Competitive fantasy football managers are constantly looking for the next best thing—that hidden gem on the waiver wire—so we’ve been keeping an eye on trends in both Yahoo and ESPN fantasy football leagues to find out who’s hot and who’s not as the NFL preseason winds down.
No. 5: Alfred Morris, RB, Washington Redskins – Maybe it was the 107 rushing yards and a touchdown against the Indianapolis Colts on Aug. 25, or maybe it’s Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan somewhat implying that Morris may have an outside shot at starting in Week 1. Whatever it is, fantasy football managers are flocking to Morris and snapping him up.
No. 4: Rashad Jennings, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars – Back when we listed Jennings as a handcuff to Maurice Jones-Drew, we never thought that Jennings might wind up a Week 1 starter due to a Jones-Drew holdout. Yet that’s exactly the situation in Jacksonville, so fantasy football owners are all over Jennings right now.
No. 3: Cedric Benson, RB, Green Bay Packers – James Starks was projected to be the workhorse for the Packers this year until he stunk in preseason and then got hurt. The Pack grabbed Benson from free agency and now fantasy football managers are doing the same. Benson looked good in his first preseason game against, ironically, the Cincinnati Bengals—his former team.
No. 2: Kevin Smith, RB, Detroit Lions – Jahvid Best still has no timetable for his return from multiple concussions and Mikel Leshoure is suspended for the first two games of the season, leaving Smith as the default starting RB in Detroit. He got a little banged up this week, but it doesn’t appear serious.
No. 1: Russell Wilson, QB, Seattle Seahawks – The rookie quarterback out of Wisconsin has been tearing it up during the preseason, and after slicing and dicing the Kansas City Chiefs starters this weekend, he’s been named the Seahawks’ starting QB for Week 1 against the Arizona Cardinals. This makes him the most sought-after player in both ESPN and Yahoo fantasy football leagues.
No. 5: Carson Palmer, QB, Oakland Raiders – Palmer was supposed to take the Raiders to new heights this year with a full off-season under his belt. Instead, he has stunk it up in preseason, and fantasy football managers have had enough.
No. 4: James Starks, RB, Green Bay Packers – A turf toe injury and a terrible preseason before he got hurt has transformed Starks from a sleeper pick to a roster bubble alert in Green Bay. Cue the mass dumping in fantasy football.
No. 3: Jahvid Best, RB, Detroit Lions – It’s looking more and more likely that Best will start the regular season on the Physically Unable to Perform list, forcing him to miss at least the first six weeks of the season and making him expendable for many fantasy football managers.
No. 2: Matt Flynn, QB, Seattle Seahawks – The news of Wilson’s promotion to starting quarterback was bad news for Flynn’s fantasy football owners, and now they’re dropping him like he’s hot.
No. 1: Terrell Owens, WR – Owens’ return to the NFL was short-lived, as he was waived by the Seahawks on Sunday. Amazingly, enough fantasy football managers owned him to make him one of the most-dropped players in ESPN and No. 1 in that capacity in Yahoo.