Week 2 Waiver Wire: Breakout Fantasy Football Pickups After Opening Sunday

Maurice Moton@@MoeMotonFeatured ColumnistSeptember 13, 2021

Week 2 Waiver Wire: Breakout Fantasy Football Pickups After Opening Sunday

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    Lon Horwedel/Associated Press

    With Week 1 afternoon games in the books, fantasy managers should take a peek at what may rise to the top of the waiver wire for Week 2.

    Typically, the first slate of NFL Sunday games comes with surprises and, unfortunately, injuries. This year didn't start out any different. Therefore, managers must make some adjustments and jump ahead of the curve on players who may take on bigger roles in the next few weeks.

    On Sunday evenings, following 1 p.m. ET and 4 p.m. ET contests, we'll look ahead at potential short- and long-term fantasy breakouts available in at least 40 percent of Yahoo leagues.

    In a look at Week 2, one running back will emerge as a must-have pickup, and another tailback put himself back on the fantasy radar. Because of soft matchups and solid workloads, two wide receivers rostered in less than 34 percent of Yahoo leagues could put up big numbers.

Week 2 Waiver-Wire Pickups

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    Phelan M. Ebenhack/Associated Press

    Week 2 Waiver-Wire Pickups

    QB Teddy Bridgewater, Denver Broncos (11 percent rostered)

    QB Jameis Winston, New Orleans Saints (43 percent rostered)

    RB Elijah Mitchell, San Francisco 49ers (7 percent rostered)

    RB Mark Ingram II, Houston Texans (19 percent rostered)

    WR Tim Patrick, Denver Broncos (1 percent rostered)

    WR Nelson Agholor, New England Patriots (33 percent rostered)

    WR Christian Kirk, Arizona Cardinals (13 percent rostered)

    WR Zach Pascal, Indianapolis Colts (1 percent rostered)

RB Mark Ingram II, Houston Texans (19 Percent Rostered)

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    Matt Patterson/Associated Press

    Don't expect Mark Ingram II to rank among the top 15 running backs in fantasy scoring on a consistent basis, but his touch volume elevates him on the waiver-wire list.

    Against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Ingram led the Texans backfield with 26 carries. Phillip Lindsay logged the second-most with eight, and David Johnson had just three rush attempts.

    Even though all three Texans running backs scored a rushing or receiving touchdown in a 37-21 win over the Jaguars, managers should always target the No. 1 running back in a group, especially if he leads the other ball-carriers in rush attempts by a wide margin.

    Also, according to Pro Football Focus' Nathan Jahnke, Ingram led the Texans running backs in snap count with 35 over Johnson (22), Lindsay (20) and Rex Burkhead (10).

    In his age-31 term, Ingram isn't likely to sustain his heavy workload, but he's worth a pickup as a potential flex option against the Cleveland Browns.

RB Elijah Mitchell, San Francisco 49ers (6 Percent Rostered)

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    Lon Horwedel/Associated Press

    Elijah Mitchell will likely top the list among waiver-wire adds going into Week 2.

    The San Francisco 49ers listed rookie third-round running back Trey Sermon as a healthy scratch. Raheem Mostert went down early in the first half with a knee injury and didn't return to action. As a result, Mitchell handled the bulk of the carries against the Detroit Lions, logging 19 rush attempts for 104 yards and a touchdown.

    Head coach Kyle Shanahan made a comment that should encourage managers to favor Mitchell over Sermon for at least the next few weeks. After the game, he told reporters that the latter didn't head into the season as a top-three tailback on the roster.

    With Mostert already battling an injury, Mitchell should have a steady workload with JaMycal Hasty, who recorded one carry for three yards and a touchdown Sunday, behind him.

    A rookie sixth-round pick out of Louisiana, Mitchell could make an immediate splash in Shanahan's run-heavy offense.

WR Nelson Agholor, New England Patriots (32 Percent Rostered)

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    Steven Senne/Associated Press

    Nelson Agholor tied for second among the New England Patriots in targets (seven) Sunday. He hauled in five passes for 72 yards and a touchdown in a 17-16 loss to the Miami Dolphins.

    While managers may have wanted to see how rookie first-rounder Mac Jones would fare under center and where he would go with the football, Jakobi Meyers (nine targets) and Nelson seem like the signal-caller's lead options among the Patriots' perimeter pass-catchers (wideouts and tight ends).

    Remember, Agholor emerged as the go-to wide receiver who stretched the field for the Las Vegas Raiders last season. Perhaps he has some leftover fantasy sizzle this year with Jones. At least for now, the 28-year-old looks like a solid pickup who can produce consistently every week.

    In Week 2, Nelson will go up against the New York Jets. Their young secondary played well for most of Sunday's outing against the Carolina Panthers, though the veteran receiver should have opportunities to make some splash plays and score with a sizeable target share.

WR Tim Patrick, Denver Broncos (1 Percent Rostered)

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    Adam Hunger/Associated Press

    Denver Broncos wideout Jerry Jeudy will probably sit out multiple games. In Sunday's contest against the New York Giants, he suffered a high ankle sprain, per NFL Network's Tom Pelissero.

    Because of Jeudy's injury and likely absence, Tim Patrick may see more looks in the passing game. The latter had an efficient Week 1 outing, hauling in all four of his targets for 39 yards and a touchdown.

    Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater doesn't inspire a lot of fantasy confidence, but next week, the Broncos will play the Jacksonville Jaguars, who gave up 37 points to quarterback Tyrod Taylor and the Houston Texans. Managers should start players on the Broncos offense in a favorable matchup.

    Coming off a torn ACL, wideout Courtland Sutton had a quiet season-opening performance against Big Blue, recording one catch for 14 yards. Patrick could rack up receptions, yards and reach pay dirt against the Jaguars.


    Fantasy scoring is courtesy of FantasyPros.