Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Wishlist - Week 9 (2023)
As many teams have noticed the writing on the wall and a slow start has made the playoffs a near dream, the waiver wires are becoming more lucrative with less hands in the pot. Now’s not the time to become complacent in your leagues. Continue to be active on the waiver wire. At this point, mainly due to injuries, there is more likely than not an open seat on your bench. Don’t be the guy allowing your league mates to scoop up the gold of the waiver wire. If you don’t know who to target, I’m here to offer my favorite targets for this upcoming Week 9 below!
Each week, I will develop a list of must add targets for fantasy football leagues. My goal is to keep each suggestion under 40-percent owned in Yahoo and/or ESPN leagues. At least one of my suggestions will be owned in less than 10-percent of Yahoo and/or ESPN leagues. I will also strive to have at least one player per position (QB, WR, RB and TE.)
Week 8 Results
Kyler Murray (Arizona Cardinals) - N/a
Derek Carr (New Orleans Saints) - 18.3 Points
Darrell Henderson (Los Angeles Rams) - 11.5 Points
Royce Freeman (Los Angeles Rams) - 10.4 Points
Tyjae Spears (Tennessee Titans) - 6.6 Points
Emari Demercado (Arizona Cardinals) - 8.9 Points
Pierre Strong Jr. (Cleveland Browns) - 9.2 Points
Josh Downs (Indianapolis Colts) - 14.2 Points
Kendrick Bourne (New England Patriots) - 12.6 Points
Rashid Shaheed (New Orleans Saints) - 24.3 Points
Jalin Hyatt (New York Giants) - 0 Points
Dalton Kincaid (Buffalo Bills) - 20 Points
Week 9 Suggestions
Will Levis (Tennessee Titans) - Owned in 4% of Yahoo and 1% of ESPN Leagues
Despite the rumors that the Titans were to split time between Levis and Malik Willis, Levis controlled the game and impressed in his NFL debut. He went 19-for-29 for 248 yards and four touchdowns with zero interceptions. After a performance like that, I don’t see how the Titans go back to Ryan Tannehill. Levis added a much needed spark to this otherwise stagnant offense. On top of all of that, he has a very fair rest-of-the-season schedule. He gets back-to-back games with the Steelers and Buccaneers who have allowed the 18th and 19th most points respectively to opposing quarterbacks. After that he gets the Jaguars who have allowed the fourth most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks before a stretch of games with the Panthers (14th most,) Colts (15th most,) Dolphins (fifth most,) Texans (ninth most,) Seahawks (12th most) and Texans (ninth most.) If his debut was anything to expect moving forward combined with his great schedule, Levis may be a must add.
Derek Carr (New Orleans Saints) - Owned in 37% of Yahoo and 21.3% of ESPN Leagues
I harped on Carr two weeks due to his historically great stretch of matchups he was entering. He continued that stretch with a game against the Indianapolis Colts where he posted 18.3 fantasy points. He has thrown for over 300 yards in three straight games. His next two matchups include the Chicago Bears (who have allowed the fourth most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks) and the Minnesota Vikings (tenth most.) Even after the Saints’ bye week in Week 11, all six of his final matchups come against teams that rank between 8th and 23rd in terms of points allowed to opposing quarterbacks.
Kyler Murray (Arizona Cardinals) - Owned in 55% of Yahoo and 31.8% of ESPN Leagues
We’re just two weeks away from Murray being able to start for the Arizona Cardinals. At this point, he remains on the PUP list but head coach Jonathan Gannon remains optimistic that we could see Murray in Week 10 when the Cardinals play the Atlanta Falcons. This is the type of move that can win you a fantasy football championship. If you have the bench spot, now’s the time to grab Murray with the hopes of having him ready to go for the homestretch leading into the playoffs!
Emari Demercado (Arizona Cardinals) - Owned in 36% of Yahoo and 39.2% of ESPN Leagues
James Conner has now missed three games and there isn’t much news in terms of when we may expect to see him back. Either way, that leaves us with at least one more game with Demercado as the ‘bell-cow’ back in Arizona before Conner returns. With the way Demercado has been running the ball, at this point, he’ll likely continue to have a role in the Cardinals’ offense even when Conner is back. Demercado ran the ball 20 times in Week 8 against the Baltimore Ravens for 78 yards. He added a receiving touchdown along the way. He’s now seen 18 and 21 touches respectively over his last two weeks. Even if it's just for one more week, he is a must own in all fantasy leagues at this point.
Zach Charbonnet (Seattle Seahawks) - Owned in 42% of Yahoo and 30.2% of ESPN Leagues
In the Seahawks’ Week 8 matchup with the Cleveland Browns, Charbonnet out-snapped Kenneth Walker 31 to 24. Walker did play hurt which led to that but I believe Charbonnet to have an increased role in this second half of the season. He ran the ball five times last week for 53 yards while hauling in both of his targets. There is much speculation that the split between Walker and Charbonnet during the second half of the season will be close to an even split. If that is the case, getting him now before that takes off could be a league-winning move.
Chubba Hubbard (Carolina Panthers) - Owned in 59% of Yahoo and 42.9% of ESPN Leagues
I know Hubbard doesn’t fit into our perimeters, but he needs to be mentioned. Hubbard has quickly taken over as the lead back for the Panthers, recording 20 and 17 touches respectively in back-to-back games. In those same two games, Miles Sanders saw eight and two touches respectively. His next two games are also mouth-watering. He gets the Colts who have allowed the sixth most fantasy points to opposing running backs and the Bears who have allowed the seventh most. If he’s available in your league, he must be your top priority.
Pierre Strong Jr. (Cleveland Browns) - Owned in 10% of Yahoo and 4.2% of ESPN Leagues
If you’re in a deeper league and the other options listed above are gone, Strong is a pretty decent consolation prize. I listed him last week as an addition but only if Jerome Ford did not play. Ford did play however but Strong still had a decent role for the Browns. He ran the ball ten times for 41 yards and hauled in his one reception for 41 yards. With Deshaun Watson’s availability remaining up-in-the-air, the Browns will continue to force run the football. It may be a three way split between Strong, Ford and Kareem Hunt, but if Week 8 is an indication, all three can have fantasy value moving forward.
Rashid Shaheed (New Orleans Saints) - Owned in 36% of Yahoo and 18.4% of ESPN Leagues
Shaheed was included in last week’s edition of this article series and he popped off with a 24.3 fantasy points performance. He caught all three of his targets for 153 yards and a touchdown. That’s what he does best. He’s a deep ball threat that can take the top off of any opposing defense. I was more excited last week due to his volume (14 targets in two games) but it’s promising to see him pop off in this manner last week. He also gets the Bears this week who have allowed the 15th most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers and the Vikings in week ten who have allowed the seventh most points.
Jayden Reed (Green Bay Packers) - Owned in 17% of Yahoo and 17.1% of ESPN Leagues
Reed had arguably his best game of his career last week as he saw a season-high 79.4-percent of snaps as the Packers utilized more 11 personnel. He caught four-of-six targets for 83 yards. This Week 9 matchup with the Rams is not ideal but he then gets the Steelers who have allowed the third most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers in Week 10, the Chargers who have allowed the most points in Week 11 and the Lions in Week 12 who have allowed the 12th most. Let’s not forget that he is still a rookie working with first year starter Jordan Love. He’s only going to get better over time.
Demario Douglas (New England Patriots) - Owned in 3% of Yahoo and 1.2% of ESPN Leagues
The Patriots WR1 in Kendrick Bourne left Sunday’s game against the Dolphins with a knee injury that may see him missing a few weeks. In his absence, Douglas has a 77-percent snap share and a team-leading 24.1-percent target share. He has now seen 13 targets over his last two outings for nine receptions and 79 yards. On top of Bourne leaving the game, DeVante Parker also left with a concussion. The Patriots’ next five games are also great for receivers as they get the Commanders (who have allowed the fifth most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers,) the Colts (17th most,) the Giants (12th most,) Chargers (the most) and the Steelers (third most.)
Marvin Mims Jr. (Denver Broncos) - Owned in 16% of Yahoo and 7% of ESPN Leagues
This is strictly an anticipation add. The NFL’s trade deadline is Tuesday. I feel like the Broncos may undergo a fire-sale and it is very likely that one of Jerry Jeudy or Courtland Sutton will be on a different team come the end of the day. With that being said, Mims would be the next in line for an increased role. He has done nothing as of late for the Broncos, who have as a whole looked much better.
Trey McBride (Arizona Cardinals) - Owned in 20% of Yahoo and 25.5% of ESPN Leagues
McBride is fresh off a 14 target, ten receptions for 95 yards and a touchdown game against the very tough Baltimore Ravens. He has now seen at least five targets in three straight games. With Zach Ertz on the IR, who had fantasy value himself, McBride is in line for a much increased role, which was evident this past week. He gets another tough test this week with the Browns (who have allowed the least fantasy points to opposing tight ends,) but then gets the Falcons (who have allowed the eighth most points to opposing tight ends,) the Texans (11th most,) and the Rams (fifth most.) For a position that lacks depth, McBride is entering must add territory, especially with Murray coming back.
Taysom Hill (New Orleans Saints) - Owned in 35% of Yahoo and 14.7% of ESPN Leagues
The Saints are once again using Taysom Hill all over the field. He’s posted three straight quality fantasy lines. In Week 6 against the Texans he saw eight targets, catching seven of them for 49 yards. In Week 7 against the Jaguars he caught four-of-five targets for 50 yards while rushing the ball five times for 18 yards and a touchdown. In Week 8 against the Colts he ran the ball nine times for 63 yards and two touchdowns while throwing for 44 yards. It appears that he’ll have an impact in some manner moving forward for the Saints. He has averaged 19.17 fantasy points across his last three games.