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2012 Fantasy Football Week 2 Waiver Wire Pickups: Fan’s Take

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Week 2 of the 2012 fantasy football season is typically the week with the most waiver wire action. With teams playing in their first regular season game of the season, breakout players emerge and players' values start to become more certain. Here's a look at some players that are likely available on the waiver wire and can be played for Week 2 action.

The following players are all owned in under 50% of Yahoo! fantasy football leagues as of September 11, 2012.

Quarterback

Alex Smith, San Francisco 49ers (vs. Detroit Lions, 44% owned)

In a huge Week 1 contest against the Green Bay Packers, Smith's shed his "game manager" label as the 49ers won 30-22. Finding Randy Moss and Vernon Davis for touchdowns, Smith dismantled a weak Packers secondary and put up good numbers even with the production on the ground by Frank Gore. While he's never been a fantasy quarterback expected to put up huge numbers, which is largely due to the team's run-heavy mentality, Smith will face a depleted Lions secondary in Week 2, making him a worthy starter to consider. Looking past this week, Smith's poise and effectiveness in the passing game makes him a good bye-week replacement, pending matchups, moving forward.

Honorable mentions: Minnesota Vikings' Christian Ponder (at Indianapolis Colts, 12% owned), Buffalo Bills' Ryan Fitzpatrick (vs. Kansas City Chiefs, 41% owned), Arizona Cardinals' Kevin Kolb (at New England Patriots, 2% owned)

Running back

Alfred Morris, Washington Redskins (at St. Louis Rams, 32% owned)

While it's borderline-crazy to trust a Mike Shanahan-coached running back, Morris' performance against the New Orleans Saints was too good to ignore. With 96 yards and two touchdowns in his NFL debut, the sixth-round pick "right now, is our starting running back" according to Shanahan. While his value can change on a weekly basis, as Shanahan can easily feature Roy Helu or Evan Royster depending on matchups, he was a workhorse with 28 carries in Week 1, making him one of the few "starting" running backs available in a majority of fantasy leagues. Up against a Rams team that allowed two touchdowns to Lions running back Kevin Smith, he should be a solid play for Week 2.

Honorable mentions: Kansas City Chiefs' Dexter McCluster (at Buffalo Bills, 16% owned), Denver Broncos' Knowshon Moreno (at Atlanta Falcons, 6% owned), Buffalo Bills' Tashard Choice (vs. Kansas City Chiefs, 0% owned)

Wide receiver

Randall Cobb, Green Bay Packers (vs. Chicago Bears, 49% owned)

The difference between Cobb and Kevin Ogletree is close, but Cobb is ultimately the better wide receiver option available on the waiver wire. While they both play on top offenses, Cobb has a better quarterback in Aaron Rodgers than Ogletree in Tony Romo. The run game in Green Bay is essentially nonexistent, and Cobb will continue to see an increased roll coming out of the Packers backfield, which makes him available for dump-off passes and screens and sets him apart from the other receivers on this high-powered passing attack. With his bursts of speed, elusiveness, and bonus value as a returner, Cobb will also be a huge asset in PPR leagues as a versatile player found all over the field like Darren Sproles, Percy Harvin and Aaron Hernandez.

Honorable mentions: Dallas Cowboys' Kevin Ogletree (at Seattle Seahawks, 43% owned), Carolina Panthers' Brandon LaFell (vs. New Orleans Saints, 23% owned), New York Jets' Stephen Hill (at Pittsburgh Steelers, 19% owned)

Tight end

Coby Fleener, Indianapolis Colts (vs. Minnesota Vikings, 49% owned)

After being teammates in college at Stanford, it's no surprise Fleener was targeted by Andrew Luck 10 times against the Chicago Bears. Already possessing great chemistry with the team's rookie quarterback, Fleener is the second-best receiving option behind Reggie Wayne, who was targeted 18 times on Sunday. With two solid matchups ahead at home against the Vikings and Jacksonville Jaguars, Fleener gets the high amount of targets desired for a tight end, making him a rising star at this position.

Honorable mentions: New York Giants' Martellus Bennett (vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 26% owned), Minnesota Vikings' Kyle Rudolph (at Indianapolis Colts, 34% owned), Baltimore Ravens' Dennis Pitta (at Philadelphia Eagles, 5% owned)

Kicker

Billy Cundiff, Washington Redskins (at St. Louis Rams, 20% owned)

In a Redskins offense run by Robert Griffin III, Cundiff was a huge winner in Week 1. Unemployed not too long ago after getting cut by the Baltimore Ravens, he assumes the kicker role from then-Redskins kicker Graham Gano, who attempted the second-most field goals last season with 41. Up against the Rams in Week 2, he should be in line for a nice number of field goal attempts once again.

Honorable mentions: San Diego Chargers' Nate Kaeding (vs. Tennessee Titans, 42% owned), Cincinnati Bengals' Mike Nugent (vs. Cleveland Browns, 33% owned), Minnesota Vikings' Blair Walsh (at Indianapolis Colts, 3% owned)

Team defense

Oakland Raiders team defense (at Miami Dolphins, 8% owned)

Despite coming off a loss on Monday night against the Chargers, the Raiders enter a very favorable Week 2 matchup against a Miami Dolphins team run by rookie Ryan Tannehill. In Week 1, Tannehill only completed 55.5 percent of his passes and threw three interceptions against the Houston Texans, which displays he'll likely experience all season on an offense with few reliable receiver options. With a solid front-seven that is strong against the run and good at applying pressure to opposing quarterbacks, the Raiders defense could be a strong matchup to exploit in Tannehill's second career start.

Honorable mentions: Dallas Cowboys team defense (at Seattle Seahawks, 31% owned), Cincinnati Bengals team defense (vs. Cleveland Browns, 25% owned), Kansas City Chiefs team defense (at Buffalo Bills, 8% owned)

Sources:

Alfred Morris reaffirms Mike Shanahan's confidence, The Washington Post

Fantasy Football Coby Fleener, CBS Sports

Graham Gano Profile, Yahoo! Sports

Ryan Tannehill Profile, Yahoo! Sports

More from this contributor:

Fantasy Football 2012 Week 1 Top Performers by Position: Fan's Review

Fantasy Football 2012 Week 1 Most Surprising Performances: Fan's Take

Fantasy Football 2012 Week 1 Over/Under Predictions: Fan's Take

2012 Fantasy Football Underrated Starters for Week 1: Fan's Take

Why Dallas WR Kevin Ogletree Will Be a Great Fantasy Player in 2012: Fan's Take

Austin Chang is a lifelong football fan, San Francisco 49ers supporter, and fantasy football player since 2005. Find him on Google+ and on Twitter @_austinchang.

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