The key to winning your fantasy football league is not how well you draft, but the players you add off waivers. This is extremely important because securing hidden talent could replace those late-round selections, even mid-rounders, that aren’t having the best season. Here at NFS, we provide the best picks for players you should grab off waivers now before it is too late. As always, both opportunity and performance are taken into consideration for these players. All players listed are rostered below 40 percent on ESPN. Learn to think like a NERD!
Jameis Winston, QB, New Orleans Saints
Jaboo is back! That may be too early to say but he had a lot of encouraging signs after the Saints obliterated the Packers on Sunday. Jameis Winston finished with five touchdowns on a 70 percent completion percentage. Not to mention he achieved all this without throwing any interceptions against what many thought was a top defense in the league. Between the major upgrade in weapons including a top-five offensive line and the laser eye surgery, Wintson’s decision to sit for most of last year is already paying off early Winston should be an immediate pickup in all league formats as the Saints could turn many heads if their success continues.
Mark Ingram, RB, Houston Texans
At 31 years old, Mark Ingram continues to give significant production to any team, even if it’s the Houston Texans who many believed was the undisputed worst team in the NFL. Well not only did they get their first win of the season, but Ingram played a great game. He totaled 86 yards and a touchdown on 26 touches, yes 26 touches. David Culley has put all his trust in Ingram to lead the backfield and Sunday showed just that. Ingram might not get 26 touches in future games, but it’s clear he’s the number one back for the Texans. Owned at only 11 percent in ESPN, he could be a steal of a pickup in a thin runningback market.
Sterling Shepard, WR, New York Giants
Despite the ugly loss against the Denver Broncos, many questions were answered about the Giant’s offense and how it could look the rest of the season. At least based on Sunday’s game, it looks like Sterling Shepard is the number one receiver for the team, and he performed like one. Shepard finished with 113 yards and a touchdown on seven receptions. While Darius Slayton and Kenny Golladay still have realistic opportunities for big games, Shepard in the past has proved to be the most consistent out of the three. This makes him a reliable and quality wide receiver to pick up off of the waiver wire.
Eric Mitchell, RB, San Fransisco 49ers
The San Fransisco 49er’s game plan for Detroit on Sunday was a shocker to everyone. Trey Sermon was named inactive before the game and Brandon Aiyuk, a popular pick for a breakout year, had zero targets. This is where Eric Mitchell comes in, who handled most of the backfield work. Mitchell finished with 104 yards and a touchdown on 19 carries. The injury to Raheem Mostert should also lead to higher production for Mitchell. However, what becomes a red flag were Shanahan’s comments about there being “no hierarchy” in the 49er’s backfield. This could lead to concerns about getting consistent production from either Sermon or Mitchell in the future. But he is worth taking a flier on in the meantime.
Denver Broncos’ Wide Receivers
With the injury to Jerry Jeudy, touches are expected to be given all around to the receivers for the Denver Broncos. Teddy Bridgewater may not throw many touchdowns with only 15 as a career-high in a single season, but he is off to a strong start in his short time with the Broncos. Bridgewater finished with two touchdowns and 264 yards on a 77 percent completion rate against a quality defense in the Giants. The offensive line deserves much credit for giving Teddy plenty of time to make accurate passes. It’ll be intriguing to see how productive they can keep this offense moving forward. Some of the names to target on waivers are KJ Hamler and Tim Patrick.