Published: Sept. 3, 2018 at 07:43 p.m.

Week 1 fantasy football waiver-wire targets

Fantasy football drafts are fun but most leagues are won on the waiver wire. Every week, we'll run down 10 players who could help your fantasy squad for the upcoming week or possibly for the rest of the year. And before you @ me on Twitter, I know ... none of these guys are available in your league.

10 Photos Total

  • We're still not 100 percent sure if Le'Veon Bell will be on the field when the Steelers start the season. If not, then look for Conner to get plenty of work against the Cleveland Browns in the opener. It remains to be seen how much Pittsburgh will use the young running back during the season but it certainly makes sense to stash him as a handcuff if you selected Bell early in your draft. 10

    Al Tielemans/Associated Press

    James Conner, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers

    We're still not 100 percent sure if Le'Veon Bell will be on the field when the Steelers start the season. If not, then look for Conner to get plenty of work against the Cleveland Browns in the opener. It remains to be seen how much Pittsburgh will use the young running back during the season but it certainly makes sense to stash him as a handcuff if you selected Bell early in your draft.

  • When the Niners signed Morris during the preseason, it appeared that he was merely insurance with Jerick McKinnon nursing leg injuries. Now the Niners are cashing in that policy after McKinnon suffered a torn ACL to end his season before it started. There's no clarity just yet on how the backfield duties will break down but it's very apparent that Morris will now be a large part of what Kyle Shanahan's offense does. 9

    Michael Conroy/Associated Press

    Alfred Morris, RB, San Francisco 49ers

    When the Niners signed Morris during the preseason, it appeared that he was merely insurance with Jerick McKinnon nursing leg injuries. Now the Niners are cashing in that policy after McKinnon suffered a torn ACL to end his season before it started. There's no clarity just yet on how the backfield duties will break down but it's very apparent that Morris will now be a large part of what Kyle Shanahan's offense does.

  • If Morris moves up a rung on the 49ers running back ladder, so does Breida. The second-year back was already ticketed for a role in the offense (think Tevin Coleman 2.0) and now could see that role expand in the wake of McKinnon's injury. 8

    Terrell Lloyd/Associated Press

    Matt Breida, RB, San Francisco 49ers

    If Morris moves up a rung on the 49ers running back ladder, so does Breida. The second-year back was already ticketed for a role in the offense (think Tevin Coleman 2.0) and now could see that role expand in the wake of McKinnon's injury.

  • Last year was a lost season for Williams, mostly due to injury. This year is the expected breakout -- an expectation that grew after Hunter Henry's season-ending injury. And don't worry about the Antonio Gates signing. As nostalgic as it is, the veteran isn't nearly the same player he once was and doesn't figure to eat into Williams' targets too much this season. 7

    Ric Tapia/NFL

    Mike Williams, WR, Los Angeles Chargers

    Last year was a lost season for Williams, mostly due to injury. This year is the expected breakout -- an expectation that grew after Hunter Henry's season-ending injury. And don't worry about the Antonio Gates signing. As nostalgic as it is, the veteran isn't nearly the same player he once was and doesn't figure to eat into Williams' targets too much this season.

  • The Lions backfield is an absolute quagmire heading into the season but it appears that Blount and rookie Kerryon Johnson are at the top of the depth chart and should occupy most of the carries. The argument in favor of Blount is his usage as a hammer near the goal line. That potential touchdown upside is worth a spot on your roster until we have a clearer idea of how this group will operate. 6

    Jason BehnkenAssociated Press

    LeGarrette Blount, RB, Detroit Lions

    The Lions backfield is an absolute quagmire heading into the season but it appears that Blount and rookie Kerryon Johnson are at the top of the depth chart and should occupy most of the carries. The argument in favor of Blount is his usage as a hammer near the goal line. That potential touchdown upside is worth a spot on your roster until we have a clearer idea of how this group will operate.

  • This rookie wide receiver class hasn't been quite as ballyhooed as others in recent memory. But Gallup has landed in a good situation on a team in need of pass-catchers that could find itself in plenty of negative game scripts. If the preseason is any indication, Gallup and Dak Prescott have built a rapport and the young wideout's athleticism makes him a dangerous downfield target. 5

    Aaron M. Sprecher

    Michael Gallup, WR, Dallas Cowboys

    This rookie wide receiver class hasn't been quite as ballyhooed as others in recent memory. But Gallup has landed in a good situation on a team in need of pass-catchers that could find itself in plenty of negative game scripts. If the preseason is any indication, Gallup and Dak Prescott have built a rapport and the young wideout's athleticism makes him a dangerous downfield target.

  • OK, I know I said this rookie receiving class didn't have a lot of hype, but Moore is among the guys who stood out during the preseason. There is target volume to be had without a legitimate No. 2 receiver in the mix. (Sorry, Torrey Smith.) Plus, you have to love a player that Steve Smith, Sr. refers to as his "spirit animal." 4

    Jim Mahoney/Associated Press

    DJ Moore, WR, Carolina Panthers

    OK, I know I said this rookie receiving class didn't have a lot of hype, but Moore is among the guys who stood out during the preseason. There is target volume to be had without a legitimate No. 2 receiver in the mix. (Sorry, Torrey Smith.) Plus, you have to love a player that Steve Smith, Sr. refers to as his "spirit animal."

  • The loss of Marqise Lee for the season doesn't totally clear things up but it does mean one less player to occupy targets in the Jaguars offense. It's been hard to definitively pick on receiver out of the bunch in Duval County but as the regular season has approached, signs point to Cole (who lead the Jags in receiving yards last season) to be the wideout to grab in this offense. 3

    Damian Strohmeyer/Associated Press

    Keelan Cole, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars

    The loss of Marqise Lee for the season doesn't totally clear things up but it does mean one less player to occupy targets in the Jaguars offense. It's been hard to definitively pick on receiver out of the bunch in Duval County but as the regular season has approached, signs point to Cole (who lead the Jags in receiving yards last season) to be the wideout to grab in this offense.

  • While writing this, I initially mistyped "John Brown" as "John Grown", which could just be a projection of how I expect him to play this season. Smokey looked like the breakout star he was on his way to becoming in Arizona and looks like a perfect deep threat for Joe Flacco in what could be a resurgent Ravens passing game. Brown is a solid best ball option but could end up with sneaky week-to-week value was well -- especially this week against a Bills team that looks to be pretty awful. 2

    Darron Cummings/Associated Press

    John Brown, WR, Baltimore Ravens

    While writing this, I initially mistyped "John Brown" as "John Grown", which could just be a projection of how I expect him to play this season. Smokey looked like the breakout star he was on his way to becoming in Arizona and looks like a perfect deep threat for Joe Flacco in what could be a resurgent Ravens passing game. Brown is a solid best ball option but could end up with sneaky week-to-week value was well -- especially this week against a Bills team that looks to be pretty awful.

  • Why isn't the Saints defense more universally owned? It was one one of the best fantasy units in the game last season and looks to be just as good, or better, this year. On top of that, New Orleans has the good fortune to start its season against a Buccaneers offense that won't have Jameis Winston at its disposal. The Saints are better than a streaming option but if you're into streaming ... well, this is also for you. 1

    Paul Jasienski/Assocaited Press

    Saints D/ST

    Why isn't the Saints defense more universally owned? It was one one of the best fantasy units in the game last season and looks to be just as good, or better, this year. On top of that, New Orleans has the good fortune to start its season against a Buccaneers offense that won't have Jameis Winston at its disposal. The Saints are better than a streaming option but if you're into streaming ... well, this is also for you.