Punch Drunk Wonderland

Week 1 Waiver Wire knee jerk reactions

USP NFL: BALTIMORE RAVENS AT DENVER BRONCOS S FBN USA COIt’s refreshing that Week 1 of the 2013 NFL season (and fantasy football) is here.  The competitive juices are flowing for all of us.  We’ve just recently built our initial teams and we’re still in the feel-it-out phase. Fantasy franchise owners are poised to jump on the waiver wire gem of the week.  Poised partly because we want to improve our teams, and partly because we haven’t made a meaningful waiver wire pick up based on actual football outcomes in months. We need action!

Beware The Ogletree Factor!

The NEWNESS of Week 1 fantasy football and the need for action lends itself to knee jerk reactions.  You see a no name guy shine in the first week and you think he’s your diamond in the rough.  Look at Kevin Ogletree from 2012. In Week 1 of 2012 he stepped into the spotlight and piled up 8 receptions for 114 yards and 2 touchdowns for the Cowboys against the Giants.  It was an inspired performance, and the end result was him being immediately taken off the waiver wire in fantasy leagues the following week.  Unfortunately, Ogletree never had a performance that was even close to those Week 1 numbers and fantasy owners were disappointed.  Avoid the glitz and glamour smokescreen that is unheralded early success for unknowns.  Sure, there are guys that will be gems and they could emerge to be huge, but be smart.

This is especially the case if you use a rolling waiver system in your league in which you move to the end of the waiver priority after each pick.  You could be wasting precious waiver position early.  If you’re in the worst-to-first style waivers systems, then it’s not so much of a big deal.  Just don’t do something stupid with your moves.

There’s only been one game in Week 1 to fawn over, but there were some waiver names that popped up.  And, fawning will occur. Denver tight end Julius Thomas and Baltimore receiver Marlon Brown had nice introductions to the NFL world last night.  Thomas amassed 5 receptions for 110 yards and 2 touchdowns, and looked like a matchup nightmare in an offense led by Peyton Manning.  Then again, any Broncos receiver not named Decker got to share in the love last night.  Marlon Brown came in for the Ravens after Jacoby Jones went down with a knee sprain.  Brown picked up 4 receptions for 65 yards and 1 touchdown.  A very respectable first NFL game for the rookie.

Baltimore-Marlon-BrownThere are some considerations for both of them.  First, Thomas has some legal issues he’s working through which could turn into lost time in the form of suspension if things don’t work out.  He’s probably in the clear, but it’s worth keeping an eye on.  In leagues that use the TE position, he definitely has some value and could emerge as a big name. He’s big and athletic, and could be a real matchup nightmare for defenses. However, keep in mind that there are a ton of offensive weapons in Denver.  Manning has several very capable and talented receivers, and there’s a good chance the ball will get spread around.  It’s a good and bad thing.  Be sure to weigh your elation over Orange Julius against the fact that his role in the offense could be fluid.  As for Marlon Brown, he’s a question mark.  He certainly seems to be a talented rookie and he stepped up very well in the absence of Jones last night.  The Jones injury is key here.  If Jacoby is going to miss time, then Brown could slide into a larger role.  It helps that the receiving situation for the Ravens is pretty weak.  With Boldin traded away and Pitta injured, the only sure thing is Torrey Smith.  What that will mean is he’ll likely get the double coverage, so that opens up opportunities for other receivers who get the single coverage.  If you want take a flyer on Brown, go ahead.  But, keep an eye on the situation around him.

And remember….it’s just one game. One week. We’re in for the long haul here, folks.  Be smart.  Remember, we beat them with our savvy.


K. Smelser About K. Smelser
Kelly Smelser is Owner/Senior Writer for Punch Drunk Wonderland and PDFantasy Sports. Architect of the PDW fantasy football world and general spinster of NFL and Fantasy Football news and analysis. Long walks on the beach, sunsets, and other such niceties are also fine...