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Week 9 is a bit hectic with some of the bigger teams on bye. The Saints, Rams, Bengals, and Falcons all have the week off, leaving plenty of holes in those fantasy lineups. The trade deadline is also approaching, and this is a year where we should see a few names be on the move. As the waiver wire gets more and more scarce, we dive into names that should get plenty of opportunity in the second half. Be sure to catch all our Week 9 rankings and fantasy football advice.
Darren Fells – TE – Houston Texans
Average Ownership: 12%, FAAB: $3
The tight end position is a wasteland this season. Here we are looking at Darren Fells, who has been an up and down option for Houston. However when he has hit, it has been in a big way. He is coming off a 23.8 PPR score against Oakland, but has a total of four double-digit PPR point games over the last six weeks. The other two games were below five points. If you are in dire need of a tight end pick up, Fells is first on the list right now. His floor is about the same as every other tight end in the mix, but he has had a more consistent ceiling and has 15% of the red zone targets.
Auden Tate – WR – Cincinnati Bengals
Average Ownership: 34%, FAAB: $3
Auden Tate saw 13 targets in the Week 8 loss to the Rams. He caught just five of them for 65 yards, but produced another double-digit fantasy score in PPR formats. He has not scored less than nine fantasy points since Week 2. While that may not seem exciting, others on the waiver wire can’t say the same. Since Week 3, Tate is averaging 8.6 targets per game. The Bengals will continue to find themselves in a lot of positions to air it out, and Tate will continue to benefit because of this. He has also had 27% of the targets in the red zone.
Kenny Stills – WR – Houston Texans
Average Ownership: 44%, FAAB: $3
It was not a great game for Kenny Stills against Oakland, as he was a major pickup for some given the news to Will Fuller. He had five targets, and has had ten in the last two games. Despite the down game, I still like Stills as an add moving forward. He offers up big play potential, and has flashed that with Deshaun Watson. Still under 50% owned on a weaker WR waiver wire right now, he is the name I am looking for most.
Chris Conley – WR – Jacksonville Jaguars
Average Ownership: 9%, FAAB: $2
Chris Conley has had back to back strong weeks and will pop up on the radar in some deeper leagues. He has 14 targets over the last two weeks, and over 180 receiving yards. Overall he has had some big play potential this season, but a lot of duds too. He has a great Week 9 matchup against the Texans, who have one of the worst pass defenses in the league. I also have some concern for Dede Westbrook, who is dealing with multiple injuries. If Westbrook misses any sort of time, Conley would get a bump. Let’s get ahead of the curve here.
Mark Walton – RB – Miami Dolphins
Average Ownership: 12%, FAAB: $7
Kenyan Drake was traded to Arizona, which is going to cause a headache if everyone there is healthy. This now leaves Kallen Ballage and Mark Walton as the two remaining options. Getting Drake out of town would free up some more touches for Walton. He had already been growing over the last few weeks. Against Buffalo he had 15 touches, and has rushed for over 4.5 YPC in the last two weeks. Opportunity is what we are looking for as far as running backs go right now, and Walton is going to step into a lot of it.
Darrell Henderson – RB – Los Angeles Rams
Average Ownership: 23%, FAAB: $2
Darrell Henderson has been getting some backup run with Malcolm Brown out, who was backing up Todd Gurley for a majority of the season. Over the past three weeks he has seen 7, 12, and 13 touches. Henderson was a name thrown out during draft season as a potential handcuff for Gurley, yet Brown was the guy. Henderson has flashed some potential, and we can hope that him getting more reps can earn him some playing time. Running backs are dry on the waiver wire, and given Gurley’s injury history and the Rams limiting his workload, Henderson is not a bad pickup.
Derek Carr – QB – Oakland Raiders
Average Ownership: 18%, FAAB: $0
If you are looking for a quarterback for Week 9, or are in need of a backup over the rest of the season, Derek Carr is worth a look. He is less than 20% owned across the industry, and has been productive in the games you’d expect him to be. Over the next four weeks he has Detroit, Los Angeles Chargers, Cincinnati, and the New York Jets. It is not the worst schedule in the world, especially for Week 9 against Detroit. Their defense is severely banged up and they lack getting pressure on the quarterback. Carr has been efficient completing over 70% of his passes, and while he isn’t airing anything out, he is a lesser owned quarterback to take a shot on.
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