Fantasy Football Week 3 Early Waiver Wire: Add Mike Davis with Christian McCaffrey out multiple weeks

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Fantasy Analysis: Christian McCaffrey (Ankle) Set to Miss Multiple Weeks

If Week 1 of the NFL season provided some answers to some of our biggest questions from the offseason, Week 2 gave us more questions than answers. The biggest of which, of course, center on the spate of significant injuries we saw around the NFL Sunday. Heath Cummings covered some of the fallout of Saquon Barkley’s potentially season-ending knee injury here, and we reacted to the rest of the injuries to the likes of Christian McCaffrey, Drew Lock, Jimmy Garoppolo, Raheem Mostert and more. 

But, of course, that’s not all we have to account for heading into Week 3. Finding replacements for those two for Week 3 (and, in Barkley’s case, beyond) will be the priorities, but we also saw several other running back situations get shaken up after just one week, plus the emergence of some potential difference makers at every other position. 

Let’s start with six running backs you’ll be looking to add for Week 3’s waiver runs before moving on to the rest of the position’s priorities. Here’s how I rank the top running back targets for waivers this week, beginning with McCaffrey’s replacement after we learned he is likely to miss multiple weeks Monday. 

Week 2 Early Waivers

No. 1 RB target

Nobody can replace Christian McCaffrey, but it’s likely the Panthers will ask Mike Davis to do just that for the next few weeks. McCaffrey left Sunday’s game in the fourth quarter and Davis came out and played 18 snaps in that final frame as the Panthers were chasing points and had seven receptions for 70 yards. Back in 2018, Davis looked at least serviceable with the Seahawks, and with news that McCaffrey is expected to miss multiple weeks, Davis has to be the top target on waivers this week. Sure, maybe Trenton Cannon sees a larger role or the Panthers re-sign last year’s backup Reggie Bonnafon, but all indications from training camp were that Davis was going to be the primary backup if anything happened to McCaffrey, and I expect him to get a ton of usage for however long McCaffrey is out. He should be a borderline PPR No. 2 RB. 

Week 2 Early Waivers

No. 2 RB target

I had Malcolm Brown as the top running back to add on waivers last week, so of course, his backfield mate is the No. 2 add for Week 3. It might sound like flip-flopping, but in this case, Cam Akers‘ injury could make both of them formidable Fantasy options. The Rams have created a ton of value in their running game in the early going, and if Akers is out, both Brown and Henderson could be viable starters. Brown led the team in snaps at running back Sunday, but it was Henderson who got hot and led the team with 81 yards on 12 carries and a touchdown — he also added two catches for 40 yards. Brown had 47 yards on 11 carries and no targets, but Henderson mostly did his damage in the fourth quarter when the game was well in hand and Brown was dealing with a finger injury. Brown should be the lead back, but Henderson showed off his upside Sunday, and will be well worth targeting on waivers in all leagues. 

Week 2 Early Waivers

No. 3/4 RB target

At the very least, McKinnon looks like he hasn’t really lost a step since missing two seasons with knee troubles. He was explosive Sunday, rushing for 77 yards on three carries with a touchdown, but he also played just seven snaps after Raheem Mostert left with a knee injury at halftime. Coleman was much less productive but played a much larger role and should be viewed as the likelier of the two to play a significant role in Week 3 if Mostert is out. It’s less interesting to go after Coleman given how McKinnon has looked, but unless McKinnon sees a significantly larger role moving forward, it’s the smarter play. 

Week 2 Early Waivers

No. 5 RB target

You can make a case that Lewis should be higher on this list, given that Barkley is likely out for the year, but I’m hedging just in case the Giants bring in someone like Devonta Freeman to be the primary option. If not, Lewis figures to see a significant role moving forward, as he played every single snap after Barkley exited the game. 46 of his 56 snaps did come on pass plays as the Giants played from behind and Wayne Gallman was a healthy scratch so he could have a role next week, but Lewis would be the back to target anyway here. He could be a No. 3 PPR back if he’s the primary option.

Myles Gaskin was totally overlooked in the last waiver run, but he confirmed he is the Dolphins No. 1 back again Sunday, playing 36 snaps to Matt Breida‘s 14 and Jordan Howard‘s six. Howard will be more involved in games where the Dolphins aren’t chasing points from the start, but you would still just be hoping he falls into the end zone as a desperation start. Gaskin’s role in the passing game makes him the back to target here, though he still doesn’t need to be a huge priority. But it might be worth throwing a low-dollar FAB bid out there to see if you can add him to the end of your roster while everyone else is chasing the bigger fish. 

Here are the other players you should be trying to add heading into Week 3. 

Week 2

Early Waiver Targets

Early Waiver Wire Targets

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