(Editor’s note: These Week 2 pickups are based on the average 12-team league. You may have better options on the waiver wire in a more shallow format. You may have fewer options in a deeper format. Ultimately, you should be gravitating towards players that score points and players with talent moving up the depth chart. Good luck!)
QB Tyrod Taylor, Cleveland Browns
The flaws of Taylor were on display against the Steelers in Week 1. He was hesitant and held on to the ball too long. He was under pressure, getting sacked seven times and finished 15-for-40 with 197 yards one touchdown and one interception. What makes Taylor better in Fantasy is the rushing. He had eight carries for 77 yards with a touchdown, and it provides a high floor each week. He also has more weapons than he had in Buffalo. He’s not a long-term option since Baker Mayfield could replace him at any time, but Taylor could be an option in Week 2 in deeper formats against a Saints defense that was shredded by the Buccaneers.
RB T.J. Yeldon, Jacksonville Jaguars
The knock on Leonard Fournette was injuries. He had several while in college at LSU and missed time with ankle issues last season. Fournette lost 15 pounds, but in Week 1 he left the game early with a hamstring injury. Jaguars coach Doug Marrone said he was “pretty optimistic” but Yeldon needs to be owned. In deeper leagues, he was drafted. Yeldon had 14 carries for 51 yards and caught three of seven targets for 18 yards and a touchdown against the Giants.
RB Phillip Lindsay, Denver Broncos
The Broncos running back distribution was one of the surprising things in Week 1. While Lindsay was getting praise in Denver, he played more than most thought. Royce Freeman played 29 snaps, while Lindsay played 26 and Devontae Booker played 19. Both Lindsay and Freeman had 15 carries for 71 yards, but Lindsay also had two catches for 31 yards with a touchdown. Broncos coach Vance Joseph said he went with Lindsay because he had the hot hand.
WR Ryan Grant, Indianapolis Colts
If Andrew Luck is back to form, there had to be someone else besides T.Y. Hilton and the tight ends that could have Fantasy value with the Colts. It looks to be Grant. Luck did throw 53 passes, so that can’t be expected every week. Grant caught eight of his nine targets for 59 yards. The Colts defense looked terrible, so Luck could be airing it out often.
WR Phillip Dorsett, New England Patriots
Dorsett has been a huge bust so far in his NFL career. The Patriots are thin at receiver with Julian Edelman suspended for the first four games, putting Dorsett in a prominent role and he delivered in Week 1. Dorsett was third on the team in targets, finishing behind James White (nine) and Rob Gronkowski (eight) with seven. Dorsett caught all seven for 66 yards with a touchdown. He played 57 of 75 snaps, but the matchup gets tougher in Week 2 against the Jaguars.
WR Cole Beasley, Dallas Cowboys
The Cowboys offense looked abysmal against the Panthers. The offensive line didn’t play well, and the receivers couldn’t get open. The passes were mostly short ones, and Beasley benefited. He’s the one receiver that is familiar with the offense, and Dak Prescott and Beasley caught seven of eight targets for 73 yards, making him an option in deeper PPR formats.
TE Jonnu Smith, Tennessee Titans
Tight end was brutal coming into the season and Week 1 didn’t help the position. Delanie Walker has a fractured and dislocated ankle, and Greg Olsen has a foot injury. Smith will take over for Walker and is a great athlete. Last season as a rookie, he had 18 catches for 157 yards and two touchdowns on 30 targets.