The key to any successful fantasy football season is picking up players from the waiver wire that turn out to be stars. These additions to your roster can make the difference between dominating everyone in your league and watching your fantasy playoffs unfold from the losers bracket.
Deciding which players to pick up after the first week of the season can be kind of a crap shoot. Some guys have a huge first week of the season and never come close to those numbers again, while for others their Week 1 outburst is just a sign of things to come.
Here are the five names that will be hottest on your waiver wire and my analysis on whether or not they're worth your time.
I have not been the biggest believer in Cam Newton and one week is not going to change my mind. However, I must give credit where credit is due and Newton had an unbelievable debut as an NFL quarterback.
While compiling over 400 yards passing along with two touchdowns through the air and one more on the ground, Newton was nothing short of spectacular against the Arizona Cardinals. While the Cardinals' porous pass defense may have contributed to those numbers, Newton still absolutely shredded an NFL defense, something many people (including myself) were not sure he could do.
I am not ready to say I was completely off on my analysis of Newton as an NFL quarterback after one regular-season game (especially since the four preseason games before that seemed to confirm everything I thought).
What I am ready to do is tell you to go ahead and drop your fourth-string running back and pick up Newton until we figure out if his performance on Sunday was a fluke or not.
Just for a second try and forget this slide is about Rex Grossman and think about the fact that the quarterback of the Washington Redskins threw for over 300 yards and had two passing touchdowns with no interceptions.
Another thing to consider is the fact the Redskins face the Arizona Cardinals next week. That means Grossman will be facing the same Cardinals defense that surrendered over 400 yards of passing to Cam Newton in his NFL debut.
I think I have seen enough of Grossman to not want to put my faith in him over the course of an entire season. However, considering his matchup next week he might be worth taking a look at if you are a little shaky at your starting quarterback spot. If he continues to perform well he might be worth taking a chance on in a backup role.
While Ginn led the 49ers to victory, I would not count on him to do the same for your fantasy team. Ginn has almost no value as a receiver and will likely only score you significant fantasy points as a return man. The problem is, even the best return men in the league are not reliable sources of touchdowns.
Ginn is not a legitimate option for your fantasy team.
Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Early Doucet accumulated 105 yards and a touchdown against the Carolina Panthers on Sunday. In doing so, Doucet pulled off the almost impossible task of overshadowing the Cardinals' more famous receiver, Larry Fitzgerald.
I would not count on Doucet to outshine Fitzgerald on a regular basis this year, but this may be the first of many solid efforts from the Arizona's "other" wide receiver. With Kevin Kolb now running the offense, it is possible the Cardinals offense will be potent enough to produce two receivers worth fantasy consideration.
Since defenses will continue to focus most of their attention on Fitzgerald, I believe Doucet is worth adding to your team as long as Kolb is throwing him the football.
Let me start off by saying I like Randall Cobb as a football player. I liked him at the University of Kentucky, I liked him when the Green Bay Packers drafted him in the second round and I really liked him after his NFL debut on Thursday night in which he scored two touchdowns.
If I were a general manager for an NFL franchise, I would definitely want Cobb on my team. However, as a fantasy owner, I do not want Cobb on my team.
The problem with Cobb is not really with Cobb at all; it is the fact that he is likely no better than the fifth option for Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (after Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, Jermichael Finley and Donald Driver).
It is very possible Cobb will be a great fantasy option in the future, but for 2011 his biggest value will come as a return man, and therefore will likely not be worth picking up for your team.