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Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Week 3: Chris Carson, J.J. Nelson lead the way

September 19, 2017 Updated: September 20, 2017 at 9:33 am
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photo - Arizona Cardinals' J.J. Nelson (14) makes a catch against Indianapolis Colts' Quincy Wilson during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Arizona Cardinals' J.J. Nelson (14) makes a catch against Indianapolis Colts' Quincy Wilson during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy) 

Happy Waiver Wire on Tuesday, fantasy faithful. With Week 2 now in the books, it’s time to take a look at the best waiver pickups and takeaways from Sunday.

Waivers: The Tight End Meltdown

Greg Olsen, Rob Gronkowski, Jordan Reed, Jimmy Graham all suffered injuries in Week 2. Olsen is out the longest with a broken foot. Gronkowski, Graham and Reed are nursing lesser injuries that will likely leave them with a questionable tag for the week. If any of these guys miss time, I like tight end Benjamin Watson in Baltimore. Watson caught all eight of his targets Sunday for 91 yards against the Browns.  

Here are some other great waiver pick ups:

Chris Carson, RB, Seattle Seahawks

Not Eddie Lacy, not Thomas Rawls, not C.J. Prosise but it looks like Seahawks seventh-round rookie Carson will run away with the starting job. Rawls only saw five carries Sunday against the 49ers and Lacy was a healthy scratch (yikes). Carson carried the ball 20 times for 93 yards.

J.J. Nelson, WR, Arizona Cardinals

Nelson had five catches for 120 yards and a touchdown Sunday against the Colts, after catching five passes for 43 yards and a touchdown in Week 1. However, Nelson’s success in the future is contingent on fellow wideout John Brown missing time with a quad injury. It’s looking like Brown will miss Week 3 with head coach Bruce Arians saying “it doesn’t look hopeful” for the wide receiver to play against Dallas Monday night, according to Rotoworld. Nelson will see plenty of volume come Monday but his usage beyond Week 3 is unclear.

Rashard Higgins, WR, Cleveland Browns

Rejoice Colorado State fans, “Hollywood” Higgins had a breakout performance Sunday, leading the Browns in catches, targets and receiving yards against the Ravens with a seven-catches-for-95 yards stat line. He may be in for more work since Browns receiver Corey Coleman broke his hand in the contest.  

Mohamed Sanu, WR, Atlanta Falcons

Sanu is still the No.2 option in a high-powered Atlanta offense. Through two games, Sanu leads the team in targets (15) and receptions (11). Even though a clear-cut second to superstar Julio Jones, Sanu still has value, especially in points per reception leagues.

Chris Thompson, Samaje Perine RBs, Washington Redskins

Washington running back Rob Kelley is dealing with a rib cartilage injury and is currently day to day. Even if Kelley doesn’t miss any time, Thompson is worth your time. Not only did Thompson rush three times for 77 yards and a touchdown, he also has a role in the team’s passing offense. Thompson caught three passes for 29 yards in Sunday’s game. In Week 1, Thompson caught four passes for 52 yards and a touchdown. If Kelley misses time, backup Samaje Perine would see the bulk of the carries. He ended the day with 21 carries for 67 yards after Kelley went down midway through the second quarter.  

Evan Engram, TE, New York Giants

With so many tight ends popping up on injury reports, fantasy owners may want to take note of Engram. Engram lead the team in targets and caught four catches for 49 yards and a touchdown Monday in a losing effort against the Lions. He won’t continue to lead the team in targets as that will likely be Odell Beckham once he fully recovers from his ankle injury, but right now and hopefully in the future, Engram should be a big target for quarterback Eli Manning especially in the red zone.

Trevor Siemian, QB, Denver Broncos

Pop Quiz. Who is currently tied for the most touchdowns thrown and is a top two fantasy quarterback? If you guessed Tom Brady or Aaron Rodgers you’d be wrong. Siemian is lighting it up to begin this season. He’s thrown for 450 yards and six touchdowns so far. If you have a struggling quarterback like Kirk Cousins or Marcus Mariota, I like the idea rolling with Siemian while he’s hot.  

Carson Wentz, QB, Philadelphia Eagles

Wentz has thrown for 640 yards and four touchdowns through two games this year. The Eagles love to throw the ball, Wentz is tied for third in the league with 85 passing attempts through two games.

Deeper waiver pickups:

Jalen Richard, RB, Oakland Raiders
Devin Funchess, WR, Carolina Panthers

D’Onta Foreman, RB, Houston Texans

Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE, New York Jets

Jermaine Kearse, WR, New York Jets

Chris Johnson, RB, Arizona Cardinals

Takeaways:

Orange Crush vs. Bills Mafia: The Broncos’ secondary, a.k.a the No Fly Zone, may be the stars of Denver's defense but the run defense, which has been suspect for the past year, rebounded in a big way holding Ezekiel Elliott to just 8 yards on nine carries on Sunday. Unbelievable. Similarly, the Bills held Panthers back Jonathan Stewart to 40 yards on 15 carries and the Panthers to 77 yards rushing as a whole. Last week, I didn’t respect the Bills’ run defense and told fantasy owners to start Stewart. Boy was I wrong. Watch the Broncos-Bills game Sunday, if C.J. Anderson and/or LeSean McCoy get bottled up, it’s time to start worrying about these defenses being tough matchups for fantasy running backs.

Sunset for “All Day”: I liked Saints back Adrian Peterson to potentially lead the team in rushing touchdowns this season in a high-powered New Orleans offense but that simply hasn’t been the case. Peterson has 14 carries for 44 yards for a “meh” 3.1 yards-per-carry average. Mark Ingram has 69 yards and 4.9 yards per carry on the same 14 attempts. Peterson is being outperformed in an offense that clearly isn’t suited to his strengths.  


Seasick: The Seahawks' offense is horrible. Their first touchdown of the year went to receiver Paul Richardson after Russell Wilson avoided like three defenders on the play. Therein lies Seattle’s problem. The offensive line is terrible. I believe they’ll figure it out, the team always seems to start off slowly of late but until they begin to gel, notable Seahawks like Wilson, Doug Baldwin, Graham, need to be on fantasy benches.

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