The NFL wraps up Week with a Monday Night Football doubleheader, but in the meantime, it’s time to start considering the fantasy football waiver wire. 14 of 16 contests are completed, and whether or not your Week 1 matchup is a wrap, you’ll need to figure out how to improve your roster for Week 2.
Injuries have started to shake up depth charts, and we have seen some unexpected performers shine. Who you claim off waivers in these first weeks of the season could make or break a fantasy championship.
With that in mind, here are 10 players with under 50% ownership at traditional Yahoo! fantasy leagues that owners can consider picking up in their leagues.
Terry McLaurin, Washington, WR (Two percent)
A rookie third-round pick, McLaurin dominated in his first NFL game, catching 5-of-7 targets for 125 yards and a TD. Some of McLaurin’s advanced metrics were outstanding, averaging approximately 19 air yards per target, fourth highest among all receivers in Week 1. McLaurin showcased high-end top speed, reaching 21.23 mph on his 69-yard TD reception, per the league’s player tracking system — one of the five fastest top speeds tracked by ball carriers in Week 1. McLaurin is a candidate to continue to be a big play threat for a Washington passing game that lacks other playmakers.
Marquise Brown, Baltimore Ravens, WR (30 percent)
Brown, a speedy deep threat, started at WR in his first NFL game and caught 4-of-5 targets for 147 yards and 2 TDs. Brown showcased game-breaking speed, outperforming his expected run after the catch based on factors such as defender distance by the best margin among all Week 1 ball-carriers. He reached 20.33 mph on an 83-yard TD catch, one of the 10 fastest tracked speeds among all ball carriers in Week 1, and was targeted deep down the field, averaging about 18 air yards per target, seventh highest among receivers in Week 1. Brown looks primed to continue to be a big play, deep ball threat for QB Lamar Jackson to threaten to take the top off the defense and open up more space underneath.
Giovani Bernard, Cincinnati Bengals, RB (13 percent)
Cincinnati’s top RB Joe Mixon injured his ankle during Week 1 and his status is uncertain heading into Week 2. If Mixon can’t play, Bernard is in line for a substantial boost in role. Bernard averaged 18 touches per game in two starts in place of an injured Mixon in Weeks 3 and 4 last season. Download the DK Live app for up-to-the-minute news on Mixon’s status.
D.K. Metcalf, Seattle Seahawks, WR (37 percent)
59 percent of quarterback Russell Wilson’s air yards went to Metcalf in Week 1, the highest rate among all receivers. The rookie physical specimen ranked in the top 10 in average air yards per target and recorded 89 receiving yards on six targets. Metcalf is oozing with potential and already looks like Seattle’s top option at WR.
Jamison Crowder, New York Jets, WR (46 percent)
Crowder’s 17 targets led all receivers in Week 1. While his average air yards per target was logged at a minuscule three yards, Crowder could be a PPR contributor if the Jets continue to throw short passes under new coach Adam Gase. QB Sam Darnold averaged just 5.6 air yards per target in Week 1, third fewest among QBs, and attempted 31 of his 41 attempts with an air distance under 10 yards.
Malcolm Brown, Los Angeles Rams, RB (11 percent)
Brown got 11 touches to Todd Gurley’s 15 as the Rams continue their end of 2018 trend of easing Gurley’s workload due to knee issues. Five of Brown’s 11 touches were in the red zone, and he got into the end zone twice with the red zone carries. If Gurley ends up missing time, Brown could be in line for a heavy workload in an explosive offense.
John Ross III, Cincinnati Bengals, WR (7 percent)
With A.J. Green (ankle) sidelined, Ross stepped up, seeing a heavy 12 targets, fifth most among all receivers in Week 1. His average air yards per target was better than average, and he took two of his catches to the house, outperforming his expected run after the catch by the ninth best margin among players to record a catch in Week 1.
John Brown, Buffalo Bills, WR (49 percent)
Brown got a strong 10 targets in Week 1, tied for 12th most, and recorded a better than average air yards per target. 46 percent of QB Josh Allen’s air yards went Brown’s way, the sixth highest percentage among receivers in Week 1. Brown capitalized by catching seven passes for 123 yards and appears to be the top downfield option for the Bills.
Chris Conley, Jacksonville Jaguars, WR (One percent)
42 percent of Jacksonville’s air yards went to Conley in Week 1, which ranked in the top 12 among all receivers, and Conley took advantage, recording 97 receiving yards and a TD on six catches.
Case Keenum, Washington, QB (Two percent)
Keenum got the start over rookie QB Dwayne Haskins and performed very well, completing 30-of-45 passes for 380 yards and three TDs. Keenum was one of the better QBs at outperforming his expected completion percentage in Week 1 based on factors such as defender distance and time to throw and recorded the sixth longest completed pass by air distance. Keenum had a poor 2018 season, but is just one year removed from a productive 2017 season. While Haskins is a threat eventually take over later in the season, Keenum is a very low-owned option in the short term and has a Week 2 matchup vs. a Cowboys defense that allowed nearly 500 total yards to the Giants in Week 1.