So draft season is officially behind us. And you may have some remorse regarding some aspects of your roster. This happens with everyone, even yours truly. I walked away from my biggest league feeling somewhat iffy about the team I drafted. But that’s not the end of the world. This is where we can improve our roster and this helps get a head start on next week as well. So stop wallowing in your self pity. If you sit back and let the waiver wire pass you by you will lose your league. You need to be diligent and always have your finger on the pulse of the wire. For the Thursday article, I won’t be touching on FAAB since you won’t be making too many FAAB bids except on guys who get dropped. But for this you’re picking up free agents and getting ahead for next week.



Jameis Winston TB – It’s hard to believe he’s just barely over 50% owned in ESPN leagues when he could get into a shootout on Sunday against the 49ers. Depending on the site you’re looking at the Over/Under for this game is between 50.5 and 52.0. That’s the second-highest total behind Kansas City/Jacksonville. Whether you’ve read a draft guide article, participated in the Mock Draft Army, or checked out this week’s DFS QB Coach, you’ll know about the upside of Winston. It’s a new head coach coming to Tampa Bay in Bruce Arians and he loves to throw the ball. And if Tampa falls behind, then Winston will air it out. And he has great receiving weapons in Mike Evans , Chris Godwin , and O.J. Howard . Jameis Winston has the ability to be a top ten quarterback in fantasy and this could be the year he fulfills the prophecy.

Jimmy Garoppolo SF – So the other quarterback in the matchup mentioned above deserves a shoutout. Jimmy G is under 30% owned on ESPN, but over 50% owned on Yahoo. So he’s probably only available in shallow leagues on Yahoo, but on ESPN he should probably owned in more leagues. Also, if you get a jump on Jimmy G this week you’ll get him in a great matchup next week in Cincinnati. The Bengals defense doesn’t project as an elite option and the 49ers should go into Southwest Ohio and get a win. For this week, we’ve already touched on how it could be a high scoring affair. And Jimmy G hasn’t really shaken off the stigma of his overrated run in 2017 so he still has something to prove after tearing his ACL a year ago.

Matthew Stafford DET – This is a pretty decent recommendation for deeper leagues. The Lions are going into Arizona this week and they’re favored by a field goal against a presumably weak defense. Remember, Stafford played through broken ribs last season and while the Lions may want to run the ball more, they drafted T.J. Hockenson with the eighth overall pick. It’s pretty clear Matt Patricia is hoping he landed the next Gronk.


Running Backs

Nyheim Hines IND – Hines is a guy who has seen his ownership drop as draft season comes to a close. Hines value exists primarily in PPR formats and if the Colts are going to fall behind and trail as much as we expect, then Hines can benefit from that game script. He caught 63 passes for 425 yards last season and he could actually improve upon those numbers if the Colts can’t establish the run game with Marlon Mack , who has had issues staying healthy at times. Hines is mostly a stash for now in shallow leagues, but he could be a PPR diamond in the rough.

Justin Jackson LAC – Jackson is still under 40% owned across most formats, but earlier this week it was announced the Chargers would halt contract talks with Melvin Gordon until the offseason. The Chargers have formally announced that the running game would be split between Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson and you assume Ekeler will get most of the workload. But Jackson should be rostered especially if you are an Austin Ekeler owner. Jackson averaged 4.12 yards per carry last season on a very small workload. For all the talk about Jackson being a better fantasy value in draft season, they seem to forget that Ekeler should get most of the workload, but Jackson should be rostered in the event of an Ekeler injury, and even if that doesn’t happen, Jackson will get his share of work.

Tony Pollard DAL – You may or may not have to place a waiver claim for Pollard depending on if he was dropped in your league following the Ezekiel Elliott news. Pollard may still get some playing time Sunday against the Giants. Jason Garrett has said that Zeke will get about 20-25 “reps,” and it’s more likely he’ll see 20-25 snaps, rather than 20-25 touches. So Pollard will still get some playing time and after that he likely gets relegated to the sideline unless Zeke gets hurt. Only spend up on a FAAB bid if you own Zeke because the handcuff wouldn’t hurt. Pollard showed some promise in the preseason so he’s got some appeal this week.

Dare Ogunbowale TB – The Buccaneers’ backfield is a mess. Peyton Barber is still atop the depth charts and Ronald Jones still hasn’t done much to impress the coaching staff. Barber was a RB1 on his own team and he was going in the mid-to-late rounds of fantasy drafts. That’s pretty solid value for a guy who will get the opportunity to carry the ball 12-15 times per game, but he only averaged 3.7 yards per carry so there’s an opportunity for someone to take the reigns and Bruce Arians isn’t the kind of guy that wants to screw around. He’ll likely ride the hot hand and why not take a shot on Dare Ogunbowale , who is currently listed third on the Bucs’ depth chart? Ogunbowale had some decent results in the preseason while also showing some flash in the passing game. He’s available almost everywhere and if you need RB depth then this is a guy worth picking up before it’s too late.


Wide Receivers

Donte Moncrief PIT – Moncrief is likely only available in shallower leagues, but it certainly wouldn’t hurt to own the WR2 in Pittsburgh’s offense. In Pittsburgh’s third preseason game, Moncrief was on the field much more than James Washington was, which is a telling sign of how the Steelers feel about Moncrief. It’s not that Washington doesn’t have upside and he’s worth rostering in the deeper formats, but Moncrief will get targets and won’t be lining up opposite the defense’s best cornerback(s) like JuJu Smith-Schuster .

Anthony Miller CHI – Miller’s available in about 50% of leagues and he’s flying under the radar to an extent. He had seven touchdowns in his rookie campaign on just 54 total targets. Miller is the second wide receiver on the depth chart behind Allen Robinson . He should see easily see an uptick in targets, receptions, and yards in his sophomore campaign.

Albert Wilson MIA – As long as Ryan Fitzpatrick is the starting quarterback, Wilson should be owned in deeper leagues and possibly 12-teamers as well. Fitzpatrick loves to target wide receivers lining up in the slot and he’s shown big play abilities in the past. Last season, in week six, Wilson had six catches for 155 yards with two touchdowns. It wouldn’t be too surprising if he develops into Ryan Fitzpatrick ’s favor target. The downside is that if/when the Dolphins make the switch to Josh Rosen it will put Wilson’s value in a bit of a limbo state.

N’Keal Harry NE – With news that Harry hit the IR a lot of fantasy players have dropped him to the waiver wire. If your league has an IR spot you should move in and add him. He can’t come off IR for roughly two months, but he’s worth rostering at least. New England invested a first-round pick in him and after getting no use out of Isaiah Wynn last year (an offensive line first-round pick), so they’d like to get use out of this year’s pick. There are still plenty of mouths to feed in the passing game and New England has been more committed to the run game. Still, he’s worth stashing in your IR spot.


Tight Ends

Darren Waller OAK – Darren Waller , one of the big storylines around HBO’s Hard Knocks, but Waller’s ownership is still fairly low. He’s a tight end worth flagging because there’s no reason he shouldn’t see four-to-six targets per game. Gruden loves to get his tight ends involved and Waller’s a nice big target for Derek Carr . Defenses will be keying in on Antonio Brown which could leave guys like Tyrell Williams and Darren Waller open. The departure of Jared Cook definitely helps Waller’s prospects as he could see 75-85 targets this year if he stays healthy.

Chris Herndon NYJ – It might be a little early to get him on your radar, but at least get some familiarity with monitoring Chris Herndon on waivers. He’s suspended for the first four games of the season and if you have some concerns regarding the tight end position, then Herndon should be a guy you target in the free agent pool. Herndon’s rookie year had its up’s and down’s. He had a three-game stretch early on catching a touchdown in each game. In week 16 he caught six passes for 82 yards and a score. He has some nice upside and his ownership is currently down because of his suspension. This is the kind of guy you should consider when scouring the waiver wire for a tight end.


Defense/Special Teams

Seattle Seahawks – Good to see everyone on Yahoo got the memo about the Seahawks this week. Seattle’s ownership went up to 70%. ESPN’s got some work to do as the Seahawks are owned in less than 20% of leagues, but they did see an 11% jump over the last 24 hours. The Seahawks have arguably the best D/ST matchup of the week against the Bengals who will be without A.J. Green and they could be without Cordy Glenn who did not participate in Wednesday’s practice. The Bengals offensive line is already hurting without their first-round pick Jonah Williams and Glenn’s absence could allow the Seahawks to put a ton of pressure on Andy Dalton . Four sacks could be a relatively modest floor for Sunday’s matchup. The Seahawks are currently 9.5-point favorites and the over/under isn’t very high at 43.5. If you want to get a jump on next week, the 49ers get the Bengals in week two and they’re owned in about five percent of leagues across the industry. The matchup isn’t as enticing as the Seahawks since San Francisco will be on the road, but it’s still serviceable.

Buffalo Bills (on Yahoo) – Surprisingly the Bills are only 46% owned on Yahoo, which is surprising because Yahoo players are usually a bit more “in the know” compared to other sites. If you play on Yahoo and have the Seahawks this week, it might not be a bad idea to look into stashing the Bills. They still have a good matchup against the Jets. New York added talent in the offseason, but so did the Bills who drafted Ed Oliver ninth overall. So the Bills could go out and get a few sacks on a young quarterback and net your team six-to-eight points. Another reason to stash the Bills is because they face the Giants in week two and then the Bengals in week three. I’ve preached this a few times, but the Bills are a great D/ST option the first three weeks of the season. They face three atrocious offensive lines and they could lead the NFL in sacks as a team through week three.

Baltimore Ravens (on ESPN) – The Ravens might be available in 10-to-12 team leagues on ESPN. Currently they’re only 47.8% owned with a phenomenal matchup on tap against Miami. The Dolphins just traded Laremy Tunsil and Kenny Stills so the passing game may not be as reliable and they already had one of the worst offensive lines in the league prior to the trade. The Ravens have a stout defense that is far too under owned on ESPN. The Ravens are favored by seven points and the over/under is currently set at a laughable 37.5.