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NFL fantasy football — waiver wire week 2 recommendations

Graphic illustration titled "Trash Talk" for the sports desk depicting different sports equipment
(Graphic illustration by Rachel Macias | The Collegian)

Week one of fantasy football is now in the books. We saw it all Sunday: double-digit comebacks, huge upsets and breakout performers. It was everything we could have asked for.

For fantasy football managers, you got to see the team that you drafted in action. If you had Kyler Murray, Deebo Samuel or Amari Cooper, I’m sure you had a great weekend. If you started Ezekiel Elliott and/or Aaron Jones, I feel for your rough start.

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I know you shouldn’t jump ship on your first- or second-round pick just yet, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t look at the waiver wire for some much-needed depth. I have three players that can instantly help your team win and give you back your bragging rights to your friends.  

My first waiver wire pick is a no-brainer, and it’s San Francisco 49ers’ rookie running back Elijah Mitchell. Starting Niners running back Raheem Mostert was put on injury reserve for eight weeks due to a chipped cartilage in his knee that he suffered in week one against the Detroit Lions.

This meant a lot more touches for Mitchell. He carried the workload most of the day for San Francisco with 19 touches, 104 yards and a touchdown. 16 fantasy points and averaging 5.5 yards per carry for an NFL debut is very impressive. If he continues how he played Sunday, he will be the number one back until Mostert returns in week nine. Mitchell should be added in all formats, especially in deeper leagues. Mitchell is available in 90% of leagues.

Switching to the AFC, the Indianapolis Colts running back Nyheim Hines is still available in 35% of leagues. Everyone thought the Colts’ backfield was crowded with Jonathan Taylor and Marlon Mack, but there were reports going into week one that Hines could get more touches after signing a three-year $18.6 million contract, making him a top 10 paid running back in the league.

It turns out those reports were true as he carried the ball nine times for 34 rushing yards and added eight targets for 48 receiving yards. For only being owned in 65% of leagues, he has way too much upside not to make a claim for him.

Hines finished with 14.8 fantasy points yesterday, which was more than Elliott and Jones combined. He’ll likely be in the flex conversation all season in points per reception formats as he plays in a weak AFC south division, which consists of the Jacksonville Jaguars and Houston Texans.

My final waiver wire claim for week two is a fan favorite for Denver Broncos fiends. Second-year wide receiver K.J. Hamler is a legitimate deep threat in this league. He proved that last year against the Carolina Panthers when he had two long catches for touchdowns and 86 yards, racking up a little over 20 fantasy points.

Hamler almost did the same thing in week one against the New York Giants, when he had three receptions for 41 yards. He also dropped a 50-yard touchdown pass that would have boosted his numbers tremendously. Hamler will see more snaps and targets since fellow wide receiver Jerry Jeudy is sidelined for 4-6 weeks due to a high ankle sprain. Hamler should be very easy to pick up on waivers since he is owned in less than 2% of leagues.

If someone in your league snags any of these three players, don’t worry. The beautiful part of football is that there are breakout players every week, especially with injuries constantly happening around the league. I will be here next week to give you three more players to improve your team and help bring you to glorious victory come January.

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Brendon Fairbairn can be reached at sports@collegian.com or on Twitter @Fairbairn_7 .

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