Fantasy Football Week 2: 10 Under-the-Radar Point Machines You Must Play
So, Week 2 of fantasy football is coming up a lot faster than you might think. You've got your stars established, but you feel like you need some more help. The only players on the waiver wire are guys nobody seems to want, so why should you want them, right?
Wrong! Here's a list of 10 guys flying under everyone's radar who will be point machines for you in Week 2. When the term under-the-radar is used in this case, it describes players currently owned in less than 50 percent of fantasy leagues.
10. Matt Hasselbeck, QB, Seattle Seahawks
Why He's Under the Radar: Hasselbeck has been presumed dead for two or three seasons, due to age and the fact that whenever he plays, NFL defenses treated the Seahawks passer like Kenny on South Park.
Why He's a Point Machine: He's healthy for the first time in a long, long time. When he wasn't hurt, Hasselbeck was an effective quarterback. He's healthy now, and if Week 1 was any indication, he's ready to give your team a jump start. If you need a quarterback (Kevin Kolb owners?), he's a good one to grab.
9. Brandon Jackson, RB, Green Bay Packers
Why He's Under the Radar: Jackson was a seldom used backup running back to the most boringly consistent runner in the NFL, Ryan Grant. With no hope of a platoon in sight, Jackson was left to fantasy football purgatory.
Why He's a Point Machine: Grant is out for the season with an ankle injury. This means Jackson is suddenly the Packers' every-down running back, and will see the lion's share of the carries from this point forward. He's a good back with big play potential, and should get you 10 points a week, no problem.
8. Peyton Hillis, RB, Cleveland Browns
Why He's Under the Radar: Hillis came to Cleveland as part of the trade that sent Brady Quinn to Denver. He's a power back who started the year third on the Brown's depth chart.
Why He's a Point Machine: The former Arkansas Razorback has produced whenever he's been given the ball in the NFL. He did well in Denver, and he did well Sunday for the Browns, racking up 41 yards and a touchdown on nine carries. Hillis has never gotten love in the NFL, despite proving he can produce points regularly. Until someone else grabs the starting running back spot in Cleveland, use Hillis.
7. Mark Clayton WR, St. Louis Rams
Why He's Under the Radar: Remember when Clayton was a highly regarded first round pick of the Ravens, with a ton of upside? That was a long, long time ago. Clayton had underwhelmed in Baltimore since his arrival, and the team dealt him to St. Louis this offseason.
Why He's a Point Machine: Clayton appeared to have found the right team on Sunday, racking up a career high 10 receptions and 119 yards. He's still got all the tools that made him a first round pick, and now, with no one else for Sam Bradford to throw to, expect him to get a steady dose of targets all year long.
6. Marcedes Lewis, TE, Jacksonville Jaguars
Why He's Under the Radar: Despite being easily the biggest target the Jacksonville Jaguars have to throw to, Lewis is also one of the more underutilized tight ends in football. He doesn't have an explosive speed, and is more of a downhill runner.
Why He's a Point Machine: If Sunday was any indication, after three years of Lewis starting in Jacksonville, the Jaguars have figured out that he's basically unstoppable in the red zone. Lewis had two catches for 31 yards and two touchdowns on Sunday against the Broncos, and figures to be David Garrard's best option in the end zone.
He might not have the kind of yards other tight ends get, but he'll score you some touchdowns.
5. Brandon Tate, WR, New England Patriots
Why He's Under the Radar: Tate, a second year player out of North Carolina, opened the season fourth on the Patriots' wide receiver depth chart, and wasn't expected to factor much in the offense.
Why He's a Point Machine: Tate is an incredibly fast, elusive receiver who will get most of his value in the return game. He's got good hands, though, and if Moss, Welker or third string Julian Edelman get hurt, expect Tate to jump in with aplomb.
4. Mike Williams, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Why He's Under the Radar: You mean besides the fact that he plays in Tampa Bay? Ok, well how about the fact he shares his name with a certain former bust wide receiver who now plies his trade in Seattle? Or the fact that he skipped essentially his entire final year at Syracuse because of a rules violation?
Why He's a Point Machine: Despite being a bit of a nut job, Williams is arguably the most talented rookie receiver in the NFL. He's also the undisputed No. 1 wideout after a stellar preseason. In Week 1, he put up five catches for 30 yards and a touchdown. As quarterback Josh Freeman gets used to him, expect that number to rise.
3. Todd Heap, TE, Baltimore Ravens
Why He's Under the Radar: Much like Matt Hasselbeck, Heap was presumed to be dead, or at the very least on life support. Injuries had sapped the potential of one of the NFL's premier tight ends, and with a pair of talented rookies waiting in the wings, it looked like Heap's time was up.
Why He's a Point Machine: Monday night, he was one of Joe Flacco's favorite targets all night, racking up 72 yards on six receptions. He didn't score, but that will change as the year goes on. If he's healthy, it looks like he's finally clicking with the third-year Flacco, which means big things for the reanimated Heap.
2. Jordan Shipley, WR, Cincinnati Bengals
Why He's Under the Radar: Shipley, a rookie out of Texas, isn't flashy or fast or loud. And with all the chatter coming out of Cincy, it's easy to see why your radar might have been a little scrambled.
Why He's a Point Machine: Shipley isn't big and tall, or terribly fast. But he's got the best hands of any wideout in the rookie class, and he fits perfectly in Cincinnati's slot receiver spot. He gives the Bengals and Carson Palmer a shiny new weapon they haven't had before, and Palmer used it to full effect on Sunday, hitting Shipley for five receptions for 82 yards. Expect that trend to continue.
1. Nate Washington, WR, Tennessee Titans
Why He's Under the Radar: Washington signed with the Titans before last season, and took a trip down Obscurity Boulevard. He's the forgotten man in Tennessee.
Why He's a Point Machine: While Vince Young may have forgotten Washington last season, he didn't forget him in Week 1. Washington tallied 88 yards on three catches, and added a touchdown for good measure. He's the team's best deep threat and, until Justin Gage comes back, he's their best receiver too. Even when Gage returns, expect Washington to have some big days.