If you are serious about winning your fantasy league football championship, stay on top of your fantasy football team throughout the year.
Each week during the NFL fantasy football season, KFFL brings you its Fantasy Football Waiver Wire, which breaks down players to pick up. Be aggressive when picking up fantasy football free agents. Even if you do not need a player, you can tuck him away for depth or block others from adding him to their fantasy football team.
Note: Percentage of polled leagues in which player is available in parentheses
Fantasy football free agents: Priority additions
The following players should be high on your radar and are worthy of being added immediately to your fantasy football team.
Dexter McCluster and Thomas Jones, Kansas City Chiefs (87 percent, 52 percent)
McCluster best direct replacement
The likely loss of Jamaal Charles (knee) for the year means you need to add McCluster, primarily in PPR leagues, and Jones to your fantasy team. The Chiefs will remain a run-oriented team as long as they are in games. When they're not, McCluster would be the bigger beneficiary.
Their upcoming schedule starts with the San Diego Chargers this week, but their next three matchups are appealing: Minnesota Vikings (Week 4), Indianapolis Colts (Week 5) and the Oakland Raiders after a Week 6 bye.
DeMarco Murray, Dallas Cowboys (64 percent)
If Felix Jones (shoulder) cannot play, Murray is likely to receive the start. He may share touches with Tashard Choice, who is available in 75 percent of leagues. Jones hasn't been ruled out yet, but you need to snag Murray from your waiver wire if you own the injured former Arkansas Razorback.
Murray is a capable receiver and a decent slasher. With Miles Austin (hamstring) and Dez Bryant (thigh) hurt, the Cowboys could rely heavily on the running game.
Fantasy football free agents: Look to acquire
The following players will have greater significance in deep fantasy football leagues. In shallow fantasy football leagues, they are not as high of a priority but should be considered based on your fantasy football team's needs.
Roy Helu Jr., Washington Redskins (69 percent)
A recurring theme this week is the writer telling you to pick up players we touted in the offseason as sleepers. While it is early in the year, we are already beginning to see dividends from these minor investments. Helu will see limited action as long as Tim Hightower is healthy and productive. Yet, there is still room for fantasy value due to Helu's talent and fit for the system. This one-cut-and-go runner has what it takes to rip off large chunks of yardage at a time and is worthy of being rostered in leagues of at least 16 players. Play this Nebraska product in your flex spot when the matchup is right.
Fantasy football free agents: One-week plays
The following fantasy football pickups are for those who need injury or bye week replacements. They are not players you immediately acquire - unless your team is in dire straights. Some have, however, shown some life and should be followed in case they materialize as options beyond their temporary use.
Isaac Redman, Pittsburgh Steelers (74 percent)
This one-week play will go one of two ways: Either Pittsburgh is up so much on the Indianapolis Colts that Redman will see a lot of late-game work, or Rashard Mendenhall will continually pound the rock to pad his stats. It seems illogical for the coaching staff to ride Mendy unnecessarily, and we expect to see enough of Redman to warrant a fantasy flex play. If you're a gambling owner, think about sneaking Redman into your lineup this week. It is undoubtedly a risky move, but you won't win your league without taking a few chances.
NEW - Earnest Graham, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (84 percent)
Graham has been involved heavily in the passing game this season, with 13 grabs through two games. The Buccaneers don't trust LeGarrette Blount in passing situations and turn to the veteran fullback.
Tampa Bay's defense is average and could put the offense in a position to play the comeback game this week. The Bucs host the Atlanta Falcons, who have given up an average of 4.50 receptions for 55.5 yards and 0.50 touchdowns per game.
Do not count on Graham for a huge fantasy day, but point-per-reception owners in deep leagues should consider him a viable flex play.
About Cory J. Bonini
Cory is KFFL's General Manager. In late 2002, he joined the KFFL staff as a research analyst and has been involved in fantasy sports since 1996. A member of the Fantasy Sports Trade Association, as well as Fantasy Sports Writers Association, Bonini has been featured in print, on radio and on scores of websites. Bonini co-hosted Big Lead Sports on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio from 2011 to 2012.
Bonini was recognized with the 2010 Best Article in Print Award from the FSWA and was a finalist for the same award in 2011. In '11, he finished first overall in the FSWA NFL experts challenge that featured 60 of the industry's best competitors.
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