The Must Stash: Week 8

Deep sleepers to stash before Week 8's games.

Every Friday I will list some players who I think, if things go their way, will wind up in those waiver articles the following Tuesday. You don’t have to stash all of them – it depends on who you have on your roster, the depth of your benches, the scoring system of your league, etc. But these are guys that should at least be on your radar.

Stashing players is only something that can occur in deeper leagues with large benches, so to make this information worthwhile, I will only be recommending guys that are under 20% owned on both Yahoo and ESPN, and in many cases, you’ll see percentages in the single digits. If you’re in a league where guys like Myles Gaskin (85% on Yahoo, 90.5% on ESPN), Joshua Kelley (43% on Yahoo, 55.4% on ESPN), or Laviska Shenault (35% on Yahoo, 30.8% on ESPN) are on the waiver wire, you’re either in a league too shallow for stashing, or you should go pick them up right away.

In addition, for those of you in really deep leagues (16+ teams), we will also include some deep cut players that are rostered in less than 3% of leagues on both Yahoo and ESPN in a section at the end to try and give you the best chance of winning your fantasy league.

Week 1 was a success where we advised you to pick up Joshua Kelley, Laviska Shenault, and Jerick McKinnon. Week 2 was successful in getting you to roster Myles Gaskin on your team. Week 3 and 4 were less successful but had a few solid waiver suggestions such as Jeff Wilson, Mo Alie-Cox, and Hunter Renfrow. Weeks 5 and 6 we told you to pick up Trey Burton who has emerged as a legitimate TE1 option in the Colts offense.

Last week was a big success as we advised you to pick up JaMycal Hasty and Giovani Bernard who are set to have roles for their teams for at least a couple weeks, and saw Tua Tagovailoa see an increase in the number of leagues he’s rostered in prior to his debut this week. In addition, a couple of the ‘Deep Cuts’ players, Richard Rodgers and Nelson Agholor, performed well and are now rostered in a fair number of leagues. Who made the list(s) this week? Let’s dive in!

 

The Must Stash

 

Denzel Mims, WR, New York Jets (4% on Yahoo, 3.7% on ESPN)

 

Denzel Mims has appeared on this list before a couple of times prior to his debut with the New York Jets because of his athleticism and draft pedigree. We talked about how the second-round pick is an athletic freak who ran a 4.38 forty yard dash (96th percentile) at the NFL combine, has an insane catch radius that ranks in the 96th percentile, and possesses high speed (96th percentile) and burst scores (90th percentile). We also talked about how in his draft profile, he was touted for his strong hands, contested-catch ability, and vertical receiving skills.

This skill set was on display in his debut against the Buffalo Bills, and it resulted in a pretty solid day for the rookie receiver. Mims played 45 of a possible 57 snaps (78.9%) against the Buffalo Bills and led the team in receiving yards (42), tied for the team lead in receptions (4), and tied for the team lead in targets (7). This is very encouraging to see for an NFL debut where the team combined for only had 120 yards through the air. As bad as the Jets are, they will have much better days through the air in the future and Denzel Mims will be one of the primary beneficiaries when that happens. Stash him confidently. 

 

Jalen Reagor, WR, Philadelphia Eagles (15% on Yahoo, 10.5% on ESPN)

 

If you have been reading these articles on a weekly basis, you might be wondering if it’s deja-vu. Haven’t Mims and Reagor been on this list before? Yes. Yes they have. But it’s for good reason. This is one of the best wide receiver classes since 2014 and both Mims and Reagor were high selections who have tantalizing potential.

As I’ve mentioned before, Reagor has elite speed, good vertical receiving ability, and is capable of changing directions on a dime, and these abilities were on full display in the first two weeks of his NFL career. In those first two games, Reagor caught five passes for 96 receiving yards and looked like he was on his way to being the next big-play receiver.

Then his season got derailed by a torn UCL in this thumb, and Reagor has missed the last few weeks. But the good news is it looks like Reagor will be making his return this week and the matchup couldn’t be better: the Dallas Cowboys. The Cowboys boast one of the worst defenses in the NFL, giving up over 400 yards (408.1) per game.

 

 

Reagor should have a great game this week. Even with his bye week coming up next week, anticipate the number of leagues he’s rostered in to explode in the near future.

 

Darnell Mooney, WR, Chicago Bears (3% on Yahoo, 1.6% on ESPN)

 

Darnell Mooney has been one of the most consistent mentions in this article series, appearing nearly every week in the ‘Deep Cuts’ section. But now it’s time to promote him to ‘The Must Stash’ for a couple of reasons.

  1. Mooney had the highest snap share (91.2%) of his career against the Los Angeles Rams. He ran the most routes (42) he’s ever run in his young career. And while he had only got three receptions for 40 receiving yards, he had seven targets and 192 air yards. If Nick Foles can play the slightest bit better Mooney should be a solid FLEX option down the stretch this season.
  2. Bears star wide receiver Allen Robinson is in concussion protocol and he may not be ready to play against the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.

 

Darnell Mooney Season Stats By Week (data via PlayerProfiler)

Mooney’s fantasy outlook is trending upward and he is positioning himself for a strong ending to his rookie campaign. If you have a spot available on your roster and both Reagor and Mims are gone consider giving Mooney a shot.

 

A.J. Dillon, RB, Green Bay Packers (12% on Yahoo, 10.5% on ESPN)

 

A.J. Dillon was supposed to have a big breakout game last week against the porous Houston Texans run defense with Aaron Jones out of the lineup, but only mustered five carries for 11 rushing yards. Should we really stash this guy after this kind of usage and performance?

 

A.J. Dillon 2020 Stats

 

While I would recommend prioritizing the other players on this list, the answer is yes: Dillon still is worth your consideration as a stash this year. Dillon was drafted highly going in the second round of the NFL Draft and has a strong 247-pound frame that makes him tough to bring down. Aaron Jones is still sidelined with his injury, and that may lead to another opportunity for Dillon to redeem himself this weekend. While he certainly won’t steal the job from Aaron Jones as long as Jones is on the roster (note for keeper/dynasty leagues: Aaron Jones and Jamaal Williams are not under contract after this season), there is hope that Dillon can take over Jamaal Williams‘ role as well as get some goal-line carries down the stretch for this season. Given what else is likely out on waivers, Dillon is worth a dart-throw. 

 

Gus Edwards, RB, Baltimore Ravens (16% on Yahoo, 2.5% on ESPN)

 

Gus Edwards rounds out ‘The Must Stash’ this week after spending some time in the ‘Deep Cuts’ section of this article series. In his three-year career, Edwards has been very solid taking 318 carries for 1647 rushing yards (5.2 YPC) and five rushing touchdowns. This high efficiency has led many people to wonder how Edwards would perform if he was given a heavier workload.

 

Gus Edwards Career Stats

This weekend we may get a glimpse of what that would look like. Mark Ingram was forced out of the Ravens most recent game against the Philadelphia Eagles with an ankle sprain, and as of this week he is still not practicing (he missed Wednesday practice). If Mark Ingram is not ready to go against Pittsburgh, the backfield duties will fall to rookie J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards. While Dobbins is presumed to be the main beneficiary, Edwards is no slouch and will have a sizable role as well. If you are stuck in a bind due to bye weeks or injuries, Gus Edwards is a great fill-in that is available and could continue to hold some value down the road.

 

 


Deep Cuts

 

(Less Than 3% owned in ESPN and Yahoo)

 

Rashaad Penny, RB, Seattle Seahawks (3% on Yahoo, 2.2% on ESPN): Rashaad Penny has been bouncing back-and-forth between ‘The Must Stash’ and the ‘Deep Cuts’ section in this weekly article series, and finds himself on the ‘Deep Cuts’ section this week since he’s rostered in under 3% of ESPN and Yahoo leagues. With starting running back Chris Carson constantly dealing with injuries this season, the former 1st round pick may find himself getting opportunities sooner rather than later when he returns. He’s worth an end of the bench dart throw. 

 

Marcus Johnson, WR, Indianapolis Colts (1% on Yahoo, 0.5% on ESPN): Marcus Johnson balled out right before the Colts went on their bye week, catching five passes on eight targets for 108 receiving yards against the Cincinnati Bengals. He looked like Philip Rivers favorite receiver in that game and it’s possible that he could have a Travis Fulgham style breakout season. Keep an eye on him.

 

Marquez Callaway, WR, New Orleans Saints (1% on Yahoo, 0.3% on ESPN): On a typical day, if you were told a Saints wide receiver had eight receptions on 10 targets for 75 receiving yards, you would probably think that it must have been Michael Thomas or Emmanuel Sanders. But this past week against the Carolina Panthers, it was Marquez Callaway who put up that stat line. As long as Sanders and Thomas remain out, Callaway will be a solid FLEX play.

Eno Benjamin, RB, Arizona Cardinals (0% on Yahoo, 0.3% on ESPN): Eno Benjamin has been a healthy scratch in nearly every week this season, which is why we dropped him from the ‘Deep Cuts’ section immediately after week 1. But he makes his triumphant return to this section after Kenyan Drake’s injury, giving the seventh-round pick has a path to snaps and opportunities now. He’s one of the highest upside players on the ‘Deep Cuts’ section this week so keep a close eye on him.

 

Jeremy McNichols, RB, Tennessee Titans (1% on Yahoo, 0.9% on ESPN): Jeremy McNichols has taken 15 carries for 81 rushing yards the last three weeks. In addition, with Darrynton Evans going down with an injury and being put on injured reserve, McNichols is the clear handcuff to star running back Derrick Henry for the foreseeable future. Monitor him on the waiver wire.

 

Anthony McFarland, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers (1% on Yahoo, 1.5% on ESPN): The Pittsburgh Steelers rookie running back, Anthony McFarland, has gotten some work the last four weeks taking 13 carries for 56 rushing yards. While James Conner and Benny Snell appear to be ahead of him on the depth chart, McFarland’s play-making ability makes him worth monitoring.

 

Albert Okwuegbunam, TE, Denver Broncos (0% on Yahoo, 0.3% on ESPN): Don’t look now but Albert Okwuegbunam has seen at least six targets in each of his last two games. His two receptions on six targets for 45 receiving yards against the New England Patriots makes sense since starting tight end Noah Fant was out. But his seven receptions on seven targets for 60 receiving yards against the Kansas City Chiefs with Fant in the lineup suggests that Okwuegbunam might have carved out his own role in the offense going forward.

 

John Ross III, WR, Cincinnati Bengals (1% on Yahoo, 0.6% on ESPN): John Ross hasn’t seen his career start like he hoped. The 9th overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft has only caught 51 passes thus far in his career and has been a healthy scratch in recent weeks for the Cincinnati Bengals. So why is he on this list? Well, it’s because Ross is a prime trade candidate at the NFL trade deadline on November 3rd. If the 4.22 forty-yard dash speedster finds himself traded to a team in need of a wide receiver like the Green Bay Packers, Philadelphia Eagles, or New England Patriots, he could be fantasy relevant.

 

K.J. Hamler, WR, Denver Broncos (1% on Yahoo, 1.9% on ESPN): K.J. Hamler had his hype train derailed after he suffered a hamstring injury in week 4. While his talent makes him a player worth monitoring, it might be a while before he’s fully healthy and can maximize his opportunity with the team.

 

Cole Kmet, TE, Chicago Bears (1% on Yahoo, 0.7% on ESPN): While Jimmy Graham is on top the Bears tight end depth chart, Cole Kmet has been pretty decent the last two weeks with two catches for 20 receiving yards and a touchdown against the Carolina Panthers in week 6 and two catches for 45 receiving yards against the Los Angeles Rams. He’s not worth a pickup yet, but the increase in usage is worth monitoring.

 

 

That’s it for week 8. Feel free to weigh in and mention any players you believe should be on this list.

 

Featured Image by Justin Paradis (@freshmeatcomm on Twitter)

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