Week 1 of the 2017 NFL season is in the books and there are already several notable injuries that will make owners lash out in fury. However, now is not the time to panic as the waiver wire may yield some long term answers at positions of need.
Let’s take a look to see what might be available in your leagues…
Alex Smith – Kansas City Chiefs
Let’s face it, there’s probably not a ton of options on the wire at the quarterback position, but a guy like Alex Smith can be a solid option to plug and play, depending on the match-up. Alex went off on the Patriots in week 1. Most of that can obviously be traced back to the weapons he has available, but the noteworthy development was his willingness to fire the ball deep . IF (notice the caps on IF), Smith has somehow found how to push the ball downfield he will boost his value immensely and could become a solid weekly start. Adding Alex to a roster that has little in the way of a second quarterback is a good move and likely to pay some dividends at some point in 2017.
Sam Bradford – Minnesota Vikings
Bradford just quietly goes about the business of being efficient in the red zone on a team that may get there more often with rookie running back Dalvin Cook toting the rock. There are solid enough weapons surrounding him to make Sam an interesting weekly option and so long as tight end Kyle Rudolph is healthy the chances of Bradford putting up more than one touchdown a week improve greatly. If you’re thinking about adding some depth at quarterback you may want to put in a claim on Sam Bradford.
Tarik Cohen – Chicago Bears
The first thing to take note of with Tarik is the number of times he touched the ball in his first ever NFL start. He was targeted 12 times for 8 catches and toted the rock 5 times, which shows that the coaching staff has immediate faith in their young addition to running back. Cohen should continue to get more opportunities throughout 2017 and is nearly a must add for owners that are immediately seeing issues with their rosters at RB.
Kerwynn Williams – Arizona Cardinals
The obvious reason that Kerwynn is on this list would be the injury to star running back David Johnson. Williams is likely going to be the touch leader out of what will be a committee approach at running back and he will get the first crack at goal line carries. He’s not going to put up anything close to the numbers that owners have come to expect from Johnson, but Williams will serve as a touchdown dependent option to fill the void.
Javorius “Buck” Allen – Baltimore Ravens
Allen had more reps on the field than ‘starter’ Terrance West and with Danny Woodhead suffering an injury that could see him sidelined for several weeks it would appear that Buck is in line for an expanded role this season. He comes with the risk of losing carries near the goal line to West, but he does come with the upside of thieving enough touches from Terrance to potentially supplant him as a three down back. This is an interesting situation developing in Baltimore and getting Allen now could provide long haul gains for your roster.
Kenny Golladay – Detroit Lions
If you paid attention to our fantasy rankings or NFL draft information for 2017 then you already now that we were advocating snagging Kenny Golladay in fantasy drafts this season. Golladay had a week one performance that will force the hand of the coaching staff to keep him no less than the third option at receiver and he will definitely see reps near the goal line. He may be a weekly boom/bust option but the arrow is definitely pointing up for Golladay.
Nelson Algholor – Philadelphia Eagles
Algholor had an impressive start to the season but the noticeable part of his Sunday was his usage in two wide receiver sets, taking snaps away from Torrey Smith. If Nelson continues to shine and his role expands permanently beyond being a slot option, Agholor may have WR2 value playing on the opposite side of the field from Alshon Jeffrey.
Corey Davis – Tennessee Titans
Davis saw an unexpected workload in week one which leans toward the coaching staff believing they have their number one option in the passing game with the rookie wide out. Corey saw a team high ten targets so it’s obvious that Marcus Mariota wants to get Davis involved. Corey may become a high volume reception player in a Titans offense that may need to pass more than some believe. He’s a solid addition to any roster and a definite add in PPR leagues.
Austin Hooper – Atlanta Falcons
Hooper only had 2 receptions on two targets, but he made the most out of both of them. The question moving forward will be whether or not the Falcons make an effort to keep the talented tight end involved in the passing game. He’s an intriguing add that may be on the verge of a breakout season.
Jessie James – Pittsburgh Steelers
James is a player that we advocated taking in any format this dynasty season because of his red zone appeal in the Steelers offense. With two touchdowns in week one, it appears that the preseason work that Ben Roethlisberger put in with James is paying off. Jessie is a must add for teams with little depth or questionable starters at tight end.
Charles Clay – Buffalo Bills
So long as Tyrod Taylor is the starter in Buffalo there will be some points to be had on a weekly basis from Charles Clay. He may not find pay dirt but he shouldn’t leave you with any goose eggs in the weekly total.
Greg Zuerlein – Los Angeles Rams
The Rams offense appears to be on the right track with second year quarterback Jared Goff making noticeable improvement. This is a good time to have Greg Zuerlein as your kicker, as the L.A. offense will likely push into enemy territory often but still struggle to get into the end zone, giving ‘Greg the Leg’ plenty of opportunities to boot it in from distance. If you had Caleb Sturgis as your starting kicker you should be after Zuerlein immediately.