In Week 2, we saw offensive explosions all over the league and all kinds of craziness. From the fake punt for a touchdown in Green Bay to Eli Manning throwing for 510 yards, this week had it all.
In the middle of the insanity, we’ve been able to rustle up a set of guys to target on the waiver wire. Unless stated otherwise, these should be the $1 value menu free agents for those of you who use an FAAB system. The percentage of availability listed is from ESPN.com leagues.
Andy Dalton CIN ($2) – Why do you want the Red Rifle this week? Well, Cincy plays Washington and that means RGIII and a shootout. The Redskins’ defense has been weak allowing 63 points in its first two games. They also lost Adam Carriker and Brian Orakpo for the year (torn pectoral) and will be more vulnerable on the ground as well. Dalton could be poised for a monster game and is available in 14% of leagues.
Matt Casel KC (68%) – For three quarters the Chiefs were getting shuffled on by Buffalo last week and managed a meager three points. Casell hooked up with Dwayne Bowe for a pair of touchdowns in the fourth quarter in garbage time. He’s averaging about 280 yards a game and will be facing the Saints. New Orleans’ secondary bears a striking resemblance to Swiss cheese so there could be some opportunities there.
Daryl Richardson STL ($2 if you own S-Jax) – Richardson showed he is going to be the handcuff to Steven Jackson. Jackson went out of the game in the second quarter against Washington and didn’t return. Richardson (99%) cleaned house with 83 yards on 15 carries. Jackson’s groin is a question mark so don’t invest too much into this pickup.
Andre Brown NYG ($3) – What can Brown do for you? Yes, it’s a terrible cliche but for the Giants the answer was “quite a bit.” Brown (99%) came on in place of Ahmad Bradshaw (neck) and piled up 71 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries. Brown’s performance was lost in the aerial assault Eli Manning put on against Tampa Bay. Bradshaw isn’t likely to play and the Giants are on the road Thursday at Carolina.
Jackie Battle SD – Battle put together a 2 TD game in the Chargers’ 38-10 win over the Titans. Battle (99%) got 69 yards on 14 carries in this game San Diego played without Antonio Gates. Gates was a late scratch with sore ribs and that may have contributed to the Chargers’ increased focus on the run. The run-pass ratio was nearly even in that game. With Ryan Mathews expected to be back in week three, Battle’s value will take a hit but Mathews has that history of getting hurt. He’s worth a stash on the bench if you have the room.
Donnie Avery IND Avery (99%) – has bounced around the league going through St. Louis, Tennessee and now Indy. After Avery’s 9 catch, 111 yard performance against Minnesota, he’s stepped into the WR2 spot opposite Reggie Wayne. Indy takes on Jacksonville in an AFC South throwdown before hitting its bye week.
Brian Hartline MIA – Yes, it’s a Dolphin! While everyone was drooling over Reggie Bush, Hartline’s great stat line was overlooked. He posted a 9-111-0 line against Oakland. Yes, Miami faces the Jets this week but I would expect Darrelle Revis (if healthy) to take on Davone Bess. Hartline (99%) might get the advantage of being a second wideout and could post another good stat line in week three.
Jon Baldwin KC – I mentioned above that Cassel could be in line for a good week and Baldwin (75%) would also be in that category too. Baldwin snagged three passes for 62 yards against the Bills after being blanked against Atlanta. Baldwin’s role could be elevated with tight end Kevin Boss being sidelined with a head injury.
Brent Celek PHI – Celek was the key to the Eagles’ 24-23 win over the Ravens last week with eight catches for 157 yards. When Philadelphia needed to move down the field, Michael Vick kept looking to Celek (38%) as a safety valve. Vick rhymes with pick and the QB has thrown six of them so far this season so it might limit Celek’s opportunities. Philadelphia meets Arizona in a battle of 2-0 teams this week and the Cardinals had some issues handling Rob Gronkowski last week against the Patriots.
Dennis Pitta BAL Pitta (76%) – Was targeted 15 times by Joe Flacco last week and caught eight passes for 65 yards. The targets alone are amazing but he also led the team in catches and yardage against the Eagles. When Baltimore continues to run the no-huddle look that they have, expect Pitta and the tight end slot in general to get quite a few targets.
Arizona DST – The Cardinals held New England to 18 points and just one touchdown. In New England. Arizona (94%) beat the Patriots for the first time in 20 years and was helped by a blocked punt as well. Put that defense against the turnover-prone Eagles and Vick and you have a recipe for defensive success. And you can never go wrong with Patrick Peterson running kicks back.
New Orleans DST - Now this seems nuts but it makes sense. Yes, the Saints (97%) have been ripped up one side and down the other in the first two games. They’ve given up a ton of points and are looking weak. But KC is what they need. Jamaal Charles hasn’t been effective and KC did nothing for most of the game against the Bills. There’s no doubt the Saints need to tighten the screws defensively and I think they’ll do it to avoid an 0-3 start.