Fantasy football: Purdy, Edwards, Nacua lead add/drops for Week 2

Baltimore Ravens running back Gus Edwards (C) is stopped by Houston Texans defensive tackle Maliek Collins on Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. Photo by David Tulis/UPI
1 of 5 | Baltimore Ravens running back Gus Edwards (C) is stopped by Houston Texans defensive tackle Maliek Collins on Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. Photo by David Tulis/UPI | License Photo

Sept. 11 (UPI) -- Brock Purdy, Gus Edwards and Puka Nacua lead my fantasy football waiver wire priority list for Week 2 of the 2023 season.

Several injuries, breakout performances and disappointing debuts highlighted the launch of the NFL campaign.


Baltimore Ravens running back J.K. Dobbins sustained a season-ending Achilles injury. That injury opens the door to fantasy relevance for Edwards and fellow backup running back Justice Hill.

Purdy is a great streaming option going forward, if you need help in the quarterback slot. Nacua stepped up in a big way for the Los Angeles Rams, who played without star wide receiver Cooper Kupp in a blowout win over the Seattle Seahawks.

My waiver wire priorities each carry an ownership percentage of 60% or less. Here are my top players to add and top players to drop for Week 2:



QB | Brock Purdy, Jordan Love; RB | Gus Edwards, Kenneth Gainwell, Kyren Williams; WR | Puka Nacua, Darnell Mooney; TE | Hayden Hurst; D/ST | Giants; K | Jake Moody


QB | Ryan Tannehill, Derek Carr; RB | Justice Hill, De'Von Achane; WR | Jakobi Meyers, Zay Jones, Rashid Shaheed; TE | Gerald Everett; D/ST | Browns ; K | Riley Patterson


QB | Jimmy Garoppolo; RB | J.K. Dobbins; WR | Kadarius Toney; TE | Greg Dulcich; D/ST | Ravens; K | Chris Boswell


Through Sunday's games, Purdy posted the 10th-most fantasy points among quarterbacks. The San Francisco 49ers passer totaled 220 yards and two scores in a 30-7 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Purdy connected with wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk eight times for 129 yards and both touchdown tosses. He found playmakers Deebo Samuel, George Kittle and Christian McCaffrey on his other 11 completions.

The 49ers will face the Rams in Week 2. The Rams held Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith to 112 yards and a score in Week 1, but look for the 49ers to have more success because of their superior offensive line, reliance on star playmakers and consistently balanced attack.


Purdy will be a Top 14 play again in Week 2.


Edwards and Kenneth Gainwell are my top running back targets for Week 2. With Dobbins lost for the season. Edwards can bring immediate RB2 value to your fantasy roster.

Edwards and Justice Hill totaled eight carries apiece in the Ravens' Week 1 win over the Houston Texans. Hill scored twice, but totaled just nine yards in the win. Edwards totaled 32 yards.

Edwards missed eight games in 2022 and the entire 2021 campaign because of injuries, but averaged 5.2 yards per carry through 53 appearances entering 2023. Hill averaged 5.3 yards per carry in 2022, but has much less experience as a lead ball carrier.

Look for Edwards to provide Top 28 value as long as he remains healthy.

Gainwell surprised many by leading the Philadelphia Eagles backfield carries by a wide margin in a 25-20 win over the New England Patriots on Sunday in Foxborough, Mass. He totaled 14 carries for 54 yards and made four catches for 20 yards.

Fellow Eagles running backs D'Andre Swift and Boston Scott received just one carry each. This situation will likely remain murky throughout the 2023 season, but Gainwell deserves a roster spot in all leagues based on his Week 1 opportunities.


Eagles coach Nick Sirianni told reporters that he should have used Swift and Scott more in Week 1, but that usage needs to be seen before it can be trusted.

Gainwell is a solid bench stash. If Swift or Scott were to get injured, Gainwell would immediately be a regular RB2 or flex option.


Nacua and Mooney were among breakout wide receivers for Week 1. Nacua torched the Seahawks secondary for 119 yards on 10 catches, earning extra looks because of Kupp's absence.

He is the No. 12 wide receiver in fantasy football through Sunday's games. I don't expect his Week 1 level of production to continue, but he should continue to get looks for the Rams.

The Rams will likely struggle to run the ball in Week 2 against the 49ers, forcing quarterback Matthew Stafford to throw. Look for the Nacua-Stafford rapport to build amid Kupp's haitus, with the rookie pass catcher earning at least 10 targets again in Week 2.

He should be on your radar as a WR3.

Many expected D.J. Moore, who joined the Chicago Bears in an off-season trade, to get off to a hot start as Justin Fields' top target, but Mooney and tight end Cole Kmet earned seven targets apiece in Week 1.


Moore drew just two looks in the Bears' loss to the Green Bay Packers. Mooney logged a team-high 53 yards and a score on four catches in the setback.

The Bears, who owned the NFL's top rushing offense in 2022, totaled nearly 200 more rushing attempts than passes a season ago. They got away from that strategy Sunday, throwing 37 times while running 29 times.

I expect the offense to be more run-heavy going forward, but maybe after Week 2, when the Bears travel for a game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Buccaneers, who owned one of the league's best run defenses over the last several seasons, just held Minnesota Vikings running back Alexander Mattison to 34 yards on 11 carries in Week 1.

Look for Fields to target Moore a bit more in Week 2, but Mooney also should stay involved. He is another WR3 streaming play.


Rookie quarterback Bryce Young made his NFL debut and the Carolina Panthers offense struggled in a 24-10 loss to the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday in Atlanta.

Despite the lackluster showing, tight end Hayden Hurts totaled five catches for 41 yards and scored. The Panthers veteran should be in consideration as a starter in leagues that require starting tight ends. Look for Hurst to continue to draw targets from Young as he finds his rhythm.


The Panthers will host the New Orleans Saints in Week 2. Hurst will be a Top 14 play, but should not be in lineups for leagues that don't require starting tight ends.

Latest Headlines