The NFL has wrapped up the first Sunday of the season and heads into Monday Night Football featuring the Ravens and Raiders. Many fantasy contests likely have been decided at this point, but MNF has enough notable names that will decide plenty of Week 1 fantasy matchups.
It’s only one week so it’s not yet time to panic for most fantasy managers. At the same time, you can never sleep on improving your roster. Trades require a willing partner, but the waiver wire is your chance to grab what you can in spite of your co-managers. If you don’t have the top claim spots, you have your work cut out for you. But if you’re up top, there are some valuable pickups available.
We’re going to break down the ten best options available on the waiver wire coming out of Sunday. Since fantasy waivers does not run until late Tuesday or early Wednesday in most leagues, we’ll update this with relevant Ravens and Raiders after Monday Night Football. The percentage in parenthesis is the roster percentage in ESPN leagues.
Raheem Mostert injured his knee and was lost for the game. Elijah Mitchell took over and is the guy to roster. If Mostert’s injury costs him any games, Hasty is worth stashing if you have a roster spot. He’s strictly an option if Mitchell in turn gets hurt, but given what Kyle Shanahan and Bobby Turner have done together with running backs, it’s not the worst idea to stash Hasty if you can. He’s not someone to waste your first waiver claim on, but he’s a worthy luxury.
Mark Ingram, RB, Texans (11%)
The Texans win over the Jaguars doesn’t mean they’re good, but we do now Ingram was the clear bell-cow back. He had 26 carries while Phillip Lindsay and David Johnson combined for 11. Ingram remains a better standard RB than PPR RB, but regardless, he’s worth noting as a volume play for the time being.
Sterling Shepard, WR, Giants (24.8%)
The Giants are a bad football team, but they could provide plenty of passing yardage playing catch-up. Shepard led the team with 9 targets in Week 1. Kenny Golladay might surpass him sooner than later, but Daniel Jones is clearly a fan. Shepard might be a guy you can slot into a flex with some regularity.
Kenneth Gainwell, RB, Eagles (3.5%)
Gainwell would appear to have usurped Boston Scott’s No. 2 role in this offense and he could remain busy. He had nine rushes for 37 yards and a score and two receptions for six yards. He’s worth adding if you have Sanders, but also if you are looking to stash an option in case Sanders gets hurt on another roster.
Cordarrelle Patterson, RB, Falcons (2.6%)
Mike Davis is the back here, but Patterson might just have found himself a role in the offense. He had seven rushes for a team-leading 54 yards and two receptions for 13 yards. This is a bad offense, but Patterson might very well be a spark.
Christian Kirk, WR, Cardinals (3.6%)
The Cardinals are loaded with young and old receivers alike. DeAndre Hopkins is the only sure thing, but Kirk has been on the verge of a breakout for a couple years now. On Sunday, he caught all five of his targets for 70 yards and two scores. A.J. Green had more targets (8), but Kirk was much more productive.
Jameis Winston, QB, Saints (26.2%)
Welcome back to Jameis! Winston threw for five touchdowns on only 148 yards against the Packers. He won’t be doing that every week, but given what Sean Payton and Pete Carmichael did for years with Drew Brees, maybe Winston is on the verge of a resurgence. He’s an intriguing option if you’re not entirely sold on your current QB options.
James O’Shaughnessy, TE, Jaguars (0.2%)
There’s not much upside in O’Shaughnessy, but with a rookie QB looking for a security blanket, O’Shaughnessy could prove to be a stable option. He had six receptions for 48 yards on eight targets in the Week 1 loss.
Zach Pascal, WR, Colts (2.4%)
The Colts running backs topped the receiving charts, leading the team in targets, receptions, and yards. That’s not ideal, but Zach Pascal was the one who found pay dirt twice. He caught four of five targets for 43 yards with two touchdowns. Parris Campbell and Michael Pittman, Jr. will get plenty of opportunities, but Pascal drew first blood and will look to build on it against the Rams in Week 2.
Nelson Agholor, WR, Patriots (30%)
Agholor led the Patriots with 72 yards and a score, all coming on five receptions and seven total targets. Jakobi Meyers led the team with nine targets, but considering he’s rostered on 61% rosters, you’re unlikely to land him. Agholor has never been a superstar, but if he has found a rapport with Mac Jones right out of the gate, that could bode well.
Juwan Johnson, TE, Saints (1.3%)
The tight end position is always a brutal one if you don’t get one of the top handful of options. Adam Trautman is the Saints starting tight end and led the team with six targets in Week 1, but Johnson was a key cog in the red zone. He might be worth a stash.