The NFL trade deadline came and went with minimal changes, and the fantasy trade deadline is coming soon for most leagues. With teams looking to fight for a Top 6 finish or simply stock up for the fantasy playoffs, the waiver wire is feeling more and more important to fantasy championship hopes and dreams. Let’s look at this week’s recommendations.
Percentages are based on Yahoo! leagues.
Devonta Freeman, Baltimore (21% rostered)
Latavius Murray missed another week and is looking questionable for Week 10, as well. Devonta Freeman shared the backfield with Le’Veon Bell against Minnesota, and both found the end zone. Ty’Son Williams saw snaps but can be safely dropped after finishing without a single carry. The Baltimore backfield will continue to be frustrating and muddy, but Freeman has done enough through the ground and air to claim the lead-back role for the time being. In the Baltimore offense, that’s worth rostering. If you have extra space on your bench, it could be worth stashing Bell and Murray in case anything changes in this backfield as we head toward the fantasy playoffs.
Jordan Howard, Philadelphia (14%)
It’s a volatile situation, to be sure, but Jordan Howard seems like the hottest hand in Philadelphia. Howard handled 17 touches for 71 yards and a score. Not bad for someone who was activated from the practice squad in Week 8. Losing work to both Boston Scott and Kenneth Gainwell is a real possibility, but it seems like Philadelphia is going to ride with Howard until he gives the team a reason not to.
Alex Collins, Seattle (43%)
With Seattle on bye in Week 9, Alex Collins was dropped from many rosters. With Chris Carson still on the mend, he’s a good bet to lead the Seahawk backfield again in Week 10. If Collins starts, he’s worth plugging directly into your lineup against Green Bay. He could be a player to hold onto if Carson’s recovery from his neck injury has any setbacks.
Other names to consider: Jaret Patterson (2%) is a preferred backup in Washington to stash; Jeff Wilson Jr. (31%) is coming off Injured Reserve and could have immediate relevance in San Francisco; Brandon Bolden (10%) jumps into the RB2 conversation if Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson don’t get medical clearance to play Week 9; Carlos Hyde (34%) jumps to the RB2/3 range if James Robinson misses more time; Mark Ingram II (38%) has some standalone flex appeal in some matchups, Jamaal Williams (47%) continues to be involved in Denver , Eno Benjamin (0%) would play backup to James Conner if Chase Edmonds misses time with a high ankle sprain.
Rashod Bateman, Baltimore Ravens (32% rostered)
Unless his involvement in Baltimore’s offense changes for the worse, Rashod Bateman will continue to headline the list. He hasn’t had his breakout game yet, but I want him on my roster when it does. The second half of the season is typically when we see rookie players take off, and Bateman has already been integrated into the potent Baltimore offense. Consider me your Commissioner Gordon and this your “Bate Signal” over the fantasy football city.
Russell Gage, Atlanta (16%)
All of this has happened before, all of this will happen again. Russell Gage has been a frustrating fantasy figure to, ahem, gauge from week to week. With Calvin Ridley out indefinitely, Matt Ryan targeted Gage 8 times, which turned into 7 receptions for 64 yards. Russell Gage will continue dealing with two tight end sets on a constant basis and the continuing breakout of Cordarrelle Patterson. We know his floor is 0.00. However, he’s still the de facto #1 receiver in an Atlanta offense that is going to be passing a lot. That should continue in Week 10 against Dallas.
Donovan Peoples-Jones, Cleveland (13%)
With Odell Beckham Jr. out of the picture, we could see Donovan Peoples-Jones take a step forward in the Cleveland offense for the rest of the season. DPJ has functioned as a deep threat, but he looks to have the skill for more varied and regular targets. The Browns are not going to change their offensive identity, especially with Nick Chubb running roughshod over opposing defenses. However, I think Peoples-Jones could be worth a flyer in Week 10 as Bill Belichick’s Patriots try to neutralize Cleveland’s rushing attack and force Baker Mayfield to beat them with his arm. That may prove to be a bridge too far, but it’s a games cript where Peoples-Jones could shine.
Other names to consider: Elijah Moore (27%) just had his rookie breakout game but has a tough matchup against Buffalo in Week 10; Darnell Mooney (42%) is worth the stash if you can spare the roster spot during Chicago’s bye; Van Jefferson (28%) has seen at least six targets the last three weeks; DeSean Jackson (5%) might have value as a Henry Ruggs replacement in Las Vegas; Marquez Callaway (34%) is volatile but could reward a bold/desperate manager; T.Y. Hilton (28%) is worth monitoring but may not be ready for Week 10; Tim Patrick (25%) once again proved his doubters wrong and made the case for post-Jeudy relevance. Odell Beckham Jr. (74%) is a drop candidate, but it could be worth waiting to see what team he joins this week.
Potential Drops: Tyler Boyd, Sterling Shepard, Odell Beckham Jr., Allen Robinson II
Pat Freiermuth, Pittsburgh (40%)
The Tight End position was weird in Week 9, y’all. The Los Angeles Chargers produced three TE1 fantasy finishes at the position. But as we always say, we’re not chasing points, we’re chasing usage. Pat Freiermuth’s role continues to increase, and his Week 9 breakout (6 targets, 5 receptions, 43 yards, 2 TD) means this is likely the last week Friar Pat will be eligible for this column.
Dan Arnold, Jacksonville (27%)
Another 7 targets in Week 9. Dan Arnold has developed one of the higher floors in the league at the position. Keep in mind that’s without scoring touchdowns. The Jacksonville offense almost guarantees that touchdowns will be hard to come by, but if Arnold can add a score to his already high floor, he could produce a spike score in any week.
Other names to consider: Evan Engram (31%), Adam Trautman (5%).
The only consistent starting quarterback on bye this week is Joe Burrow, so it’s a little challenging to find players under 50% rostered with upside to make them worth signing. I don’t necessarily like these options, but sometimes you have to tell yourself the story of how you think a game could go. Streaming options: Tua Tagovailoa (33%) takes on Baltimore on Thursday Night Football in Week 10. If he’s able to play, he’s a good streaming option in a potential shootout. Going a little further down the rabbit hole, I’m interested in both Jimmy Garoppolo (28%) and even Taylor Heinicke (9%) if you need ceiling games where their teams should be playing catch up. For a safer play in a a good matchup, look no further than Teddy Bridgewater (26%) matching up against Philadelphia.
That wraps it up for this week’s recommended waiver adds. At this point in the season, you know if you need to manufacture some wins or start looking toward the fantasy playoffs. If you have the luxury of looking ahead to Week 11, here are some players that could be worth stashing: Darnell Mooney, Tyler Boyd, Kadarius Toney, Kenny Golladay.
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