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2012 Fantasy Football Week 1 Waiver Wire: Redskins, Texans, Saints, Packers, Lions and More

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Waiver Wire is our weekly look at players available in many fantasy football leagues that could have an immediate impact on your fantasy roster, or simply just players to keep on your radar. We’ll be here all season to let you know which players to watch, who to ignore, and most importantly, who to pick up. If you have any waiver wire questions, feel free to post them in our Fantasy Football Forum.

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Roy Helu WAS | RB

I know what you are thinking, the Redskins backfield is a mess and I don’t want to waste a roster spot. However, I think Helu is well worth a spot for the first couple weeks just to see what happens. We have always thought of him as the most talented running back in Washington, and if he can stay healthy the Shanahans will find a way to get the ball in his hands. (about 75% owned)

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Ben Tate HOU | RB

I was shocked to see that Tate was still available in so many leagues. Not only is he the hottest handcuff in the league, but he had over 1,000 total yards last year. If you own Arian Foster in a league that Tate is available, then you need to find a bench spot for Tate. Tate has the potential of being a top ten fantasy back if Foster gets hurt. (about 70% owned)

Rashad Jennings JAC | RB

Jennings should be owned in more leagues at this point. Even if you don’t own Jones-Drew you could get a couple starts out of Jennings and maybe even get long term value out of him. Jones-Drew has finally reported to the Jags, but who knows what type of shape he is in or if he will stay healthy. Jennings has proven in the past that he is a talented running back, and there is a ton of upside here. (about 75% owned)

Mark Ingram NO | RB

There are a lot of Ingram haters out there, evident by him only being owned in 70% of leagues. We all knew that him going to New Orleans wasn’t the best spot for his fantasy value, but I think the hate has gone too far. He is still the featured back on an amazing offense, and he should see 15+ touches and the goal lines. I am not expecting huge things from Ingram, but I see no reason why he couldn’t be a top 30 running back this year. (about 70% owned)

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Mikel LeShoure DET | RB

I know LeShoure is going to miss the first two games, but I was still surprised to see he is owned in less than half of all leagues. Best is out until who knows when, and I have little faith that Kevin Smith will be able to stay healthy. I think LeShoure will be the man for the Lions when he comes back, and he should get the goal line work for their high powered offense. (about 40% owned)

Randall Cobb GB | WR

It’s rare to have a wide receiver that we know would have a lot of value if their is an injury to one of the starters, but that’s the case with Cobb. Normally the wide receiver that would take over for the starters is somewhat of a question mark, and there is no guarantee that they would have value. For Cobb If Jordy Nelson or Greg Jennings go down I am confident that he could be a top 30 wide receiver, especially in a league that counts return yards. (about 50% owned)

Kendall Hunter SF | RB

Let’s face it, Gore is only going to last so long, and eventually the 49ers are going to have to look elsewhere for your workhorse running back. It’s crowded in the backfield for the 9ers, but I think Hunter is the guy to own as the handcuff for Gore. I am not sure if he can handle the type of load that Gore has in years past, but if Hunter gets close to 20 touches a game he is going to be a great fantasy running back. (about 20% owned)

Isaiah Pead STL | RB

The Rams drafted two running backs in the 2012 draft, which tells us that they have little faith in Jackson staying healthy. I think Jackson does still have some left in the tank, I just think the odds of him breaking down are pretty high this year. Pead looks to be the backup for Jackson as of now, and I think he is a great high upside guy to stash on your bench at this point in the season. (about 20% owned)

Austin Collie IND | WR

I know the concussion stuff is a bit alarming, but Collie still has a huge upside. He could be Luck’s favorite target this year, and if he stays healthy he could be a PPR specialist. Let’s not forget the hot start that Collie got off to in 2010, and I think he could make a similar impact this year if he can stay on the field. (about 35% owned)

Ryan Fitzpatrick BUF | QB

I know Fitzpatrick has been up and down during the course of his career, but for a guy that came close to 4,000 passing yards last year he isn’t getting much respect. He is only owned in about half of all leagues, and in my opinion he makes a solid QB2 for most fantasy teams. I am not expecting huge things from him this year, but I see no reason why he couldn’t be a top 20 QB. (about 50% owned)

Daniel Thomas MIA | RB

I couldn’t believe that Thomas was available in so many leagues. Reggie Bush is still going to get a ton of touches, but I think Thomas is going to get a lot of the early down work and the goal lines. If Bush stays healthy than Thomas probably doesn’t have a huge upside, but he should still see enough touches to have value in most leagues. (about 20% owned)

Jonathan Dwyer PIT | RB

For most of the preseason Redman was the guy to own until Mendenhall comes back, but now it’s looking like it might be Dwyer. He has played great so far in the preseason games, and all of the reports have been positive. I think there is a good chance that Dwyer could emerge as the better fantasy option in Pittsburgh, and he could have some decent value if Mendenhall takes longer than expected to come back. (about 15% owned)

Minnesota MIN | DEF

The Vikings gave up a lot of points last year, but they lead the league in sacks. I think they could put some pressure on the young quarterback of the Jaguars and maybe force some turnovers. With MJD probably only seeing limited action, it should be even easier for the Vikings to keep points off the board. (about 10% owned)

Luke Kuechley CAR | D

The rookie out of Boston College was a first round pick for the Panthers in this years draft. He is a talented young player that could be a tackle machine this year. If you are looking for a high upside individual defensive player then you might want to give Kuechley a look. (about 20% owned)

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Mike Goodson OAK | RB

Goodson had a chance to start a couple games for the Panthers back in 2010, and he played great. Looking like the primary backup to the injury prone McFadden, I think Goodson could get a chance to start at least a few games this year. The Raiders offense could be decent this in 2012, and if Goodson gets his chance he could be a top 30 running back. (about 10% owned)