Week 2 Waiver Wire: Can Josh Gordon get a vote?

The drug vote saga drags on, leaving the suspensions for Josh Gordon and Wes Welker up in the air. Is it worth stashing Gordon at this point if he’s still out there? Probably.

I’m still concerned about how much of Gordon’s suspension will actually be reduced, but his abilities as a top-5 fantasy football receiver when he takes the field makes him worth a bench spot at this point.

Don’t break the bank with your free agent acquisition budgets just yet, but make sure Gordon is on a roster by week’s end.

Speaking of top receivers, I’d love to list Allen Hurns here. He was the early surprise in Week 1 when he broke out with two touchdowns in the first half of the early games. But Cecil Shorts’ injury opened the door. Shorts’ return in Week 2 could close it.

I’m not sure I burn a lot of free agent dollars or a waiver claim order to get Hurns, but if you have a deep bench, be my guest. I might feel differently if it was Blake Bortles starting under center and not Chad Henne.

Now let’s kick off the waiver picks for this week.

  • Justin Forsett
  • Terrance West
  • Bobby Rainey
  • James Starks
  • Markus Wheaton
  • Brian Quick
  • Lorenzo Taliaferro
  • Andrew Hawkins (PPR Bonus)

I like Forsett this week, but that’s in the context of “this week.” I don’t expect him to keep Bernard Pierce and Lorenzo Taliaferro at bay all season long, but he’s in line for the bulk of the work in Week 2, which makes him a “must add” if you need the production more than the stash. I wouldn’t spend more than 25% of a FAAB on Justin Forsett considering the doubts. In fact, I’m only putting 5% down on him this week for price enforcement.

Terrance West would be the lead dog in the Browns backfield if Ben Tate’s knee injury is serious. The latest news says Tate will miss at least this week and maybe a few more. Isaiah Crowell is exciting, and he might be the more talented runner. Unfortunately, he didn’t get as much work as West on Sunday.

I’d spend 15% to lock West up for the rest of the season. This won’t be the last time Ben Tate is on an injury report.

For Crowell, I’d sneak him onto your bench in all leagues you can afford to do so and hope his talent gets him on the field more for the Browns, who looked very capable of running the ball on Sunday.

Bobby Rainey shot out of a cannon this week after Doug Martin’s injury — but was it really an injury? We don’t yet know whether Martin will miss any time, but Rainey may emerge in his absence. We’ve seen Rainey shine in the past, and Lovie Smith has done nothing to suggest he’s loyal to Martin. I’d be willing to drop 10% FAAB to secure Rainey for Week 2 and beyond, especially if we hear Martin will be out.

James Starks is a just-in-case addition if you own Eddie Lacy and are feeling nervous. It seems that Lacy is already on the road to recovery from his latest concussion, but we could see Starks involved in this offense regardless of Lacy’s health. He’s a 10% add for me.

Markus Wheaton got on the same page with Big Ben in Week 1. That offense seemed to be running on all cylinders, so I’d take a piece of Wheaton where I can get it. He’s likely a 5-10% FAAB add right now since he didn’t get to the end zone in Week 1.

Brian Quick looks to be the top receiving option in St. Louis. The Rams offense didn’t appear too promising on Sunday, but I am giving the Rams the benefit of the doubt that they won’t be that terrible every week, which would make Quick a decent start and WR depth as the season progresses. He’s a low-cost 5% FAAB bid.

Lorenzo Taliaferro is the rookie in Baltimore. In Ray Rice’s absence and Bernard Pierce’s failure, he could rise up the depth chart over Forsett, but it will take some time. I tend to believe Pierce will be back on top of this committee sooner or later. If you want to stash Taliaferro on your bench, he’s worth of a 5% FAAB.

And for those of you in PPR leagues, Andrew Hawkins should be a nice WR3 play, especially if Josh Gordon’s suspension holds up and Jordan Cameron misses time with his shoulder injury. Go after him with 5% FAAB while he’s on the market.

Need a QB for Week 2? SB Nation’s Keepers provides a few reasons to like Jake Locker.

For more beautiful waiver wire advice, check in with FantasyPros, Rotoworld, Keepers, Fantasy Football Librarian, and The Hazean.