins is going to be a steal this season. The rookie wide receiver is currently the starting wide receiver in Houston outside Brandin Cooks. Tyrod Taylor was named the starting quarterback, and I fully expect the Texans to be losing all the time, to the point where they will be passing a lot.
The Texans traded 2 future picks to go up and get the big physical WR, and fully intend on starting him on day 1. Cooks does have an injury history, so the possibility of Collins being the WR1 on a team trailing consistently is very real. Collins plays physical and ran a 4.43 on his pro day.
This is a player that fell to the 3rd as a result of a deep WR class, and the Texans got a steal. A 1,000-yard season and double-digit touchdown season is not out of the question. He most likely will lead the Texans in touchdowns.
Terrace Marshall Jr, Wide Receiver, Carolina Panthers, 19% rostered
A wide receiver that is slowly picking up steam is Terrace Marshall Jr. Right now, the Panthers have DJ Moore and Robby Anderson as their top two wideouts. Barring injuries, Marshall is not going to pass them on the depth chart, but his talent is too good to ignore. David Moore was cut, which essentially wins the WR3 position for Marshall.
The speedy WR ran a 4.4 and brings a dynamic element to the Panthers' offense led by Sam Darnold. Against Baltimore this summer, Marshall caught 3 passes for 50 yards, and against the Colts had 3 catches for 88 yards.
Gabriel Davis, Wide Receiver, Buffalo Bills, 13% rostered
The 2020 4th round pick for the Bills is looking to build off of his 7 touchdown rookie season. Currently, Buffalo has Stefon Diggs, Emmanuel Sanders, and Cole Beasley. With Beasley having question marks, and Sanders new to the offense, Davis should be able to take advantage and produce.
Glowing reviews out of camp are screaming breakout season for Davis. With Josh Allen throwing the ball, a double-digit touchdown season is in sight.
Paris Campbell, Wide Receiver, Indianapolis Colts, 38% rostered
With TY Hilton going to IR, it is now or never for Paris Campbell. Now the number two wide receiver on the depth chart, he looks to capitalize after a lost season last year due to injury.
The speedy wideout showed some flashes this summer. If he can stay healthy he has the chance to be a flex play every week. Working outside Michael Pittman, I expect him to see a ton of targets. Carson Wentz loves his slot receivers and Campbell should capitalize.
Sammy Watkins, Wide receiver, Baltimore Ravens, 9% rostered
The only reason Sammy Watkins is on here is that it feels like every season, week one waivers, he is on every article.
This year he is catching passes from Lamar Jackson, and the Ravens are experiencing injuries at the WR position. Rashod Bateman is injured, and JK Dobbins is out for the season. Watkins realistically is the top target outside Mark Andrews and is a nice flier if you’re thin at the position.
Adam Trautman, Tight End, New Orleans Saints, 8% rostered
Adam Trautman likely was not drafted in your league. He has a foot injury and could miss the first couple of games. I would keep a big eye on him when he returns. Jameis Winston loves to use his tight ends.
Winston totaled 39 total touchdowns to tight ends in his time in Tampa. 27 to Cameron Brate, and 12 to OJ Howard. He is 6’5 and 255 pounds, and I feel Sean Payton will try and turn him into a Jimmy Graham type TE with the mismatches he can create due to his size.
Juwan Johnson, Tight End, New Orleans Saints, 1% rostered
Going back to back Saint tight ends here. Juwan Johnson was a wide receiver, converted to a tight end. With Michael Thomas out, as well as potentially Adam Trautman, Johnson steps in with a chance to shine.
With his wide receiver eligibility as a tight end, you could be getting a tight end playing the wide receiver role. See Darren Waller or Kyle Pitts type of role. Johnson is 6’4 and flashed in the preseason, bringing in two catches for 71 yards in the preseason opener. He’s a name to keep an eye on.
Jared Cook, Tight End, Los Angles Chargers, 21% rostered
Jared Cook enters a very good situation. He is filling into the Hunter Henry role on the Chargers and is playing with one of the upcoming superstars in Justin Herbert.
In 2019, Jared Cook had nine touchdown receptions. Last season he had seven. Cook is 34 years old, but his 6’5 frame makes him an ideal red-zone target. One the Chargers are seeking to find since Antonio Gates departed.
Tyler Kroft, Tight End, New York Jets, 1% rostered
The Jets recently traded Chris Herndon to the Minnesota Vikings, opening up the tight end starting job to Tyler Kroft. The 6’6 tight end has flashed this preseason catching two touchdown passes from Zach Wilson. I expect Kroft to be a boom or bust touchdown option, but he seems to be the number one tight end for the Jets at the moment.
For more options, or questions about these options, please check me out on Twitter @NMimi. Otherwise, please tune in LIVE this Wednesday night at 9 pm to the Stack Attack Fantasy Podcast, part of the Fantasy Six Pack You Tube Channel family of podcasts.