Week 9 of the NFL season was full of surprises. We learned that the Cardinals don’t need Kyler Murray to win, the Titans don’t need Derrick Henry to win, and the Jaguars have the best player named Josh Allen in the NFL. All jokes aside, Week 9 was a really rough week for fantasy owners with so many players injured. If your fantasy team is not at least moderately banged up you should consider yourself lucky. However, if you are like me and many other fantasy owners, you are in desperate need of some production off waivers. If you can’t get any value off the waiver wire at this point in the season, it will be extremely difficult for your team to do any damage in the fantasy playoffs.
Last Week Recap:
As I said earlier, Week 9 was a pretty brutal week for fantasy football. Along with that, the players who I hyped up did not necessarily perform as well as I would have hoped. The player I was most passionate about was Michael Carter who finished his game with 13 carries for 49 yards and 1 reception for 37 yards. I think what really hurt Carter in this game was his lack of receptions. To be fair, the Jets did have to switch quarterbacks halfway through the game after Mike White got hurt. This may have changed their game plan and caused Carter to see less volume. My opinion on Carter remains unchanged, I think he is an excellent option in fantasy going forward even though he underperformed last week.
The other player I hyped up was A.J. Brown, who finished his game with 5 receptions for 42 yards. Even though these numbers may not seem atrocious, I really expected a better performance from Brown. He dropped two very catchable third-down passes which could have easily led to red zone opportunities had he caught them. Regardless, Brown is still an extremely talented player who just had a couple of bad drops. I am still buying into the Brown hype, and I would expect big numbers from him in the coming weeks.
On the bright side, I did advise my readers not to buy into the Adrian Peterson hype. Peterson finished the game with 10 carries for 21 yards and 1 reception for 5 yards. He looked like the third-best running back option on the Titans. I am still not touching Peterson with a 10-foot pole, and if he is currently on your roster I recommend dropping him.
Buy Into The Hype: Donovan Peoples-Jones
After the whole Odell Beckham Jr. fiasco in Cleveland, many people expected the Browns to be a lot weaker in the passing game. However, there is still value to be found on the Browns offense outside of Nick Chubb. In the last 3 games he’s played, Donovan Peoples-Jones has 11 receptions for 257 yards and 3 touchdowns. Peoples-Jones has established himself as the premier deep threat in Cleveland. While his volume has been pretty subpar in these games, I expect Baker Mayfield will throw his way much more often in the coming weeks. The Browns are in a tight playoff race right now and they need a way to move the ball upfield if Chubb can’t do it himself. If Peoples-Jones is able to establish himself as the WR1 in Cleveland, he might just be the most valuable player available on waivers right now. Go get him while you still can.
Don’t Buy Into The Hype: Antonio Gibson
Washington has yet to come up with a new team name or a successful offensive game plan. Going into the season, I thought Antonio Gibson was definitely a candidate for a breakout season. However, he has been relatively disappointing this whole year. He has been especially subpar as a receiver, never catching more than 3 passes in any game this season. It seems as if JD McKissic has become Washington’s primary receiving back this season. For the first 5 weeks of the season, Gibson’s performance was slightly underwhelming, but since then he’s just been outright bad. Gibson hasn’t notched a 100-yard rushing game this season and has only broken 70 yards one time. While I still believe Gibson is an extremely talented player with a ton of potential, it’s just hard to believe that he’s going to be able to turn it around this season. Hopefully, Washington changes things up over the offseason to make Gibson’s life a little easier, but until then I am staying away from him.
Buy Into The Hype: Russell Gage
The Falcons are adjusting to life without Calvin Ridley for the foreseeable future after he announced that he is stepping away from football. With Ridley gone, Russell Gage is the de facto WR1 in Atlanta. Of course, both Kyle Pitts and Cordarelle Patterson essentially play wide receiver about half of the time they’re on the field. Regardless, Gage has seen plenty of production with Ridley out. Even though he has not played that many games throughout the season, he has shown flashes of what he can do. Last week was Gage’s first game playing after Ridley stepped away, and he was able to get 7 receptions for 64 yards. It is clear that Gage has the tools to put up big numbers, and it is only a matter of time before he has a breakout game. He is definitely one of the best high ceiling/high floor players available on waivers. When Gage plays, you can count on him putting up good numbers.
Nine full weeks of football have taught us to take no player for granted. One week your star player may be single-handedly winning your fantasy game, and the next week he’s on the IR. At this point in the season, it is essential to be able to stream serviceable and potential breakout players off the waiver wire. The NFL looks a lot different than it did in Week 1, and most fantasy leagues are still up for grabs. Play the waiver game right and you could win yours. Good Luck!