Waiver Worthy: Week 2 Fallout: Matt Jones, Travis Benjamin & More

by Will Overton

We didn’t have quite as many big injuries this week impacting the landscape of the waiver wire (though there were some). What we did have, though, were noteworthy performances among players available in many leagues.

A couple of things to keep in mind:

  1. Right now we are focusing right now primarily on guys who had a big game who will get a lot of buzz in the waiver wire discussion.  Later in the season, especially when bye weeks come into play heavily, we will look more closely at specific matchups week to week.
  2. I am looking only at guys who are available in 75% of leagues or more. Players like Michael Crabtree or Ronnie Hillman are available in a decent amount of leagues and should be added, but I won’t go into detail on them here because we’re digging a little deeper.

With that in mind, here are eight players who stood out in the Week 2 box scores who are available in a majority of leagues:

Brandon Weeden – QB, Dallas Cowboys: The Dallas Cowboys are 2–0, but the fans can’t feel too good about their fortunes. In Week 1 they lost their franchise wide receiver for 10–12 weeks and now their quarterback, Tony Romo, has a broken clavicle and will likely miss 8–10 weeks. In steps Brandon Weeden, who filled in nicely yesterday going 7–7 for 73 yards and a TD. While Weeden won’t have Bryant to throw to, the Cowboys are likely not going to stop throwing the ball so he has a chance to have value based on quantity alone. I wouldn’t grab him in a 10 or 12 team standard league, but in two-QB formats or deeper leagues he definitely could hold value as QB’s don’t come along often.

Dexter McCluster – RB, Tennessee Titans: I’m not sure anyone expected this kind of a game from McCluster. The Titans gave the change of pace back 10 carries and he turned that into 98 yards while also catching four balls for 26 yards. The catches don’t surprise me, but seeing 10 carries (considering how many other backs the Titans have) does. At the same time McCluster makes for a nice compliment to Bishop Sankey, so I can see him maintaining a decent amount of snaps moving forward. In a PPR league McCluster holds value, but he also has it in deeper standard scoring leagues as well. Ken Whisenhunt will find a way to use McCluster if he proves to be the playmaker the team needs.

Matt Jones – RB, Washington Redskins: The preseason performance of Matt Jones got him attention in fantasy circles, but the game he put up yesterday will make him a must own as he ran the ball 19 times for 123 yards and 2 TD. That gave him one more carry than starter Alfred Morris. In week one it was Morris with 123 yards, so we can’t assume Jones is just going to take the job over. It does appear though that Washington is serious about getting him touches and willing to ride the hot hand from game to game. Jones will have some poor games and some good ones, so you’ll have to ride that out, but he’s a must grab.

Aaron Dobson – WR, New England Patriots: The New England Patriots are looking for someone to take on Brandon LaFell’s role opposite Julian Edelman until LaFell can make his return. After not doing much in Week 1Dobson was the guy who stepped into that role. He was targeted eight times, just behind Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski. Dobson caught seven and had 87 yards. He has been wildly inconsistent since joining the team, but this is a big opportunity as the Patriots look like a team ready to throw and throw often.

Ted Ginn Jr – WR, Carolina Panthers: After being targeted seven times in Week 1 he got the targets again yesterday, seeing nine balls head his way and catching four passes for 41 yards and a TD. Outside of Greg Olson he has been the most targeted receiver on the team to open the season. The Panthers don’t throw it a lot and Ginn really isn’t as good of a receiver as he is a playmaker. He doesn’t run great routes and struggles to get separation despite his speed. He will hit some big plays,  but he’s going to be very dependent on them for value so he wouldn’t be at the top of my list of receivers to target on the waiver.

Travis Benjamin – WR, Cleveland Browns: Speaking of guys with big play ability, meet Travis Benjamin. I didn’t mention him after Week 1 since I thought his 89 yards and a TD was a fluke thanks to one big play. Then he followed it up with 3 receptions for 115 yards and 2 TD, both long plays. Benjamin isn’t getting a ton of targets, but it’s clear he can use his speed to make things happen, and I think he has a chance to be much better at that role than Ginn. Benjamin could start seeing even more snaps and they may look for more ways to get the ball in his hands, so while what he’s done isn’t sustainable, the upside is still there.

Rishard Matthews – WR, Miami Dolphins: In the offseason the Miami Dolphins added Greg Jennings, Kenny Stills and Davante Parker to their receiving corps, but it’s largely ignored and undrafted Rishard Matthews running as the team’s WR2. Matthews caught four balls on six targets in Week 1, including a TD catch, and then followed up with six grabs on seven targets for 115 yards yesterday. I still think long term Parker overtakes him, when he’s healthy and more comfortable in the offense, but for right now Matthews actually looks like a decent grab in 12 team leagues and deeper.

Crockett Gilmore – TE, Baltimore Ravens: At the start of the season it wasn’t real clear who was going to be the Ravens lead tight end with rookie Maxx Williams in the mix, but Gilmore has won the job. He didn’t do a lot last season, but he’s looking to break out this year after catching five passes for 88 yards and 2 TD yesterday. We know Joe Flacco likes to use his tight ends and we know that the offensive coordinatior Marc Trestman likes them as well. Standing 6’6″ Gilmore has a shot to be a regular fixture in the red zone, where the Ravens don’t really have anyone else. I’m not sure he can crack the Top 10 at the position, but Top 15 is certainly a reachable target.

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36 comments

  1. Romo says:

    Hey roto! Out of duke johnson, Matt jones, and David johnson, who would u pick up? I have l bell back this week and have d martin, t coleman, and j hill. I will prob drop t coleman. U think hill will lose touches after his performance? Which 2 would u start? Thanks professor!

    • L says:

      You got to go with Matt Jones as his playing ability is simply better looking than the other backs and with his breakout game he’s likely earned at minimum a 50/50 share of the workload where as Duke still hasn’t quite gotten to that type of split with I.Crowell nor has he shown the type of skill that Jones has and David likely faces some sort of 3-way split unless he can put together a true breakout game like Matt Jones did that’ll remove Chris from the RBBC picture.

      • Sam says:

        As a Matt Jones owner (full dynasty league), I’d caution you from adding him right away over Coleman (he was hurt but looked fine until then and had a big game in week 1, stealing the RB1 role). Jones looked good but Morris is a rock and is still the cog there. Unless you’re in dynasty I wouldn’t make too much of Jones start. If you absoluetly want to add him, maybe drop (in this order) your backup K, Def, TE, QB (unless you’re two QB.. up to this point, I don’t care who the back up is, I would rather have an RB or WR that I think is serviceable) or your weakest WR. Your running backs look good and I wouldn’t wanna let any of those hit the wire (I’d look to move D-Mart thogh via trade).

        • L says:

          Good point. I didn’t fully read the post to understand that he’d be dropping T.Coleman. Yeah; I agree with Sam – if you have a back-up K, DST, TE, QB or a fringe WR then drop one of them for M.Jones.

    • At this point what type of league is it? Coleman is going to be out a few weeks so dropping him for Jones may not be the worst idea depending…

  2. Spell Checker says:

    * You left an ‘l’ out of Crockett Gilmore. It’s spelled Gillmore.

    You’re welcome.

  3. L says:

    I took a loss this week mainly because of two injuries (Cutler & Adams) and ultimately because I didn’t trust A.Robinson after his week 1 dud, but I kind of like the way my team is looking and after Tuesday’s Wavier Requests go through I’ll be targeting some prime low-ball RB candidates in trade offers.

    I’m in a 0.5PPR, 6PT TD Pass & 0.5PT/Passing Yard, plus no negative scoring; this is my current team:

    QB: J.Cutler
    RB: A.Foster (hopefully returning week 3)
    RB: J.Forsett
    RB: S.Vereen
    RB: I.Crowell
    RB: Duke J.
    WR: D.Bryant (out for some time)
    WR: D.Hopkins
    WR: A.Robinson
    WR: D.Adams
    WR: P.Garcon
    WR: N.Agholor
    TE: R.Gronkowski
    TE: E.Ebron
    K: M.Crosby
    DST: Texans

    J.Cutler was looking pretty good week 2 before his injury, but now I have to replace him with a waiver wire QB for week 3. My options are to drop Cutler for either C.Newton, C.Kaepernick, T.Taylor, A.Smith, B.Bortles, D.Carr, J.Flacco, T.Bridgewater, R.Fitzpatrick, R.Mallet, K.Cousins or J.Manziel. Given the league’s settings for QBs who’s got the best looking prospects? Also, my opponent next week will have L.McCoy as his RB2, S.Watkins or A.Hurns as his WR2 and T.Kelce as his TE1 — should that weigh into my decision as to who to take (like T.Taylor, A.Smith, or B.Bortles) in order to cipher some of his team’s value away? He’ll be doing the same to me with T.Brady as his starting QB.

    I’m going to be actively trying to move J.Forsett because I’m concerned over L.Taliaferro’s role growing as the season progresses; plus, S.Vereen and perhaps I.Crowell are two others who could fetch interest. Personally, I don’t think Vereen can be consistent and trustworthy enough to keep around and I fear the 50/50 workshare between Crowell and Duke which is why I think it’s best I try moving Crowell now. I’ll be targeting some upper backs who have had some struggles or issues such as J.Hill (thanks to 2 fumbles and a benching), CJ.Anderson (crappy O-line, tough opponents, and bad toe make him a super value – I think), D.Murray (extremely crappy O-line, but they’ll keep finding ways to feed him), F.Gore (if he flops tonight I should be able to low-ball the owner), and perhaps E.Lacy (hoping that the owner is freaked out by his ankle injury). Some other target considerations are J.Stewart (I like his late season schedule), TJ.Yeldon (I like his 3-down back role), L.Miller (injury and tough division might cause his owner to move him), T.Coleman (injury might make him available), and M.Gordon (I think his role continues to expand), but I do want to be careful about taking on too many injured players. By the way, is there any sense in making a wavier wire request on J.Starks? If so, who to drop… Duke J?

    With M.Crabtree having the week he had is there any sense in putting a waiver claim in for him at the cost of say N.Agholor? I like Agholor as a hold/stash, but Crabtree’s targets were really impressive and the Raiders should be passing the ball a lot this season.

    Lastly, should I hold onto the Texans DST given their week 3 matchup with the Buccaneers or might I be better off trying to replace them with either the Patriots (face the Jaguars), Browns (face the Raiders), Jets (face the Eagles), Cardinals (face the 49ners), or Packers (face the Chiefs)?

    • QB – Newton for me

      Starks – Probably not worth it. As long as Lacy is healthy (and word is the injury is minor), he’s not going to have value

      Crabtree/Agholer – It’s a personal preference honestly, I’m not particularly big on either of them (though there was a time I was a big Crabtree believer)

      Defense – TB’s offense does have potential, so I’d be looking at the Patriots most likely (having not looked in-depth as of yet)

      • L says:

        In case I miss out on Newton given my Wavier Wire priority is fairly low how would you rank the remaining QBs after Newton. As of now this is how I’ve setup my Wavier Request:

        Newton
        Taylor
        Kaepernick
        Smith
        Bortles
        Fitzpatrick
        Cousins
        Flacco
        Bridgewater
        Mallet
        Carr
        Manziel

        …though I doubt more than 2 get picked up in front of my team.

        • L says:

          …recall that it’s a 6pt/Pass TD & 0.5pt/1 Yard Passed League; not to mention, my opponent will be playing L.McCoy as his RB2, either A.Hurns or S.Watkins (the more likely) as his WR2, and T.Kelce as his TE1 in case that should factor somewhat into the choice.

  4. Haggy says:

    Would you drop Andre Johnson and pick up Matt Jones. I also have landry, Stevie Johnson,Bryant,Matthews.

  5. Beans says:

    What’s up Professor? Lost Romo and need to free up a roster spot. Who would you rather have for ROS? Denver or Arizona def? Thanks for the time.

  6. FantasyGuru says:

    I got a trade for AJ Green for Demaryius Thomas. I would be getting AJ Green.

    A lot of people have said I’m getting the lesser of the deal. I was wondering what you thought of this trade.

    My reasoning behind the trade was that Manning’s arm is deteriorating and is a shell of his former self.

  7. Smidge says:

    I lost Romo and had Cutler as backup. My choices are Bortles Manziel Mallett or Weeden??? Seriously I know it sucks.. It’s a 15 team league with a deep bench should I look to trade maybe or just roll with one of those guys?
    Thanks for all the help

  8. StanGable says:

    Colts game ended and not impressed with Gore (NYJ DEF good). My RB nonppr this week are Lynch and Lativious RB1/2. I think they both have good matchups. I was going to flex Gore vs. Tenn but now not sure. I drafted both Matt Jones and David Johnson late in draft. Who would you start for flex of Gore, Matt Jones, and David Johnson? Thanks – Stan

  9. Hello says:

    Worth stashing Dez Bryant and dropping Marcus Wheaton?

  10. FantasyGuru – At the same time you can say that Cincinnati is going to be a more run oriented offense, limiting the opportunities for Green. I’d be going Thomas

    Smidge – Bortles would be my top choice, but I’d probably play matchuos

    StanGable – Jones i definitely an alluring option, depending on what they are saying regarding Morris’ role. The matchup is there for him to thrive.

    Hello – Who are your other WR? I’d say it’s worth it if you havedepth.

  11. Hello says:

    I have Charles Johnson and Tate as my 3rd and 4th wr. Also in another league I have Mathew Stanford as my qb and want I think I could get luck. Allen Robinson Larry Fitzgerald and Doug Martin, would you give up 2 of the for Luck? I think I could survive without those players but not sure what is too much for luck and is it worth it

  12. Steven says:

    Who should i use my number 1 waiver priority on…Dion Lewis or Matt Jones?

  13. David says:

    Pick up Matt Jones or Travis Benjamin?

    3 WR league, here’s what I’m working with:

    RB1: Forte
    RB2: McCoy
    WR1: Cooks
    WR2: Watkins
    WR3: V. Jackson
    FLEX: Dion Lewis

    BENCH: Roddy White, Colston, J. Bell

    Thanks!

  14. B-Rad says:

    I’m in a 12 standard and lost Romo. Do I pick up T-rod for the upside rushing yards or Eli Manning?

    Thanks.

  15. Jim says:

    I am thinking about grabbing Starks off waivers this week. I have lacy. I could just play isiah Crowell instead. What do you think? How much out of 100 dollar waiver total should I bid for Starks.

  16. Hello – Then I’d stash Bryant. As for trading for Luck, I wouldn’t give up Robinson. If you can do it for Fitzgerald/Martin and have RB depth, then I would.

    Steven – Jones all the way

    David – Jones. As it is Benjamin is going to be boom or bust and tough to trust

    B-Rad – I’d still go with Manning

    Jim – Minimal, I wouldn’t throw morethan $1 or 2 at him

  17. Hello says:

    Didn’t see your post before I accepted the trade, but I traded Allen Robinson and Dion Lewis for Luck. IDK if this was a good trade or not but now I have 3 qb’s and Rivers has the same bye week as luck. Is it better to hold onto Rivers or drop him for a Hankerson or Richard Matthews? (can’t seem to get anything on the trade front).

  18. C says:

    How’s it going guys? Hope you’re doing better in your leagues than I am.

    Lost Romo after already losing Dez, and Cooks feels pretty much useless now after Brees’ injury.

    Right now I’ve got A. Robinson and S. Johnson as my starting WRs. On my bench I’ve got Cooks, Dez and Martavis Bryant — not too much help right now, obviously.

    Should I just go with these guys and take my chances, or look for FA help? It’s looking pretty bad with the likes of Andre Johnson, Agholor, Rishard Matthews, Doug Baldwin, Marvin Jones, Charles Johnson (whom I just dropped..), Aaron Dobson and DGB the FAs worth mentioning.

    Really frustrating season so far. Appreciate the advice!

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