Waiver Wire Wonders: The Week of the Random in Fantasy Football
While Week 1 of the NFL season revealed some clear rising stars and glaring adds for fantasy rosters, Week 2 consists largely of head-scratching maybes. Call it the week of the random. Still, several players widely available on the waiver wires made breakout statements this week, so study up and get to know these names.
Laurent Robinson (WR, St. Louis) - The St. Louis Rams are clearly struggling to find their footing in the passing game, yet the connection between Mark Bulger and Laurent Robinson looks to be developing nicely. After a solid game in the season opener, Robinson pulled in six catches for 54 yards and a touchdown this week. While this may not look all that spectacular, the fact that Robinson accounted for over 40 percent of the passing yards and all the points makes him look pretty appealing.
Julian Edelman (WR, New England) - While I'm still not totally convinced Wes Welker didn't just suit up in a different jersey, everyone claims rookie Julian Edelman filled in as Welker missed Sunday's action against the Jets with a knee injury. The speedy doppelganger handled Welker's possession receiver duties admirably as he hauled in eight balls for 98 yards. In all seriousness, Edelman looked very impressive and veteran Joey Galloway did not capitalize particularly well on his targets, so look for Edelman to move into a growing role regardless of Welker's status.
Correll Buckhalter (RB, Denver) - Despite the departure of Mike Shanahan, the Denver backfield remains a bit of a mystery. Everyone and their mother has Knowshon Moreno at the top of their sleeper list, yet for the second week in a row he was outshined by Buckhalter. Moreno definitely got the heavier load of carries with 17 for 75 yards, but Buckhalter scored a touchdown and tallied 76 yards rushing on only nine carries and added 30 yards receiving.
Kevin Kolb (QB, Philadelphia) - If anyone can prove they predicted Kolb would lead the league in passing yards on Sunday, I owe you a cheese steak. Kolb's value has a limited timeline as Donovan McNabb will get the job back and Michael Vick won't help his case once he can play -- not to mention the presence of Jeff Garcia -- but it's still hard to ignore 391 yards. Realistically, Kolb's huge yardage came in large part from the desperation of trying to come back from a massive deficit as the Saints annihilated the Eagles. Still, Kolb could be a decent play in the short term.
Jets Defense (D/ST, New York) - The Jets defense has yet to throw up a huge day in terms of fantasy points, but after Sunday's shutdown of the New England offense and the offensive explosion posted by Houston after looking lousy against the Jets last week, it is clear the Jets are an elite unit. Clearly Rex Ryan has this unit headed in the right direction. Additionally, Darrelle Revis shut down Andre Johnson last week, handled Randy Moss on Sunday, and grabbed an incredible interception to boot. Look for this group to post big numbers going forward.
Mike Sims-Walker (WR, Jacksonville) - One of few bright spots for the Jaguars in Sunday's Kurt Warner show was the emergence of University of Central Florida alum, Mike Sims-Walker. He connected with David Garrard six times for 106 yards and a touchdown. Furthermore, Troy Williamson suffered a torn labrum that will likely end his season.
Johnny Knox (WR, Chicago) - No longer to be known for just Jackass jokes, the 4.34 forty speedster made his name known Sunday with six catches for 70 yards and a touchdown in the Bears win against the defending Super Bowl champs. While fantasy pundits still try to gauge the Bears' wide receiver corps -- with Earl Bennett and Devin Hester getting most of the attention -- Knox snuck in and played the best game to date with Jay Cutler. Somebody needs to step it up at wideout for the Bears, so Knox could be the star they have been waiting on.
Byron Leftwich (QB, Tampa Bay) - So much for cruising with the Cadillac. Our feel-good story from Week 1, Carnell "Cadillac" Williams, returned with just seven carries and nine yards in Week 2. Overall, the Bucs totaled only 57 yards rushing. On the other hand, Leftwich threw the ball 50 times for 296 yards with three touchdowns (and two interceptions). With big names like Matt Hasselbeck and Donovan McNabb already out, Leftwich may be the fill-in these owners need.