- The fantasy-football season has officially begun.
- After just one week of action, plenty of players have emerged as potential fantasy targets for the rest of the season.
- Here are 13 waiver-wire targets for fantasy players looking to fill in any gaps in their roster.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Fantasy-football season is officially on!
After a Week 1 full of action and surprises, fantasy players are scrambling on Monday morning to work the waiver wire and fill in any gaps in their rosters. Thankfully, plenty of stars have emerged after just one Sunday as potential stars of the fantasy season.
Below, we’ve collected 13 waiver-wire targets for fantasy players looking to add some depth to their rosters early in the season, going position by position to give you the best chance of earning your way to a first-round bye in the fantasy playoffs.
All ownership percentages come from ESPN, and scoring is based on a standard ESPN points-per-reception format.
Case Keenum, QB, Washington Redskins
ESPN fantasy ownership: 1.2%
Week 1 stats: 380 passing yards, three passing touchdowns – 27.2 fantasy points
One thing to know: While Washington wasn’t able to hold on to the win in Philadelphia, Keenum shredded the Eagles defence through the first half of the game. He spread the ball around with ease and looked much like his 2017 self who took the Minnesota Vikings to the NFC title game. By the end of Sunday, he was the fifth-highest-scoring quarterback in fantasy.
The Redskins might still hand the reins over to rookie Dwayne Haskins during the season, but for those in two-QB leagues or with an early bye week for their top starter, Keenum should be a workable replacement.
Gardner Minshew, QB, Jacksonville Jaguars
ESPN fantasy ownership: 0.1%
Week 1 stats: 274 passing yards, two passing touchdowns, one interception – 17.6 fantasy points
One thing to know: New Jaguars quarterback Nick Foles was knocked out of his very first game in Jacksonville with a shoulder injury just after throwing a brilliant touchdown pass to DJ Chark.
In relief, the Jaguars called upon Minshew, a rookie out of Washington State, who completed 22 of his 25 passes and looked remarkably poised for a first-time player.
As Foles is out with a broken clavicle until at least the second half of the season, Minshew is a must-add for anyone playing in a two-quarterback league.
Malcolm Brown, RB, Los Angeles Rams
ESPN fantasy ownership: 6.5%
Week 1 stats: 53 rushing yards, two touchdowns – 17.3 fantasy points
One thing to know: The Los Angeles Rams seemed to clearly signal on Sunday that their team would go with a running back by committee at least to start the year, which proved to be a boon for Brown.
Fantasy stud Todd Gurley found his rhythm in the second half against the Carolina Panthers. However, Brown looked like the more dynamic rusher for much of the game and made the most of his opportunities, finding the end zone twice.
With the Rams looking likely to once again put up a ton of points this season, Brown winds up a reliable flex option for fantasy players.
Chris Thompson, RB, Washington Redskins
ESPN fantasy ownership: 18.9%
Week 1 stats: 10 rushing yards, seven receptions, 68 receiving yards – 14.8 fantasy points
One thing to know: Thompson didn’t do much in terms of running the ball, but he was Case Keenum’s most reliable receiver on Sunday. He took advantage of both plays designed for him and any checkdowns he got from the Redskins quarterback.
For PPR players, Thompson’s numbers seemed to indicate that a big year could be on the horizon.
DeSean Jackson, WR, Philadelphia Eagles
ESPN fantasy ownership: 71.5%
Week 1 stats: Eight receptions, 154 receiving yards, two touchdowns – 35.4 fantasy points
One thing to know: Jackson was quick to remind Philadelphia Eagles fans that he was still one of the most electric deep threats in the NFL. Jackson connected with quarterback Carson Wentz on two big touchdown throws and a few more key first downs when the team was looking to put the game away.
He’s already owned in the majority of fantasy leagues, but if he’s available in yours, he’s likely the top player to add coming out of Week 1.
John Ross III, WR, Cincinnati Bengals
ESPN fantasy ownership: 4.8%
Week 1 stats: Seven receptions, 158 receiving yards, two touchdowns – 34.8 fantasy points
One thing to know: Few would have guessed that Andy Dalton would have the best passing day of his career without A.J. Green on the field – but thanks to a heroic effort from Ross, that’s just what happened.
The Bengals offence proved it could produce unlikely fantasy superstars last season with the breakout year of Tyler Boyd. This season it looks as though it could be Ross who takes the role.
Marquise Brown, WR, Baltimore Ravens
ESPN fantasy ownership: 28.2%
Week 1 stats: Four receptions, 147 receiving yards, two touchdowns – 30.7 fantasy points
One thing to know: “Hollywood” Brown looked like a star on Sunday. While he caught just four balls, two were deep beauties from Lamar Jackson that he took in to score with ease.
It’s unclear how much credit deserves to go to the Ravens offence as opposed to the dismal Miami Dolphins defence. But regardless, Baltimore showed that Brown is an important part of its big-play offence, and he seems to have quite a connection with Jackson.
John Brown, WR, Buffalo Bills
ESPN fantasy ownership: 35.3%
Week 1 stats: Seven receptions, 123 receiving yards, one touchdown – 25.3 fantasy points
One thing to know: Coming into the season, the thought of Brown catching deep balls from Josh Allen, the cannon-armed quarterback, had some fantasy owners drooling. On Sunday, Brown proved he’d be more than just a deep threat in the Buffalo offence. He should be a solid WR3 or flex option moving forward this season.
Terry McLaurin, WR, Washington Redskins
ESPN fantasy ownership: 7.3%
Week 1 stats: Five receptions, 125 receiving yards, one touchdown – 23.5 fantasy points
One thing to know: Another beneficiary of Washington’s surprisingly efficient offensive day was rookie wideout McLaurin, with five receptions on seven targets to finish as a top-15 fantasy receiver in Week 1. If you miss out on the top pickups at receiver on the waiver wire, McLaurin would be a more-than-suitable consolation prize.
DJ Chark, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars
ESPN fantasy ownership: 11.8%
Week 1 stats: Four receptions, 146 receiving yards, one touchdown – 24.6 fantasy points
One thing to know: Chark caught Nick Foles’ touchdown pass that ended with an injured shoulder for the Jaguars’ starting quarterback, but his production didn’t stop with Foles’ exit. Gardner Minshew played well in relief of Foles and connected with Chark two more times to help him finish as a top-10 receiver after Sunday’s action.
We’re still a few weeks from the start of bye-week fill-ins, but Chark might wind up having more value than a substitute by the end of the year.
T.J. Hockenson, TE, Detroit Lions
ESPN fantasy ownership: 30%
Week 1 stats: Six receptions, 131 receiving yards, one touchdown – 25.1 fantasy points
One thing to know: If you decided to pass on one of the elite tight ends in fantasy this year, Hockenson might be the most important waiver claim you can put in this week.
The Lions drafted Hockenson with a top-10 pick this year and on Sunday proved they intend to use him as a first-round pick.
Head coach Matt Patricia is a product of Bill Belichick, who knows a thing or two about taking advantage of an oversized tight end.
Mark Andrews, TE, Baltimore Ravens
ESPN fantasy ownership: 51%
Week 1 stats: Eight receptions, 108 receiving yards, one touchdown – 24.8 fantasy points
One thing to know: Andrews had plenty of buzz entering the season as a key part of the Ravens offence, and on Sunday he led the team in targets. Again, if you missed out on the likes of George Kittle, Zach Ertz, or Travis Kelce, Andrews is a solid pick to start in your tight end spot for the rest of the year.
Tennessee Titans defence
ESPN fantasy ownership: 40.1%
Week 1 stats: 13 points against, three interceptions, five sacks, one safety – 22 fantasy points
One thing to know: The Titans suffocated the Cleveland Browns offence after an offseason of hype, and they face off against backup quarterbacks for the next two weeks, with the Indianapolis Colts coming to Nashville next week, followed by a trip to Jacksonville.
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