By Jay Dondon (@1littleindianjd)
Well, well, well. Glad to see everyone back for the grand re-opening of the Pawn Shop. Every year we do our best to research and draft the best of the best. Yet every year it seems we leave gems behind. It could be because of the lack of belief in rookies, guys having lackluster preseasons or the common “I’m not drafting that guy he has a bad situation”.
Week one has shown us there are still plenty of gems sitting around the shop. Some even nicer gems may end up here following over reaction Monday. So whether you are in a standard claim style waivers or Free Agent Auction Bidding (FAAB) style, there are guys worth burning the #1 spot or spending all your cash. So enough with the small talk. Let’s get into the Week one waiver wire gems. [Editor’s Note: All ownership percentages are for ESPN leagues]
Tarik Cohen, RB – Chicago Bears
The stories coming out of training camp probably should have put him on a few more radars. He is still available in 97.7% leagues though. He showed Sunday that he is ready for the NFL speed with 66 yards on the ground and another 47 on six catches. He should continue to see a steady workload on a weekly basis. Even with Jordan Howard in front of him Cohen has earned himself a decent share of work in that backfield. His size is a cause for concern but this is the type of explosive player you want on your roster. At the very least you don’t want him on your opponent’s roster, so claim him where you can.
Kerwynn Williams, RB – Arizona Cardinals
This is a handcuff that very few even had on their draft boards. Most David Johnson owners hadn’t even given it a second of thought. But as is the story every season, injuries can, and do, occur. As I write this we are still uncertain of the extent of DJ’s injury but early rumblings are anywhere from a couple weeks to a large chunk of the season. There is still a possibility that the Cardinals go out and sign a free agent like Matt Jones or Ryan Mathews [Editor’s Update: The cardinals signed DJ Foster off the New England Patriots practice squad]. We may not have total clarity to this situation by the time waivers are processed in you league but at the very least Williams is worth a pick up until anything is confirmed. Kerwynn is owned in only 0.9% of leagues and depending on the injury news this could change drastically.
Javorious Allen, RB – Baltimore Ravens
I hope Danny Woodhead’s injury isn’t major just like the rest of you. As the FLAFFL House Epic single “Soft Tissue Issues” has taught us though, hamstring injuries can linger. I know this feels like a yearly thing that the Allen’s name pops up. He is in a decent spot in terms of opportunity though. With Joe Flacco coming off the back injury, look for the Ravens to stay committed to the run. Allen totaled 71 yards on 21 carries after Woodhead left the game. So if the beloved Woodhead misses any time, Allen will continue to share the workload of this run heavy offence. He is worth a roster spot for teams without much depth at the position. Allen is only 0.4% owned. Yes, not even a full one percent. He could easily turn into a flex worthy option.
Cooper Kupp, WR – Los Angeles Rams
This guy went undrafted in most leagues purely based on his terrible situation. This was an offence [Editor’s Note: That’s offense for all you Americans. Please excuse Jay, he’s Canadian] no part of was desired by anyone playing fantasy football. That was prior to week one, of course. Maybe we were wrong. Maybe it was just that laughable defence of the colts that made it feel that way. Whatever it was, one thing was for certain. Jared Goff throwing to Cooper Kupp is going to be a “thing” in 2017. Kupp had four receptions for 75 yards and a TD. His average of 19 yards per reception lead his team and that won’t be the last time that happens this season. Kupp ownership is only 12.5% so hopefully your league is in the 87.5% that slept on him.
Kenny Golladay, WR – Detroit Lions
Following week one this hype train is back on the rails and rolling through a station near you. Throwing up two TD’s in week 1 right after having the dreaded Questionable tag all week was impressive. The way he laid out for that second TD catch of the day was just beautiful. While his four receptions were second to Tate who had 10, it will be the Red Zone targets that give Golladay the upside of a weekly WR2. Look for Mr. Moneybags, I mean Matthew Stafford, to do what he can to make this a great long term relationship. Kenny Golladay is owned in a measly 5.3% as of Sunday and he may not be able to make the column next week.
Nelson Agholor, WR – Philadelphia Eagles
In 2015, this promising first round pick was a sleeper in the minds of many owners until he fizzled (yes, that was for you Steve). But with Jordan Matthews gone and the failed Doriel Green-Beckham experiment of 2016, the Eagles may be getting rewarded for their patience. Agholor had six receptions, which put him two behind tight end Zach Ertz for the lead in week one, and he turned those into 86 yards and a TD. With Wentz poised to take a step forward in 2017, Agholor could be the player to watch this season. Agholor is 2.8% owned, but that won’t last long.
Austin Hooper, TE – Atlanta Falcons
Towards the end of 2016 he started to break out and it seems the fantasy world forgot all about it. Maybe we just decided he didn’t deserve the respect of many other tight ends in the NFL. Sure, his impressive stat line of yards and a TD only came on two catches. It’s that big play ability that makes Hooper worthy of a pick-up though. Matt Ryan showed trust last season with Hooper and clearly that trust hasn’t faded. There are a lot of mouths to feed on that offence but Hooper will eat more often than starve. Currently owned in 29.6% of leagues Hooper can help any tight end needy team immediately.
Well folks those are some my favourite gems this week. As always, remember who you drop is just as important as who to add, so stop by the FLAFFL house on all social media and we can help you out with all those decisions. May all you waiver adds turn to gold!