Don’t Sleep on These Hidden Gems in Fantasy Football: Ben Goldman’s Fantasy Pickups After Weeks 1 and 2


Carson Wentz, quarterback for the Washington Commanders, prepared to take the snap in the Commanders Week 2 game against the Detroit Lions. Photo from Yahoo! Sports

Written By Ben Goldman

It’s that time again! The NFL season has started, and fantasy drafts are over. Here are some waiver wire pickups from weeks 1 and 2 to help you win your league!

The first week 1 pickup is Chiefs running back Isiah Pachecho. The 7th rounder dominated in preseason, looked good in garbage time, and should have a decent role in a Chiefs backfield that doesn’t have much talent. Clyde Edwards-Helaire began the season as the starter; however, based on his previous performance, he may have trouble keeping that job. Pachecho will be on the waiver wire in almost all smaller leagues.

Another player to pick up is Browns wide receiver Donovan Peoples-Jones. He was a massive target hog in the Browns game and looks to be Jacoby Brissett’s favorite target. He also should get easier matchups with Amari Cooper drawing all of the star cornerbacks. If he puts up more performances like week 1, he could be a very solid WR2. 

An under the radar pickup is Jaguars wide receiver Zay Jones. While Christian Kirk is obviously the WR1 in Jacksonville, Zay Jones had 6 catches, and that can’t be ignored. When given an opportunity, Jones has performed well, but struggled to find opportunities due to the quality of the r receivers he competed with. This could be a breakout year for him, and at the very least he should be a decent bye week fill in.

Jaguars wide receiver Zay Jones makes a sharp cut while running a route in the Jaguars week 1 game against the Commanders. Photo from

Someone else to pick up is the Tennessee Titans’ wide receiver, Kyle Phillips. The rookie out of UCLA was the leading receiver for the Titans in week 1 and had 9 targets. You should definitely pick him up in PPR leagues, and he could end up leading the Titans in catches. The comparison I keep coming up with is Hunter Renfrow because they’re both possession slot receivers that could be PPR monsters. He might only be a bye week filler, but you should still pick him up.

Someone who might not be available is Colts running back Nyheim Hines. In non-PPR leagues there’s no point in picking him up, but he should be great in PPR leagues and could even be in the RB2 range. He had six catches last week, and with Matt Ryan’s arm strength depleting, that could become a theme. He’s more of a wide receiver than a running back, but if you’re thin at running back, Hines is a lifesaver.

A very popular pick up is Commanders wide receiver Curtis Samuel. He had a HUGE game in week 1, hauling in 8 of 11 targets for 55 yards and a touchdown while also carrying the ball 4 times for 17 yards. If he gets volume like this every week, he will be a WR1. Even if his volume decreases a bit, his gadget role will make him very valuable in fantasy, as he should rarely go off the field. He should be your number 1 waiver priority this week.

The final week 1 pickup is Cardinals wide receiver Greg Dortch. He hauled in 7 of 9 targets in week 1, and could be the Cardinals WR1 until DeAndre Hopkins returns from his suspension. He has WR1 potential, but a very low floor. He should definitely be on everyone’s radar.

Jets tight end Tyler Conklin looks a ball into his hands in practice. Photo from New York Post.

The first week 2 pickup is Commanders quarterback Carson Wentz. Wentz is performing very well through two weeks, and should continue to ball out as the Commanders have to throw the ball often. It doesn’t look pretty, but Wentz always finds a way to put up great stats. He should be a QB1 for the rest of the season, but don’t watch his games if he’s on your fantasy team, Wentz might give you a heart attack.

The next week 2 pickup is Patriots wide receiver Jakobi Meyers. Meyers caught 9 of 13 targets for 95 yards in week 2, proving that Meyers is obviously the Patriots’ WR1, but he still might not have much upside in a boring Patriots offense. It also seems that Meyers has a fear of the endzone, with only two touchdowns in his 4 year career. Pick Meyers up, but I wouldn’t start him until he starts to string together big games.

The final week 2 pickup is Tyler Conklin. The Jets’ tight end has drawn 7 and 9 targets in weeks 1 and 2, both of which are great target totals for tight ends. In a year with so many tight end busts, Conklin could be a very helpful pickup. Volume is king in fantasy football, and Conklin has been drawing a lot of volume. He should be a low end TE1 or high end TE2 every week.