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Through The Wire - Week 9

By Antonio D'Arcangelis | 11/2/21 |

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. I’ll also provide a brief update on the players I covered the previous week.

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


Mike White, NYJ – White (nearly universally available), pushed into starting duties following a Week 7 injury to Zach Wilson, staged an epic comeback over the Bengals in which he completed 37 of 45 passes for 405-3-2, adding a two-point conversion reception. White has also been confirmed as New York’s starter for the Thursday night game with the Colts, and could be worth a look in leagues where your starter is on a bye or nursing an injury.

Tua Tagovailoa, MIA – Tua (35-40% owned) was mediocre on Sunday against a tough defense, as he completed 21 of 39 passes for 205 yards with no touchdowns and one interception in the 26-11 loss to the Bills. He also rushed four times for 10 yards and a touchdown, threw a two-point conversion pass and gets a much better matchup in Week 9 facing the Texans.

Other QBs to consider: Cooper Rush (if Dak sits in Week 9), Jimmy Garoppolo, Trevor Siemian


Daniel Jones, NYG – UPDATE: Jones completed 22-of-32 passes for 222 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception (adding 12 rushing yards) in the Giants’ 20-17, Week 8 loss to the Chiefs. He remains a QB2 with weekly upside in the right matchup and should be on your radar during your main QB’s bye weeks.

Trey Lance, SF – Jimmy G stole the show and ran in a couple TD runs, relegating Lance to an emergency role that never transpired. It was a bad week to acquire him.

Trevor Lawrence, JAC – Lawrence completed 32 of 54 pass attempts for 238-1-1 against Seattle on Sunday, carrying the rock just three times for 11 yards. The outlook remains bleak for a Week 9 tilt with Buffalo.

Tyrod Taylor, HOU – Davis Mills got another start but we could see Tyrod as soon as Week 9 at Miami.

Jeremy McNichols

Running Backs

Michael Carter, NYJ – It’s not often we start out our QBs and RBs with Jets players, but Carter went nuts on Sunday (77 yards and a touchdown while adding nine catches for 95 yards on 14 targets in Sunday's 34-31 triumph over the Bengals) and makes for a solid RB2 play on TNF. He’s owned in about 70 percent of fantasy leagues but could be available in yours.

Adrian Peterson, TEN – UPDATE: Peterson will be signed to the practice squad and eventually elevated to the active roster once it’s deemed he’s ready and in shape. With Henry undergoing foot surgery that will sideline him through the end of the regular season, they Titans felt they needed to make a big splash acquisition with a RB of a similar skill set. Peterson projects to earn the bulk of the early-down snaps once up to speed, but his last go-round was with the Lions in 2020 and resulted in 604 hard-earned yards (3.9 yards per carry). A prospective shift toward the passing game could actually give the biggest boost to A.J. Brown in fantasy, though Peterson should be able to post RB2/3 numbers as the recipient of loads of carries on an efficient team with a solid O-Line.

J.D. McKissic, WAS – The Washington Football Team is still peppering McKissic with looks and Sunday was no different as the 28-year-old veteran carried the ball three times for 10 yards and caught all eight of his targets for 83 yards in Sunday’s 17-10 loss to the Broncos. He’s on a Week 9 bye but is still available in about 40-45% of leagues.

Derrick Gore, KC – UPDATE: Universally available heading into Week 8 because he had only played a handful of snaps this season, Gore came out of nowhere and rushed 11 times for 48 yards and a TD in Monday night’s 20-17 win over the Giants. Starter Darrel Williams still racked up 110 scrimmage yards on 19 touches, Gore likely did enough to keep himself in the mix should Clyde Edwards-Helaire (knee) not be able to return in Week 9 versus the Packers. The UL Monroe product could steal goal line touches and short yardage carries moving forward.

Jeremy McNichols, TEN – If the foot injury suffered by Derrick Henry Sunday is season-ending, McNichols (just 2% owned) might be the top add of Week 9. McNichols recorded three receptions on three targets for 33 yards in Sunday’s 34-31 win over the Colts and is the clear handcuff for Henry.

UPDATE: The addition of Adrian Peterson complicates McNichols’ role, which could be limited to passing game work and change-of-pace if AP settles in nicely.

Boston Scott, PHI – Scott was the surprise starter over Kenneth Gainwell and rushed 12 times for 60 yards and two touchdowns in Sunday’s 44-6 blowout win over the Lions. He was unable to haul in his only target but should remain a big part of the offense heading into a Week 9 matchup with the Chargers and their sad-sack run defense.

Carlos Hyde, JAC – Stay tuned on the injury to James Robinson, since it could vault Hyde into the fantasy conversation for Week 9 against the Bills. Hyde is not an exciting option but he did run for 32 yards on nine carries and caught six receptions for 40 yards on eight targets against Seattle on Sunday.

Other RBs to consider: Ty Johnson (5%), Jordan Howard (1-2%)


JaMycal Hasty, SF – Hasty (1-2% owned) rushed just three times for 4 yards and caught both of his targets for 29 yards in Sunday’s 33-22 win over the Bears. He’s not much of an option in Week 9 facing the Cards, though we could see some garbage receptions.

Rashaad Penny, SEA – Seven carries, 7 yards. It was all the Seahawks passing game and some ancillary runs from Alex Collins on Sunday in the Seattle win.

Wide Receivers / Tight Ends

Cole Beasley, BUF – Before my one-week hiatus, I recommended adding Beasley, who came through with flying colors this past week as the favored third-down and possession option for Josh Allen, securing 10 of 13 targets for 110 yards in the victory over the Dolphins on Sunday. Still available in about 30-35% of fantasy leagues, Beasley has taken on a larger role with teams doubling Stefon Diggs and Dawson Knox on the shelf. He’s always a risk-reward play but gets a decent matchup against the Jags in Week 9.

Cedrick Wilson, DAL – Wilson’s huge TD made his fantasy day (3-84-1), but because Amari Cooper is always nursing an injury and we don’t know Dak’s status for Week 9 yet, I think he’s still on the radar for his excellent mojo with Cooper Rush. Stay tuned.

Randall Cobb, GB – The Packers will get their other WRs back in Week 9 against the Chiefs, but Cobb has shown he has plenty left in the tank and in the red zone. He brought in three of five targets for 15 yards and two TDs in the Packers’ 24-21 win over the Cardinals on Thursday and should get a handful of looks facing KC.

TE Evan Engram, NYG – UPDATE: His usage in the Giants’ offense is puzzling, but Engram played okay on MNF (3-15-1 on four targets) and could be on the move to Green Bay, who have expressed an interest in the largely disappointing TE following the loss of Robert Tonyan (IR). Perhaps a change of scenery, a better QB and a playoff run could elevate his game to the next level and provide the low-end TE1 value we hoped Engram would garner in 2021. Stay tuned.

Jamison Crowder, NYJ – Another Jet! Crowder is available in over 80 percent of fantasy leagues and now has some hope for his 2021 fantasy outlook. He had a wild game Sunday, catching eight of nine targets for 84 yards, tossing a two-point conversion and losing a fumble in the surprising 34-31 win over the Bengals.

Other WRs/TEs to consider: Tre’Quan Smith, Elijah Moore, Van Jefferson, Nick Westbrook-Ikhine


Kalif Raymond, DET – Raymond was targeted once but he did not record a catch during Sunday's 44-6 loss to the Eagles. Not good after a promising week.

TE Foster Moreau, OAK – Moreau was on a Week 8 bye and we’ll have to stay tuned to see Darren Waller’s status for the next couple of weeks.

Michael Gallup, DAL – Perhaps recommending Gallup this week was a bit premature, but he’s a talented WR with the ability to separate and what we said about Wilson goes even more for him. He’s worth an add in 12-team leagues.