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Waiver Wire Rankings and FAB Advice: Week 2 (2021 Fantasy Football)

Sep 13, 2021

It’s one of the most important waiver wire periods of the fantasy football season – that stretch between Weeks 1 and 2, when everyone in the league is flush with FAB cash and the potential for landing a league winner at the beginning of the season leads to exorbitant spending.

Here’s a look at our improved waiver wire rankings, along with a new feature in which Dan Harris, Kyle Yates, Joe Pisapia, and Pat Fitzmaurice offer their FAB recommendations for the week.

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Waiver Wire Rankings powered by FantasyProsECR ™ – Expert Consensus Rankings


Q1. Who is your top waiver wire option of the week, and why?

It’s got to be Elijah Mitchell. Raheem Mostert is out for the season and Trey Sermon was a surprise inactive because Kyle Shanahan reportedly didn’t view him as one of the top running back options on the team. Given the opportunity against an admittedly soft opponent, Mitchell rumbled for 104 yards and a score on 19 carries. Mitchell may have a clear role to a dominant share of the running back carries in a Shanahan offense – that’s a player who should be a priority pickup in every league.
– Dan Harris (@danharris80)

Kenneth Gainwell of the Eagles becomes a very intriguing option. In Week 1 against the Falcons, he had 9 carries for 37 rushing yards and two receptions, one for a TD. Considering this was his NFL debut, there’s only room to grow over the next 16 games, and by the mid-way point of the season, Gainwell could be a steady weekly flex option in PPR formats.
– Joe Pisapia (@JoePisapia17)

With the unfortunate injury to Jerry Jeudy, Tim Patrick rises up to the top of my Waiver Wire Rankings. Before Jeudy even left the game, Patrick was essentially seeing the same amount of snaps as him, which meant that Patrick could have been a savvy pickup to begin with this week. However, now that we know Jeudy’s going to be out until mid-to-late October with a high ankle sprain, Patrick’s an incredibly solid add. He’s been productive for fantasy in the past and he should be able to provide fantasy managers with weekly FLEX value moving forward. There are plenty of other WR options on the waiver wire to scoop up, so I’m not going crazy and blowing a significant amount of FAAB on him, but he’s the first option I’d go after.
– Kyle Yates (@KyleYNFL)

That Elijah Mitchell had passed Trey Sermon on the 49ers’ depth chart was a well-kept secret within team HQ and took us all by surprise. Sermon could certainly bubble up to the surface and become a coveted asset at some point, but for now we have to play the ball as it lies, as they say in golf. Raheem Mostert is out for the season with a knee injury and for now, Elijah Mitchell is the RB1 on a strong team with a very good offensive line. Never mind Mitchell’s sixth-round pedigree; he ran a 4.35 at his pro day and has impressive balance through contact. A robust bid of 50%-60% of FAAB wouldn’t be too much (and might not be enough, quite frankly).
– Pat Fitzmaurice (@Fitz_FF)

Q2. Which high-end waiver wire option for Week 2 was the most difficult to rank?

Mark Ingram. 26 carries, 85 yards, and a touchdown? That’s nonsense. On the one hand, you just can’t possibly ignore that type of volume, let alone production. On the other, everything about it seems entirely fluky. The Texans played most of the game with what will almost certainly be one of their only big leads in any game this year, and, even so, Ingram still played fewer than half the snaps while ceding work to David Johnson, Phillip Lindsay, and Rex Burkhead. Ingram needs to be added, but I have zero confidence he will actually make an impact going forward.

– Dan Harris (@danharris80)

DeVante Parker had a nice Week 1 performance. However, with Will Fuller returning in Week 2 from suspension, it’s difficult to say if that performance will be repeatable, or if he loses significant target share to Fuller and Jaylen Waddle (who looked strong with a TD in his rookie debut).
– Joe Pisapia (@JoePisapia17)

Elijah Mitchell’s going to be a very hot waiver wire add this week, but he was very difficult for me to rank. He was able to put together a big performance due to the matchup and the fact that Raheem Mostert left this game early on with an injury. With the news that Raheem Mostert is now on IR and out for the season, Mitchell’s going to have every opportunity to keep this starting job with Trey Sermon inexplicably benched. However, he’s not going to get to play the Detroit Lions defense every single week. Mitchell should be added in every format, but I’m not dropping more than 10-15% of my FAAB on him. This backfield is a complete mystery right now, so don’t drop Trey Sermon either. There’s a strong possibility that the 49ers come out next week and Sermon is the player that sees 19 carries and Mitchell takes a back seat to him.
– Kyle Yates (@KyleYNFL)

Jameis Winston. This whole “Efficient Jameis” shtick is a little weird and I’m still trying to process it, OK? For now, I’m a reluctant believer. The temporary lack of firepower at wide receiver is a drawback, but I love that Winston has a terrific offensive line in front of him and is in a time-tested system. He’s worth picking up if you need a QB.
– Pat Fitzmaurice (@Fitz_FF)

Q3. For managers renting a D/ST in Week 2, what readily available option (under 40%) should they target?

The New Orleans Saints’ defense is understandably under-rostered because of their Week 1 matchup, but they should be a priority pickup. The Saints were the seventh-best D/ST last season, and they harassed Aaron Rodgers all game on Sunday, putting up 15 fantasy points. Sam Darnold remains mistake-prone, and it’s not as if the Panthers looked like world-beaters against the Jets. The Saints D/ST should have another big game in Week 2.

– Dan Harris (@danharris80)

The Green Bay Packers’ defense was straight-up embarrassed in Week 1. In Week 2, at home, on MNF, they will take out that frustration on the Lions.
– Joe Pisapia (@JoePisapia17)

There aren’t necessarily any matchups that jump off the page, but the New Orleans Saints defense is coming off of a dominant performance where they shut down the reigning MVP. While it could’ve been rust for Rodgers more than anything, the New Orleans Saints’ defense is the best bet right now to chase after. They take on the Panthers in week 2 and they could force Sam Darnold into a turnover or two if they create enough pressure.
– Kyle Yates (@KyleYNFL)

The New Orleans Saints’ defense smothered the Packers in Week 1, and the next four quarterbacks they face are Sam Darnold, Mac Jones, Daniel Jones and (presumably) Taylor Heinicke. This is a defense you can ride for a solid month.
– Pat Fitzmaurice (@Fitz_FF)


Notable Week 2 FAB Recommendations (in %)


Q4. Which Week 2 waiver wire option carries the biggest risk of being a waste of FAB dollars?

It's probably Mark Ingram, but honorable mention to Christian Kirk, who had a huge, two-touchdown performance against the Titans. But Kirk played far fewer snaps than either DeAndre Hopkins and A.J. Green, and Rondale Moore looked explosive when he had the ball. Kirk may eventually overtake Green and be in on two wide receiver sets, but for now, his Week 1 performance looks flukier than anything.

- Dan Harris (@danharris80)

In SF leagues, folks will run to pick up Taylor Heinicke, but Cam Newton has to be a real possibility at this juncture if Ryan Fitzpatrick is set up to miss significant time. That’s a very likely scenario for the record.
- Joe Pisapia (@JoePisapia17)

As mentioned previously, Elijah Mitchell could be a huge hit for fantasy lineups or he could end up being a complete waste of FAAB. I have a very hard time believing that the 49ers are going to keep their 3rd-round pick - that they traded up for - on the bench in favor of someone they drafted several rounds later in the same draft. I wouldn't be surprised if Sermon is the lead back for this offense next week at all, which makes Mitchell a very risky add that has a wide range of outcomes.
- Kyle Yates (@KyleYNFL)

It's Elijah Mitchell simply because of the enormity of the price tag. As of this writing, we don't know the severity of Raheem Mostert's knee injury, but it's reportedly not a torn ACL, so he could be back at some point (perhaps soon). And what if 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan has a change of heart regarding Trey Sermon? Shanahan has already thrown one head fake at us. This isn't to say you shouldn't make a robust bid for Mitchell, but by no means is he a foolproof investment.
- Pat Fitzmaurice (@Fitz_FF)

Thank you to the experts for naming their top waiver targets. Be sure to give them a follow on Twitter if you're not already doing so and check out our latest podcast below for more great advice.

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