This week’s waiver deadline has come and gone, but many of you may still have unmet fantasy needs. Every Thursday, we’ll spotlight a group of widely available potential fantasy pickups for deeper fantasy formats, owned in no more than 10 percent of Yahoo leagues. Think of this as an end-of-week, post-waivers fantasy dumpster dive. Let’s dig in…
Jalen Richard, RB, Oakland (at Den, 3% owned)
Richard is a rotational back for Oakland who’s been verifiably more elusive than most runners over the past three seasons. He’s averaged 5.5 YPC over 144 career attempts. Richard saw a whopping 11 targets in the opener against the Rams, hauling in nine balls for 55 yards. PPR managers, he’s an obvious add following Monday night’s high-volume performance.
Javorius Allen, RB, Baltimore (at Cin, 6% owned)
Allen is another PPR special. He caught five passes on six targets in Baltimore’s season-opening not-at-all-competitive win over Buffalo. Kenneth Dixon was placed on IR this week with a knee issue, leaving Allen as the clear understudy/complement to Alex Collins.
Nyheim Hines, RB, Indianapolis (at Was, 6% owned)
OK, one final PPR-friendly back. Hines had fumbling issues during preseason action, but he was a buzzy player throughout the spring and summer. He has blazing speed (4.38) and big-play ability, plus he caught 89 balls over three collegiate seasons. Hines saw nine targets in the opener for Indy, catching seven.
Marcus Murphy, RB, Buffalo (vs. LAC, 1% owned)
If you’re a LeSean McCoy owner who decided to stash Chris Ivory as a handcuff, it appears you may have rostered the wrong backup…
Notable #Bills snap count takeaways thread….
LeSean McCoy – 53%
Marcus Murphy – 36%
Chris Ivory – 11%
Patrick DiMarco – 2%
Murphy the clear No. 2 back. Adjust your depth charts accordingly.
— Joe Buscaglia (@JoeBuscaglia) September 10, 2018
Murphy was running ahead of Ivory in practices by the end of camp and he actually led the Bills in rushing in the opener (6-31-0). He was an exciting player at Mizzou back in the day, averaging 5.8 YPC over his four-year career. Murphy is worth a look in mega leagues.
Chase Edmonds, RB, Arizona (at LAR, 2% owned)
The Fordham legend gained 48 scrimmage yards in Arizona’s Week 1 loss, running behind David Johnson. He’s a do-it-all back who made plenty of noise in the Cards’ offseason program, establishing himself as the clear understudy to DJ. If you’re the handcuffing type, you should want him.
Dante Pettis, WR, San Francisco (vs. Det, 6% owned)
Pettis had a terrific opening week for the Niners, gaining 61 yards on two receptions, with a highlight touchdown grab included. The rookie has a shot at a significant role in Week 2, particularly if Marquise Goodwin (quad) is unavailable. Pettis has plenty of speed and he earned favorable reviews throughout the offseason. If you’re a believer in Garoppolo, then go get Pettis.
Ryan Grant, WR, Indianapolis (at Was, 6% owned)
This is simply a target-chasing pickup. Grant caught a team-high eight passes on nine targets in the Colts’ opener, though he gained only 59 yards. He’s a natural fit for what appears to be a low-yield, short-range passing offense. Grant is very much on the radar for those of you looking for a PPR boost.
Taylor Gabriel, WR, Chicago (vs. Sea, 1% owned)
Gabriel is a smallish (5-foot-8), explosive receiver who entered the league with 4.27 speed. He played a significant role for Chicago in the opener, catching all five of his targets. The Bears had a spread-the-wealth passing approach on Sunday night, as seven different players saw at least three targets and no one drew more than seven. Eventually, Gabriel is going to turn a short route into a massive gain.
Ian Thomas, TE, Carolina (at Atl, 5% owned)
Thomas is a talented developmental tight end, a fourth-round selection out of Indiana. He wasn’t supposed to be thrown into the mix so early in his career, but Greg Olsen’s re-injured foot has changed his timeline. His services are needed immediately. Thomas has the speed and athleticism demanded by his position, and he’s going to play all the snaps he can handle while Olsen is sidelined. He’s clearly a player of interest in two-TE leagues.
Jake Butt, TE, Denver (vs. Oak, 4% owned)
Butt played 36 snaps in Denver’s opener, catching two of his four targets for 29 yards. He was out-snapped by Jeff Heuerman (60), yet he was much more involved as a receiver. Butt was a terrific player at Michigan, gifted with excellent hands and separation ability. He’s clearly no threat to Demaryius or Sanders in this team’s receiving hierarchy, but he has the talent to produce a sneaky top-20 (top-16?) positional finish.