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Week 3 fantasy pickups include Eddie Royal, DeAndre Hopkins, James Starks

Eddie-Royal-ChargersUnlike the relatively quiet opening week we began with this NFL season, Week 2 was littered with injuries. Ray Rice is dealing with a hip flexor strain that is not considered serious, but everyone needs to be adding Ravens backup running back Bernard Pierce if he isn’t already owned. He should have been drafted in almost all leagues, so we’re not considering him a waiver wire pickup.

Other injuries included Packers running back Eddie Lacy and Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson, who both left their respective games with concussions. Falcons running back Steven Jackson also went down with a thigh injury and is expected to miss 2-4 weeks. Vernon Davis could also miss time with a hamstring injury. Long story short, the waiver wire is more important than ever. Here are your Week 2 fantasy pickups.

Eddie Royal, WR, Chargers: The bad news for Royal in fantasy terms is that he has hauled in five touchdown passes in the first two games of the season — while he was on waivers in most leagues. He’s only owned in 24% of fantasy leagues, but that number will shoot up this week now that he has obviously developed a rapport with Philip Rivers. Should we expect the WR1 or WR2 numbers to continue? It’s doubtful at best, but with Floyd looking like he’s going to miss time Royal should continue to see plenty of targets. He’s worth adding if you’re in a league that starts three receivers and are struggling to find someone to plug in.

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DeAndre Hopkins: I feel like I can be better than Andre Johnson

DeAndre-Hopkins-TexansHouston Texans wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins stole the show in an overtime win over the Tennessee Titans on Sunday. The rookie out of Clemson caught a 25-yard pass from Matt Schaub in overtime that set the Texans up near the goal line and then snagged a game-winning touchdown from three yards out. He finished the day with seven catches for 117 yards to go along with the all-important score.

The Texans have high hopes for the rookie, who apparently has even higher hopes for himself. After his breakout performance, Hopkins said he believes he can be better than Andre Johnson.

“I feel like I can be better than Andre,” Hopkins told the Texans’ official website. “That’s my mindset. And that’s what Andre tells me. (He says) Don’t try to shadow yourself when you know you can be better.”

We’re talking about a rookie here. Johnson has been one of the most dominant receivers in the NFL throughout his 10-plus year career. Hopkins proved to be a capable fill-in when Johnson left with a concussion on Sunday, but it’s usually a better approach for rookies to not compare themselves to perennial All-Stars.

Houston would not have spent a first-round pick on Hopkins if it did not believe he could be the receiver of the future. Johnson is 32 and has a long history of injuries, so Thompkins could be called upon to be that guy sooner rather than later. However, it will take a lot more than one great performance for us to even consider that he might enjoy the same type of career as Andre.

H/T Rotoworld

Clemson WR DeAndre Hopkins baptized after practice (Picture)

Seeing players in a tub after football practice is not an uncommon occurrence. Whether it be the hot tub or an ice bath, 250-pound men who have been beating up on each other need something to soothe the bumps and bruises. In fact, guys even get thrown into the cold tub when they don’t want to be there. Clemson wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins found himself in a tub after practice last Thursday, but the reason for it was a bit more unusual.

As you can see from the photo above that Clemson wide receivers coach Jeff Scott shared on Twitter, Hopkins was baptized in front of his teammates last week. According to Channel 3 News in South Carolina, official team chaplain and pastor Perry Noble oversaw the baptism. Hopkins then went on to catch a school record 13 passes and score the game-winning touchdown in Clemson’s 26-19 win over Auburn on Saturday. Don’t be surprised if other schools around the country start encouraging their skill players to be baptized after practice.