2015 Fantasy Football, Week Two Waiver Wire: Target Mariota, Hillman
Week one of the 2015 fantasy football season is in the books. Now that’s we’ve seen all of our the players we invested in actually hit the field, it’s time to evaluate our decisions and determine if we need to stick to our guns or move and poach some players from the waiver wire. It’s always important to reflect on our “don’t panic” mantra. Week one is just week one. And if we invested in players during our draft our auction, we probably did so with reason. However, if injuries force your hand, you may need to send one of the players you invested in back to the wire to ensure team depth at other positions. At any rate, here are some names that you could consider snagging this week.
Tyrod Taylor | Bills
There was a ton of preseason buzz on the Bills’ new quarterback and we saw why with our own eyes this past Sunday. The former Virginia Tech star completed 19-of-24 passes (73.7% completion %) for 195 yards and a touchdown through the air, then added nine rushes for an additional 41 yards on the ground. Taylor could offer your team the dual threat passing and rushing potential on a weekly basis, but it’s unlikely that you’ll start in him in anything less than a 14-teamer or a two quarterback league for the time being. Stash him if you have the means.
Marcus Mariota | Titans
The second overall pick in the NFL’s 2015 draft arguably stole the show in week one. Throught the air, Mariota connected on 13-of-16 passes for 209 yards and four touchdowns — each of which landed in the hands of a different pass catcher. He also added six yards on the ground on a couple of carries. Just a really impressive outing for a rookie, although, we may look back at this and question the ability of the Tampa defense. Mariota’s average depth of target of 6.4 yards finished him just 19th among signal callers entering Monday, but his 1.39 points per drop back were best among all quarterbacks.
Consider in leagues: 12-team
Waiver Wire Priority: 6 or lower
Spend this much FAAB to acquire: 10%-12%
Players I’d drop for him: Jameis Winston, Blake Bortles, Josh McCown
Ronnie Hillman | Broncos
C.J. Anderson and the Broncos faced a tough Ravens defense in week one and failed to really get it going at any point. He did suffer an ankle and toe injury, leading to backup Ronnie Hillman getting some shares of workload out of the backfield. Hillman took advantage of the opportunity as well — just as he always seems to do. He played just 17 snaps, but carried the ball 12 times for 41 yards (3.4 y/c) with a long of 11 yards. Anderson was on the field for Monday’s practice, but didn’t participate. With the Broncos having a short week — Denver will meet Kansas City for Thursday Night Football — and missing practice on Monday, Hillman figures to see a boost in snaps against the Chiefs. He’s the top running back addition this week, but I don’t think he warrants a number one waiver priority.
Andre Ellington suffered a mild PCL sprain and is expected to miss at least week two’s contest against the Bears. Each of the names listed above could be added, depending on your team’s needs. If you need something short-term, I like the addition of Chris Johnson. Just reading some of the quotes from Bruce Arians leads me to believe that the veteran will likely get the first crack at carries ini Ellington’s absence. For those thinking about long-term, David Johnson is the better way to go. Chris Johnson carried the rock 10 times for 37 yards (3.7 y/c) but failed to haul in the only pass thrown his direction. David Johnson didn’t earn a carry, but connected with Carson Palmer on one pass (two targets) for a 55-yard gain resulting in a touchdown. Big play.
Here’s a duo of ball carriers with ownership levels hovering around 50%. So there’s a good chance they’re spoken for in your league at this time, but if by chance they’re available, feel free to give them a home.
The Chargers found themselves down early, leading the Chargers to call Woodhead’s numbers early and often on Sunday. He carried the ball 12 times for 42 yards (3.5 y/c) and two scores while reeling in four passes on six targets for another 20 yards through the air. Sankey on the other hand played just 23 snaps, but earned 12 carries for 74 yards (6.2 y/c) and a touchdown while inducing three missed tackles. He caught another two balls for 12 yards and a touchdown as well. I feel like we can expect more of the same from Woodhead going forward depending on game script and hope for the same from Sankey.
Consider in leagues: 10-team
Waiver Wire Priority: 3 or lower
Spend this much FAAB to acquire: 10%
Players I’d drop for him: Andre Williams, Fred Jackson, Jonas Gray
Donte Moncrief | Colts and Stevie Johnson | Chargers
Moncrief connected with Andrew Luck six times in 11 attempts for 46 yards and a score. He averaged 7.7 yards per reception, but only 1.7 yards after the catch per reception. Moncrief’s spike in fantasy value is directly correlated to T.Y. Hilton’s injured knee. Keep an eye on Hilton’s health as your league’s waiver wire/FAAB bids are due to determine exactly how much you should be investing.
Stevie Johnson played 72-of-79 snaps in his first game for the Chargers and caught each of his six targets from quarterback Phillip Rivers for 82 yards and a score. He averaged 13.7 yards per reception and 13.3 yards after the catch per reception. The Chargers should continue to throw the ball a lot, making Johnson a valuable piece going forward.
James Jones | Packers
So he wasn’t good enough for the Giants, big deal. He landed back in Green Bay and it seemed like he never even left. Jones played in 55-of-60 snaps, hauling in four passes on four targets for 51 yards and two touchdowns. All this guy does is catch passes (and touchdowns) from Aaron Rodgers! You could make a case that he’s this week’s top pass catcher on the waiver wire, but I’m not using my top priority on him.
Consider in leagues: 10-team
Waiver Wire Priority: 3 or lower
Spend this much FAAB to acquire: 15%
Players I’d drop for him: Brian Quick, DeVante Parker, Ty Montgomery
Ladarius Green put in an impressive performance against the Lions on Sunday. He caught 5-of-6 passes for 74 yards and a touchdown. He accumulated 50 yards after the catch — and looked silky smooth doing so. Antonio Gates may be back in a few games, but Green will hold it down until then and could be the tight end of the future for the Bolts. Ebron, the former first-round pick, is healthy and off to a quick start for Detroit. The former Tar Heel caught 4-of-5 targets for 53 yards (13.3 y/c) and a touchdown on Sunday in San Diego. If the chemistry between he and Matthew Stafford heat up, he could be a forced to be reckoned with in the short and long-term.
Thanks to our friends at PFF for the data used in the article.