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Antonio D'Arcangelis | Archive | Email |
Staff Writer

Through The Wire - Week 9
10/28/19; Updated: 10/29/19

Targeting weekly waiver picks is a completely subjective business, but this column hopes to point out some obvious and not-so-obvious selections to help your team from week to week while you strive to collect fantasy wins, reach your league playoffs and win the elusive title that your friends say is out of your grasp. While I’m a big proponent of making trades to bolster your roster, the waiver wire can be an almost limitless resource when it comes to discovering fantasy value in strange places. Each week, I’ll highlight some of the popular (and not-so-popular) players who can help your squad and may still be available in your league.

Feedback is always welcome, appreciated and encouraged. I’ll get to as many e-mails as I can.


Gardner Minshew, JAC – We’ve talked about him before and he’s still available in over 50 percent of ESPN leagues. The matchup next week is a decent one, as the Texans usually yield some decent numbers to opposing QBs and are now missing J.J. Watt, who’s gone for the remainder of the season with a torn pec.

Sam Darnold, NYJ – I know, I know. But this is Miami we’re talking about, and there are no ghosts there. He’s 15-20 percent owned in fantasy and should be a fine streaming play at QB this week.

Jimmy Garoppolo, SF – Just 33 percent owned in ESPN leagues, the 49ers don’t ask much of their QB with their awesome running game and solid defense. But everybody seems to play well versus the Cards. Garoppolo threw for 175-2-1 in Sunday’s win and he should improve on those numbers in Week 9.

Brandon Allen, DEN – UPDATE: I was really looking forward to seeing Joe Flacco (out 5-6 weeks with a neck injury) play in Week 9 against the Browns after he destroyed the coaching staff in his post-game comments. The truth is that this Broncos team does have some weapons, although they are all relative greenhorns and lack the consistency of seasoned NFL veterans. Allen will start for Denver against the Browns, and the 2016 sixth-round pick (by the Jacksonville Jaguars) has never played a regular-season snap. It’ll be a baptism by fire against Cleveland and their capable pass rush, but you never know who you have until you give them a shot. He’s only a deep league desperation addition in two-QB leagues and a minimum-salary DFS dart throw, but at least he’s not flaccid Flacco.

Other QBs to consider: Ryan Tannehill, Ryan Fitzpatrick


Matt Moore, KC – Moore completed 24-of-36 passes for 257-2-0 in Week 8 against the Packers. The Mahomes-less Chiefs were a bit overmatched and couldn’t keep up with “the Aarons” but should get their star QB back by Week 10 at the latest. Mahomes is pushing to return next week, so stay tuned to the injury report. Moore won’t be much of a fantasy option facing the Vikings.

Jacoby Brissett, IND – Brissett completed 15-of-25 passes for 202 yards in the Colts Week 8 win over the Broncos, adding 34 rushing yards and a lost fumble on six carries. He did lead the Colts a late drive that set up the game-winning field goal, breaking a tackle to avoid a safety and tossing a sharp 35-yard strike to a toe-tapping T.Y. Hilton on the final series. Brissett makes for a much better play in Wek 9 against the Steelers.

Derek Carr, OAK – Oakland came away with another loss but Carr completed 18-of-30 passes for 285-3-0 in Week 8. He faces the Lions in Week 9 in what may end up bring a shootout.

Teddy Bridgewater, NO – Drew Brees returned for the Saints and threw for 373-3-1, relegating Bridgewater to fantasy irrelevance barring another injury to the HOF QB.

Running Backs

Derrius Guice, WAS - UPDATE: Guice (29.2 percent owned in ESPN leagues) practiced with the Redskins on Monday, putting him on track to play in Week 11 when he is eligible to return off IR. Washington's 2018 second-round pick has battled knee injuries since coming to the NFL, but should be healthy enough to return for the stretch run - albeit on a very bad team. He underwent surgery to repair a torn meniscus in mid-September and will likely still be facing a committee situation with Adrian Peterson and Chris Thompson (toe). Guice has some long-term upside and makes for a possible playoff push add - just don't expect balloons to come falling out of the sky when you take him.

Tevin Coleman, SF – Believe it or not, Coleman sat the bench for most fantasy owners in Week 8 as he rushed for 105 yards and 3 TDs (adding 2-13-1 receiving) and scored about 40 fantasy points. And he’s still only 65.3 percent owned in ESPN leagues, meaning he could be available in yours. He’s the clear lead back on the SF RB committee and has a few good matchups on the docket.

Jaylen Samuels, PIT – UPDATE: A shoulder injury to James Conner puts Samules (who missed Week 8 with a knee injury but is close to a return) squarely on the waiver wire radar for Week 9. The Steelers may choose to pick up another RB with Benny Snell also injured, but we’ll know more of the severity of all these ailments later in the week. Stay tuned.

Jamaal Williams, GB – Arron Jones stole the show on Sunday night with 220 total yards and a couple scores, but Williams (55-65 percent owned) is still contributing in the Packers offense and had a fine game on Sunday. He ran the ball seven times for 22 yards and a TD and added 3-14-1 in the win over Kansas City.

Kenyan Drake, ARI – The Cardinals acquired Drake from the Dolphins on Monday morning for a conditional 2020 sixth-round pick. Both Chase Edmonds and David Johnson are expected to miss the TNF game, so the Cardinals were in the market for a running back and Drake (70-75 percent owned) could provide some short-term value in their absence. He’s just not going to do much once the main guys get back.

Darrell Henderson, LAR – Henderson is just 20-25 percent owned and is getting regular work in the Rams’ offense with Malcolm Brown injured. He handled 11 carries and rushed for 49 yards (2-20-0 on three targets) in Sunday’s 24-17 win over the Bengals in London.

Other RBs to consider: Rashaad Penny, Tra Carson, Rex Burkhead


Chase Edmonds, ARI – Edmonds was held in check by the Saints defense before departing in the third quarter with a hamstring injury, rushing for 8 yards on seven carries and adding 2-5-0 receiving. Kliff Kingsbury said Monday that Edmonds might not play Thursday night against the 49ers. With David Johnson (ankle) also sidelined, the Cardinals will roll with a committee of the newly acquired Kenyan Drake, Alfred Morris and Zach Zenner – with Drake being the most exciting of these dart throw plays in fantasy.

Latavius Murray, NO – Murray rushed 21 times for 102 yards and a touchdown in the Sunday’s win over the Cardinals, adding 9-55-1 receiving. It was a huge performance from a player who we liked heading into Week 8. The Saints are on a bye this week and Alvin Kamara should return in Week 10 – but Murray should be rostered in 12-team leagues for his standalone value and handcuff upside in this offense.

Ty Johnson, DET – With as well as Matthew Stafford has been throwing the pigskin, the Lions didn’t need Johnson on Sunday, but the RB was a disaster in fantasy with just seven carries for 25 yards and a 13-yard reception. I had way too many shares in DFS and played him over Damien Williams (TD for the Chiefs) and Devin Singletary (solid game for Buffalo) because of the matchup and the word that he’d be getting a large workload. It's possible the Lions make a trade to add a running back before Tuesday's deadline, but if they don’t Johnson will be a low-floor FLEX for Week 9 in Oakland. Sorry, folks.

Mark Walton, MIA – Update coming Tuesday.

Danny Amendola

Wide Receivers / Tight Ends

D.K. Metcalf, SEA – Owned in fewer than 65 percent of ESPN leagues, Metcalf has had some solid games this season but if coming off his best from a scoring standpoint. He caught two TD passes from Russell Wilson and is a bona fide red zone beast this season with 4 TDs through eight weeks. He’s a risky start in PPR leagues but should be owned in all formats based on his TD upside.

Danny Amendola, DET – We profiled him earlier in the season and he busted for a couple of weeks – and now he’s got two straight games with eight catches and a mess of yards (8-105-0 in Week 7, 8-95-0 in Week 8). Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones may be hauling in the TDs, but Amendola (8.9 percent owned in ESPN leagues) is a PPR maven who’s through his bye and has a favorable Week 9 matchup.

Michael Gallup, DAL – UPDATE: Don’t forget about this guy! Gallup (still available in over 20 percent of ESPN leagues) was on a Week 8 bye with the rest of the team and had a couple quiet games following his monster Week 5 against Green Bay (7-113-1), so some owners may have dropped him heading into the bye. He did catch three of four targets for 34 yards in the Week 7 win over the Eagles, and this week gets to face the Giants – a team he ripped apart for 7-158-0 in Week 1. He’s a risk-reward play of the highest order and makes sense for deeper leagues and DFS.

Darius Slayton, NYG – From my Week 7 article: “Another Giants WR I’m keeping an eye on is Slayton, who has seen at least five targets in three of the first four games he's suited up for. The Round 5 draft pick has above-average speed, decent hands and plenty of upside as a downfield threat – which could be exploited more once Saquon Barkley is healthy.” So that happened, and then Slayton (10-15 percent owned) hauled in 2-50-2 on Sunday, one of eight NFL players to have two TD catches in Week 8. Add him if you like TDs.

Hunter Renfrow, OAK – Tyrell Williams and TE Darren Waller are the top targets in this Oakland passing game, but Renfrow (2-5 percent owned) is coming on strong and posted 4-88-1 on four targets Sunday. He’s an explosive player after the catch and worth a look in deeper leagues.

TE Ryan Griffin, NYJ – Wow! Griffin was spectacular in defeat on Sunday, picking up a pair of scores in his 4-66-2 line. He gets a cake matchup at Miami in Week 9 and is universally available in fantasy.

Other WRs/TEs to consider: Chris Conley, TE Jonnu Smith, TE Tyler Eifert, Demaryius Thomas


Corey Davis, TEN – Davis caught 2-of-6 targets for 9 yards in Tennessee's Week 8 win over the Bucs, while A.J. Brown, Tajae Sharpe and TE Jonnu Smith (filling in for an injured Delanie Walker) all caught TD passes from Ryan Tannehill.

Mohamed Sanu, NE – Sanu played a little more than half of the Patriots offensive snaps (37 of 69) and had two catches for 23 yards on five targets Sunday in the decisive victory over the Browns. He should be mixed in more frequently in upcoming games, including against the Ravens in Week 9.

Cole Beasley, BUF – “The Beas” hauled in 3-of-7 targets for 41 yards and a TD in the Bills’ Week 8 loss to the Eagles – a game that featured high winds and poor defense from the Bills. Beasley had not scored in his first five games with the team, Beasley but now has TDs in back-to-back games.

Kenny Stills, HOU – Stills had an excellent matchup coming in but caught just 3-of-5 targets for 22 yards in Houston’s Week 8 win over the Raiders. He’s a boom-or-bust WR3/4 moving forward.

Alex Erickson, CIN – More of the same for Erickson, who caught 5-of-6 targets for 92 yards in the negative game script for the Bengals in their Week 8 loss to the Rams. He’s worth owning in 12-team leagues and all sizes of PPR league.

Zach Pascal, IND – One catch for 6 yards on two targets for Pascal in Week 8. The roller coaster continues.

TE Kyle Rudolph, MIN – He had some nice games heading into Week 8 but caught just 3-of-3 targets for 17 yards in the Vikings’ Week 8 win over the Redskins.