League Office: Fantasy Football Waiver Wire – Week 9

The fantasy football season has officially reached crunch time. With the standard fantasy trade deadline just more than a week away (Nov. 10) and just five weeks remaining until most leagues open the playoffs in Week 14, managers need to add crucial assets for either a push into the postseason or for a playoff run.

While Week 8 did not create the upside waiver claims that the previous week did — Nick Chubb, Jalen Richard, and Marlon Mack — there still are plenty of assets worth filing claims on ahead of Week 9.

Before getting into streamers and potential stashes, the must-add list requires its weekly attention.

The following players are must-adds if available in your leagues, and some are surprisingly widely available (these are in no particular order):

  • WR John Brown (ownership: 81% on ESPN, 86% on Yahoo)
  • WR Tyler Boyd (ownership: 90% on ESPN, 92% on Yahoo)
  • WR Calvin Ridley (ownership: 82% on ESPN, 85% on Yahoo)
  • RB James White (ownership: 97% on ESPN, 97% on Yahoo)
  • RB Tarik Cohen (ownership: 93% on ESPN, 93% on Yahoo)
  • RB Marlon Mack (ownership: 82% on ESPN, 88% on Yahoo)
  • RB Aaron Jones (ownership: 48% on ESPN, 71% on Yahoo)
  • RB Nick Chubb (ownership: 89% on ESPN, 88% on Yahoo)
  • RB Jalen Richard (ownership: 50% on ESPN, 63% on Yahoo)
  • TE David Njoku (ownership: 85% on ESPN, 91% on Yahoo)

There is one addition to the previous week’s list: Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones.

  1. Aaron Jones was a hot waiver wire target after Week 2 when he was poised to return from a suspension. While he ran well and looked great in a limited role, many lost patience with his lack of sufficient touches and may have dropped him ahead of the Packers’ bye in Week 7. As someone with Jones on multiple teams, I chose to wait until after the bye to see if the Packers changed their backfield rotation on their off-week. Surprisingly, his role grew, as he dominated snaps and touches in the backfield. He was vultured by Jamaal Williams for a goal-line touchdown, but Jones is a legitimate RB2 the rest of the season and has matchups against four teams who rank in the bottom-eight of PPR points allowed to running backs — this includes facing the worst two in Weeks 13-14.
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There’s also a name that remains on the list that deserves some attention:

2. David Njoku was not targeted in Week 8 despite the Cleveland Browns passing the ball plenty against a team that was terrible against tight ends in fantasy. Njoku still has a very favorable schedule the rest of the season, and there is now a new play-caller in place after the Browns fired both head coach Hue Jackson and offensive coordinator Todd Haley. Defensive coordinator Gregg Williams will be the interim head coach, and Freddie Kitchen (great name, by the way, as the Fantasy Sports Chef, is obviously a huge fan) will be the offensive coordinator. Have patience with Njoku and trust the offense will come around. Avoid rage-dropping Njoku after his goose egg.

With this must-adds addressed and out of the way, it is time to see what streamers and stashes could be available for waiver claims this week.

Quarterbacks

Ryan Fitzpatrick

(ownership: 6% on ESPN, 6% on Yahoo)

  • The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have sent Jameis Winston to the bench and given Ryan Fitzpatrick the keys to the offense again. While there is reason for skepticism for the curtain call of the Fitz-magic show, there are eye-popping numbers worth noting. Pending the Monday Night Football game of Week 8, Fitzpatrick ranked second (yes, SECOND) in fantasy points per game among quarterbacks behind only Patrick Mahomes. Additionally, when only factoring in his four starts, Fitzpatrick is first among quarterbacks in fantasy points per game. His current average is 25 points per game, and that includes being pulled at halftime in Week 4 and playing less than a half in Week 8. The Fitz-magic show is the hottest ticket in town and is worth standing in line to get.
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Others To Place Claims On: C.J. Beathard (7% ESPN, 9% Yahoo) — faces the Raiders at home on Thursday night this week.

Droppables: Eli Manning (12% ESPN, 20% Yahoo), Jameis Winston (75% ESPN, 75% Yahoo)

Running Backs

Peyton Barber

(ownership: 56% on ESPN, 46% on Yahoo)

  • Another Tampa Bay Buccaneer and another name who was mentioned in this series recently, Peyton Barber is worth a pickup behind the running backs mentioned earlier in this post. After Barber tallied 20.6 PPR points against the Atlanta Falcons in Week 6, I penned him as a waiver wire claim. The reason was that his 2017 production down the stretch was kicked off by a solid game against the Falcons. This season could see a similar trend. After having his Week 7 outing limited by an injury, Barber bounced back in Week 8 and went for 14.5 PPR points. Ronald Jones, the second-round rookie for the Bucs, not only was not efficient enough to challenge Barber’s role as a starter but is dealing with a hamstring injury that could keep him out for a few weeks. Barber’s upcoming schedule is hideous, and he’d be a tough start, he’s still a starting running back who could see enough volume and goal-line chances to deliver flex production for the stretch run.

Others To Place Claims On: Josh Adams (0% ESPN, 1% Yahoo), Kapri Bibbs (2% ESPN, 2% Yahoo)

Droppables: Raheem Mostert (26% ESPN, 49% Yahoo), Ronald Jones (23% ESPN, 21% Yahoo), Derrick Henry (57% ESPN, 52% Yahoo)

Wide Receivers

D.J. Moore

(ownership: 10% on ESPN, 15% on Yahoo)

  • Selected as the first receiver off the board in the 2018 NFL Draft, D.J. Moore is beginning to carve out a solid role in the Carolina Panthers’ offense. After the team’s bye in Week 4, Moore has seen more opportunities, registering at least four targets and at least three receptions in the four games since. With an extremely favorable schedule the rest of the season, Moore’s continued involvement on offense puts him in the WR3/flex conversation each week moving forward.

Others To Place Claims On: Keke Coutee (19% ESPN, 20% Yahoo), Tre’Quan Smith (17% ESPN, 31% Yahoo), DeVante Parker (22% ESPN, 13% Yahoo) — Parker has played so sparingly it’s hard to justify using a roster spot on him, but the combination of his Week 8 success and the Dolphins’ depleted receiving corps should lead to more opportunities for the extremely talented receiver to finally get his career on track.

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Droppables: Chris Hogan (45% ESPN, 51% Yahoo), Martavis Bryant (10% ESPN, 28% Yahoo)

Tight Ends

Jack Doyle

(ownership: 32% on ESPN, 25% on Yahoo)

  • There were many questions surrounding Jack Doyle when he returned from a lengthy injury absence for the Indianapolis Colts in Week 8. After Eric Ebron had filled in so well, what would their roles be? Would Doyle play a healthy amount of snaps after dominating the snap count prior to the injury? How would he look returning from his hip injury? The answer to all of these is simple: Pretend Week 2 just wrapped up and Doyle did not get hurt. Ebron slid back into his red-zone role while Doyle dominated playing time. He should be added, but with the Colts on a bye this week, a roster spot for him may be difficult to create. Also, the Colts’ schedule the rest of the season is a rather tough one.

Others To Place Claims On: Chris Herndon (5% ESPN, 6% Yahoo) — tight end remains very thin, and Herndon has a low target share for the New York Jets, but he has scored a touchdown in three straight games.

Droppables: Cameron Brate (19% ESPN, 33% Yahoo) — no Jameis Winston, not much value for Brate.

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Joshua Cook

Joshua Cook

Writer Fantasy Football Desk at Sports Talk Line
Fantasy enthusiast armed with whit, sarcasm and some knowledge, too. The Fantasy Sports Chef is a fantasy writer for SportsTalkLine.com.
Joshua Cook