The free agent market has come back to life after a series of trades and injuries heading into Week 8. As exciting as it is to throw around phrases like “potential league-winner,” the reality is that the majority of waiver wire and streamer adds will turn out to be mere flavors of the week. That’s not a bad thing if you just need a one-week rental, but it’s much nicer when you can pick up a successful streamer who also has the ability to stick as a season-long asset on your roster. There are a few players fitting the latter description this week who I fully believe can provide that extra punch needed to take your squad to the next level.
* Players marked with an asterisk below can also be found in the priority waiver wire adds article referenced at the end.
Ty Johnson* (RB, Detroit Lions)
Here’s the obvious one for Week 8. Ty Johnson is this week’s top RB streamer as he carries the alluring combination of an extended opportunity, a weak opponent, and talent. Kerryon Johnson has been placed on IR with a knee injury, ruling him out for a minimum of eight weeks, so Ty Johnson will get the chance to show he can be a primary back in the NFL while Kerryon recovers. The weekly ceiling likely won’t be as high as Kerryon’s would be since Ty Johnson doesn’t have as much experience as a pass-catcher, but the Giants were annihilated by Chase Edmonds last week and could provide RB2/ FLEX potential in Week 8.
Mark Walton (RB, Miami Dolphins)
I know, the Dolphins, gross, but volume is king when you’re looking for streamers to pull through for you and Walton seems to have now found it consistently with double-digit touches each of the last two weeks. Yet again, the Dolphins seem intent on using literally anyone but Kenyan Drake as their primary backfield option and have recently floated his name in trade talks, making Walton both a solid streaming add and potential long-term option. Kalen Ballage will be a thorn in the side of fantasy owners if he continues to vulture TDs, but there aren’t many RBs available on the wire who have both standalone value as well as the potential to take on a feature role in the near future.
Corey Davis (WR, Tennessee Titans)
Although I’m not ready to start trusting Ryan Tannehill to consistently support multiple Titans pass-catchers, last week’s numbers can’t be ignored and their Week 8 opponent could not get much better. The Bucs rank in the bottom quadrant of the NFL for WR points allowed and have played one less game than most of the teams who have given up all those points. Davis has shown solid rapport with Tannehill in a small sample and should be picked up as an upside FLEX play with WR2 upside against the exploitable Tampa Bay secondary. Davis has the skill set to help you out this week and potentially the rest of the season if Week 7 was a sign of things to come.
DaeSean Hamilton (WR, Denver Broncos)
The 2-5 Broncos seem to have now embraced the reality of their rebuild, trading Emmanuel Sanders away in exchange for draft picks and opening the door for Hamilton to step into a more prominent role. He has yet to fulfill his potential as last year’s fourth-round pick, but the Broncos will need playmakers to step up in the passing game alongside Courtland Sutton and will likely use the rest of the season to see what they have in Hamilton. Denver will take on the Colts and Browns these next two weeks so pick him up, stash him on your bench if you’re not ready to play him yet, and cut him during Week 10’s bye if he doesn’t appear to be an impact player. It’s a worthwhile gamble on talent and new-found opportunity if you have a roster spot to play around with.
Kyle Rudolph (TE, Minnesota Vikings)
Someone will need to step up while Adam Thielen (hamstring) is out and Rudolph has done it before. I understand the hesitance to fully buy in after his slow start through the first seven weeks, but Rudolph is coming off his best game of the season (five catches for 58 yards on six targets and a touchdown) and now gets a chance to back it up in Week 8 against the Redskins on Thursday. The Vikings’ run-heavy approach has not offered a lot of volume in the passing game outside of Thielen and Stefon Diggs, so even the absence of one player is a big deal. Minnesota has also looked like a more balanced team in recent weeks and I imagine Kirk Cousins will want to ball out against his former team in the national spotlight.
Jonnu Smith (TE, Tennessee Titans)
Smith’s value is tied to Delanie Walker’s status in Week 8. If Walker sits, look for the versatile and athletic Smith to be a playmaker for this possibly-better-but-still-questionable offense. While the Titans passing game isn’t the easiest sell in terms of fantasy success, Smith has shown the ability to produce on limited touches, hauling in three of three targets for 64 yards last week. Monitor Walker’s status and consider Smith a fringe TE1/ high-end TE2 if he’s out.
Accountability is everything so here’s a quick look back at last week’s recommendations
Jamaal Williams (RB, Green Bay Packers): The volume wasn’t ideal with a combined seven touches for 31 yards, but Williams rewarded fantasy owners who took a chance on him with a touchdown. He’s a nice depth piece who is showing well as a pass-catcher lately, hauling in four receptions in each of the past two weeks.
Devin Singletary/ Frank Gore (RB, Buffalo Bills): Singletary returned from a hamstring injury to post a modest 26 yards on seven carries while Gore rushed 11 times for 55 yards and added one reception for 11 yards. It was letdown performance for both players against a Dolphins defense that hasn’t been able to slow down RBs this season. They’ll face a difficult Eagles rush defense in Week 8, so if they disappoint once again, your buy-low window for both players could open up.
Phillip Dorsett (WR, New England Patriots): Dorsett saw just four targets as the Patriots steamrolled the Jets last week, but he turned those targets into a useful three catches for 46 yards and a touchdown. It remains to be seen what the Pats’ receiving corps will look like with Mohamed Sanu entering the rotation, but Dorsett is worth a hold while the situation is sorted out.
Anthony Miller (WR, Chicago Bears): Miller looked to be on his way to a miserable afternoon after losing a fumble and not contributing much through the first half against the Saints. His final numbers on the day were decent, although inefficient, securing five catches for 64 yards on nine targets and one rush attempt for minus-one yard. The uptick in volume is encouraging and makes Miller worth owning in deeper PPR leagues.
Hunter Henry (TE, Los Angeles Chargers): Henry collected eight catches on nine targets for 97 yards last week and will likely graduate from consideration in this article for the remainder of the season. Hopefully you were lucky enough to scoop him up before the last couple weeks.
Noah Fant (TE, Denver Broncos): Fant was unable to get anything going against the Chiefs with just one catch for seven yards on five targets. Streaming tight ends can be tricky business and Fant does not bear consideration as a streamer until he shows flashes of what made him a first-round pick.
(Photo by William Purnell/Icon Sportswire)