Week 2 Waiver Wire Pickups 2021: Fantasy Football Players You Need to Add

Max Staley
Week 2 waiver wire 2021: fantasy football pickups you need to add, including Elijah Mitchell.
Week 2 waiver wire 2021: fantasy football pickups you need to add, including Elijah Mitchell. / Leon Halip/Getty Images

Week 1 of the 2021 season has already brought its fair share of injuries. Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick is on the IR, running back Raheem Mostert could miss the next few games, and wide receiver Jerry Jeudy is dealing with a high-ankle sprain.

If you need help sorting through the events of the weekend, The Duel has you covered. Here are the top-five waiver wire pickups heading into Week 2 of the 2021 season.

Week 2 Waiver Wire

Note: Only players rostered in fewer than 50% of Yahoo! fantasy football leagues are eligible for this list.

5. Jameis Winston, QB, New Orleans Saints (44% Rostered)

Jameis Winston balled out in his first start as a New Orleans Saint. He scored the third-most points among all QBs, trailing only Patrick Mahomes and Kyler Murray. This may not be a fluke, either. The last time we saw Winston play a full season as the starter (2019), he finished as fantasy's QB5. It's a small sample size, and the 5 touchdowns are unsustainable, but he averaged a whopping 12.40 adjusted yards per attempt (AY/A) against an above-average pass defense. Plus, the 6 carries for 37 yards are an added bonus. Things should only get better from here. It's fair to expect Winston to continue improving as he gets comfortable in Sean Payton's system, and this unit could really take off once Michael Thomas returns. If you need QB help, Winston is your man.

4. Nelson Agholor, WR, New England Patriots (33% Rostered)

Mac Jones looked great in his NFL debut. In fact, he's now considered the favorite to win Rookie of the Year, according to FanDuel Sportsbook. That could mean his pass-catchers are more valuable than we thought entering the year. That certainly appears true of Nelson Agholor, who turned 7 targets into 5 receptions for 72 yards and a score. He was second on the team in targets and first in yards. Agholor is New England's most dynamic WR and should be on the WR3 radar more often than not.

3. Kenneth Gainwell, RB, Philadelphia Eagles (8% Rostered)

Rookie RB Kenneth Gainwell made his NFL debut, turning 9 carries into 37 yards and a score. That may not seem like a lot, but the usage was really interesting. He played 34% of the snaps while Miles Sanders played 66%. Boston Scott, meanwhile, didn't see the field once. Assuming that trend continues, Gainwell would suddenly become one of the most compelling handcuffs in the league. And he's playing behind an RB who has had problems staying healthy in the past. Gainwell is a talented player running behind a solid O-Line in what looks to like a surprisingly effective. He's a great lottery ticket to stash on your bench.

2. Christian Kirk, WR, Arizona Cardinals (14% Rostered)

The Arizona Cardinals offense had everything working on Sunday. That included Christian Kirk, who turned 5 targets into 5 receptions for 70 yards and 2 touchdowns. He's obviously not going to score that much every week, but there's a real chance he emerges as Arizona's No. 2 receiver. His 5 targets were tied for the third most on the team, and he only saw 1 fewer look than A.J. Green (6). However, he was way more efficient than Green, who turned those 6 targets into 2 receptions for 25 yards. Kirk's 57% snap rate was also the third-best mark among Arizona's wideouts. At worst, Kirk looks like the No. 3 option for this dynamic passing attack, and it wouldn't be a surprise to see him earn No. 2 duties as the year progresses.

1. Elijah Mitchell, RB, San Francisco 49ers (8% Rostered)

Elijah Mitchell is the top add of the week, and it's not particularly close. He earned No. 2 RB duties over Trey Sermon, who was a surprising healthy scratch. And it didn't take long before Mitchell was the feature back, as Raheem Mostert left after just 4 snaps. Mitchell wasted no time taking advantage. He turned 19 carries into 104 yards and a touchdown, clearly working as the lead back over JaMychal Hasty, who only saw one attempt. It's still unclear how much time Mostert will miss, but he's going to be a mid-range RB2 as long as he's the starter.

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Max Staley is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Max Staley also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mstaley1212. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.